A New Vector for Air Force Development of Joint Leaders
AIR UNIV MAXWELL AFB AL MAXWELL AFB
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This thesis asks the following question how should the Air Force develop joint leaders To answer that question, the thesis describes the historical, legal, and policy context of jointness and defines attributes of joint leadership determines the extent to which the Air Force is represented in leadership positions within the joint community identifies elements of Air Force policy and culture that enhance or detract from the development of joint officers proposes solutions to enhance joint officer development for airmen and assesses the proposed solutions using the criteria of feasibility and effectiveness. The thesis finds that the Air Force has not developed officers with credentials necessary to be competitive for senior positions in the joint community, largely due to functionally focused institutional norms that place a high value on technical competence and a relatively low value on breadth of experience. The thesis concludes that the Air Force can develop better joint leaders while maintaining a razor-sharp technical competency for warfighting, but in order to do so, changes are required. The thesis proposes eight changes 1 require only one command tour for colonels 2 direct Development Teams DTs to meet institutional requirements 3 task assignment teams to meet institutional requirements 4 emphasize joint experience at promotion boards 5 strengthen institutional identity 6 enhance the Air Force vision and mission statements 7 improve Air Force leadership doctrine 8 bifurcate technical and leadership tracks. Taken together, these eight steps will develop more capable Air Force joint leaders, thereby both increasing Air Force representation in senior joint billets and enhancing American national security.
- Personnel Management and Labor Relations
- Military Forces and Organizations