Picture, for a moment, being in the midst of a challenge. How will you deal with that challenge? Will you shy away? Will you hide in the shadows of another’s motivation and know-how? Or, will you move into the forefront and say I’m ready to lead?
Leadership is not something found in a book, Air Force Instruction or guidance.
Leadership is a state of mind that pushes each of us to go further than we ever thought we could. It is patience, caring and compassion. It’s knowing how to pull the best out of your Airmen and understanding how their contributions will aid in the accomplishment of the mission. Showing compassion builds a bond between you and your Airmen thus creating resiliency and morale.
It has been said that some were born to lead; however, there is a standard set for us as a force, and we must all step up to the plate and accept leadership roles and responsibilities. Some supervisors nowadays want their Airmen to like them and don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. Being a leader is not about friendship or feelings; it is holding someone to a standard and then holding them accountable for not meeting or exceeding that standard.
Our subordinates desperately need us. They look up to us. I implore everyone to push forward into a better demonstration of what a leader is. Be perseverance in the flesh. Empower your Airmen by giving them the opportunities that will allow them to show you and everyone else what they can do.
As our force draws down, the need for effective leadership has never been more relevant. It is time to prove ourselves worthy and take our capability to the next level. We are more than capable. We are inherently great.
Find the leader within yourself. To lead or not to lead? There is no question.