Air National Guard Force Development in the 21st Century

Senior Master Sgt. Christopher Underwood is the 129th Rescue Wing's Human Resources Advisor. The HRA promotes opportunities for all Air Guard members to maximize their potential for success without regard to cultural differences. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ray Aquino)

Senior Master Sgt. Christopher Underwood is the 129th Rescue Wing's Human Resources Advisor. The HRA promotes opportunities for all Air Guard members to maximize their potential for success without regard to cultural differences. (U.S. Air Force photo by Tech. Sgt. Ray Aquino)

MOFFETT FEDERAL AIRIFLED, Calif. -- Gen Craig R. McKinley, director of the National Guard, Lt. Gen. Harry M. Wyatt, director of the Air National Guard, and Chief Master Sgt Christopher E. Muncy, command chief of the Air National Guard, rank force development at the top of their Air National Guard priority list.

I join them in their efforts to develop the forces of the ANG. As leaders and future leaders within this organization, I invite you to join them as well. Force development is essential to the success of our missions as well as to our organization's capability and reliability as a force in the 21st century.

As stated in the Air Force Doctrine Document 1-1, 2006, p. 14, force development is "a series of experiences and challenges, combined with education and training opportunities that are directed at producing Airmen who possess the requisite skills, knowledge, experience, and motivation to lead and execute the full spectrum of Air Force missions. It is the method the Air Force uses to grow experienced, inspirational leaders who have the necessary technical competencies and professional values, framed by a common culture, regardless of career specialty. Force development is the essence of capability to accomplish the Air Force mission. Early in an Airman's career, development is aimed primarily at personal competencies at the tactical level with an introduction to people/team leadership. At the operational stage, personal leadership continues, but much greater emphasis falls into people/team leadership development, and institutional leadership competencies are introduced. At the strategic level, the greatest emphasis is on developing institutional leadership competencies in preparing Airmen to be senior leaders and commanders."

As senior leaders (i.e. commanders, chiefs, first sergeants, and senior non-commissioned officers) we must understand that force development is essential to the success of our organization and its missions, as well as to the development of our Wing as a capable and reliable force in the 21st century.

In order to be successful as an organization we must make available to our Airmen professional military educational options, including in-residence PME as well as opportunities in our local communities that would make them competent and diverse leaders. This includes encouraging our Airmen to support and join professional military organizations as well as to provide service to their communities.

These efforts develop a well-rounded and whole leader, which is a necessity in the 21st century. To be successful it's our responsibility to also award and recognize our Airmen by submitting them for awards, medals and decorations for their significant contributions to their organizations, communities and the nation. Likewise, we must promote and empower our developing Airmen into positions where they are best able to utilize their leadership training and development in the "best interest" of our organization. Positions should include those outside of our Wing, at the State and National Guard Bureau levels, that would benefit the Air National Guard as a whole.

Support of our retention office and recommendations that would be beneficial to our retaining of valuable and competent Airmen within our organization is another great way to succeed in the 21st Century.

Finally, the support of Mission Driven Mentoring and converting our ANG training, education, and experience into opportunities for other unit members on the move.

According to General McKinley, "to be the most capable force, our Airmen must be comprised of men and women with international insight, foreign language proficiency and wide-ranging cultural experiences. The talents, experiences and insights of all Airmen must be recognized and tapped to ensure a prepared, forward-leaning force of the highest caliber."

As your Human Resources Advisor, I am available to assist you in creating an environment in our Wing that harnesses the talents, strengths and knowledge of our diverse Airmen. I will also assist in the transformation of a culture that encourages development and empowerment of our Airmen and one that allows them the opportunities to display their GREATNESS.

With these efforts we can be most effective in achieving our missions as we enhance our retention, productivity, and mission readiness and be successful as an organization in the 21st century.

Resources available to help our force of Airmen develop:
- My Enlisted Development Plan (MyEDP)
- AF Portal
- AFI 36-2618 - Enlisted Force Structure
- AF Doctrine 1 - Basic AF Doctrine
- AF Doctrine 1-1 - Leadership and Force Development
- AF Doctrine 2 - Operations and Organizations
- AFPAM 36-2241 - Professional Development Guide
- https://www.afmentor.com.