Commanding with a vision key to good leadership

  • Published
  • By Lt. Col. Daniel Dant
  • 4th Space Control Squadron commander
The men and women of the 4th Space Control Squadron crave vision and guidance and then want to be "cut loose" to make that vision a reality. 

The 4 SPCS is at a critical juncture for the future of counterspace missions -- it's all about credible space superiority. 

One definition of space superiority is, "the degree of dominance in space of one force over another that permits the conduct of operations by the former and its related land, sea, air, space and special operations forces at a given time and place without prohibitive interference by the opposing force." 

As one of only two offensive counterspace space squadrons in the U.S. Air Force, living up to the definition of space superiority is a Herculean task for a small squadron ... especially considering tight budgets, reduced manning, rapidly changing training paradigms and limited hardware to train, evaluate and deploy with. 

Whining? No ... just stating the facts. 

And guess what? These limiting factors make the need for a vision even more critical.
On calm seas, a ship may sail along in a "comfort zone" without much leadership. 

However, a rudderless ship in choppy waters with nobody at the helm -- and in close proximity to peril -- is likely to smash against the rocks. 

Even the most dangerous of obstacles though, can be navigated with a clear sight picture of the lane ahead and a captain willing to chart the course and steer the ship.
For the 4 SPCS, the vision -- to navigate uncharted waters -- lies at the heart of space superiority. 

To "dominate in space over another force" we must be "America's premier offensive counterspace operators, maintainers and warriors ... always ready for the space fight." 

Who do we work for? America. 

What do we aspire to? Premier status. 

What do we do? Offensive counterspace. 

Who are we? Operators, maintainers and deployable warriors. 

How do we achieve space superiority? Being always ready for the space fight! 

Transforming vision to reality involves teaching and framing the vision in terms that allow people to take action. The 4 SPCS frames our vision with something called "4+4+4=1." Translation: 4 SPCS + the mission, people, AFSO 21/resource management and civic/environmental duty + four goals within each key result area equals one team. 4+4+4=1. 

The goals within the four Key Result Areas lie at the heart of developing a credible space superiority capability for the wing and the nation. 

For instance, being day-to-day inspection ready, creating "steely-eyed" counterspace operators, making training deployments "routine," building a positive reputation of excellence and getting people what they "earn" with respect to OPRs, EPRs and awards are examples of goals that support our vision. 

Some day, America may call on the 4 SPCS to save the nation. As the commander of this squadron, I cannot be asleep at the helm as the ship glides aimlessly through calm waters. 

Commanding with a vision means guiding that ship now ... so when the nation does call for us to gain and maintain space superiority, your counterspace capabilities are delivered with lethality, precision and airtight credibility.