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Team players make Air Force successful

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Samuel Bunting
  • 386th Expeditionary Communications Squadron
T-E-A-M spells team. Team is something we all are part of, the Air Force Team that is. We sometimes forget, being a team player is important. If you think about how we got here it wasn't an individual effort. Sure, we signed the enlistment paperwork, but that was it. The team got us here.

I grew up in an Air Force family and my father had to be the coolest guy ever. He was a mission crew commander on the E-3 Airborne Warning and Control System (AWACS). He wore a flight suit with the flight cap tilted just right on his head, and on sunny days he rocked the aviator sunglasses. So my interpretation of the Air Force was that only those that flew were the cool ones and flying was what the Air Force was all about.

Boy was I wrong. I had plans of going to the Air Force Academy or at least attaining a Reserve Officer Training Corp (ROTC) scholarship so I could follow in my father's footsteps, but instead I found myself in a recruiter's office clueless as the recruiter asked me what job I wanted to do. I had no idea. So I asked: "What job do enlisted folks do?"

I went to Basic Military Training and learned the enlisted role and realized that everything I thought I knew about the Air Force was wrong. I used to think either you flew and you were cool or you just fixed planes. I came to find out that without the support personnel, the category I fall into now, the flyers could not fly the aircraft.

As a knowledge operations manager, my job involves dealing with a lot of important paperwork. What's the first thing that happens to all of us when we get to BMT? We have to do paperwork before the military training instructors can really get a hold of us. Think about your arrival at your current location. You arrived and had to fill out more paperwork upon in-processing with the PERSCO team. From there you were released to your respective units and each unit required some sort of paperwork to be completed before you could actually start working. Accurate paperwork ensures proper accountability of personnel and update-to-date information, which is integral to team success.

So when it all boils down, all of us are part of the same team. None of us have a more important job than the other. That is true from the operations group flying personnel in and out of here to the maintenance group that ensures their aircraft are safe and ready to fly. To the mission support group that provides communication, supplies, water, air conditioning, security, fitness center, theater and other locations for our morale, and of course you can't forget the medical group providing world class medical and dental care for us.

We're all a part of the same team and none of us would be successful without each other.
So don't think and live as if your job is better than the others. All of us need each other to make the mission a success; otherwise none of us would be here.

T-E-A-M spells team. We're all on the Air Force Team.