Commentary

November 1, 2013

Empowering our Airmen

Maj. Kelly A. Gerlach
92nd Contracting Squadron commander

FAIRCHILD AIR FORCE BASE, Wash. — The beginning of a new fiscal year always brings a unique set of challenges. Fiscal year 2014 is no exception.

Not only did we start off the fiscal year with a government-wide shutdown, but we now also find ourselves in a continuing resolution environment coupled with sequestration.

For more than a year now Airmen have been told to start thinking of new and innovative ways to get the mission done safely. Fiscal year 2014 is proving to be no different.

As the Defense Budget shrinks, doing more with less is the new normal. Our senior leaders are challenging us to use our creativity to make the Air Force better for our generation of Airmen and for the generations to come. In a recent speech on empowering Airmen, Gen. Mark A. Welsh III Chief of Staff of the Air Force said, “If it doesn’t make common sense, if it doesn’t make the mission better, if it doesn’t take better care of our people, then just don’t do it and tell your boss you’re done.”

These are powerful words that every Airmen needs to understand and live by.

Do you find yourself in your work center realizing there is a more efficient way to accomplish the mission? Challenge yourself to change the system from the bottom up. Empowering Airmen and trusting them to make the right decisions is the only way the United States Air Force will remain the most powerful Air Force in the world. If not, our Air Force will bleed talent, and ultimately, we will fail to fly, fight and win.

Empowering Airmen requires a delicate balance. For example, the first time an Airman proposes a more efficient way to get the job done and that idea gets shot down, they will be hesitant in the future.
Also, if Airmen are told that an idea is good, but the change is never made, they won’t make further suggestions.

It is incumbent upon leaders at all levels to listen, improve and implement ideas where able. Any changes outside of one’s scope of responsibility must be funneled up the chain of command for action. Feedback and follow-up are essential to making this process work.

By empowering our Airmen, we can continue to keep the Air Force on the road to air superiority.




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


 
 

 
U.S. Air Force photo by Henry Hancock

Weapons school grad challenges Airmen as new AU commander

U.S. Air Force photo by Henry Hancock Lt. Gen. Steven Kwast, Air University commander and 1994 outstanding graduate from Fighter Weapons School at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., addresses Airmen Nov. 12 at Maxwell-Gunter Air Forc...
 
 

AF closes FY14 force management programs

WASHINGTON — Airmen who met the service’s reduction in force board were notified of the board’s results Nov. 19, bringing the fiscal 2014 force management programs to an end. The RIF board selected 354 captains and majors across the Air Force for non-retention, half of the number the service previously projected it would separate. Line...
 
 
Courtesy graphic

Blowing away ashes

Courtesy graphic Tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the U.S., yet more than 45 million Americans still smoke cigarettes. However, more than half of these smokers have atte...
 

 

479 selected for CMSgt promotion

JOINT BASE SAN ANTONIO-RANDOLPH, Texas – Of the 2,525 senior master sergeants eligible for promotion to chief, 479 were selected for an 18.97 percent selection rate, Air Force Personnel Center officials announced today. To see the selection list, go to the Air Force Portal at https://my.af.mil, or myPers at https://mypers.af.mil. Airmen will be able to access their score...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen

Creech chiefs welcome finest Airmen into top enlisted tier

U.S. Air Force photo by Airman 1st Class Christian Clausen Senior Master Sgt. Matthew Saugstad, center left, poses with his wife Senior Master Sgt. Carissa Saugstad, Chief Master Sgt. Butch Brien, 432nd Wing command chief, and ...
 
 
U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika

Creech commandeers career counseling capability

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika Senior Master Sgt. Tonya Joyce (left) and Master Sgt. Marcy Holland, both 99th Force Support Squadron career assistance advisors, are available to help Airmen stationed in Souther...
 




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