Commentary

July 20, 2012

Outcomes successful when everyone knows ‘Big Picture’

by Chief Master Sgt. Bill Peck
56th Maintenance Group

When I enlisted in the Air Force 29 years ago, I didn’t really know my organization’s overall mission. At the time I didn’t understand what my leaders or the organization were trying to achieve. I was but one small cog in a large machine. I thought all I needed was to do what I was told, do a good job and all would be well.

But as time went by, I got promoted and could no longer just do what I was told. I now had to lead and manage people.

At first, I was simply passing along the things my bosses told me needed to get done. I began to realize that if I was going to be telling people what to do, I had better understand why I was telling them to do it. I needed to know and have a stake in my organization’s goals and understand how they fit into the bigger picture. I also needed to make my Airmen understand so they knew how their work contributed to the unit’s mission.

Back in 1991 while assigned to Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., I was working on the flightline on a Friday night reconfiguring F-16s.

We had just downloaded the pods and bombs off the aircraft in preparation for the following week’s flying schedule. Just as we were finishing up and preparing to go home for the weekend, a call came in from Ops stating they needed all the pods and bombs back on the aircraft for Monday.

As you can imagine, we were not pleased. My supervisor headed off to Ops to fight the good fight but came back shortly and told us we had to reload the aircraft. Now he simply could have made us do it without telling us why, but he explained that there was a particular laser-guided bomb that had never been operationally tested with the LANTIRN targeting pod and that it was planned to be employed in Operation DESERT STORM shortly. Needless to say, we reloaded the aircraft, the test was successful and the bombs hit their targets.

Having the bigger picture made a huge difference in our attitudes on that long Friday night, and the sense of accomplishment and satisfaction that came with knowing we directly contributed to the larger mission made it all worthwhile.

So think about that the next time you have to tell your Airmen to do a job that may not make sense to them. I’m not saying you have to explain every order or direction you give to them, but in those situations where it may not seem to pass the logic test, explaining why a task needs to be done and how it contributes to the overall mission can pay huge dividends in the attitudes and productivity of your people.

All of us contribute to the mission. Take the time to let your Airmen know how they fit into the “Big Picture.”




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


 
 

 

Fly, fight & win! Luke plays unique role in AF mission

The mission of the Air Force is to fly, fight and win. The Air Force’s “motto,” as it was originally called, was adopted October 2010. Capt. Gregroy Bollrud of Hurlburt Field Florida, wrote, “It succinctly captures what our Air Force has been renowned for ever since its creation in 1947. Also, the specific choice of...
 
 

Wingman for life

“I look after my wingman. He looks after me. We work together. We fight together.” — Col. Gabby Gabriski, WWII ace Having a wingman has been an essential part of combat flying since the beginning. A wingman is able to watch your “6,” provide support and can offer a different perspective on a situation. These...
 

 
141119-F-HT977-165

Chiefs announced

Senior master sergeants selected for promotion to chief master sergeant at Luke Air Force Base posed in front of the static F-16 Fighting Falcon in front of the wing headquarters building. They are, from left, Kelbey Norton, 56...
 
 

Enlisted promotion system changes continue

WASHINGTON — This January, changes to the Weighted Airman Promotion System will continue with adjustments to the scoring model for promotions to technical sergeant and below, all designed to help ensure job performance is the most important factor when evaluating and identifying Airmen for promotion. The current WAPS enlisted performance report calculation model for technical...
 
 

News Briefs November 21, 2014

Kachina Gate closure The Kachina Gate will be closed to inbound traffic Dec. 8 through 19 for gas valve repair. Outbound traffic will not be affected. For more information, call 623-856-7051. Kids cooking class Kids Kamp Cooking Class is 4 to 6 p.m. for ages 8 to 12 and 7 to 9 p.m. for ages...
 




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=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin