HomeNewsArticle Display

Squadron Officer School new curriculum challenges students to ‘know themselves’ first

MAXWELL AIR FORCE BASE, Ala. (AFNS) -- Squadron Officer School’s new curriculum challenges students to know themselves first before they can lead Airmen to prevail in “great power competition.”

 

The new “LEAD to Prevail” curriculum begins with Leadership Experiences and Attribute Development. As the first of three phases, it uses students’ introspective discovery of who they are as individuals and as leaders as the foundation for the rest of the course.

 

“During the LEAD phase, students focus on the human domain, or ‘interpersonal skills’,” said Maj. Spenser Lee, SOS Strategic Outreach and Program Integration director. “It teaches them to be more vulnerable in their leadership style, which equips them to know themselves to lead themselves and to know their team to lead their team.”

 

In developing this part of the “LEAD to Prevail” curriculum, SOS faculty collaborated with faculty at Air University’s Leader Development Course for Squadron Command. The LDC, first offered in 2018, is for officers and civilian leaders tracking toward squadron command or civilian director positions and squadron enlisted superintendents. Fundamentally, LDC sharpens and focuses on the human domain leadership skills of these leaders.

 

Learning “people skills,” however, is not just for those tracking to lead a squadron of a few hundred Airmen. They are just as important to any leader no matter the level of leadership position or the number of people they are leading, and learning these skills earlier in their careers gives them time to refine them.

 

“Our LDC course targets squadron leaders one to three years from command. We do that so our graduates have time to develop and refine the concepts they studied with us,” said Lt. Col. Justin Longmire, LDC director. “However, how awesome would it be if future squadron leaders could be working on these concepts and skills for five to 10 years before taking command? How much more prepared will they be when they’re tapped on the shoulder and asked to take on the sacred burden of command? That’s the value in delivering this human domain content earlier in a leader’s career.”

 

In the second phase, Accelerating Change and Solving Problems Together, students apply the leadership competencies learned in the first phase to incorporate diverse perspectives to address a diverse range of complicated and complex challenges using multidisciplinary design approaches.

 

“In short, they take what they learned in the first phase and use those skills as a foundation to analyze complex organizational challenges,” said Capt. Tara Holmes, SOS Strategic Design Department director. “It’s about identifying the right problems and designing the right approaches for the right users, which requires empathy and understanding problems from multiple stakeholder perspectives.”

 

The culminating phase of the curriculum is Joint Warfare: Leading in Context. In this section, the curriculum covers topics such as airpower doctrine, international paradigms, instruments of national power and joint all-domain operations.

 

“Being an effective leader in this era of modern warfare requires leaders who know their people and their teams and who can trust and rely on them to solve complex challenges if we are to prevail in the great power competition,” said Capt. C. Dan Phillips, SOS Joint Warfare Department director.

 

This latest iteration of SOS is itself the product of a design process during which the faculty and staff were using the same principles to reimagine the program. While that effort began with new strategic guidance, such as the National Defense Strategy, “LEAD to Prevail'' was also a response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

 

Col. Ricky Mills, SOS commandant, has drawn a clear connection between agility at SOS and the chief of staff of the Air Force’s message to “Accelerate Change or Lose.”

 

“We will continue to work to develop leaders our commanders need, leaders better equipped and better connected to keep our Air Force and Space Force the most dominant and respected in the world,” Mills said.

 

