Today I started my first day of Airman Leadership School. What is Airman Leadership School, I hear you ask?
ALS is a six-week leadership course that every enlisted member must go through before they are allowed to become a noncommisioned officer, i.e. sew on Staff Sergeant stripes. (I made the rank of Staff Sergeant [at my first attempt] back in September, but I'm not due to actually sew on the rank [and get the extra pay that comes with it] until May 1st of this year.)
As with any mangement course, there's sure to be some superfluous and perhaps even unnecessary stuff that I'll have to endure, but the point of the course is to prepare young (and that damn sure doesn't mean me!) enlisted troops with the tools they'll need to make unsupervised decisions and to supervise/lead/train those even younger Airmen under them. And this can only be a good thing.
It is thus that I find myself in ALS for the next six weeks.
I already have a lot of leadership experience, having been a retail manager for four years. However, I realize that the military will teach a somewhat different style of management/leadership and therefore am looking forward to learning another way to lead/supervise/manage.
Surely the things I learn in ALS (and in the military as a whole since I've been in) will only help me when I separate from the service early next year.
I'll blog any significant/interesting/humorous things that happen in the course during the next six weeks.