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KnuckleDragger
06-07-2014, 06:05 AM
The new 931/932(effective 20140701) are on e-publishing.

http://static.e-publishing.af.mil/production/1/af_a1/form/af931_(effective1jul2014)/af931_20140701.pdf

I did not expect the self assessment portion. Don't know how much value it will add, other than to brand new airmen.

The rating portion seems VERY black&white. I will probably need to use the comment section for a troop that falls into a grey area. It definitely seems to be paving the way for the next epr form and quota system.

...BIG CHANGES...

sandsjames
06-07-2014, 12:34 PM
The new 931/932(effective 20140701) are on e-publishing.

http://static.e-publishing.af.mil/production/1/af_a1/form/af931_(effective1jul2014)/af931_20140701.pdf

I did not expect the self assessment portion. Don't know how much value it will add, other than to brand new airmen.

The rating portion seems VERY black&white. I will probably need to use the comment section for a troop that falls into a grey area. It definitely seems to be paving the way for the next epr form and quota system.

...BIG CHANGES...

Are there some good changes? Yes. Here are some issues I still have:

Training section..."Ahead of time and above standards"...If one requires a 70 passing score will they get marked in this box if they are ahead of time and score a 71? According to the form, they should, but I'm sure supervisors will still have different requirements.

Whole Airmen concept, WHAT????? How subjective is that?????

A couple things I like. Everything has to show a positive impact on the military. Somebody getting the bachelor degree doesn't necessarily mean a mark to the right...unless it somehow has a "significant positive impact".

I also like the "N/A" blocks at the top half.

I think there is still a bit of grey area but I think it is somewhat better overall. It's going to be tough handing out 5s...well, at least for the next few years until a few people don't get promoted because they didn't have enough EPR points and the supervisor sees a dirtbag from another shop get promoted.

One last thing...Standards..."Raised the standard in ALL areas"...How do you raise a standard? And does it really have to be in ALL areas? Almost sounds like you're going to need at least 100 on your PT Test here...maybe some extra credit?

Also, how do you exceed standards in dress and appearance? Shorter haircut? Bald? Buy new boots once a week so they don't get dirty? I don't get it.

bcoco14
06-08-2014, 07:13 AM
I predict these forms will get about as much use as the ones we currently are using. Essentially nonexistent. It’s a noble idea but unless it gets incorporated into the actual evaluation system then it’s pointless. Just another good idea fairy that took a bunch of resources to design and will be ineffectively implemented. The feedback system is, dare I say, even more messed up than the EPR system. A documented form is something I see as not necessary to begin with.

In 15 years I have had ONE official feedback session. That was at my third assignment, as a SSgt, and it was pointless for the most part. You don’t need a form to tell someone what is expected of them or if they are messing up, just my take.

Now for quotas. I have heard Chief Cody say on more than one occasion that there won’t be any. If for some reason that doesn't end up being true they would have to realign every ranks EPR close out to the same period of time. While that is just some admin thing it wouldn't be hard, but can you even imagine having to do a majority of an entire shops worth of EPRs all at once? That would be counterproductive.

Chief_KO
06-08-2014, 01:49 PM
It is my understanding that a copy of the PFW must accompany the EPR as it is routed for signatures, so that should take care of the under usage.
IAW the AFI, it is the RATEE's responsibility to ensure the feedback is conducted. When the RATEE signs the EPR he concurs that feedback was given on the date indicated on the form.
It is also my understanding that EPR close out dates will by synced to the respective PECD. That single action will accomplish more to diminish inflation than anything else. When 40 SSgt EPRs hit leadership at the same time it will be EXTREMELY EASY to determine how many earned a 5, 4, or 3. (Works fine for the Navy!).
The RATEE's self-assessment is a valuable tool...if anyone has ever done a self-assessment we are much harder. much more critical on ourself than others are. Very few people can honestly rate themselves as excellent or outstanding across the board, but many supervisors do.
Is this form and the new EPR perfect, of course not...and no form ever will be. BUT, IMO this is a move in the right direction.

sandsjames
06-08-2014, 01:56 PM
It is my understanding that a copy of the PFW must accompany the EPR as it is routed for signatures, so that should take care of the under usage.
IAW the AFI, it is the RATEE's responsibility to ensure the feedback is conducted. When the RATEE signs the EPR he concurs that feedback was given on the date indicated on the form.
It is also my understanding that EPR close out dates will by synced to the respective PECD. That single action will accomplish more to diminish inflation than anything else. When 40 SSgt EPRs hit leadership at the same time it will be EXTREMELY EASY to determine how many earned a 5, 4, or 3. (Works fine for the Navy!).
The RATEE's self-assessment is a valuable tool...if anyone has ever done a self-assessment we are much harder. much more critical on ourself than others are. Very few people can honestly rate themselves as excellent or outstanding across the board, but many supervisors do.
Is this form and the new EPR perfect, of course not...and no form ever will be. BUT, IMO this is a move in the right direction.

Any guesses about how this will affect small units compared to large units? For instance, if I'm in a squadron with 40 airmen there will be more 5s "available" than a unit with 10.

Also, one is not supposed to be rated against people in other career fields, are they? It's supposed to be against peers which, to me, means people in the same rank/career field. I can see that completely overlooked with all EPRs being submitted/reviewed at the same time.

In addition, if the supervisor submits an EPR he cannot be forced to change it, so is this just going to be accompanied with threats to the supervisor's EPR if he doesn't comply with what "leadership" thinks of the rating?

Chief_KO
06-08-2014, 02:00 PM
Regarding writing all the shop's EPRs at the same time (for that respective rank). This is an easy fix.
Let's say TSgt is the first rank that will fall into this new system. Gather all your TSgts into a room and tell them this:
"Your name is on this form twice, my name is on it once. This form is twice as important to you as it is to me...It is your responsibility to provide well written inputs to support your rating."
As it stands now, 20 - 50% of bullets are "shared" between multiple RATEEs. This should also be eliminated. Only one NCO "led" an event, hence only one EPR will state that.
If you're in a production type environment, time for you to start tracking how many X do you accomplish (unless there is a data system already in place that does this).
TSgt X accomplished 137 actions (job orders, customers, etc.) with a 1% error rate (internal QA review, customer feedback, do over, etc.)
TSgt J accomplished 47 actions with a 18% error rate (but is on every base committee, etc.)
Pretty easy to rate these 2 accurately regarding mission accomplishment!

The problem lies in that the majority of organizations do not have a tracking mechanism in place, nor do they have a measurable standard in place for individual performance.

DannyJ
06-09-2014, 06:02 PM
Regarding writing all the shop's EPRs at the same time (for that respective rank). This is an easy fix.
Let's say TSgt is the first rank that will fall into this new system. Gather all your TSgts into a room and tell them this:
"Your name is on this form twice, my name is on it once. This form is twice as important to you as it is to me...It is your responsibility to provide well written inputs to support your rating."
As it stands now, 20 - 50% of bullets are "shared" between multiple RATEEs. This should also be eliminated. Only one NCO "led" an event, hence only one EPR will state that.
If you're in a production type environment, time for you to start tracking how many X do you accomplish (unless there is a data system already in place that does this).
TSgt X accomplished 137 actions (job orders, customers, etc.) with a 1% error rate (internal QA review, customer feedback, do over, etc.)
TSgt J accomplished 47 actions with a 18% error rate (but is on every base committee, etc.)
Pretty easy to rate these 2 accurately regarding mission accomplishment!

The problem lies in that the majority of organizations do not have a tracking mechanism in place, nor do they have a measurable standard in place for individual performance.

There's the problem right now. Things will almost immediately revert to how they are now. Jobs like mine are incredibly dependant on others doing their job (outside my realm of control) for me to look as though I'm doing mine...meaning my measureable performance is more subjective. Kinda hard to put numbers to actions, so the leadership will end up going back to "Who was at the bake sales, squadron picnic, booster club president, etc.?" The problem is always going to be performance vs percieved performance, particularly in jobs where metrics are derivative.

