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Author Topic: "Ask the National Commander" - eServices' new button  (Read 8326 times)
♠SARKID♠
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« on: December 28, 2011, 07:37:16 AM »

Has anyone else seen the new link on the eServices homepage?  They've given everyone a direct line to the CAP/CC's inbox (and, automatically, your wing and region CCs).  I have a very, very strong feeling that this is going to be a short lived deal.

It bypasses the entire concept of chain of command, its a redundancy to the knowledge-base, and gives (to use an IT analogy) top tier access to bottom tier tech support needs.  If an issue is important enough that it goes above wing or region level it isn't going to be small enough to go so unnoticed that the CC needs to have every Tom, Dick, and Harry pinging him about it.  That said, it was set up at Maj Gen Carr's request so more power to him - I just don't think it will be effective.

Here on CAPTalk we get our fair share of Cadet Snuffys asking the most basic of basic questions that should really be asked of their commanders.  I can imagine a lot of that is going to get channeled there as well.  That is, of course, assuming that you manage to get a cadet to log into eServices every once in a while (I sure as heck can't).

Thoughts?
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coudano
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« Reply #1 on: December 28, 2011, 01:15:44 PM »

Has anyone else seen the new link on the eServices homepage?  They've given everyone a direct line to the CAP/CC's inbox (and, automatically, your wing and region CCs).  I have a very, very strong feeling that this is going to be a short lived deal.

Probably just fishing for ideas for "commander's corner" articles or whatever.

Quote
That is, of course, assuming that you manage to get a cadet to log into eServices every once in a while (I sure as heck can't).


well they have to test... :)
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MSG Mac
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« Reply #2 on: December 28, 2011, 06:14:33 PM »

It is a good thing that MG Carr wil hear about the concerns of the everyday member. True it may become bogged down with items that could and should be handled at the local level, but it does show he wants to hear from us. In addition, several times in these forums we hear legitimate concerns and ideas that are shut down without any feedback from higher HQ. Maybe this will eliminate this. When I was in Florida Wing, the FLWG/CC had this same policy and whenI had a concern that I had addressed to Group several times without response, I received immediate response when addressed to the Wing CC through his forum.
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Michael P. McEleney
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Duke Dillio
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« Reply #3 on: December 28, 2011, 07:42:03 PM »

This kinda sounds like the ultimate "open door" policy.  My question is whether the subordinate commanders now have an "Insta-2B" button to toss the people who may abuse this....    >:D
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JeffDG
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« Reply #4 on: December 28, 2011, 07:53:39 PM »

This kinda sounds like the ultimate "open door" policy.  My question is whether the subordinate commanders now have an "Insta-2B" button to toss the people who may abuse this....    >:D
It's built into the web-app. >:D
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Hardshell Clam
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« Reply #5 on: December 28, 2011, 08:11:21 PM »

A lot of corporations have systems whereby you can send suggestions to the board of directors and bypass your "chain of command".  As the CAP moves away from the "military side" and more into the "corporate" side of the coin, and IMHO, we will be seeing more of this sort of thing. I am not taking a side here (quazi-military vs corporate), just making an observation however I disagree with the suggestion being provided to your commander at the same time.
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Persona non grata
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« Reply #6 on: December 28, 2011, 08:34:49 PM »

I just asked him about geting a new van. No response as of yet. I will keep you posted.
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Rock, Flag & Eagle.........
AngelWings
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« Reply #7 on: December 28, 2011, 08:49:25 PM »

Has anyone else seen the new link on the eServices homepage?  They've given everyone a direct line to the CAP/CC's inbox (and, automatically, your wing and region CCs).  I have a very, very strong feeling that this is going to be a short lived deal.

It bypasses the entire concept of chain of command, its a redundancy to the knowledge-base, and gives (to use an IT analogy) top tier access to bottom tier tech support needs.  If an issue is important enough that it goes above wing or region level it isn't going to be small enough to go so unnoticed that the CC needs to have every Tom, Dick, and Harry pinging him about it.  That said, it was set up at Maj Gen Carr's request so more power to him - I just don't think it will be effective.

Here on CAPTalk we get our fair share of Cadet Snuffys asking the most basic of basic questions that should really be asked of their commanders.  I can imagine a lot of that is going to get channeled there as well.  That is, of course, assuming that you manage to get a cadet to log into eServices every once in a while (I sure as heck can't).

Thoughts?
I hate to sound cold hearted but it could very well be a support thing. I've run into a few local politicans who did do similar things for support. I mean nothing by it, but I'm sure a man smart enough to make it to CAP/CC is going to immediately see the sheer impracticality of this. One of the politicans I talked to said it works well when trying to cover something negative but small enough to be distracted by something positive for a small time. I mean no harm by saying this, and if it is truely more than a support thing, than I respect that a lot.
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lordmonar
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« Reply #8 on: December 28, 2011, 08:53:18 PM »

I wonder why people are getting worked up about this.

When I was a commander I encouraged my cadets and SM to come to me if they felt they needed to.

