Ah, so you must be one of those smart finance guys.
Naw, I'm not that smart. I just have an overdeveloped BS detector.
Ironically, since you mentioned building airplanes, when I was in senior management I reported directly to our CEO who was a former SVP for the Boeing company. Assuming that's the airplane company you are referring to, I got a good indoctrination to their way of thinking. (Though this was several years ago when, I am told, the Mcdonnell Douglas management philosophy was spreading through the company so things may have changed.)
You are correct in your assumption of both the identity company and the way its mindset has changed over the past 15 years since the merger. However, further common on my part about all this would constitute an indiscretion on my part so I'll have refrain from saying more.
I'll tell you from experience, I have a lot more freedom as an engineer/engineering manager than I did in senior management. I also work far fewer hours, travel much less, and get paid about the same. I'll take being an engineer most days!
I do envy you. Having the freedom to apply your skills creatively is a privilege to be valued. If we finance people get too creative, we wind up going to jail.