Absinthe Anecdote
06-09-2014, 07:18 PM
There's the problem right now. Things will almost immediately revert to how they are now. Jobs like mine are incredibly dependant on others doing their job (outside my realm of control) for me to look as though I'm doing mine...meaning my measureable performance is more subjective. Kinda hard to put numbers to actions, so the leadership will end up going back to "Who was at the bake sales, squadron picnic, booster club president, etc.?" The problem is always going to be performance vs percieved performance, particularly in jobs where metrics are derivative.

During feedback sessions, it should be easy to focus specifically on the task at hand.

In my experience, ambiguous metrics doesn't directly lead to bake sale over emphasis, but to gross exaggeration of the member's contribution when the EPR is written. The bake sale shit comes later, be patient, I'll get to it.

In intel for example, an airmen might write a few hundred technical reports and be given credit for contributing to the killing xx of the enemy.

It is a big stretch of the imagination and everyone in the EPR chain knows it, but those bullets go out that way.

For a Cold War era cop it was even worse, if a patrol was sent to check out a fence alarm because a gust of wind set it off, it would get written up as they repelled the entire Red Army.

An attempt to make EPR bullets meaningful, resulted in them becoming meaningless.

Here is where the volunteerism war started.

The ridiculous duty performance bullets resulted in well meaning supervisors, who wanted their troops to stand out, to start pushing the total person concept, and the bake sale diva was born.

All behold that fancy strutting peacock, the bake sale diva, who raises funds for garish Hail & Farewell trinkets, and boosts the morale of the squadron with his tantalizing cupcakes.

Miraculously, this industrious peacock still finds the time to enroll in community college classes, volunteer at animal shelters, and read books to elementary school children. Forget about the fact, they only showed up at the animal shelter or book reading once in the entire year, that shit went in the EPR.

At some point a SNCO tried to through cold water on this bullshit, but another well meaning SNCO who wanted to protect his troop's dazzling "total person concept" feathers, stepped in and insisted that exact number of hours spent at the animal shelter be documented.

And that is how the volunteerism arms race started. To end that arms race means plucking all those beautiful tail feathers, and I ask you, who the fuck wants a squadron of peacocks with no tail feathers?

sandsjames
06-09-2014, 07:38 PM
Apparantly, looking at the form and the blocks farthest to the right, you will need to score at least a 101 on your PT test to be rated there.

CrustySMSgt
06-09-2014, 08:29 PM
Agree they aren't perfect, but when followed by aligning close outs and routing the feedback with the EPR, it has the opportunity to move us in the right direction. I like adding demographics to the rating blocks (some, most, some, very few); it will now force the discussion as to how someone can be rated in the very few category. Sure, they're all just words and without a concerted effort to get folks to do the right thing, we'll be in the same boat we've always been... so I hope folks use this as the "line in the sand" opportunity and move forward with a new outlook.

sandsjames
06-09-2014, 08:43 PM
Agree they aren't perfect, but when followed by aligning close outs and routing the feedback with the EPR, it has the opportunity to move us in the right direction. I like adding demographics to the rating blocks (some, most, some, very few); it will now force the discussion as to how someone can be rated in the very few category. Sure, they're all just words and without a concerted effort to get folks to do the right thing, we'll be in the same boat we've always been... so I hope folks use this as the "line in the sand" opportunity and move forward with a new outlook.

It does have some improvements. With the requirements listed I'd think it's fair to say that there are no firewalls walking the face of the earth, and probably very few 5s at all. Looks like it makes it much easier to give a 3, as it should.

Airborne
06-10-2014, 02:16 AM
It does have some improvements. With the requirements listed I'd think it's fair to say that there are no firewalls walking the face of the earth, and probably very few 5s at all. Looks like it makes it much easier to give a 3, as it should.

I think they said the same thing when it went from the 9 form to the 5 form.

sandsjames
06-10-2014, 02:42 AM
I think they said the same thing when it went from the 9 form to the 5 form.Yeah...they sure did. It will change just like not pressing the ABUs changed...for a very short period of time.

mikezulu1
06-10-2014, 02:43 AM
I think the biggest question is will the gatekeepers still require 5's for a PCS decoration and consideration for DSD and other specials duties/positions. If so you might as well throw this and the new EPR form thats coming in the trash.

Chief_KO
06-10-2014, 01:31 PM
Spot on MZ1. You nailed it. Couldn't agree more.
If you gave an Airman a blank EPR form in an "academic/non-attribution" environment and asked them to rate themself, you would see very few 5's and the front sides would look like a scattergram; which would represent an honest rating. Unfortunately AF put the "if you're not a 5 you're $hit" (IYNAFYS) policies in place, then blamed front line supervision for inflation!
Add to that the number of commanders, chiefs, first sergeants, etc. who prejudge an inbound based upon previous EPR ratings.
The big hole in the new system remains the lack of SMART performance standards (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely)across the board. A7 was working on that for MSG units (installation support) back in 2008...I provided my inputs...guess that died when that general moved on...
Civilian employees and orgs are assessed via SMART, even us lowly GS are; each mission area should have SMART standards that can be applied organizationally and down to the specific employee (as applicable).
My first retired job (civilian sector) rated my office area monthly (performance production & error rate) and listed all the employees (multiple locations) rated #1 to #129 (and rated each location accordingly). Guess what fed into our annual performance report...until AF completes this basic HRD (human resource development) task, we will always be chasing our tail...no form can correct this glaring deficiency.

Absinthe Anecdote
06-10-2014, 02:20 PM
I think they said the same thing when it went from the 9 form to the 5 form.

There were a lot of 4s given out that first year, but it quickly went back to over inflated 5s the next year.

sandsjames
06-10-2014, 02:39 PM
There were a lot of 4s given out that first year, but it quickly went back to over inflated 5s the next year.

Speaking of over inflated, how's your ego today?

SomeRandomGuy
06-10-2014, 02:40 PM
I think the biggest question is will the gatekeepers still require 5's for a PCS decoration and consideration for DSD and other specials duties/positions. If so you might as well throw this and the new EPR form thats coming in the trash.

Before we can answer this question we need to define what exactly a PCS decoration means. Do we want a decoration to mean that you showed up, worked 4 years, and stayed out of trouble? Or is a PCS decoration supposed to mean you went above and beyond? Here is what I would do, take the decoration points out of the promotion equation. Then PCS decorations become something that you only give to exceptional performers as opposed to something you are expected to get.

Now, with DSD we also need to define how important it is to only select the best of the best. For Air Force Honor Guard maybe it's ok to still require all 5s. For Postal Duty I'm not so sure it matters.

CrustySMSgt
06-10-2014, 03:56 PM
All great points! No doubt this is an uphill battle and there will be those that keep their head in the sand and say this problem will never be resolved and continue to rubber stamp firewall 5s for average troops. But I'm really hoping everyone who's spent years bitching about inflation, shitty SNCOs who should have never been promoted past TSgt, having to carry the dead weight of their worthless ROAD peers, and all the rest take a stand and push to do the right thing.

SRG's point about decs is spot on... Decs are as inflated as EPRs; if you didn't go above and beyond douring a tour, should you get a dec as a "thanks for showing up to work for 3 years" gift?

LogDog
06-10-2014, 06:03 PM
The new 931/932(effective 20140701) are on e-publishing.

http://static.e-publishing.af.mil/production/1/af_a1/form/af931_(effective1jul2014)/af931_20140701.pdf

I did not expect the self assessment portion. Don't know how much value it will add, other than to brand new airmen.

The rating portion seems VERY black&white. I will probably need to use the comment section for a troop that falls into a grey area. It definitely seems to be paving the way for the next epr form and quota system.

