HomeNewsCommentariesDisplay

High-touch leadership

JOINT BASE CHARLESTON, S.C. (AFNS) -- Technology has revolutionized our lives and the Air Force. Our high-tech culture and military are capable of unprecedented effectiveness and agility due to the speed of communication. In many facets of our personal and professional lives, technology gives us the ability to communicate rapidly and accomplish a variety of tasks with minimal personal interaction. However, this high-tech world introduces a risk of leaders losing touch with those under their command. To reduce the potential of technological isolationism, leaders must focus on using high-touch tactics, including learning about subordinates, providing continuous performance feedback and taking ownership of the organization’s actions.

Leaders cannot lead effectively by sending a barrage of e-mails; it takes time, effort, creativity and, most of all, requires genuinely caring about the welfare and development of their personnel. In the age of social media and mass e-mails, it is easy to think we know people based on what we see on a computer screen but learning about an individual demands face-to-face interaction, understanding their non-verbal communications and gauging their motivations. Only through the process of learning about an individual can leaders understand how to motivate and mentor their Airmen to achieve excellence.

Deliberate performance feedback is critical to correcting substandard performance, rewarding excellence and putting individuals on a path to being outstanding contributors to the goals of the organization. Virtual feedback is not sufficient. Performance feedback must be a face-to-face communication capitalizing on the knowledge a leader gains from learning about the subordinate. It is easy for leaders to think they provide continuous feedback because they give guidance via e-mail or through another virtual means but those mechanisms are ineffective in comparison to focused personal interactions aimed at guidance and mentorship. Without engaging in interactive and personal performance feedback, leaders risk abdicating the responsibility of taking unbiased ownership of each member’s actions.

A critical component of effective leadership is taking complete ownership of the intent and execution of the organization’s mission. One can only achieve such ownership through high-touch interactions. In an age of digital work accomplishment and communication, a leader can fail to take responsibility for subordinates’ work. Many times that failing is due to not wanting to micromanage Airmen, a noble intent. However, a leader can make the motivation clearer by involving themselves in their subordinates’ actions personally instead of virtually. Additionally, being involved personally, leaders enable an open dialogue which enhances communications of intent.

The technological revolution our society has undertaken over the past few decades is awesome and the application of new technologies has contributed to the U. S. Air Force’s dominance in air, space and cyberspace. However, we must never forget our people are, and will always be, our greatest asset. Regardless of the generation, people are best understood by, mentored by and led by people…not ones and zeros. A high-tech organization deserves high-touch leadership to maximize the effectiveness of its people.

Engage

Twitter
In 2020, Air Force officials enacted improvements in privatized housing across the Air Force, demonstrating a servi… https://t.co/58fi5lU6Y3
Twitter
In January 2020, @AirMobilityCmd rapidly deployed the 82nd Airborne Division to Prince Sultan Air Base in Saudi Ara… https://t.co/aoVhDNe7iB
Twitter
As we celebrate 73 years, we honor the heroes we're proud to have served with. Maj. Louis Sebille flew dozens of co… https://t.co/76wrv9Wo1I
Twitter
In February 2020, the 27th Special Operations Wing at @CannonAFB_ carried out the first forward area refueling poin… https://t.co/4SLMrYERcP
Twitter
As we celebrate 73 years of the U.S. Air Force, we remember the heroes we are proud to have served with. Today we… https://t.co/XjKJtCwKxE
Twitter
In 2020, @USAFReserve identified, activated and deployed 281 medical professionals to New York City for #COVID19 op… https://t.co/nMgn9w4WVs
Twitter
.@USAF_ACC recently re-activated the 15th Air Force as a new Conventional Numbered Air Force which will be dually r… https://t.co/KgTnN9Y4Gs
Twitter
.@AFGlobalStrike opened the new “STRIKEWERX” Innovation Center on May 28, 2020. The center serves as a storefront t… https://t.co/Di7qcIxVMJ
Twitter
As we recognize 73 years of the Air Force's continuing defense of America, we also remember Sept. 17 was designated… https://t.co/vFZpLyVLt2
Twitter
In March 2020, the CV-22 Osprey fleet established the first flying crew chief program. A ceremony elevated five of… https://t.co/cQv1qMzu1A
Twitter
Addressing @AirForceAssoc's #vASC2020, @WILLROP3R, assistant secretary of the Air Force for acquisition, technology… https://t.co/ZjMJm0kSrX
Twitter
.@USAF_ACC guided @Offutt_AFB flood recovery efforts, executed $856 million in congressional funding to support 12,… https://t.co/YmfLdwPIcg
Twitter
As we celebrate 73 years, we remember heroes we're proud to have served with. In 1965, A1C William Pitsenbarger res… https://t.co/vTmZkWGg73
Twitter
RT @cmsaf_official: Teammates — we hear you. Continuing in unprecedented times....managing official/primary duties, child care, virtual s…
Twitter
In partnership w/the Cyber Innovation Center in Bossier City, Louisiana, @AFGlobalStrike developed the Portfolio-le… https://t.co/xyOGprp9By
Twitter
Since the outbreak COVID-19, @AirMobilityCmd has flown 306 sorties providing aeromedical evacuation, airlift, and a… https://t.co/9bdqVfSj40
Twitter
The first two KC-46A assigned to the @USAFReserve were delivered to the 916th Airlift Wing, @SJAFB, North Carolina… https://t.co/brcVdrqOAY
Twitter
In Aug 2020, the USAF pushed to field hypersonic weapons after a final captive-carry test of the AGM-183A Air-launc… https://t.co/c8LN43plk1
Twitter
As we celebrate 73 years, we honor the heroes we're proud to have served with. Today we pay tribute to MSgt John A… https://t.co/YhOCcbdyuR
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
1,278,312
Follow Us