Think and plan strategically
By Gen. Howie Chandler, Commander, Pacific Air Forces
/ Published June 25, 2009
Commander, Pacific Air Forces --
Pioneers like Mitchell, Lemay, and Creech shaped our Air Force. While their visions for our service were remarkable, they cemented their legacies through diligent planning that brought those visions to life. Today in PACAF, we continue to build legacies and prepare for tomorrow. Like our forefathers, we must continue their legacy of long-term strategic thought in order to maintain our place as the greatest Air Force in the world.
As a service, and as individual Airmen, we are busier than ever. We've taken on new missions while at the same time we've been required to reduce our force. Despite the turmoil, we must make the time to think and plan strategically, looking to where we want to be in the future. We must look beyond what is on our plates today and focus on the long term. Strategic planning ensures we are calculated and intentional in the way we employ our Airmen. We can afford nothing less.
Senior leaders have invested significant amounts of time over the past year to develop a simple, long-term planning method called Strategic Alignment and Deployment (SA&D). More than anything, it's a way to think, plan and grab hold of the potential that lies ahead. It's getting Airmen at every level to tackle everyday tasks driven by our command priorities, goals and objectives. By design, SA&D orients us and focuses our efforts on our most important goals. It drives us to get the things done that make the greatest difference.
The core of our SA&D model is the 8-step problem solving process. It puts the necessary rigor and discipline into how we solve command-wide problems. You'll hear more about the details and methodology in the coming weeks and months. Our PACAF model is the pilot for the Air Force and, once approved, will be implemented by all MAJCOMs.
I need your help in turning our SA&D strategy into action. As with all other world-class organizations, PACAF will only succeed in SA&D if everyone participates. Specifically, I am counting on all Airmen to identify gaps in their ability to get the job done as well as to seek opportunities to be even more effective.
Having spent time at all our bases, I recognize that we have a smart, innovative and driven force of Airmen. I've heard you and I know you are brimming with ideas to improve our Air Force. I'm asking you to learn this SA&D process and run with it as we plan and innovate for the future in order to give the nation the Air Force it deserves.