...BIG CHANGES...
I looked at this form and it's a good start but it can also be improved upon. Having been retired for 11 years, I recall the feedback forms I used and they were merely "square fillers" that had little to no reflection on the individual's actual performance. I would suggest, on the new feedback form, they include job standards/metrics the individual is expected to meet in Section V. You could combine and reduce Sections VII and VIII to allow room for job standards/metrics.

Shove_your_stupid_meeting
06-11-2014, 01:28 AM
I think the biggest question is will the gatekeepers still require 5's for a PCS decoration and consideration for DSD and other specials duties/positions. If so you might as well throw this and the new EPR form thats coming in the trash.


In regards to SD assignments, I'm not keeping my hopes up. The funny thing is, as many of us know, some firewall 3s could fill some of these SD assignments just fine. Just because they're SD assignments, doesn't necessarily mean they're all for the best of the best by any means.

technomage1
06-11-2014, 12:19 PM
My 2 cents are that I'm very glad I'm going to retire in a few years. The AF as an organization has lost its collective mind and I'm pretty sure it's beyond repair.

I am sick of pulling the load for those volunteer divas who will only wind up ahead of me in the pecking order anyway. I nail the education bullets because - guess what - my second career will depend on the education I'm getting - and for no other reason.

I finally figured out this deployment why I do so well downrange and not so well at HS. Well, it's because downrange the job matters, not the BS.

As far as the form goes, feedback is supposed to be between you and the rater. The only time the form got pulled was when there was a discrepancy and proof was needed. And that was limited to pretty much who needed to know. Now the entire chain or any lackey that handles the form will see it. Yeah, my honesty for the self assessment and the talking points just went to zero.

Am I really going to say to my rater in section VIII, 3 that my stressors include the complete and utter abject stupidity of policies at all levels of management? You want to help? Mission first, people always! Remember that? Now, mind, I'd say that much more diplomatically to my rater in a private session but now? Not. Saying. A. Word. Why? Because it will come back to be used against me if I do. That honest, behind doors conversation that SNCOs need to be effective has been eliminated.

Sorry to be kind of down but it generally pisses me off that I'm called a model SNCO by a 30 year Army SGM (E-9) and a AF Lt Col downrange for doing just that yet I don't have much chance for SMSgt by the time I retire nor does that formula seem to work in garrison. Seems like the shiny pennies get the attention and those that work their butts off with their head down get the shaft.

Also...I've noticed personality tends to influence ratings for some people. Some people assume there is only 1 way to do a job. In management/leadership that is not true. Different styles can be effective. I'm not a dominant personality, yet my team is highly effective. Because I'm quietly off to the side fostering and nutruing my people they get the job done, yet it seems some people can only see those who bark orders and are out in front, regardless of how effective (or oftentimes ineffective) they are.

Frustrated? Yeah, you bet. And I don't see how this will do anything but make it worse.

Absinthe Anecdote
06-11-2014, 12:54 PM
Seems like the shiny pennies get the attention and those that work their butts off with their head down get the shaft.



Get ready for a shocker, it is the exact same way in the outside world.

If you think that being a passive person that hides in the shadows is rewarded in any organization, you might as well start sniffing glue, because you are hopelessly out of touch with reality.

technomage1
06-11-2014, 05:15 PM
Get ready for a shocker, it is the exact same way in the outside world.

If you think that being a passive person that hides in the shadows is rewarded in any organization, you might as well start sniffing glue, because you are hopelessly out of touch with reality.

Big difference between hiding in shadows and letting your work speak for itself.

I came in late. I'm well acquainted with how it is in the civilian world. Results speak to the bottom line.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 05:25 PM
Here's my civilian feedback form:

1. Instructs students through assigned blocks of instruction (40% of rating)
2. Develops and/or revises lesson plans (20%)
3. Monitors and evaluates student progress and performance (20%)
4. Inputs necessary date into system (10%)
5. Maintains professional and technical expertise (10%)


That's it. Nothing more to be rated on. Don't need to advance my expertise. Don't need to "exceed" any of the standards because there is nothing to exceed. The standard is the standard. You either meet it or you don't.

Being shiny or not has zero impact on how I am rated. It's amazing how a civilian can efficiently do the job without all the bells and whistles.

You know the biggest difference? There is no "up or out" so I am not compared against anyone else...just the standards.

Absinthe Anecdote
06-11-2014, 05:33 PM
Here's my civilian feedback form:

1. Instructs students through assigned blocks of instruction (40% of rating)
2. Develops and/or revises lesson plans (20%)
3. Monitors and evaluates student progress and performance (20%)
4. Inputs necessary date into system (10%)
5. Maintains professional and technical expertise (10%)


That's it. Nothing more to be rated on. Don't need to advance my expertise. Don't need to "exceed" any of the standards because there is nothing to exceed. The standard is the standard. You either meet it or you don't.

Being shiny or not has zero impact on how I am rated. It's amazing how a civilian can efficiently do the job without all the bells and whistles.

You know the biggest difference? There is no "up or out" so I am not compared against anyone else...just the standards.

You can even let yourself become an out-of-date douche bag and still be a 90 percent.

Measure Man
06-11-2014, 05:38 PM
The Self-Assessment is interesting to me. Y=Yes, but N does not equal No. N=Needs more information. I get the subtlety.

3.. Understands the importance of admitting shortcomings or mistakes.
- This is like the ultimate irony question test. If you answer this one with a "Y", is that evidence that you don't admit your shortcomings? If you answer "N" then you are being honest and admitting you have a shortcome. I love this question...for those on active duty still, when you do your first one, remember question 3 is a trick question, a trap!

4. Understands the importance of refusing to partake in inappropriate behavior despite social pressure.
- Define inappropriate? I'm sure some of my behavior would be deemed inappropriate by many...but, not by me. Is that a Y or N? Some of your behavior might be deemed inappropriate by me, but not by you.

Understands the importance...not sure about that phrase...does that mean you do it, or just understand that something is important? Like, sure, I understand the importance of pretty much all of those, but there are a few I don't do well, or didn't when I was active duty.

I had a supervisor once that would have me fill out the feedback form on myself first, we would discuss my marks on myself, and then would get his marks and discuss his perceptions of things, and where there were differences we would talk about that. A lot of the differences were my own insecurities that I was actually doing well with. Those were great feedbacks, he also bought me lunch while we discussed them. Hopefully that would happen with this form as well. Some of the questions are probing and deserving more than a Y or N...but maybe it's just a vehicle to open discussion, which is great.

Absinthe Anecdote
06-11-2014, 05:38 PM
Big difference between hiding in shadows and letting your work speak for itself.

I came in late. I'm well acquainted with how it is in the civilian world. Results speak to the bottom line.

Results that your boss will take the credit for, if you insist on being a wimpy little wall flower. You sound like you've been hanging out with SJ too much.

Measure Man
06-11-2014, 05:41 PM
Here's my civilian feedback form:

1. Instructs students through assigned blocks of instruction (40% of rating)
2. Develops and/or revises lesson plans (20%)
3. Monitors and evaluates student progress and performance (20%)
4. Inputs necessary date into system (10%)
5. Maintains professional and technical expertise (10%)


That's it. Nothing more to be rated on. Don't need to advance my expertise. Don't need to "exceed" any of the standards because there is nothing to exceed. The standard is the standard. You either meet it or you don't.

Being shiny or not has zero impact on how I am rated. It's amazing how a civilian can efficiently do the job without all the bells and whistles.

You know the biggest difference? There is no "up or out" so I am not compared against anyone else...just the standards.

Good point.

As a contractor now, our company does not do evaluation, appraisals or anything like that. In fact our company policy is to NOT do them, so even if a subordinate manager wanted to, he is not supposed to do them according to policy.

I've found people still do pretty much the same work...and if we were going to promote someone, we still know who we should promote.