Engage

Twitter
New heights Breaking their own record, maintainers and crew members surpassed 50 consecutive combat missions for… https://t.co/IvUmRKn10C
Twitter
Streamlined training improves readiness. #ReadyAF https://t.co/eJA1Ft3320
Twitter
Maintaining readiness through unique times. Airmen assigned to the 15th Wing participate in exercise Tropic Tempes… https://t.co/3uf96rwQPK
Twitter
The Dept. of the Air Force restored military tuition assistance to $4,500 per fiscal year and Air Force Credentiali… https://t.co/b1XKYHpl9y
Twitter
Modern living and educational facilities The Air Force Civil Engineer Center is leading a massive $700 million, mu… https://t.co/wMlJr5T2i3
Twitter
Demonstrating readiness and joint capabilities. #ReadyAF #AimHigh https://t.co/88gGGo3CMG
Twitter
The tools are cool, but it's the Airmen that make them go. #AimHigh #ReadyAF https://t.co/kNrKGKPJ13
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: Met virtually with @Offutt_AFB first sergeants today. I am grateful for their valuable feedback on #Airmen issues and for…
Twitter
RT @PACAF: #ICYMI: Check out these new photos of fighter aircrew participating in a joint interoperability exercise in the @INDOPACOM regio…
Twitter
Air power on full display 🦅 An F-15E Strike Eagle takes off from @48FighterWing during routine training. An array… https://t.co/g4vZsO5ViY
Twitter
Aeromedical evacuation missions consist of critical care transport teams executing patient movement and care.… https://t.co/rbtAum69VT
Twitter
Less downtime means the mission moves forward faster. Airmen assigned to the 60th Logistics Readiness Squadron fro… https://t.co/Yark70RZAY
Twitter
Yes, even robodog is a very good boy. 🐕 🤖 @TeamTyndall is one of the first military bases to implement “computeri… https://t.co/H1OSccLwjg
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Focus on the things that matter & the things you can control. Anything else is a distraction at best. Have a fantasti…
Twitter
RT @GenCQBrownJr: COVID-19 precautions have made in-person engagements with #Airmen challenging. However, I’m grateful for the virtual oppo…
Twitter
Preparing for tomorrow's fight, today. #InnovativeAF #ReadyAF https://t.co/sKXDUgZelP
Twitter
Pit stop⛽️ The E-3 Sentry, which is an airborne warning and control system aircraft with an integrated command and… https://t.co/Qw1bifEZf4
Twitter
RT @DeptofDefense: DOD military medical professionals at @BWI_Airport & @SeaTacAirport began giving rapid #COVID19 tests to service members…
Twitter
Water survival tactics 🚤 Survival, Evasion, Resistance and Escape specialists assigned to the 375th Operations Su… https://t.co/Eu2L4SEyYD
Facebook
The newest Air Force Podcast recently dropped. Listen to a small snippet of CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright talk with Staff Sgt. New about resiliency. Listen to the entire podcast on Youtube: https://go.usa.gov/xpnAD or Subscribe to The Air Force Podcast on iTunes: https://podcasts.apple.com/podcast/the-air-force-podcast/id1264107694?mt=2
Facebook
Our mantra, "Always ready!" It's the spirit we fly by! #B2Tuesday
Facebook
Need some motivation to get your week started off right? Listen as CMSAF Kaleth O. Wright weighs in...
Facebook
The U.S. Air Force Academy gives its cadets some unique opportunities. Ride along one of this opportunities.
Facebook
A United States Air Force KC-135 Stratotanker refuels an F-22 Raptor over northern Iraq, Nov. 6, 2019. U.S. Central Command operations deter adversaries and demonstrate support for allies and partners in the region. (Video by Staff Sgt. Daniel Snider)
Facebook
Although the Silver Star is the third-highest military medal, it's not given often. Today, TSgt Cody Smith was the 49th Special Tactics Airman to receive this medal since Sept. 11th, 2001. Read more of TSgt Smith's amazing story: https://www.airforcespecialtactics.af.mil/News/Article-Display/Article/2024815/special-tactics-airman-battled-through-injuries-awarded-silver-star/fbclid/IwAR2LZWwx1VHdTnQe39rIEBOuJS_0JvMQBBGt7I-E6zsxxn-Lx9387yu43Bc/ Cannon Air Force Base Air Force Special Operations Command United States Special Operations Command (USSOCOM) U.S. Department of Defense (DoD)
Facebook
Tune in as our Air Force musicians along with other military musicians are awarded the National Medal of Arts.
Facebook
Like Us
Twitter
1,310,139
Follow Us