Colorado Springs Military Newspaper Group

Peterson Space Observer

ALC: Leadership course like no other

By Capt. Melissa Milas

721st Mission Support Group

Company grade officers and senior noncommissioned officers across the 21st Space Wing convened Jan. 12-16, for an Accelerated Leadership Course.

The course was designed for participants to discover insights into their leadership styles and how to recognize and react to various types of leadership methods in others.

“I feel this different style of leadership course is invaluable to the participants,” stated Garsha Wood, Leadership and Team Development for Smaller Earth, Inc. “They have the opportunity to understand and practice their emotional intelligence, which I feel has a huge impact on their leadership style.”

Throughout the week, twelve members practiced their leadership and followership skills utilizing current leadership models through indoor and outdoor activities. Some of the highlights of the week included rock climbing at Red Rock Canyon, Colo., and orienting and challenging themselves with a low/high ropes course at La Foret Retreat Center in Colorado.

The vigorous events allowed the participants to learn about trusting others, overcoming challenges, displaying effective communication and encouragement, as well as how to incorporate these areas into their own work environment. In order to accomplish the objectives, members needed to trust fellow teammates and overcome fears to meet goals.

“The course helps participants to become better leaders at facing challenges in their jobs, as well as help them coach, develop and mentor others. The power of support is critical when being a good leader and these activities require trust and support,” said Wood.

For many participants, the course opened their eyes to new experiences.

“The Accelerated Leadership Course was the best leadership course I have participated in to date. It’s not your typical Air Force leadership course. I was challenged in so many ways. The best part was being challenged in activities I have never had any interest in before, such as rock climbing, only to find out it gives you such a feeling of accomplishment, not only as an individual, but as part of a team,” said Master Sgt. Kelli Remmert, 21st Aerospace Medicine Squadron Optometry flight chief.

The members also participated in puzzle-solving games geared toward building trust and unity amongst the members.

Capt. Craig Cherek, 21st Operations Support Squadron, reflected on the week’s events: “The week was very insightful into a new way of viewing leadership and personality styles…it also challenged us in ways we never thought were possible, whether climbing something we’d never imagined climbing, gracefully barrel-rolling a cliff or moving outside our daily comfort zone. I think everyone involved had fun and grew personally.”

The course allows participants to actually practice new behaviors and to see the impact on others immediately. Additionally, it allows their leadership skills to trickle up and expose their supervisors to things they have not experienced yet, thus becoming more effective in their job and in the military.”

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