Of course, we are small company where we all know each other...I realize managing a fair promotion system for 300,000 people is not the same.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 05:49 PM
You can even let yourself become an out-of-date douche bag and still be a 90 percent.

Yep...Or I can avoid recording test results and still be excellent.

Hell, I only have to instruct 25% of my scheduled time in order to pass.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 05:50 PM
Good point.

As a contractor now, our company does not do evaluation, appraisals or anything like that. In fact our company policy is to NOT do them, so even if a subordinate manager wanted to, he is not supposed to do them according to policy.

I've found people still do pretty much the same work...and if we were going to promote someone, we still know who we should promote.

Of course, we are small company where we all know each other...I realize managing a fair promotion system for 300,000 people is not the same.

We are currently without a GS-11 so we don't have a supervisor. We all still do our jobs just as we did when he was here. You let an NCOIC go on leave for a couple weeks and it turns into a Chuck-e-Cheese.

Measure Man
06-11-2014, 06:12 PM
I think the biggest question is will the gatekeepers still require 5's for a PCS decoration and consideration for DSD and other specials duties/positions. If so you might as well throw this and the new EPR form thats coming in the trash.

+1 Nothing drove EPR inflation more than submitting them with decorations.


Spot on MZ1. You nailed it. Couldn't agree more.
If you gave an Airman a blank EPR form in an "academic/non-attribution" environment and asked them to rate themself, you would see very few 5's and the front sides would look like a scattergram; which would represent an honest rating. Unfortunately AF put the "if you're not a 5 you're $hit" (IYNAFYS) policies in place, then blamed front line supervision for inflation!

Yeah...if you got a 4, you're scum of the scum.


Add to that the number of commanders, chiefs, first sergeants, etc. who prejudge an inbound based upon previous EPR ratings.

That's kind of what they're for, though.


The big hole in the new system remains the lack of SMART performance standards (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, Timely)across the board. A7 was working on that for MSG units (installation support) back in 2008...I provided my inputs...guess that died when that general moved on...
Civilian employees and orgs are assessed via SMART, even us lowly GS are; each mission area should have SMART standards that can be applied organizationally and down to the specific employee (as applicable).


How do you measure an attain leadership? judgement? caring for Airmen? My fear with a push for objective standards is that it merely creates a promotion shopping list. "I must care for one Airman this month, it's your turn."


My first retired job (civilian sector) rated my office area monthly (performance production & error rate) and listed all the employees (multiple locations) rated #1 to #129 (and rated each location accordingly). Guess what fed into our annual performance report...until AF completes this basic HRD (human resource development) task, we will always be chasing our tail...no form can correct this glaring deficiency.

I would be curious to see what kind of environment that would create.


All great points! No doubt this is an uphill battle and there will be those that keep their head in the sand and say this problem will never be resolved and continue to rubber stamp firewall 5s for average troops. But I'm really hoping everyone who's spent years bitching about inflation, shitty SNCOs who should have never been promoted past TSgt, having to carry the dead weight of their worthless ROAD peers, and all the rest take a stand and push to do the right thing.

Here is where I think you are a little off-point, and I've heard it from a LOT of senior people. They feel inflation has come about because first line supervisors, commanders, or whoever would not "do the right thing" or were "trying to be everyone's friend" or were "afraid to make the call" etc.

I don't think that is it at all. I think inflation has mostly come about because a supervisor thinks highly of their subordinate and honestly and genuinely believes that person to be better than his/her peers...and that person DESERVES to be promoted, if not this year, within a year or two. That supervisor also recognizes that in order to get that person what they DESERVE, they MUST have a firewall EPR and earn a decoration.

My above average subordinate deserves to be treated as such. However, if I rate that person as above average (an not "truly among the best")...that person, whom I'm somewhat responsible for, will suffer an injustice. I don't want my troop to get injustice, I want them to get what they deserve, especially to the degree that I can control it.

I think this is the point the AF is missing...supervisors are trying to do the right thing. The AF seems convinced that supervisors are either afraid or unwilling to do the right thing.


SRG's point about decs is spot on... Decs are as inflated as EPRs; if you didn't go above and beyond douring a tour, should you get a dec as a "thanks for showing up to work for 3 years" gift?

I don't know if decs are inflated or not. I don't know...if someone takes a year of their life and goes to Korea and serves honorably...what's the harm in recognizing that contribution to the country?

I don't know what it means for decs to be inflated or not...they cost the govt. very little, but mean a lot to people. Part of the problem with decs, I think, is career military people tend to see them only within the concept of what they mean for promotion, career, etc....and that after 20+ years you have all of these decorations and ribbons and stuff and some of them they think are "meaningless" in terms of career. They are forgetting that a good portion of our bros. and sises. do not serve a career. Many might do one term and that Good Conduct Medal, or Achievement Medal is one of the few things that actually stays with them into civilian life. They still have been an decorated Airman that served honorably...and that should mean something in our country.

No, it's not a "gift"...it's a thank you for giving up 4 years of your life to serve honorably award. So, you get that and what? VA healthcare?

Absinthe Anecdote
06-11-2014, 06:24 PM
Yep...Or I can avoid recording test results and still be excellent.

Hell, I only have to instruct 25% of my scheduled time in order to pass.

So basically, what's important is being well liked, if you want to be a superstar, and not pissing your boss off to the point that he tries to get rid of you, if you want to be an average joe.

That's at the heart of any system, regardless of the amount of paperwork or evaluation blocks.

Measure Man
06-11-2014, 07:01 PM
So basically, what's important is being well liked.

It's amazing how far that will get someone in life.

SomeRandomGuy
06-11-2014, 07:03 PM
The Self-Assessment is interesting to me. Y=Yes, but N does not equal No. N=Needs more information. I get the subtlety.

3.. Understands the importance of admitting shortcomings or mistakes.
- This is like the ultimate irony question test. If you answer this one with a "Y", is that evidence that you don't admit your shortcomings? If you answer "N" then you are being honest and admitting you have a shortcome. I love this question...for those on active duty still, when you do your first one, remember question 3 is a trick question, a trap!

4. Understands the importance of refusing to partake in inappropriate behavior despite social pressure.
- Define inappropriate? I'm sure some of my behavior would be deemed inappropriate by many...but, not by me. Is that a Y or N? Some of your behavior might be deemed inappropriate by me, but not by you.

Understands the importance...not sure about that phrase...does that mean you do it, or just understand that something is important? Like, sure, I understand the importance of pretty much all of those, but there are a few I don't do well, or didn't when I was active duty.

I had a supervisor once that would have me fill out the feedback form on myself first, we would discuss my marks on myself, and then would get his marks and discuss his perceptions of things, and where there were differences we would talk about that. A lot of the differences were my own insecurities that I was actually doing well with. Those were great feedbacks, he also bought me lunch while we discussed them. Hopefully that would happen with this form as well. Some of the questions are probing and deserving more than a Y or N...but maybe it's just a vehicle to open discussion, which is great.

The questions you mention remind me of the stupid Self Assessment you have to do if referred to ADAPT. There is an entire series of two part questions that go like this..

(First Part) I become bold when I am intoxicated
1 Agree Strongly 2. Slightly Agree 3.Neutral 4. Disagree Slightly 5. Disagree Strongly

(Second Part)This is a..
1. Good Thing 2. Neutral 3. Bad Thing

So if I say I disagree that I am bold when drunk then how should I answer the second part? Am I saying it's a good thing that I am not a bold drunk or am I saying that it is a good thing to be a bold drunk?


There are like 40 or 50 of these questions and they are all over the place. Everything from being happy, to horny (though they used a different word). I can't see how there is any value in the assesment unless you sit down and explain your answers.