My first question 90% of the time was "have you taken this up your chain of command?". 

Ask the commander is a cool tool.....if you have the time to weed out all the "when can I get promoted" and "is it okay to be late on Tuesday" questions to get to that 10% (or less) that the commander really needs to address.

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PATRICK M. HARRIS, SMSgt, CAP
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AngelWings
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« Reply #9 on: December 28, 2011, 08:57:37 PM »

I wonder why people are getting worked up about this.

When I was a commander I encouraged my cadets and SM to come to me if they felt they needed to.

My first question 90% of the time was "have you taken this up your chain of command?". 

Ask the commander is a cool tool.....if you have the time to weed out all the "when can I get promoted" and "is it okay to be late on Tuesday" questions to get to that 10% (or less) that the commander really needs to address.
+1.
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JK657
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« Reply #10 on: December 28, 2011, 09:17:10 PM »

How many uniform questions do you think he's gotten so far?
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RiverAux
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« Reply #11 on: December 28, 2011, 10:03:18 PM »

While I am all for such ideas, I'm not sure that "Ask the National Commander" is the best way of marketing this method of communication.  It does give the impression that hes ready to answer any question about anything.  Something that implies that it is to be used for suggesting changes to CAP policies or regulations may be more in the spirit of what he was going for. 
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Ed Bos
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« Reply #12 on: December 28, 2011, 10:20:11 PM »

How many uniform questions do you think he's gotten so far?

HA!
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EDWARD A. BOS, Lt Col, CAP
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JeffDG
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« Reply #13 on: December 28, 2011, 10:22:06 PM »

While I am all for such ideas, I'm not sure that "Ask the National Commander" is the best way of marketing this method of communication.  It does give the impression that hes ready to answer any question about anything.  Something that implies that it is to be used for suggesting changes to CAP policies or regulations may be more in the spirit of what he was going for.
What might be nicer would be a "Ask the commander" tool, with tracking to see where your question/comment/suggestion is within the CoC, so if it's stuck with Group, you can see that.

I have no problem with a commander rejecting an idea, but just sitting on it and doing nothing is not acceptable...so you could see when it hit each echelon's inbox and try and dislodge something that's just stuck.
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RiverAux
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« Reply #14 on: December 28, 2011, 10:29:44 PM »

Actually, what I'd rather see is a similar sort of information collection tool in the section for draft regulations that would let folks comment on them directly to national staff. 

And perhaps a similar button on the page with the regulations to report possible mistakes in existing regulations. 
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MSG Mac
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« Reply #15 on: December 28, 2011, 11:35:08 PM »

Actually, what I'd rather see is a similar sort of information collection tool in the section for draft regulations that would let folks comment on them directly to national staff. 

And perhaps a similar button on the page with the regulations to report possible mistakes in existing regulations.

The draft regulations are posted for comment and there is a button to make those comments. Also I have reported errata to National HQ and always gotten a response on AE and Leadership tests.
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Michael P. McEleney
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RiverAux
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« Reply #16 on: December 29, 2011, 12:07:47 AM »

Actually, what I'd rather see is a similar sort of information collection tool in the section for draft regulations that would let folks comment on them directly to national staff. 

And perhaps a similar button on the page with the regulations to report possible mistakes in existing regulations.

The draft regulations are posted for comment and there is a button to make those comments.
Actually, there is an email address, but it says that comments should be directed to that address through your chain of command.  So, you're not supposed to be commenting on them directly. 
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Ned
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« Reply #17 on: December 29, 2011, 12:17:23 AM »

How many uniform questions do you think he's gotten so far?

I know that at least 4 folks have asked about ABUs.

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SARDOC
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« Reply #18 on: December 29, 2011, 12:40:26 AM »

I know that at least 4 folks have asked about ABUs.


hahaha....Classic.
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titanII
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« Reply #19 on: December 29, 2011, 04:48:39 AM »

I agree that this seems to be encouraging "jumping" the Chain of Command.
It will be interesting to see what this is used for, who uses it, and how long it stays around. Time will tell...
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coudano
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« Reply #20 on: December 29, 2011, 06:00:42 AM »

i'd like to point out that the cjcs and secdef both go around addressing masses of troops and take questions from an open mic.   that doesn't even get the "filter" before a response.
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Brad
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« Reply #21 on: December 29, 2011, 06:19:48 AM »

We have a similar tool where I work with South Carolina Highway Patrol called "Ask The Colonel". For an agency that harps so much on chain of command it does seem to work. Sometimes there simply are questions, comments, or ideas that you want to bring to the top of the chain.
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Brad Lee
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« Reply #22 on: December 29, 2011, 08:21:39 AM »

I don't see what the big deal is.  If people think the CC is going to answer each and every question submitted they will probably be disappointed.  I imagine the CC will respond to those questions that he thinks will be of interest to the majority of members or topics that he thinks are of great importance.  It won't be like having him on your personal speed dial.
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jimmydeanno
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« Reply #23 on: December 29, 2011, 08:30:25 PM »

