Commentary

February 7, 2014

Leadership in changes, challenges — it’s what we do

Lt. Col. PATRICK LAUNEY
56th Logistics Readiness Squadron

Changes and challenges have always been a part of military service. It has confronted Airmen from the beginning evolution of flight to today’s operational environment, ranging from near-peer adversaries to unconventional nonstate groups. History can recount Billy Mitchell’s multiple efforts through the 1920s advocating for an increased role of airpower and a separate service, challenging the status quo to change. The attacks of Pearl Harbor or Sept., 11, 2001, are obvious examples, challenging our notion of security and readiness. Look at the multiple ways airpower has provided kinetic and nonkinetic effects across the spectrum of operations in the last 15 or so years, regardless of environment or threat. Pause for a moment and think about your functional area and how much things have changed just in your career.

As Airmen, when you truly think about your daily duties, you are operating in a context of constant change and challenge. The key is you must confront it and then inform, motivate and lead others through it.

I remember multiple times as a convoy commander having to roll out on a mission even when an improvised explosive device had gone off on a previous route or that day in another part of the battle-space with someone injured or killed. It was obviously very difficult to motivate Airmen and Soldiers in those circumstances as so many emotions run through your mind such as teammates’ safety, your safety, sadness, empathy, frustration and anger.

However, as a leader you either rise to the occasion or you wilt and your people will follow your lead, whether it is to confront the challenge or not. You have to compartmentalize the issue, focus on your task, realizing a lot of others are going to follow you, and lead them through the situation. We clearly face challenging times from every angle today, fiscal woes, manning reductions, changes in global posture and constantly revised adversarial tactics and efforts. We must look at them as opportunities to rise and lead, because our fellow Airmen and every U.S. citizen are relying on that.

Change, challenge and crisis will always be there, and just like anything else in life, it is an opportunity. Ten percent of it is what the problem is and 90 percent is what you do with it. We will face some difficult discussions with some of our Airmen in the next few months with the impending force management reductions. We may even see some talented Airmen separated despite multiple years of dedicated service.

Even with difficulty, a leader must rise to the occasion and face the challenge together with his or her people. The only constant is that we will see more change and crisis.




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


 
 

 
6-140821-F-LC301-007

Sponsoring Airmen makes big difference for them

A permanent change of station can be overwhelming for the Airman coming from technical training school or for the family who feels as though they have moved a thousand times, but having a sponsor can make all the difference whe...
 
 

Air Force News – August 29, 2014

New Mexico Airmen from every specialty completed a four-day deployment exercise Aug. 20 at Holloman Air Force Base as part of the Air Force Commander’s Inspection Program. Air Force’s CIP was rolled out 2013 and specifically focuses on the bases’ ability to rapidly deploy combat-ready Airmen and equipment worldwide. Romania Mihail Kogalniceanu Air Base started...
 
 

People First – August 29, 2014

Editor’s Note: The “People First” section is compiled from information from the Air Force Personnel Center, TRICARE, 56th Force Support Squadron, Airman and Family Readiness Flight, Veterans Affairs, the civilian personnel office and armed forces news services. For the complete story, go to the web address listed at the end of the story. Call for...
 

 

Dollars and Sense

Have you contributed to the Thrift Savings Program? Are you now considering taking a TSP loan? Before you do, consider the total costs of the loan and the impact upon your future benefits. TSP loans borrow from your contributions and accrued earnings. Additionally, you are charged a $50 loan fee that is taken from your...
 
 
Courtesy photo

Chaplain’s thoughts …

Courtesy photo C.S. Lewis C.S. Lewis has a character in one of his books who speaks of the Law of Undulation. The law is simply this; life is marked by ups and downs. The present unpleasant circumstance that may be marring your...
 
 
DT-140822-F-NQ441-010CROPPED

New SNCOs head back to school

A Luke Honor Guardsman presents the Prisoner of War and Missing in Action table Aug. 22 during the Senior NCO Professional Development Course in the Club Five Six Ballroom at Luke Air Force Base. The table is a reminder of thos...
 




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