Measure Man
06-11-2014, 07:07 PM
(First Part) I become bold when I am intoxicated
1 Agree Strongly 2. Slightly Agree 3.Neutral 4. Disagree Slightly 5. Disagree Strongly

(Second Part)This is a..
1. Good Thing 2. Neutral 3. Bad Thing



It's a trick question. The only correct answer is: "I don't know, I've never been intoxicated."

Absinthe Anecdote
06-11-2014, 07:31 PM
The questions you mention remind me of the stupid Self Assessment you have to do if referred to ADAPT. There is an entire series of two part questions that go like this..

(First Part) I become bold when I am intoxicated
1 Agree Strongly 2. Slightly Agree 3.Neutral 4. Disagree Slightly 5. Disagree Strongly

(Second Part)This is a..
1. Good Thing 2. Neutral 3. Bad Thing

So if I say I disagree that I am bold when drunk then how should I answer the second part? Am I saying it's a good thing that I am not a bold drunk or am I saying that it is a good thing to be a bold drunk?


There are like 40 or 50 of these questions and they are all over the place. Everything from being happy, to horny (though they used a different word). I can't see how there is any value in the assesment unless you sit down and explain your answers.

They are designed to merely promote thought about drinking habits of the test taker. If a person whose life is truly in shambles because of alcohol sits down with a test like that, it might give them a moment of clarity.

No doubt that the test may seem dumb to some people, but they are aiming it at people who are at the bottom of the whiskey barrel.

CrustySMSgt
06-11-2014, 07:44 PM
Here is where I think you are a little off-point, and I've heard it from a LOT of senior people. They feel inflation has come about because first line supervisors, commanders, or whoever would not "do the right thing" or were "trying to be everyone's friend" or were "afraid to make the call" etc.

I don't think that is it at all. I think inflation has mostly come about because a supervisor thinks highly of their subordinate and honestly and genuinely believes that person to be better than his/her peers...and that person DESERVES to be promoted, if not this year, within a year or two. That supervisor also recognizes that in order to get that person what they DESERVE, they MUST have a firewall EPR and earn a decoration.

My above average subordinate deserves to be treated as such. However, if I rate that person as above average (an not "truly among the best")...that person, whom I'm somewhat responsible for, will suffer an injustice. I don't want my troop to get injustice, I want them to get what they deserve, especially to the degree that I can control it.


I might think that was true, IF all those fighting for their troops had something to back them up. But when they actually try and defend their 2-3 time PT fail, no CCAF/PME MSgt, making an irrational argument that despite these failures, they really are truly among the best, there is no way of comprehending their thought process. These are folks that aren't going to get promoted, so you can't justify arguing you don't want to hurt their promotion potential by giving them less than a 5, so it just comes down to not wanting to hurt their feelings by calling it like it is.

But I do agree that when the troop really is above average, the current system doesn't allow them to be rated accordingly, because you're right, most supervisors are giving these folks 5s.

I think a great deal of the problem is that this is the only thing 99% of them know. There are very few of us left that were around for the EPR/APR conversion where there was a disjointed effort to try and make this change influence the validity of ratings, but with no AF-level guidance, unified leadership push, or standardization, it failed miserably. From what I've heard, those working the changes to the system are working hard to not make the same mistakes as we did then. Aligning closeouts with PECDs will be one step in the right direction; looking at all the records in that grade at the same point in time will make it easier to see who's outstanding and who's average.

No system is going to be perfect. And change is never easy. I am really hoping the changes will at least make SOME difference and move in the right direction. Do I think on day 1 all the average folks will instantly be given 3s? No, but I do think we can make a serious dent in knocking down 5s from being 85%. And after a few years, if we all work together to make it stick, it will get easier.



I don't know if decs are inflated or not. I don't know...if someone takes a year of their life and goes to Korea and serves honorably...what's the harm in recognizing that contribution to the country?

I don't know what it means for decs to be inflated or not...they cost the govt. very little, but mean a lot to people. Part of the problem with decs, I think, is career military people tend to see them only within the concept of what they mean for promotion, career, etc....and that after 20+ years you have all of these decorations and ribbons and stuff and some of them they think are "meaningless" in terms of career. They are forgetting that a good portion of our bros. and sises. do not serve a career. Many might do one term and that Good Conduct Medal, or Achievement Medal is one of the few things that actually stays with them into civilian life. They still have been an decorated Airman that served honorably...and that should mean something in our country.

No, it's not a "gift"...it's a thank you for giving up 4 years of your life to serve honorably award. So, you get that and what? VA healthcare?

After a year in Korea they get the "been there, done that" Korean Defense Service Medal, so they do get recognized for their service to the country (ours AND theirs lol). Do we really want to turn meritorious decorations in to participation trophies? No doubt we're close to that now, but at least there is some screening involved. The harm in doing so is it does influence promotion as well as devalue outstanding performance. As with EPR ratings, what incentive is there to busting your ass and earning a 5 or a decoration if the average folks are going to get the same rating/decoration? If we reward mediocrity, mediocrity becomes the standard.

I wholeheartedly agree they should mean something and when someone does on hitch an separates with a medal awarded for meritourious service, they should be very proud of it. If the slacker they worked with got the same medal, they'll remember that and it will mean less. If everyone got gold medals in the olympics, would having the 10th place guy showing off his gold medal on a box of Wheaties mean anything?

Absinthe Anecdote
06-11-2014, 08:35 PM
The promotion system and the evaluation systems are obviously too complex.

What if someone came along made the evaluation system simple, like having only a ready or not ready for promotion elevation in order to test?

Have a small list of things that result in a not ready endorsement, Art 15s, PT failure, not completing PME.

I'm sure that people would scream like hell about that too, but in reality it wouldn't be that different from an over inflated complex system.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 08:52 PM
So basically, what's important is being well liked, if you want to be a superstar, and not pissing your boss off to the point that he tries to get rid of you, if you want to be an average joe.

That's at the heart of any system, regardless of the amount of paperwork or evaluation blocks.

Nope...I don't even have to be liked. Not part of my feedback/evaluation.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 08:56 PM
I might think that was true, IF all those fighting for their troops had something to back them up. But when they actually try and defend their 2-3 time PT fail, no CCAF/PME MSgt, making an irrational argument that despite these failures, they really are truly among the best, there is no way of comprehending their thought process. These are folks that aren't going to get promoted, so you can't justify arguing you don't want to hurt their promotion potential by giving them less than a 5, so it just comes down to not wanting to hurt their feelings by calling it like it is.

But I do agree that when the troop really is above average, the current system doesn't allow them to be rated accordingly, because you're right, most supervisors are giving these folks 5s.

I think a great deal of the problem is that this is the only thing 99% of them know. There are very few of us left that were around for the EPR/APR conversion where there was a disjointed effort to try and make this change influence the validity of ratings, but with no AF-level guidance, unified leadership push, or standardization, it failed miserably. From what I've heard, those working the changes to the system are working hard to not make the same mistakes as we did then. Aligning closeouts with PECDs will be one step in the right direction; looking at all the records in that grade at the same point in time will make it easier to see who's outstanding and who's average.

No system is going to be perfect. And change is never easy. I am really hoping the changes will at least make SOME difference and move in the right direction. Do I think on day 1 all the average folks will instantly be given 3s? No, but I do think we can make a serious dent in knocking down 5s from being 85%. And after a few years, if we all work together to make it stick, it will get easier.



After a year in Korea they get the "been there, done that" Korean Defense Service Medal, so they do get recognized for their service to the country (ours AND theirs lol). Do we really want to turn meritorious decorations in to participation trophies? No doubt we're close to that now, but at least there is some screening involved. The harm in doing so is it does influence promotion as well as devalue outstanding performance. As with EPR ratings, what incentive is there to busting your ass and earning a 5 or a decoration if the average folks are going to get the same rating/decoration? If we reward mediocrity, mediocrity becomes the standard.

