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  • Published
  • By Senior Master Sgt. Hector G. Arias
  • 451 EOG First Sergeant
I am confident my fellow Airman will do the right thing. We can learn much from our other services and also from our Airmen by the simple theme of setting the right example for them to follow. If we all, from top to bottom, show that under the worst conditions we do not give in to complacency and we remain strong in our convictions to maintain the highest level of pride, then we can overcome any obstacle or enemy. We need to take advantage of every moment and use it as an opportunity to show our Airmen that by setting the best example for them at all times, they will do the same when it is their turn.

We provide the right environment for our Airmen to excel and strive to minimize distractions to allow full accomplishment of the mission. The mission may take on many appearances, but one common factor does not change--our Airmen. We are here to fight, win, and send our people safely home to their loved ones. I will not fail my Airmen and I challenge you to do the same--we will not fail our Airmen. A great leader told me about their six priorities in completing the mission. The first three: "Do what it takes to complete the mission." The second three: "Do whatever it takes to get the mission done." The commander then told me, "First Sergeant, make sure I have Airmen to do the mission." Not too difficult, let's prepare our Airmen and not fail them.

As leaders we need to prepare today and every day to know every possible detail about our Airmen to include where they are from, their family, what they like to do on their down time, and most importantly, how they decompress. The great leaders will do this flawlessly and will truly know their Airmen. Those are the ones we stand beside and wish we could emulate. We can be them or aspire to be them by simply applying the simple rule of "Know Your Airmen". As leaders we need to be out there with our Airmen not to do their jobs, but to know our Airmen.