Mar 28, 2005

On Leaders And Leadership

Happy belated Easter everyone. Happy Passover to all my Jewish readers. I've been doing some thinking lately, and thought about my experiences in CAP and the commonality of them with other stories from the military. Considering we're a paramilitary organization it's probably not that surprising, but anyway, that's another story. I've thought about what it takes to be a good leader and why there are people who are gods among men and those who do nothing but breed contempt. I thought about it a lot and came up with a few things.

I have been fortunate to learn leadership from some of the finest people in the world. I have been brought into the fold of my compatriots and given a crash course and have strived to be the best leader I can. But there are others who I have run into who aren't as effective. As a senior NCO, I run across many officers and am sometimes left appalled by the way they treat their subordinates.

Many times have I had run-ins with officers who could not be bothered by their NCOs, who neither respected them, nor trusted them, and it showed. I have seen officers who don't even have the time of day to return salutes. It makes me sick. The NCOs(non-commisioned officers) are the ones who get everything done. We're the guys(and girls) you go to in the clutch to get something taken care of(something I've done a lot of). Officers must rely on their NCOs and the NCOs must in turn rely on officers for orders and directions. It revolves around the unit and making it effective.

But what's the point of this rant, is it just to bitcha and moan until I'm blue in the face? Not really. I have strived to make myself the best leader I can. I take care of those below me and take the younger junior NCOs under my wing to help teach them how to lead. I hope that when I become an officer I can be as effective as possible and help mentor others to be the best they can be. And yes, I WILL return every salute given to me.


- C/ Master Sergeant Andrew Miller, Civil Air Patrol, USAFA

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