Teamwork-- unexpected results from amazing people

  • Published
  • By Maj. Jeff Jones
  • 2nd Combat Camera Squadron commander
As I sat down to write this article, I really struggled on what to write about and what was important to me. As a public affairs officer, you would think writing a commentary would just come easy and would not take any time to finish. For me, I looked long and hard at the computer screen, yet nothing. So I decided to take a walk around the 2nd Combat Camera Squadron and Hill Air Force Base and it just hit me -- Teamwork.

In activating a new squadron, we have been waiting for the typical things that plague every new unit -- money and personnel. As the original cadre of three members of the squadron showed up, it seemed like a long and daunting task to stand up a squadron. Along each step of the way, we have added more and more folks to the squadron. These folks range from broadcasters and photographers to cyber transport craftsman. Those important budget, supply and knowledge operations personnel had to be added to the manning document and are projected to come in this summer. In the meantime, each new member has taken on a new and different role to help the squadron get to full operational capability. These Airmen -- civilians, enlisted and officers -- have stepped out of their normal Air Force specialties and done amazing things. These squadron members are the epitome of teamwork. Let me give you a couple of examples of what I am seeing.

As the squadron stood up, a senior master sergeant, a videographer, became a personnel and manpower specialist. She became an expert on the Unit Manning Document and all the pieces she needed to work with the Air Force Personnel Center to get them to advertise more than 28 new positions we needed filled. She came up with the job descriptions, requirements and points of contacts by just digging into the material. She did whatever needed to be done and was more than willing to take on the challenge ... Teamwork.

A staff sergeant, another videographer, was picked to lead the squadron's orderly room and has become an expert in running the squadron's day-to-day operations. She has worked with the 75th Force Support Squadron, AFPC and Air Force Public Affairs Agency to track and monitor all correspondence coming through 2nd Combat Camera Squadron. She runs a front office while still being engaged with her production flight ... Teamwork.

A master sergeant, in maintenance, has taken over the budget process and ran with it. He has become an expert in Defense Travel System, civilian pay, Automated Business Services System, Government Purchase Card and anything else relating to money. He has been able to work with higher headquarters' budget staff to acquire our budget, create a spend plan and develop a list of future unfunded requests. He is also working to establish a five-year spend plan to ensure the squadron is set for the future ... Teamwork.

These are just a few examples of Airmen who have stepped up in every phase of activating the squadron. These are all amazing members who have stepped outside of their comfort zone and Air Force specialty code, or AFSC, to make the squadron better. No complaints, no excuses, just amazing team members in an amazing squadron. They were Airmen first and foremost, then valuable 2nd Combat Camera members and then professional craftsmen in their AFSCs. For a military service to succeed in today's diversified contingencies, high operations tempo and tightening budgets, we must take on this attitude of teamwork. All of these Airmen have stepped up to fulfill our combat camera mission with no degradation to the steady state of the production mission. In fact, they have helped stand up the squadron while producing five Secretary of the Air Force "In the Fight" videos, a Chief of Staff of the Air Force directed Haiti video, a CSAF "American Airman" video and an Air Force Pararescue specific recruiting video.

Each team member could not have accomplished these amazing results without the outstanding support of Team Hill. The support group, the medical group, the communications directorate, our sister squadrons and the civilian personnel office are just a few examples of the outstanding support from the base. Without their teamwork and can-do attitude, we would be many months behind where we are today. These Airmen, from Team Hill and 2nd Combat Camera Squadron, live and breathe teamwork and personify two of our Air Force "Core Values" -- "Service Before Self" and "Excellence in All We Do."