Henri Al Helaly

Chief Operating Officer at Skytex Aero

In his pivotal role as Chief Operating Officer at Skytex Aero, Henri Al Helaly channels his extensive 15-year experience in Ultra-High-Net-Worth-Individual (UHNWI) advisory and the aviation industry to architect top-tier aviation maintenance solutions. His profound understanding of the aviation sector and the needs of UHNWI clientele enables him to consistently meet and exceed industry standards, offering superior and customized solutions that are truly world-class.

Parallel to his role at Skytex Aero, Henri holds the position of General Manager at Strategiae. In this capacity, he expertly orchestrates successful business transactions across the EMEA region. His strategic leadership and acute business acumen are instrumental in creating profitable opportunities and fostering beneficial partnerships across diverse markets.

Furthermore, Henri is an esteemed contributor to the Forbes Business Council and the Entrepreneur Leadership Network. Through these prestigious platforms, he actively shares his wealth of knowledge and professional insights, enlightening the business community with his thought leadership. Always a champion for diversity and technology, Henri uses his influential voice to promote cultural diversity and technological advancements in the industry, inspiring progress and driving innovation.

In all his roles, Henri Al Helaly is more than just an aviation executive or a business leader. He is a visionary, continually pushing the boundaries and striving for excellence in the constantly evolving world of business and aviation. His expertise and dedication play a significant role in shaping the industry, contributing towards an efficient, diverse, and technologically advanced future.

What is your typical day, and how do you make it productive?

As the COO at Skytex Aero and General Manager at Strategiae, my days can be quite varied. Typically, I begin with a review of the previous day’s reports and a briefing with my teams. From there, I dive into meeting with clients and partners, planning for future projects, and solving any immediate issues. To stay productive, I prioritize tasks based on urgency and importance, delegate where possible, and ensure I take regular short breaks to stay fresh and maintain my focus.

How do you bring ideas to life?

I believe in the power of collaboration. To bring ideas to life, I involve my teams early in the brainstorming process. I foster an environment where everyone feels comfortable sharing their insights and perspectives. We then align on the best ideas and break them down into actionable steps, leveraging our collective strengths to implement them.

What’s one trend that excites you?

The incorporation of AI and machine learning in the aviation industry greatly excites me. These technologies have the potential to revolutionize how we maintain aircraft, optimize flight paths, and manage air traffic, making aviation safer and more efficient.

What is one habit that helps you be productive?

I consistently practice mindfulness. Whether it’s through meditation or just taking a few moments to focus on my breathing during a busy day, it helps me stay centered and maintain clarity of thought.

What advice would you give your younger self?

I would advise my younger self to embrace failure as a learning opportunity. Each setback is a chance to learn, grow, and come back stronger. It’s all part of the journey to success.

Tell us something you believe almost nobody agrees with you.

I believe that in the near future, private air travel will become as commonplace and accessible as ride-sharing is today. With the advancements in electric aircraft and air taxi services, this is closer to reality than most people think.

What is the one thing you repeatedly do and recommend everyone else do?

Continual learning. The world is evolving rapidly, especially in technology and aviation. I make it a point to set aside time each week to learn about new developments in my field, and I recommend others do the same.

When you feel overwhelmed or unfocused, what do you do?

When I feel overwhelmed, I step back and take some time to clear my mind. It might be going for a short walk, meditating, or simply switching off from work for a few moments. I find this helps me regain my focus and approach the task with renewed energy.

What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business or advance in your career?

Building and maintaining strong relationships has been instrumental in my career. Whether it’s with colleagues, clients, or partners, these relationships have opened doors to opportunities and collaborations that have driven growth and advancement in my career.

What is one failure in your career, how did you overcome it, and what lessons did you take away from it?

Early in my career, I took on a project without fully understanding its scope, which led to cost overruns and delays. I learned the hard way the importance of thorough planning and understanding all aspects of a project before committing. This experience taught me invaluable lessons in project management and risk assessment.

What is one business idea you’re willing to give away to our readers?

I see a significant opportunity in developing an AI-powered predictive maintenance tool for the aviation industry. This could revolutionize aircraft maintenance, reducing downtime and increasing operational efficiency.

What is one piece of software that helps you be productive? How do you use it?

I use Trello for project management. It helps me track progress, manage tasks, and collaborate with my team, ensuring nothing falls through the cracks.

What is the best $100 you recently spent?

I recently bought a subscription to MasterClass. It has been a great investment, providing me with access to knowledge and insights from leaders in various industries.

Do you have a favorite book or podcast from which you’ve received much value?

My favorite book is “The Lean Startup” by Eric Ries. It provides valuable insights into how to effectively build and manage a startup. I’ve applied many of the principles to my own business ventures with great success.

What’s a movie or series you recently enjoyed and why?

I recently watched “The Martian.” It’s a great story of ingenuity, resilience, and problem-solving under pressure – themes that resonate strongly with me in my professional life.

Key learnings:

  • Collaboration and inclusion of diverse perspectives are key to bringing ideas to life.
  • Mindfulness can help enhance productivity and maintain focus amidst a busy schedule.
  • Continuous learning is crucial in a rapidly evolving world.
  • Building and maintaining strong relationships can open doors to opportunities and collaborations.
  • A failure can serve as a valuable lesson in planning and risk assessment.