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Successful supervisors develop successful Airmen

  • Published
  • By Chief Master Sgt. Marty Anderson
  • 90th Missile Wing Command Chief
My concept of a successful supervisor is a professional Airman who embraces the Air Force as a way of life! A professional Airman understands the commitment level expected to the mission and their fellow Airmen. Professional Airmen find ways to involve themselves in the mission, base and community, not makes excuses or find ways to get out of being involved.

We all should want to improve our technical and leadership skills in order to contribute to daily excellence and mission success. We all should want to be involved in base and community activities to improve the quality of life for all. We all should be concerned for the morale and welfare of others and not just ourselves. Professional Airmen seek out these opportunities so they have a positive impact on those around them.

We have all heard the term "lead by example," but that means different things to different Airmen depending on their personal values. For example, if a supervisor believes the job is the only priority, then I have no doubt he is dedicated to the task at hand and ensures the job is done right. I am sure his Airmen will also develop a similar dedication to daily tasks. But, job performance is only part of what it takes to be a professional Airman in the 90th Missile Wing and Air Force Global Strike Command.

I quickly become disheartened whenever I hear a supervisor at any level state, "I am comfortable with staying at this rank or position." This usually translates into "I am just going to do the minimum." This philosophy will negatively impact the Airmen they come into contact with, because Airmen will also adopt this type of behavior.

In order for Airmen to be successful, they must have a multitude of skill sets. Supervisors who have developed these skills and value the Air Force way of life will be very successful and in turn help mentor their Airmen in meeting or exceeding their professional and personal goals.

"Leading by example" is more than a phrase or motto. The actions demonstrated by a dedicated professional supervisor speak louder than words. Airmen see these behaviors and tend to emulate what they see. Successful supervisors involve their Airmen and push them outside their comfort zones in order to grow and learn.

Are you a professional? Is your commitment and dedication to the Air Force worth emulating? Whether you agree or disagree, like or dislike it, you accepted the rank or position as a supervisor or leader, and with that rank or position comes great responsibility. Never forget that what we do or don't do has more consequences than our words.

Our wing has great Airmen who make tremendous sacrifices on a day-to-day basis achieving the Air Force mission. We owe them our very best in our actions to help them become great future Air Force supervisors!