I wholeheartedly agree they should mean something and when someone does on hitch an separates with a medal awarded for meritourious service, they should be very proud of it. If the slacker they worked with got the same medal, they'll remember that and it will mean less. If everyone got gold medals in the olympics, would having the 10th place guy showing off his gold medal on a box of Wheaties mean anything?

The problem is that NOT getting a dec and NOT getting a firewall 5 should NOT hurt you, it should help those who do. Unfornately it doesn't work that way and everyone knows it but all are still insistent on keeping the same system and periodically changing how it is supposed to be scored.

Absinthe Anecdote
06-11-2014, 09:01 PM
Nope...I don't even have to be liked. Not part of my feedback/evaluation.

It's not on your feedback/evaluation form, but you are being judged on that by the people that have power over you.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 09:08 PM
It's not on your feedback/evaluation form, but you are being judged on that by the people that have power over you.

And the judging of me by those who have "power" over me results in what? You tried to get a DOD civilian fired lately?

As a matter of fact, the only thing a poor evaluation does to me is keep me from getting put in for any sort of bonus. But the paychecks still roll in.

Stalwart
06-11-2014, 09:16 PM
You tried to get a DOD civilian fired lately?

Or at the VA.

A friend of mine who is a Navy O6 CO just spent the better part of a year getting a civilian terminated, a long arduous process. It probably helped her that she was an HR rep and knew the rules, it didn't help that she rarely came to work and was abusive to the people that worked with her.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 09:20 PM
Or at the VA.

A friend of mine who is a Navy O6 CO just spent the better part of a year getting a civilian terminated, a long arduous process. It probably helped her that she was an HR rep and knew the rules, it didn't help that she rarely came to work and was abusive to the people that worked with her.

Yeah, that could be an issue. Not showing up to work will do it pretty much every time.

Though I may have to run it through my union rep to find out exactly how many days I can skip before they can get rid of me.

Measure Man
06-11-2014, 09:23 PM
I might think that was true, IF all those fighting for their troops had something to back them up. But when they actually try and defend their 2-3 time PT fail, no CCAF/PME MSgt, making an irrational argument that despite these failures, they really are truly among the best, there is no way of comprehending their thought process.

I don't think the 2-3 PT fail people are getting 5s. At least not that I remember. The no CCAF/PME thing...I think someone COULD truly be among the best performers without having CCAF/PME. Oh, perhaps they could be marked down in Education/Self-improvement or whatever, sure...but only if those that they are out-performing are getting marked down in the Job Performance block....but that doesn't happen either.

There was a time when a guy could make Chief without a CCAF. Then what happened, was since we weren't making differentiations on job performance...we HAD to find someway to discriminate so that not everyone was the same...so we picked the EASY things to discriminate on...go/no-go objective things...CCAF/PME/Decoration/PT score, etc. Because we don't know how to evaluate job performance.


These are folks that aren't going to get promoted, so you can't justify arguing you don't want to hurt their promotion potential by giving them less than a 5, so it just comes down to not wanting to hurt their feelings by calling it like it is.

Good point...I think those folks are just brought along in the wave.


But I do agree that when the troop really is above average, the current system doesn't allow them to be rated accordingly, because you're right, most supervisors are giving these folks 5s.

I think a great deal of the problem is that this is the only thing 99% of them know. There are very few of us left that were around for the EPR/APR conversion where there was a disjointed effort to try and make this change influence the validity of ratings, but with no AF-level guidance, unified leadership push, or standardization, it failed miserably.

Even those of us that did live through it, don't really know much difference...within a couple years, everyone was getting overall 5s mostly...and once they submitted EPRs with decorations, it became all about the firewall on front as well as an overall 5


From what I've heard, those working the changes to the system are working hard to not make the same mistakes as we did then. Aligning closeouts with PECDs will be one step in the right direction; looking at all the records in that grade at the same point in time will make it easier to see who's outstanding and who's average.

I agree with that one 100%...that step ALONE will do a lot to curb inflation. I can see as a sq. chief getting all the TSgt EPRs from a flight and saying, "Dude, all your TSgts are not firewall 5...discriminate them" That is a lot easier when you see them all at once.


No system is going to be perfect. And change is never easy. I am really hoping the changes will at least make SOME difference and move in the right direction. Do I think on day 1 all the average folks will instantly be given 3s? No, but I do think we can make a serious dent in knocking down 5s from being 85%. And after a few years, if we all work together to make it stick, it will get easier.

I agree...this change is long overdue and appears to be well thought-out at least.


After a year in Korea they get the "been there, done that" Korean Defense Service Medal, so they do get recognized for their service to the country (ours AND theirs lol).

Meh...not the same as a decoration.


Do we really want to turn meritorious decorations in to participation trophies? No doubt we're close to that now, but at least there is some screening involved.

This is always the argument...take one side to the extreme "oh let's just give everyone the Medal of Honor"...or we can take it to the extreme, "No Achievement Medal unless you score a 100 on PT and physically save a life." The proper point of approval is somewhere in the middle, of course. Where the exact line is drawn, I don't know.


The harm in doing so is it does influence promotion as well as devalue outstanding performance. As with EPR ratings, what incentive is there to busting your ass and earning a 5 or a decoration if the average folks are going to get the same rating/decoration? If we reward mediocrity, mediocrity becomes the standard.

The primary purpose of the Decoration is NOT promotion. We should not be looking at decorations as to whether or how they influence the promotion. The promotion system considers decorations, but that's not the purpose of the decoration.


I wholeheartedly agree they should mean something and when someone does on hitch an separates with a medal awarded for meritourious service, they should be very proud of it. If the slacker they worked with got the same medal, they'll remember that and it will mean less. If everyone got gold medals in the olympics, would having the 10th place guy showing off his gold medal on a box of Wheaties mean anything?

It's not the medal, it's what it represents. Do you think each AFSC should grant one and only one MSM, AFCM, and AFAM every 4 years? If yes, they would be pretty special, like an Olympic Gold. I just don't thnk they need to be THAT special.

I don't think a guy needs to be the top person in the world to get an Achievement Medal. He just needs to have some Achievement in honrable military service. Some people get them for a weekend of volunteering...others go a whole career without ever getting one. So, it's hard to say what they mean...but no one would suggest it means you were the world's greatest in something.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 09:28 PM
I don't think a guy needs to be the top person in the world to get an Achievement Medal. He just needs to have some Achievement in honrable military service. Some people get them for a weekend of volunteering...others go a whole career without ever getting one. So, it's hard to say what they mean...but no one would suggest it means you were the world's greatest in something.

The problem with the medals, at least in the Air Force, is that they haven't been about actual achievement in a very long time. The only reason people want them is for the points. It's sad, really. An AFAM, AFCM, and MSM should represent the achievement itself and the person should gain pride from that alone. Hell, if they took the points away from them very few people would care if they ever got one. In my mind, that's not what those medals should be about. That's where the differences in the EPR should come in.

Measure Man
06-11-2014, 09:40 PM
The problem with the medals, at least in the Air Force, is that they haven't been about actual achievement in a very long time. The only reason people want them is for the points. It's sad, really. An AFAM, AFCM, and MSM should represent the achievement itself and the person should gain pride from that alone. Hell, if they took the points away from them very few people would care if they ever got one. In my mind, that's not what those medals should be about. That's where the differences in the EPR should come in.

I agree that they should not be about the points.

I disagree that this is the only reason people want them or feel pride in them. I've seen many separating and retiring Airmen that were concerned about their decorations, feel proud in having got one or embarassed to not have, etc. I've seen many long-separated/retired people that still have pride in them.

They mean what they mean. What they "should" mean is a matter of opinion. I rejected a guy's retirement dec. once, and I came to regret it later. I think I was overzealous in "trying to make the hard call." The guy did 20+ years, he probably should have gotten an MSM, IMO now.