The intent is to have every single question answered, that is submitted.  However, I'm not so sure that HE will be the one that answers them.  It'll most likely be sent to some sort of inbox or something that get sent to the specialist that deals in that area.
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Al Sayre
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« Reply #24 on: December 30, 2011, 04:18:44 AM »

It's not jumping the chain of command if the commander asks for your questions and provides a means for you to submit them directly...
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Lt Col Al Sayre
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sardak
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« Reply #25 on: December 30, 2011, 04:28:14 AM »

Here is what the Jan-Mar 2012 Open Cockpit, that came out today, says:
--------
Ask the Commander: “Ask the Commander” is eServices’ newest application. This feature has been initiated at the request of Major General Chuck Carr to increase the flow of information to the field and to offer the membership better access to the National Commander. All members will be able to ask General Carr a question and then receive a response. The response will include the question as well as the name and unit of the member submitting it. General Carr’s reply will also copy the member’s squadron, group (if applicable), wing and region commander so they are aware of his answer. Some questions/answers will also be posted on Knowledgebase to keep all members informed.

Before members submit a question they should first give their commander an opportunity to answer.

Questions should be kept professional and pertinent to others. This system is not a substitute for the IG system and does not afford any confidentiality.
--------

Mike
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Spaceman3750
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« Reply #26 on: December 30, 2011, 02:27:08 PM »

Does anyone else think that the button is in a really awful/annoying place on the page?
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AngelWings
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« Reply #27 on: December 30, 2011, 03:23:02 PM »

Does anyone else think that the button is in a really awful/annoying place on the page?
+1
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a2capt
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« Reply #28 on: December 30, 2011, 04:08:05 PM »

At least they fixed that "hack" look that was on the top with the stats (membership numbers) in it. But the whole page is a hodgepodge hack of mess. That $5,000 facelift they gave it a while back was a waste of money.

Alas, I can imagine the conversation though. "I want it right where people will see it." :)
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Spaceman3750
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« Reply #29 on: December 30, 2011, 05:07:58 PM »

I don't mind the general look. My issue is simply that the new link was just thrown in the middle of the page.
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The moment any commander or staff member considers themselves a gatekeeper, instead of a facilitator, they have failed at their job.
I can't fix all of CAP's problems, but I can lead from the bottom by building my squadron as a center of excellence to serve as an example of what every unit can be.
PHall
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« Reply #30 on: December 31, 2011, 03:06:02 AM »

I don't mind the general look. My issue is simply that the new link was just thrown in the middle of the page.


Oh, where people can actually find it?  So what's the problem with that?
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RADIOMAN015
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« Reply #31 on: December 31, 2011, 04:21:41 AM »

Just give him the url for captalk.net,  ;) I think he can get a good idea about what the membership policy wise is concerned about :angel:   To a certain extent non CAP owned public forums allow the membership (and former membership) to post their opinions in public and exchange ideas, with very little censorship. 

Maybe we could just run a thread topic here "what would I ask the National Commander IF I pressed the "easy" button?". :angel:
RM   
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OMA
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« Reply #32 on: January 08, 2012, 08:32:51 AM »

This could very well be one of the worst things I've seen since I've join CAP, though I know it hasn't been long. I joined CAP for some reasons but the main one was the military aspect of it. Bypassing the CoC is something I've been told time and time again not to do however I support his decision. The National CC obviously knows about this and we must back his decisions if we agree with them or not.
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PHall
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« Reply #33 on: January 08, 2012, 03:20:15 PM »

This could very well be one of the worst things I've seen since I've join CAP, though I know it hasn't been long. I joined CAP for some reasons but the main one was the military aspect of it. Bypassing the CoC is something I've been told time and time again not to do however I support his decision. The National CC obviously knows about this and we must back his decisions if we agree with them or not.


Bypassing the CoC????   Just about every Air Force Base has a "Commanders Hotline" where anybody on base can call and voice their concerns to the Wing/Base Commander. 

So this "Ask the National Commander" thing is nothing new. Our current National Commander being an Air Force Retiree probably has a bit of experience with this.
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Extremepredjudice
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« Reply #34 on: January 08, 2012, 05:41:59 PM »

I asked him when CAP was going to request ABUs. >:D

He told me to read the eservices annoucement about ABUs? ???
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« Reply #35 on: January 08, 2012, 06:10:32 PM »

I wonder how many uniform questions the CC gets?  I bet its a lot.
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bosshawk
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« Reply #36 on: January 08, 2012, 06:25:02 PM »

And most of them will be from posters on CT.  In my 18 years in two Sqs and one Wing Staff, I bet that I didn't hear a half dozen comments about uniforms: a far cry from what I read on CT.
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Paul M. Reed
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« Reply #37 on: January 08, 2012, 06:27:02 PM »

But you always looked so good at Imperial with your sunburn and streams of sweat running down your face!!
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CAP Talk  |  General Discussion  |  The Lobby  |  Topic: "Ask the National Commander" - eServices' new button
 


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