Joint Base Charleston


Ready for inspection!

By Lt. Col. Alexandria Watson | Joint Base Charleston Installation Inspector General | November 25, 2013

JOINT BASE CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Inspectors are coming! Inspectors are coming! Are you ready for our next inspection? Have you completed all of your checklists? Are you fully compliant in every area? Can you pass the "white glove" test?

Quick, paint the grass green and put on your best uniform. Stress out for the next few weeks preparing for our big compliance inspection. Pull all-nighters getting your documents in order and fixing things. That is what we are doing right?

WRONG! In all honestly, that is how we used to do it but that is not how we're doing it now. Thank goodness! So, how do we prepare for our upcoming Unit Effectiveness Inspection? What do you do? The same thing you have been doing all along -do your job to the best of your ability.

Remember that core value, excellence in all we do? Do that. When you're giving your best, you are following Air Force instructions, policies, procedures, guidelines, etc., in order to accomplish the mission.

When something happens that impedes your ability to comply with established guidance and accomplish the mission, you identify that issue and work within your organization to resolve it. You come up with a resolution plan, implement that plan, and engage the appropriate leadership, if necessary, to resolve the issue.

I have yet to meet an Airman who focuses on not being compliant and making sure our mission fails. That is counter to who we are. Airmen want to do a great job and contribute to our mission success. If you're doing that, then you are definitely going to contribute to our inspection success in December.

So take in a deep breath, have yourself a "woo sa" moment and top it off with a cup of tea or coffee. Now that your mind is more at ease, here's what we all need to do. We all need to understand the purpose the new Air Force Inspection System. It is threefold:

(1) to enable and strengthen commanders' effectiveness and efficiency;

(2) to motivate and promote military discipline, improved unit performance and management excellence up and down the chain of command, in units and staffs; and

(3) to identify issues interfering with effectiveness, efficiency, compliance, discipline, readiness, performance, surety, and management excellence.

That's a lot to digest. In short, it is a system that will give our commanders an assessment of their organizations' compliance; ability to find, analyze, report and fix problems; and ability to prevent fraud and minimize waste and abuse.

I know. I know. That is still a lot to digest. So, I'll present it in this way. What does all of this mean to you? Each Airman -- whether you are an airman first class or a colonel have to have the following mindset in our day-to-day operations.

We need to identify problems whenever they arise and not wait until we run a checklist or have an exercise.
We need to determine the root cause of these problems and communicate (report) them when they arise -- up, down and across our organizations as appropriate.

We need to actively work to resolve the problem in a timely manner and engage our leadership when we face challenges fixing problems.

We need to actively look for ways to improve operations.

So when you have that great idea that starts with, "you know, somebody oughta do 'such-n-such' to make 'this-n-that' faster, easier, etc., etc., etc.," YOU be that somebody. If each person assigned to Joint Base Charleston does this, guess what? Our commanders will be able to assess if their organization is in compliance; has the ability to find, analyze, report and fix problems; and can prevent fraud and minimize waste and abuse.

How, you may ask? Because we're immediately indentifying and reporting problems, developing and implementing plans to fix those problems, engaging our leadership all along the way, and constantly looking for ways to improve, regardless of the area, and making it happen.

So what does all of that have to do with inspections? I'll tell you. By changing our mindset to be one in which we are continuously in a state of self-evaluation of our work, our unit, our processes and procedures, etc. AND we are identifying and addressing issues as they happen AND we're not afraid to make changes for the better, it doesn't matter when we are inspected because we're always ready. Our efforts are focused on ensuring effective and efficient mission accomplishment. When we're not in compliance, we've identified that and are working to fix it. When we are compliant, we're looking for ways to improve. So get onboard and be a part of this positive change. Your friendly neighborhood Inspector General office is available any questions you have _feel free to e-mail them to our "628 ABW/IG Inspector General" organization box.

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