Air Force CORE VALUES
SERVICE BEFORE SELF,
EXCELLENCE IN ALL WE DO !!!
From day one of BMT, each trainee is taught
to learn, understand and live by the three core value's, Integrity
First, Service Before Self and Excellence in all that we do. As a
loved one of a USAF member, it is good to learn these yourself so
you will understand why there are some changes in your Airman. Also, some good
lessons for all. I can not take credit for the rest of this post.
The best way to explain is right from
"The Little Blue Book"
which explains all three.
The Core Values are much more than minimum standards. They
remind us what it takes to get the mission done. They inspire us to
do our very best at al times. They are the common bond among all
comrades in arms, and they are the glue that unifies the force and
ties us to the great warriors and public servants of the past.
(1) INTEGRITY FIRST Integrity is a
character trait. It is the willingness to do what is right even when
no one is looking. It is the moral compass - the
inner voice; the voice of self-control; the basis for the
trust imperative in today's military. Integrity is the
ability to hold together and properly regulate al of the elements of
a personality. A person of integrity, for example, is capable of
acting on conviction. A person of integrity can control impulses and
appetites. But integrity also covers several other moral
traits indispensable to national services. Courage: A person of
integrity possesses moral courage and does what is right even if the
personal cost is high. Honesty: Honesty is the hallmark of the
military professional because in the military, our word must be our
bond. We don't pencil-whip reports, we don't cover up
tech data violations, we don't falsify documents, and we don't write misleading operational readiness messages. The
bottom line is we don't lie, and we can't justify any deviation. Responsibility: No person of integrity is
irresponsible; a person of true integrity acknowledges his or her
duties and acts accordingly. Accountability: No person of
integrity tries to shift the blame to others or take credit for the
work of others; "the buck stops here" says it best.
Justice. A person of integrity practices justice. Those who do
similar things must get similar rewards or similar punishments.
Openness: Professionals of integrity encourage a free flow of
information within the organization. They seek feedback from all
directions to ensure they are fulfilling key responsibilities, and
they are never afraid to allow anyone at any time to examine how
they do business. Self-respect: To have integrity also is to
respect oneself as a professional and a human being. A person of
integrity does not behave in ways that would bring discredit upon
himself or the organization to which he belongs. Humility: A
person of integrity grasps and sobered by the awesome task of defending the constitution of the United States Of America.
(2) SERVICE BEFORE SELF Service before
self tells us that professional duties take precedence over personal
desires. At the very least it includes the following behaviors:
Rule following: To serve is to do one's duty, and our
duties are most commonly expressed through rules. While it may be
the case that professionals are expected to exercise judgment in the
performance of their duties, good professionals understand that
rules have a reason for being, and the default position must be to
follow those rules unless there is a clear, operational reason for
refusing to do so. Respect for others: Service before self
tells us also that a good leader places the troops ahead of his/her
personal comfort. We must always act in the certain knowledge that
all persons possess fundamental worth as human beings. Discipline and self-control: Professionals cannot indulge themselves
in self-pity, discouragement, anger, frustration, or defeatism. They
have a fundamental moral obligation to the persons they lead to
strike a tone of confidence and forward-looking optimism.
specifically, they are expected to exercise control in the following
areas: Anger: Military professionals - and especially
commanders at all echelons - are expected to refrain from
displays of anger that would bring discredit upon themselves and/or
the Air Force. Appetites: Those who allow their appetites to
drive them to make sexual overtures to subordinates are unfit for
military service. Likewise, the excessive consumption of alcohol
casts doubt on an individual's fitness, and when such persons
are found to be drunk and disorderly, all doubts are removed.
Religious toleration: Military professionals must remember that
religious choice is a matter of individual conscience.
Professionals, and especially commanders, must not take it upon
themselves to change or coercively influence the religious views of
Faith in the system: To lose
faith in the system is to adopt the view that you know better than
those above you in the chain of command what should or should not be
done. In other words, to lose faith in the system is to place self
before service. Leaders can be very influential in this regard: if a
leader resists the temptation to doubt "the system",
then subordinates might follow suit.
(3) EXCELLENCE IN ALL WE DO Excellence
in all we do directs us to develop a sustained passion for the
continuous improvement and innovation that will propel the Air Force
into a long-term, upward spiral of accomplishment and performance.
Product/service excellence. We
must focus on providing services and generating products that fully
respond to customer wants and anticipate customer needs, and we must
do so within the boundaries established by the tax paying public.
Personal Excellence. Military
professionals must seek out and complete professional military
education, stay in physical and mental shape, and continue to
refresh their general educational backgrounds.
Community Excellence. Community
excellence is achieved when the members of an organization can work
together to successful y reach a common goal in an atmosphere free
of fear that preserves individual self-worth. Some of the factors
influencing inter personal excellence are: Mutual respect:
Genuine respect involves viewing another person as an individual of
fundamental worth. Obviously, this means that a person is never
judged on the basis of his/her possession of an attribute that
places him or her in some racial, ethnic, economic, or gender-based
category. Benefit of the doubt: Working hand in glove with
mutual respect is that attitude which says that all coworkers are "innocent until proven
guilty". Before rushing to
judgment about a person or his/her behavior, it is important to have
the whole story.
Excellence in all we do also demands that we aggressively implement
policies to ensure the best possible cradle-to-grave management of
resources. Material resources excellence: Military professionals
have an obligation to ensure that all of the equipment and property
they ask for is mission essential. This means that residual funds at
the end of the year should not be used to purchase 'nice to
have' add-ons. Human resources excellence: Human
resources excellence means that we recruit, train, promote and
retain those who can do the best job for us.
Operations excellence. There
are two kinds of operations excellence - internal and
external. Excellence of internal operations: This form of
excellence pertains to the way we do business internal to the Air
Force - from the unit level to Headquarters of the Air Force. It
involves respect on the unit level and a total commitment to
maximizing the Air Force team effort. Excellence of
external operations: This form of excellence pertains to the way in
which we treat the world around us as we conduct our operations. In
peacetime, for example, we must be sensitive to the rules governing
environmental pollution, and in wartime we are required to obey the
laws of war.
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