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The National Guard Bureau Introduces Leadership Workshop to Enhance Unit Effectiveness

  • Published
  • By Master Sgt. Rafael D. Rosa
  • 156th Wing

MUÑIZ AIR NATIONAL GUARD BASE, Puerto Rico -- In an effort to enhance unit effectiveness across the Air National Guard spectrum, the National Guard Bureau launched a leadership workshop aimed at bolstering unit performance and efficiency measured during unit effectiveness capstones, with the first official course taking place at the 156th Wing, Jan. 23, 2024, with additional classes conducted through Jan. 25, 2024.

The one-day course was developed by the NGB Inspector General's office, titled “Unit Leadership Workshop”, and seeks to address deficiencies identified in Unit Self Assessment Programs.

“It's all about the Unit Self Assessment Program,” said U.S. Air Force Lt. Col. Roy Nieukirk, deputy NGB IG. “The way I like to refer to it, this course is ‘Management 101’; the concepts work for a civilian organization as well as an Air Force squadron. Management fundamentals are universal.”

The course curriculum is designed as a comprehensive response to identified unit shortcomings, with an introduction to foundational techniques in managing an organization, from creating a mission and vision statement, to identifying goals, down to understanding the data that drives continuous improvement.

“This workshop is not merely an IG initiative but a vital component of organizational management, equipping commanders and Unit Self Assessment Program managers with essential tools for success,” said Nieukirk.

Various participants assigned to Air National Guard units across the country, included the 156th Wing from Puerto Rico, 136th Airlift Wing from Fort Worth, Texas, the 149th Fighter Wing from San Antonio, Texas, the 159th Fighter Wing from New Orleans, Louisiana, and the 147th Attack Wing from Houston, Texas, were the first to attend the course.

“Initial feedback from participants has been overwhelmingly positive, with many expressing gratitude for the valuable insights gained,” said Nieukirk. “Some attendees even advocated extending the course duration, underscoring its perceived importance in enhancing leadership effectiveness.”

The workshop's coordination between NGB IG and the 156th Wing facilitated a synergistic approach to training delivery, allowing for concurrent sessions to address diverse organizational needs. This collaborative effort aimed at maximizing the initial impact of training efforts.

"Coordinating this event was an opportunity we wanted to take full advantage of, given that the wing IG office is focused on restructuring our Unit Self Assessment Program," said U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Hector Alamo, the 156th Wing IG superintendent. "This workshop served as a foundation to which the ultimate end goal is to posture our wing to sustain a high-end fight."

The inauguration of this workshop serves as a reminder that Airmen are the Air Force’s greatest asset, so by providing leaders within the Air National Guard community the knowledge and tools to be successful they can more effectively reach new milestones.