CHARLESTON AIR FORCE BASE, S.C. –
Happy holidays. These words are often spoken during this time of year. Yet, when it comes right down to it how many of us are willing to play a role to ensure someone has a happy holiday?
Upon returning to work after the Thanksgiving holiday, I asked the usual question to those I came in contact with, "How was your Thanksgiving?" Most responded with positive comments about spending time with family and friends. One individual stated that she had declined invites and was content with spending a quiet day alone at home, but was pleasantly surprised to hear a knock at her door from someone with Thanksgiving dinner in hand with all the trimmings. That was an act of a true Wingman.
I could tell as she told her story, that small gesture made a big difference. To know that someone thought enough of her to deviate from their planned route to bring her a delicious hot meal was more than she would have asked for.
Leaders are not only responsible for ensuring mission accomplishment but also for the health, well-being and morale of those they lead. In keeping with the spirit of people taking care of people, we all have a role to play in each other's well-being. The Wingman that Thanksgiving Day wasn't a supervisor, just a thoughtful co-worker that saw a need and took action without hesitation. During this holiday season seize those opportunities to make a difference. Resist the temptation of saying you are too busy, when in reality many acts of kindness are small in nature and require little time but can have a big impact on someone.
Have a safe holiday. That's another phrase often used this time of year. When these words are spoken, sometimes we give little thought as to what we can do to ensure the safety of others. Each time I have participated, along with many others, in the "safety send off" at the base gate, by shift's end I can truly say that was 30 minutes well spent. I conveyed a sincere, "Have a safe holiday" as I handed out safety information cards to drivers as they departed the base. I can only hope the brief contact made with each driver made a difference in their holiday safety or someone else's. Again, a small gesture by many that can have a big impact.
For the remainder of this festive time of year, let's all be mindful of what we can and will do to help someone have a happy and safe holiday.