Rusty Jones
06-11-2014, 09:45 PM
The problem with the medals, at least in the Air Force, is that they haven't been about actual achievement in a very long time. The only reason people want them is for the points. It's sad, really. An AFAM, AFCM, and MSM should represent the achievement itself and the person should gain pride from that alone. Hell, if they took the points away from them very few people would care if they ever got one. In my mind, that's not what those medals should be about. That's where the differences in the EPR should come in.

I'm fine with things being the way they are now, because there are plenty of other sources of points than medals.

As far as everyone caring about medals so much... if you were ever in JROTC in high school (I was), you'd see how stupid things could possibly get if that were to happen.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 09:55 PM
I agree that they should not be about the points.

I disagree that this is the only reason people want them or feel pride in them. I've seen many separating and retiring Airmen that were concerned about their decorations, feel proud in having got one or embarassed to not have, etc. I've seen many long-separated/retired people that still have pride in them.

They mean what they mean. What they "should" mean is a matter of opinion. I rejected a guy's retirement dec. once, and I came to regret it later. I think I was overzealous in "trying to make the hard call." The guy did 20+ years, he probably should have gotten an MSM, IMO now.[/QUOTE]That's why I didn't say "all". I didn't get one at retirement. It doesn't personally bother me but it would have been nice to have had it read in front of my family. That one is supposed to encompass the whole career, not just the current assignment and I feel as you do that 20 years of honorable service is pretty deserving of one.

Either way, I'd love to see the points taken away from them. Then they would be presented when earned, not just (as with the 5 EPR) because the supervisor thinks the troop did as well as others who received them.

sandsjames
06-11-2014, 09:56 PM
I'm fine with things being the way they are now, because there are plenty of other sources of points than medals. Exactly, so it's like "Who's Line Is It Anyway". The points don't matter.

CrustySMSgt
06-11-2014, 10:12 PM
The problem is that NOT getting a dec and NOT getting a firewall 5 should NOT hurt you, it should help those who do. Unfornately it doesn't work that way and everyone knows it but all are still insistent on keeping the same system and periodically changing how it is supposed to be scored.

No argument from me there. I agree, there should be nothing wrong with being average; we need average people who do their job; not everyone is destined to be a MSgt, SMSgt, or CMSgt and that's the way it should be.


The problem with the medals, at least in the Air Force, is that they haven't been about actual achievement in a very long time. The only reason people want them is for the points. It's sad, really. An AFAM, AFCM, and MSM should represent the achievement itself and the person should gain pride from that alone. Hell, if they took the points away from them very few people would care if they ever got one. In my mind, that's not what those medals should be about. That's where the differences in the EPR should come in.

Agreed! There has been talk of making a "retirement medal." WHY?!? Again, if everyone gets one, how does it have value? And if that's the mentality, should we make a PCS medal too, so we can give something away every time we move?

When I read a decoration, it should say what the individual's meritorious service entailed. If it reads like their job description, all it tells me is what they were supposed to do, not what they did.



I don't think the 2-3 PT fail people are getting 5s. At least not that I remember. The no CCAF/PME thing...I think someone COULD truly be among the best performers without having CCAF/PME. Oh, perhaps they could be marked down in Education/Self-improvement or whatever, sure...but only if those that they are out-performing are getting marked down in the Job Performance block....but that doesn't happen either.


I wish I could say it wasn't happening... not often, but it does. Obviously not with a fail on top, as that can't be a 5 now, but I've seen people with several failures in a row, some within the reporting period, who passed before closeout and their supervisors still try and push a 5. Don't get me wrong, I don't believe PT should be THE standard, but I can't agree with giving someone a 5 when, if the EPR closed out 30 days earlier, it would be a referral 4.

Trying not to get myself in trouble, but on my board panel we looked at some of the AF's most demanding AFSCs and I think we gave them a little more leeway when it came to balancing them having versus real world experience in combat. But for the rest, given the emphasis on these two items over the last 10 years, the arguments for pushing them without having completed these two simple tasks are pretty weak. The little brown book is pretty clear and if you choose not to follow along, you're making your intentions pretty clear.




There was a time when a guy could make Chief without a CCAF. Then what happened, was since we weren't making differentiations on job performance...we HAD to find someway to discriminate so that not everyone was the same...so we picked the EASY things to discriminate on...go/no-go objective things...CCAF/PME/Decoration/PT score, etc. Because we don't know how to evaluate job performance.


I will readily admit I was a "late bloomer." My first couple years as a MSgt I just did what I had to do and not much more. I didn't get my CCAF until I had 2 years TIG. But nearly 15 years ago, that was acceptable. Now the expectations are clear. No doubt these are easy discriminators... yet 50-ish percent of MSgts still haven't knocked them out, so it continues to be an easy way of telling who's in and who's out.



Meh...not the same as a decoration.


It is if everyone gets a decoration. We have enough "gimmies" (campaign medals, service medals, the good conduct medal, etc.); what is wrong with establishing a higher standard for decorations for meritorious service?



This is always the argument...take one side to the extreme "oh let's just give everyone the Medal of Honor"...or we can take it to the extreme, "No Achievement Medal unless you score a 100 on PT and physically save a life." The proper point of approval is somewhere in the middle, of course. Where the exact line is drawn, I don't know.


CENTCOM commanders have gotten pretty good at establishing realistic expectations to earn a decoration for a deployment. The rest of the AF is hit or miss. I would definitely support some clearer guidance of the AIR FORCE'S definition of meritorious service as a starting point for CCs to work from. Should a markdown on the front of the EPR 3 years ago automatically take you out of the running? Absolutely not.



The primary purpose of the Decoration is NOT promotion. We should not be looking at decorations as to whether or how they influence the promotion. The promotion system considers decorations, but that's not the purpose of the decoration.


That wasn't my inference. My point was comparing decorations to EPR ratings. Receiving a 5 or a decoration should be to recognize sustained superior performance. If you put an average Airman and an outstanding Airmen side by side on a stage and give them the same decoration, more people will be thinking, "Why is Airman Snuffy getting a decoration; all he did for his tour was show up to work and do what he was told?" than will be thinking, "Damn, Airman ____ really busted his ass this tour; I'm glad to see him recognized for all his hard work."



It's not the medal, it's what it represents. Do you think each AFSC should grant one and only one MSM, AFCM, and AFAM every 4 years? If yes, they would be pretty special, like an Olympic Gold. I just don't thnk they need to be THAT special.

I don't think a guy needs to be the top person in the world to get an Achievement Medal. He just needs to have some Achievement in honrable military service. Some people get them for a weekend of volunteering...others go a whole career without ever getting one. So, it's hard to say what they mean...but no one would suggest it means you were the world's greatest in something.

Obviously my gold medal reference was exaggerated to make a point. My point is they should be reserved for those who do more than just punch the clock for 1, 2, 3, 4 years and walk away not having left their mark on anything. To do any less rewards mediocre performers and supports the everyone gets a trophy mentality.

LogDog
06-12-2014, 02:15 AM
No argument from me there. I agree, there should be nothing wrong with being average; we need average people who do their job; not everyone is destined to be a MSgt, SMSgt, or CMSgt and that's the way it should be.
I agree completely. There's nothing wrong with someone who is a 16-year TSgt, fully capable of doing their jobs, and happy not being a MSgt. We need worker bees who are happy with being worker bees to do the work and train junior airmen.



Agreed! There has been talk of making a "retirement medal." WHY?!? Again, if everyone gets one, how does it have value? And if that's the mentality, should we make a PCS medal too, so we can give something away every time we move?
As I said on another thread about the retirement medal, we get a retirement check every month so why do we need a retirement medal? To me, the retirement check is more important than any medal.


When I read a decoration, it should say what the individual's meritorious service entailed. If it reads like their job description, all it tells me is what they were supposed to do, not what they did.
And it should state they did more than what was expected of them for their rank. If a SrA performs at the level of a TSgt in a TSgt slot then that should be apparent to anyone reading/hearing the citation.




