Commentary

March 22, 2013

The bad guy

Maj. John Groff
Kunsan AB, South Korea

Who likes to be the bad guy? Do you? How many of you like to tell someone that they need a haircut or to stop chewing tobacco outside a tobacco-use area? No one likes to be the bad guy; no one likes to correct someone doing something wrong.

Is it because of the confrontation or is it the fear of not being liked? Over the years of my service, I’ve noticed that more supervisors choose to overlook items that are clearly against regulation. I think for some it’s because they’d prefer to be well liked by everyone.

Let’s look at two examples how supervisors can be a good or bad guy:
One example is writing an enlisted performance report. Supervisors that don’t provide feedback and can’t take the time to sit down with their Airmen to discuss performance areas needing improvement will likely write that “firewall 5.” So they get to be a good guy. That good guy would also be the one that would write a 4 without any feedback or explanation.

A bad guy would provide constructive feedback and hold their Airmen accountable when they don’t improve or correct their performance. Bad guys feel they owe it to their Airmen to tell them how they’re performing. How else will they ever learn how to improve? If you correct poor performance most Airmen will listen and improve. Most Airmen want to do a good job but they can’t read minds.

The next example is on-the-job training. I believe we’re the best-trained Air Force in the world. We take training very seriously. We take the time to make sure our Airmen know what they’re doing by running them through technical schools prior to sending them to the field. Then, supervisors are expected to take them to the next level. What happens if the good guy doesn’t correct their behavior on the job? They might hurt themselves, others or damage expensive equipment.

A bad guy would stay as long as it takes make sure their Airmen are the best at what they’re assigned to do. Even if it makes them work longer hours or figuring out new ways to help the Airmen succeed. A bad guy will exhaust all their efforts trying to do that.

Being the bad guy for the right reasons can be gratifying whether it’s rules that we all have to follow, keeping Airmen from being hurt, or helping them get back on track with their career.

My bad guy code is to be firm, fair and polite. Whatever your policy is, stick to it. Treat everyone equally and fairly, and be polite; there’s no room for jerks in the Air Force .

We’re counting on you to be our bad guy when you need to be. Being a bad guy is not so bad!




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Money, manpower and minutes

U.S. Air Force graphic by Airman 1st Class Nicollo Daniello FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash.–I’m about to make a big statement, so pay attention. I believe anything physically possible can be accomplished with the right amount of money, manpower and minutes. That’s right. Anything. Just look at some of the amazing architecture and technology devised...
 
 
suicide-prevention1

Suicide Prevention Month

A reminder of our 24/7/365 responsibility to ourselves, each other All Airmen have a responsibility that last much longer than a one-month campaign. This responsibility extends beyond ourselves and includes our work environment...
 
 

Remember past to help inform present

TRAVIS AIR FORCE BASE, Calif.–Like myself, I am sure most of you have heard the saying, “Don’t forget where you came from.” Several years ago, as I was looking through some boxes of my military memorabilia, I ran across a thank you note from Gen. Stephen Lorenz, who at the time was a lieutenant general...
 

 

Gaining Altitude — Growth Opportunities for the Week

Through our character – an opportunity to reflect on important issues in our community Labor Day is more than a weekend sales event.  It supposed to remind us to take time to recognize the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.  Sales events typically recognize the value we place...
 
 

Challenge yourself: Never give up, never quit

I once read that newly created cells in our bodies do one of two things: they either begin to decay or they become more vital. These cells choose their path based on what we demand of them. If we are sedentary, our brains signal our cells to decay; but if we exercise, our cells get...
 
 

Gaining Altitude — Growth Opportunities for the Week

Through our character – an opportunity to reflect on important issues in our community Have you ever tried to change your character?  It’s easier to change a behavior, like drinking less soda, than to change a character trait, like using sarcasm to respond to others. Why is it so difficult? One author puts it this...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>