Air Force

February 22, 2013

Top Reserve shirt talks first sergeants’ importance

by Tech. Sgt. Richard Gonzales
419th Fighter Wing public affairs

Chief Master Sgt. Michael Bellerose, Air Force Reserve Command’s first sergeant functional manager. (U.S. Air Force photo)

HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah — Early in his career, Chief Master Sgt. Michael Bellerose saw a first sergeant fix a problem others said couldn’t be solved. Bellerose, a security forces patrolman at the time, was working at a base air show and someone told him there weren’t enough box lunches for him and his team, he recalled. A first sergeant overheard the conversation and 45 minutes later Bellerose and his team had food. That small act of kindness from a random first shirt set the path for his Air Force career, he said.

Two decades and a dozen assignments later, Bellerose is Air Force Reserve Command’s first sergeant functional manager. He mentors 509 first sergeants and advises Reserve leaders on how best to use those Airmen. Bellarose relayed his beliefs on the role of first sergeants.

Is being a first sergeant tough?

It is the toughest job ever for an enlisted Airman. You see the good, bad and ugly of a unit. But it’s also very rewarding. First sergeants take care of Airmen in the shadow of the mission. If a first sergeant is doing a job well, the unit is going to succeed and we see that on unit climate assessments. If a first sergeant has good ratings on a climate assessment, the unit is most likely excelling in its mission.

So, what’s the benefit for Airmen to become first sergeants?

Well, we go from being operational leaders as supervisors to strategic leaders as first sergeants. First sergeants get incredible leadership development when stepping out of their career fields. We see people go back to their units after taking off their diamond and a lot of them end up taking on larger responsibility. Nothing else offers the leadership opportunity and development you get from being a first sergeant. If you ask any first sergeant to take off his or her diamond and go back to their old career field, none of them wants to leave.

What do you do to help shirts become better leaders?

What I really like to do is get new first sergeants and take them away from what they know. For example, I want to take a first sergeant with background in the mission support group and rehouse  in the maintenance group, so a whole new culture can be learned. Then, a few years later, reposition with operations or medical. So, when they return to their unit, they are a senior noncommissioned officer with experience in several distinct cultures, which increases their ability to lead and understand the entire organization.

What skills help a Reserve first sergeant succeed?

A first sergeant’s job isn’t done at the end of a Unit Training Assembly. Networking and fostering relationships are a huge part of being a first sergeant. If things go wrong, you need a good network to get things done in a timely manner, especially when you only see your Airmen one weekend a month. Family problems, marital problems and financial issues are the kind of things that come up and a first sergeant needs to be able to know how to quickly help their Airmen.

The March Air Reserve Base First Sergeant’s Association is readily-available to assist members with whatever is needed to bring balance to their careers and family life. For more information, contact your unit first sergeant.




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


 
 

 
Tammy_Duckworth,_official_portrait,_113th_Congress

Knowing the facts: National Disability Employment Awareness Month

Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth, an Iraq War veteran, was deployed to Iraq as a Blackhawk helicopter pilot for the Illinois Army National Guard in 2004. One of the first Army women to fly combat missions during Operation Iraqi Fr...
 
 

452nd felt early frost in Cold War

(Ninth in an 11-part series that was first run in the Beacon in 2007) Two weeks after the D-Day invasion, 47 B-17s from the 452nd Bombardment Group and other Army Air Forces units were destroyed by German aircraft at a largely undefended Russian airfield. The attack, which began about 12:30 a.m. June 22, 1944, destroyed...
 
 

Air Force to implement TDY policy changes

The Air Force recently implemented two TDY policy changes that will impact travel reimbursements for Airmen. The first change, which took effect Oct. 1, made changes to the Joint Travel Regulations, Reimbursable and Incidental Expense Policy. The second will be a change in long-term TDY per diem expenses and take effect Nov. 1. Under the...
 

 
running

Lacing up: Finding your ‘WooHoo’ moment

U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Natasha Stannard For those who run with me, they know I can get a bit noisy. A celebratory “WooHoo” is a must at the start of taking any hill. The drumbeat of sneakers on the pavement, labore...
 
 
Dom-Violence-Aware-Month-photo

Domestic Violence awareness Month: How to help a friend who is being abused

Here are some ways to help a friend who is being abused: •Set up a time to talk. Try to make sure you have privacy and won’t be distracted or interrupted. •Let your friend know you’re concerned about her safety. Be hone...
 
 
(Courtesy photo/Joe Mora)

Shadowy figure blocks exit to room in March Field building

(Courtesy photo/Joe Mora) A camera captures what appears to be a shadowy figure (left side) sitting in one of several chairs lined up against a wall in a building on March Air Reserve Base Wednesday, Aug. 13, 2014. The image wa...
 




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