It is if everyone gets a decoration. We have enough "gimmies" (campaign medals, service medals, the good conduct medal, etc.); what is wrong with establishing a higher standard for decorations for meritorious service?
The MSM should be for something that not everyone could do and it should show leadership and/or accomplishment. A tour of Korea or any overseas and you get the Short or Long Tour ribbon. If you did more than your normal job and the results positively impacted your unit/base then you should be considered for additional awards.

technomage1
06-12-2014, 06:51 AM
Results that your boss will take the credit for, if you insist on being a wimpy little wall flower. You sound like you've been hanging out with SJ too much.

Until the boss is asked a question and can't answer it because they don't know what they're doing. I love it when that happens. When and where results matter it quickly becomes apparent who the SMEs are, and believe you me higher ups get shoved aside if they can't pull their weight or aren't knowledgeable. However our current system, for the most part, ignores results and concentrates on the superfical. You can only do that so long before the whole house of cards comes collaspsing down on you.

Again, huge difference between being what you describe and not being the one screaming and shoving to the front, or pushing down others in an attempt to get ahead. If you want to do that be my guest. I want nothing to do with it as it's a repulsive way live life IMO.

LogDog
06-12-2014, 07:17 AM
Until the boss is asked a question and can't answer it because they don't know what they're doing. I love it when that happens. When and where results matter it quickly becomes apparent who the SMEs are, and believe you me higher ups get shoved aside if they can't pull their weight or aren't knowledgeable. However our current system, for the most part, ignores results and concentrates on the superfical. You can only do that so long before the whole house of cards comes collaspsing down on you.

Again, huge difference between being what you describe and not being the one screaming and shoving to the front, or pushing down others in an attempt to get ahead. If you want to do that be my guest. I want nothing to do with it as it's a repulsive way live life IMO.
I agree. If the boss can't demonstrate he knows what is going on in his section he isn't going to last long. Those bosses who continuously take credit for the work of their people are easy to spot because they're usually the biggest BSer's and have big egos. The only good thing about them is seeing them shoot themselves down in front of the brass.

DannyJ
06-12-2014, 07:36 PM
I agree. If the boss can't demonstrate he knows what is going on in his section he isn't going to last long. Those bosses who continuously take credit for the work of their people are easy to spot because they're usually the biggest BSer's and have big egos. The only good thing about them is seeing them shoot themselves down in front of the brass.

If only I could post some emails I have...

LogDog
06-12-2014, 08:35 PM
If only I could post some emails I have...
The ones I knew were smart enough not to put anything in writing. I did have fun with one Lt., a former TSgt, who was a BS artist. We were in the Commander's office with two other officers (Lt. Col and a Major) going over some issue and the Commander was asking the Lt. questions he couldn't answer. I knew the answers but kept quiet until I was asked about them. I have a habit of nodding my head when someone is giving the correct answer and not nodding when the answer isn't true. The Lt. Col kept moving his eyes from the Lt. when he answered to me picking up on my non-verbal actions. Whenever I stopped nodding he tore into the Lt. Afterward, in the Lt's office, he was madder than hell trying to figure out how the Lt. Col knew he was lying. I never told the Lt. how the Lt. Col knew but I just sat back and enjoyed the moment.

Normally, I don't correct "superiors" in public or enjoy seeing them suffer, but I made an exception in the Lt's case because he had it coming.

Measure Man
06-12-2014, 09:09 PM
The ones I knew were smart enough not to put anything in writing. I did have fun with one Lt., a former TSgt, who was a BS artist. We were in the Commander's office with two other officers (Lt. Col and a Major) going over some issue and the Commander was asking the Lt. questions he couldn't answer. I knew the answers but kept quiet until I was asked about them. I have a habit of nodding my head when someone is giving the correct answer and not nodding when the answer isn't true. The Lt. Col kept moving his eyes from the Lt. when he answered to me picking up on my non-verbal actions. Whenever I stopped nodding he tore into the Lt. Afterward, in the Lt's office, he was madder than hell trying to figure out how the Lt. Col knew he was lying. I never told the Lt. how the Lt. Col knew but I just sat back and enjoyed the moment.

Normally, I don't correct "superiors" in public or enjoy seeing them suffer, but I made an exception in the Lt's case because he had it coming.

There is a certain line of Mx Officers that derive untold pleasures from embarassing CGOs in the maint meetings. They just keeping asking more and more detailed questions until the lt. or capt. can't answer...and then berate them without mercy for their stupidity...generally the Col. already knows the answer, but just enjoys undressing his jr. officers in front of a conference room full of pro supers and superintendents.

Occassionally one of these CGOs is a dick that I don't mind seeing this happen to...mostly it's the Col. being a dick though

I have noticed that the CGOs who were "mentored" by this kind of Col., grow up to do the same...which is why I say it is a line. There are some really great MX officers out there, that are just all about rolling up our sleeves and figuring this shit out together...and then there's this strain out there...that is all aobut seeing how dickish they can be when the other person is powerless to disagree or argue a point.

I've always said MX Officers are like German Shephards...there is some lines of really great dogs, and then there are a few lines that are vicious as hell by nature. If you're going to get one, check their lineage.

Stalwart
06-12-2014, 10:18 PM
There is a certain line of Mx Officers that derive untold pleasures from embarassing CGOs in the maint meetings. They just keeping asking more and more detailed questions until the lt. or capt. can't answer...and then berate them without mercy for their stupidity...generally the Col. already knows the answer, but just enjoys undressing his jr. officers in front of a conference room full of pro supers and superintendents.

Occassionally one of these CGOs is a dick that I don't mind seeing this happen to...mostly it's the Col. being a dick though

I have noticed that the CGOs who were "mentored" by this kind of Col., grow up to do the same...which is why I say it is a line. There are some really great MX officers out there, that are just all about rolling up our sleeves and figuring this shit out together...and then there's this strain out there...that is all aobut seeing how dickish they can be when the other person is powerless to disagree or argue a point.

I've always said MX Officers are like German Shephards...there is some lines of really great dogs, and then there are a few lines that are vicious as hell by nature. If you're going to get one, check their lineage.

I can tell you that it isn't just a "certain line of MX officers" that have that type of bad leadership style. I have very rarely encountered truly bad leaders (some who were below avg, but few truly bad ones.)

Playing 'stump the chump' really shows/proves nothing, especially when the 'chump' couldn't really be expected to know what you are asking in the first place -- a common practice I have observed on Navy qualification boards to prove that some of the board members know more than the trainee. When I took my Naval Aviation Observer (NAO) board, the VQ squadron Intel Officer sat the board (odd since he was not an NAO but did have a lot of target knowledge.) He had done a 6 month deployment with the Marines (had earned his Fleet Marine Force (FMF) Warfare device) and near the end of the board started peppering me with questions about the Marine Corps (not realizing I was a prior USMC SNCO.) Afterward he stated he was really surprised I knew so much about the Marine Corps for not having an FMF device. The squadron CO bluntly told him I had been in the Marine Corps for quite a long time before i was commissioned and I think it truly embarrassed the guy.

DWWSWWD
06-18-2014, 08:52 PM
I think the form is pretty good. The verbiage is better than I thought. e.g. do you understand the importance of this or that, would you like to discuss ......? It opens the door to a personal discussion rather than kicking it in. Regardless, I think it's largely useless simply because it must be routed for everyone to see. If there is not a quota, there will be a perception that average ratings should be lower. CC's will be accountable for that and will use the feedback form as a means to "check" the rating. I tend tend to be fairly honest with feedback and err on the side of the Airman on the EPR. That is to say that I grade on par with our culture. If you didn't kill anyone recently, you'll do OK on your report. All that to say that routing the feedback with the report tends to preclude honest feedback.