Flying high

Sparrow Jets

Reaching new heights in personalised service, Sparrow Jets ensures its discerning clients travel in comfort and style

From horses to aeroplanes, Jacquie Dalton has enjoyed an unorthodox route to her position as founder and CEO of Sparrow Executive Jets, a company that manages private jet charter for select clientele from all over the world.

Jacquie began her career as a thoroughbred jockey, riding in more than 200 races before returning to education. “I left school at 17 and went on to ride and win my first race at 21 to 1,” she says. “I loved racing, it gave me a great work ethic, and taught me the importance of learning an industry from the ground up. In racing that was mucking out a stall, and in every business, at some point, you have to know how to ‘muck out the stall’.”

After graduating top of her class at Northwestern University in the US, she began her second life in the aviation industry, where she put in place some of the lessons learned on the track as well as the classroom. It is a success that is illustrative of her tenacity, attention to detail and intuitive understanding of customer relations. “I credit racing with giving me a competitive edge,” says Jacquie, “and I also learned that, ultimately, whether it’s racehorse owners or jet charter clients, working for high-net-worth individuals requires a level of service that exceeds expectations, with very high standards.”

Before Jacquie founded Sparrow Jets, she had worked in many aspects of private aviation, gaining an unrivalled understanding of the needs of customers, as well as the operational challenges of getting planes in the air. Her primary focuses are the customer and their flight. As she helps transport passengers across the US and the world in comfort in a range of luxury aircraft, she encourages her team to think about the requirements of the individual customer at every stage of the process.

“This is a sacred trust and we have to get it right every time,” she says. “The business is run through invitation and referral only. We value every client, their family and business as a significant responsibility with specific needs. It’s important to understand the customer’s expectations to get an idea why they are flying privately and be certain that we’re the right fit.”

This personal relationship is central to the Sparrow Jets offering. Jacquie ensures she is at the disposal of her clients 24 hours a day. That has meant developing a team who share her work ethic and ideals, something she has achieved through the creation of an all-female team – an anomaly in a male-dominated industry.

“I aim to be a thought leader in the industry and with a strong team of women who share the core principles of what we are doing. The relationship we build with our clients is a reflection of our company culture and extends to the vast network of operators and vendors that we work with around the globe.”

It is this more personal approach that has made Sparrow Jets such a success. As Jacquie notes, a private flight is an intimate experience, with the company also taking responsibility for somebody’s life. Jacquie believes her passengers choose to fly with her company because of their personal faith in herself and her team – her diligent, customer-focused approach filters through to every employee. “Like the sparrow, we each excel in our work individually while building on each other’s strengths to achieve success as a team.”