Chief's Corner - week of March 10
By Senior Master Sgt. Patricia Ford, 50th Space Communications Squadron
/ Published March 07, 2016
SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colo. -- Don't lose your voice
As with every military member, I have a story to tell. I have learned throughout my career using your voice is vital in making a difference in yourself and your Airmen's stories. It's not the voice that is heard but the silent voice that keeps you moving forward to becoming a better Airman, leader and person.
I grew up in a very large family, 15 to be exact. I was surrounded by six brothers and six sisters. While growing up, it was hard to compete with my siblings because they had diverse personalities and each brought something different to the family. Also, it was very hard for my voice to be heard, and my thoughts and ideas to be recognized, because everyone was willing to talk, stand up and make decisions for me. At times, I felt as though my voice was lost.
When I joined the military, my family was not around and was no longer my voice. I was on my own. I learned quickly as a young Airman, my voice became the actions I took to complete the work at-hand whether it was completing my career development course on time, helping the squadron booster club at the unit picnic, or excelling at my job. Moving through the ranks, the military has given me opportunities to use my auditory voice. I was given opportunities to excel by being out in front; leading, briefing and instructing. But my true voice, which made an impact on other Airmen, was the actions I accomplished within the Air Force for my fellow Airmen, both military and civilians.
As a young Airman, my voice was heard in my actions of learning my job and meeting the expectations of my supervisor. As an NCO, my voice was heard by taking care of the Airmen I supervised; guiding them through their own careers and helping them take my place one day. As a senior NCO and now chief master sergeant-select, I look forward to continuing to let my voice be heard through my actions. It is a privilege to have the ability to take care of the Airmen and help them in their struggles and successes.
As you go through your career, think about how your voice can be heard. Your voice is what makes you a better Airman and leader for your Air Force and your Airmen. A boisterous person doesn't mean they will take better care of you, it just means they will be heard. You don't have to be boisterous to be heard, your actions will be your voice. Whether you're a new airman basic or a chief; make sure you don't lose your voice.