Every Airman’s ability to go above and beyond what’s expected of him begins long before joining the U.S. Air Force. Along the way, we do it for spouses, family, friends, supervisors, community and maybe even ourselves. But is it done rarely, occasionally or often?
Whatever the answer, as Airmen we now must challenge ourselves to clearly exceed the standards and expectations of our leaders, fellow Airmen and ourselves at all times.
We have this opportunity daily by just acting in accordance with our Air Force Instruction. The AFI provides guidance on supervisor-subordinate relationships, conduct, courtesy, character, military bearing, training and fitness.
Many Airmen can recite the AFI. However, is the knowledge always applied?
Goethe stated “Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Willing is not enough; we must do.” Ask yourself the following questions.
- Do I supervise and lead as directed while enforcing standards at all times?
- Do I conduct myself in a professional manner with a good attitude at all times?
- Do I comply with customs and courtesies at all times?
- Do I comply with dress and appearance standards at all times?
- Do I hold myself accountable and communicate through the chain of command at all times?
- Do I complete required training and additional education at all times?
- Do I meet the fitness standards at all times?
- Do I actively adapt within changing environments at all times?
- Do I have an outstanding ability to perform assigned tasks at all times?
- Do I get involved with professional organizations at all the times?
It’s important to think about the responses to these questions. If the responses don’t clearly reflect exceeding standards and expectations at all times, seek mentorship and request feedback from leaders and fellow Airmen. Pursue additional education and membership in organizations for self improvement. Chief Master Sgt. Chuck Frizzell said, “Certain education and involvement activities are not required but highly encouraged to develop a well-rounded Airman.”
When you live by the Air Force core values, integrity first, service before self and excellence in all we do, you clearly exceed standards and expectations.