TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. --
The command chief of Air Combat Command spoke to Tyndall Airmen about the greatest impacts coming to them in the near future and answer questions during an enlisted all-call Dec. 7.
Chief Master Sgt. Frank H. Batten III spoke to more than 200 Airmen about topics such as ACC goal areas, revitalizing squadrons, retention, uniform changes, Enlisted Professional Military Education and leadership.
“We want to revitalize squadrons to the point where we increase readiness and the lethality of those units,” Batten said. “You guys, on an individual basis have that responsibility. That includes where you are at with your skill level training, medical readiness, family readiness, and weapons system readiness. So across the board, we need you focused on that.
“If you are a supervisor of Airmen, a section supervisor, flight chief or squadron superintendent, you need to come to work every day and figure out what it is you have to do to ensure your people are ready to go,” he continued. “I hope that you are thinking about that.”
The Air Force plays a key role in the defense of our nation and its interests, and Tyndall’s F-22 Raptors provide unmatched air dominance, which opens up the battlefield for more options.
“We have to have options ready for our most senior leaders, and that option is right here on your runway with these F-22s and the air superiority role they play,” Batten said. “I need you to be focused on what you are doing.”
One key element in keeping the Air Force ready is taking care of the Airmen by developing leaders.
“We are developing leaders that can go out and lead in a joint environment, they can bring what we have as far as airpower and what we have in the Combat Air Forces and bring that to any fight anywhere across the globe,” Batten said.
Batten mentioned leadership is essential to the Air Force mission and development programs currently in talks and those already in works, such as a unit superintendent’s course, flight commander courses and EPME across the spectrum.
“In a 2015 retention study on why Airmen stay or get out of the Air Force, the number one reason was leadership,” Batten said. “You front line supervisors, section chiefs and superintendents, you are what drives our retention. You are what drive the health of Air Combat Command and our Air Force. I am allowed to do some things that help within our command, but I firmly believe our frontline supervisors can solve nearly every problem within our Air Force.
“We need strong leadership who is willing to stand up and take care of their people. When we do that, our Airmen will take care of the mission for us. Airmen will put in so many hours and so much extra work knowing they are thanked for their work, knowing their work is relevant and knowing that you care about them,” he added.
Chief Batten also mentioned uniform changes in the works, such as switching to the Airman Combat Uniform, female uniform standards and providing feedback or recommendations to the Air Force Uniform Board.
“You can go online right now, and load in ideas and responses. It is always available,” he said.
He mentioned to submit suggestions for consideration by the Air Force Uniform Board, visit the Airmen Powered by Innovation page on the Air Force Portal. On the right side under “Search Ideas / Status of Your Ideas,” click the button marked “Submit Your Idea.”
“From the top down, we talk about innovation,” Batten said. “Make decisions at the level you can, and take the risk at that level. As enlisted [Airmen], make sure that we identify the risk to the commanders and come up with great ideas. If it makes sense to give it a shot, then give it a shot. Like I said earlier, we can solve almost any problem in the Air Force with just the minds in this room.”