ORI time!

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. David Morrissey
  • 32nd Flying Training Squadron commander
ORI time! It must be, because I've been so busy that when Public Affairs called and asked where my commentary for the Vance Web site and the Scoop was they got a very long pause, and an "Uh, can I get an extension?" response. 

I bet they loved that. 

Right now I am concerned about two things. First and foremost is leading the 32nd FTS through the ORI. In addition, we have some unique personnel challenges in the squadron right now that are drawing my focus to the people and families in the unit. 

ORI keys to success -- there are many, but I'd like to break it down to three: 

Know your mission. 

Articulate how you and your area contribute to the mission. 

Be enthusiastic. 

First and foremost all of us should know why we are gathered here at Vance air patch. I can't speak for your particular area but the Wing's mission in short is to produce pilots, develop Airmen, and support the war. 

In the 71st Operations Group we are most concerned with the producing pilots portion. Our mission in the 32nd FTS is to produce America's best trained pilots by building a foundation of aviation excellence. All our efforts contribute to that overarching cause and support the Group and the Wing's mission. 

That will get me a cup of coffee during the ORI if I can't articulate to the inspection team how the 32nd contributes. 

The second key to success is being able to tell your story. I am telling my Airmen to practice and get in sync on interview stuff. I will be visiting every area of the squadron to do mock interviews. It's not that I want to waste people's time, but I want them to practice articulating how they think they contribute to the mission. 

Being able to talk the walk still doesn't mean much until you deliver it in a way that generates excitement. The third key to success in the ORI is to be enthusiastic. 

In Anthony Antoline's Ph.D. dissertation on student perceptions of motivational behaviors of instructors in a military setting, he found that students learn better from instructors who are passionate and motivated about what they do - go figure. 

So let me ask you, are you more impressed with someone who is driven and passionate about their job, life, career, or do you prefer to sit around with the whiners who seemingly have no passion about anything? I thought so. 

For the ORI, the bottom line is "get up for it." Nobody knows your area better than you. When I was at the Pentagon I had to give a briefing as a captain to a bunch of senior ranking officers. I was intimidated and really nervous until my boss came in and reminded me the only guy in the room who knew anything about what I was briefing was me. The ORI team will be smart, but you are the expert. Tell it. 

The other issue on my mind is taking care of people. The 32nd has a member who just found out that the cancer they have is terminal. It is absolutely humbling to see the love and kindness that people all over the base are showing this military couple. 

I am reminded how important it is that we take care of each other. In military service most often we are geographically separated from our natural support networks of family, local community and church. 

What a difference we can make in each other's lives if we take the time to find out how we can help. If the member with cancer were writing this article the message would be to enjoy life right where you're at, and cherish the time you have with friends and family. 

That's all I've got for now -- see you at the post-ORI celebration!