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SCoontsFan
Recruit

Posts: 38

« on: October 19, 2018, 02:43:48 PM »

Not sure if this post belongs in the Lobby, but I don't see any other appropriate subsection in which to place it.

As a new Asst. Recruitment and Retention Officer for my squadron, I'm having difficulty getting responses from our flight group leader as well as the squadron commander regarding upcoming recruitment possibilities that I believe we should be involved in.  The squadron commander has referred me to the flight leader, the flight leader is currently very occupied in activities outside of CAP and isn't responding.  I see letting these recruitment opportunities go unattended as possible lost recruits.  There is also an issue with general email questions and requests being ignored by the same flight leader.  I'm not the only senior in the flight who is frustrated and feeling like we don't know where to go next since COC dictates how to proceed and to whom, but communicating with that "whom" feels now like a brick wall with no return communication.  I'm fairly new to CAP but not new to military structure and procedure and am feeling stonewalled and stranded.  Any suggestions?
« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 11:43:00 PM by SCoonts » Logged
Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 29,246

« Reply #1 on: October 19, 2018, 02:48:02 PM »

Any suggestions?

Yes - discuss this with your local staff.

Also, if you are the A/RRO, where is the RRO?  That's the person charged with the job.  If they are AWOL
or otherwise not performing, ask to be appointed the RRO and then run with the duties.

What is a Flight Group Leader?
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SCoontsFan
Recruit

Posts: 38

« Reply #2 on: October 19, 2018, 02:53:17 PM »

-- "Also, if you are the A/RRO, where is the RRO?  That's the person charged with the job.  If they are AWOL
or otherwise not performing, ask to be appointed the RRO and then run with the duties."

Ah, yes.  And therein lies the rub.  The squadron RRO is the Flight leader.

-- "What is a Flight Group Leader?"

Seriously?  I'm going to guess you've not taken the OBC or recall the module on Organization of CAP? https://www.gocivilairpatrol.com/media/cms/Organization_of_CAP_091230_95EFD8736392D.pdf
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Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 29,246

« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2018, 02:54:03 PM »

Also, just as general advice to a new member.

Calling out your peers as being brick walls on a public forum probably isn't the best idea
when you've identified your aquadron in your profile.

This isn't the military or a job, even though it might feel like both sometimes.  It's just bunch of
people volunteering on their own nickel and trying to do some good, just like you, and subject to
the same foibles, personality traits, and competition for their attention and time like any other
community organizaiton.

Embrace that and work within it and you'll have a good time and do some good.
Drink the T-F KoolAid to much and call people out while your CAP ID is still wet and you may not
receive the warm reception you want.
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Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 29,246

« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2018, 02:56:46 PM »

Seriously?  I'm going to guess you've not taken the OBC or recall the module on Organization of CAP? https://www.gocivilairpatrol.com/media/cms/Organization_of_CAP_091230_95EFD8736392D.pdf

The term "flight group leader" does not appear in the document you cited, and it not part of the CAP lexicon,
nor is it a staff role in CAP.
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SCoontsFan
Recruit

Posts: 38

« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2018, 03:05:38 PM »

-- "The term "flight group leader" does not appear in the document you cited, and it not part of the CAP lexicon, nor is it a staff role in CAP."

Sigh... I didn't say it was.  Further, I didn't capitalize "Flight Group Leader" (that was intentional, *because* it's not an official title), you did.  That said, Flights do have a designated leader, a form of mini-commander, actually.  Did you search in that doc for "Flight"?  If not, maybe do that so you can better understand at least a portion of the premise.

And just for the record, I wasn't saying the individual is a brick wall, I'm saying that the experience of doing what I need to do communication-wise and not getting a response is akin to a brick wall.
« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 03:37:30 PM by AmeliaE » Logged
Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 29,246

« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2018, 03:11:52 PM »

A "Flight" within a CAP squadron has a Commander, not a "Group leader", that is true
whether it's a Cadet Flight in a typical Squadron, a designated charter which is manned at Flight strength,
that wold even be true for a small group of members developing a new squadron under the auspices of
an existing charter.

It appears that you are having an unsatisfactory, but not atypical experience as a new member in an
undermanned CAP unit, however as Festivus doesn't start until the 23rd of Dec, it's a little early for the "Airing of Grievances".

The program is what it is, if you don't want to accept that, it's your choice, and I wish you luck with your
future CAP experiences.
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SCoontsFan
Recruit

Posts: 38

« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2018, 03:13:28 PM »

-- "This isn't the military or a job, even though it might feel like both sometimes.  It's just bunch of people volunteering on their own nickel and trying to do some good, just like you, and subject to the same foibles, personality traits, and competition for their attention and time like any other community organizaiton."

I'm well aware, but thanks for the kind heads up (?)  ;)

I'm also volunteering on my own nickel and was led to believe one thing at the time I joined and am now seeing another.  That's frustrating for anyone volunteering their time, talents, and finances.  It's also unsat to dismiss legitimate concerns with the "we're just volunteers!" excuse.

-- "Drink the T-F KoolAid to much and call people out while your CAP ID is still wet and you may not receive the warm reception you want."

I'm not asking for a warm reception, nor do I enjoy Kool-Aid (in Jonestown it was actually Flavor Aid, the incident from whence that colloquialism was derived, by the way)  ;D

-- "The program is what it is, if you don't want to accept that, it's your choice, and I wish you luck with your future CAP experiences."

I'm starting to get the feeling you're sort of a Negative-Nelly-Debbie-Downer type.  So far, all of your responses in the threads where I have commented have fallen right into that category.  Not exactly helpful or encouraging.  :-\
« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 03:16:52 PM by AmeliaE » Logged
SarDragon
Global Moderator

Posts: 10,464
Unit: NAVAIRPAC

« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2018, 04:02:58 PM »

OK, folks, let's put the swords away, and take a break. A PM has been sent, which is how this should have been handled in the first place.
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Dave Bowles
Maj, CAP
AT1, USN Retired
Mitchell Award (unnumbered)
C/WO, CAP, Ret
etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,304

« Reply #9 on: October 19, 2018, 04:52:53 PM »


As a new Asst. Recruitment and Retention Officer for my squadron, ...... regarding upcoming recruitment possibilities that I believe we should be involved in.

You see a need, run with it. Sometimes things can be done grass roots. You didn't say what types of possibilities are coming up. Some public event where you can setup a recruiting booth perhaps? Send an email to your Squadron Seniors and ask for volunteers to help you man the booth. Go for it.

Everything doesn't always have to be run up and down the chain.
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MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO
Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 29,246

« Reply #10 on: October 19, 2018, 05:00:41 PM »

Everything doesn't always have to be run up and down the chain.

All member activities must be approved by the Squadron CC, and in some wings require Wing approval.

Generally there would be no reason why typical recruiting activities would not be approved, but
just going out and hanging a shingle somewhere without approval isn't allowed.

Further to that were it to involve cadets, as they need signed F32s for anything outside a unit meeting
or O-rides at the home squadron.
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etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,304

« Reply #11 on: October 19, 2018, 07:32:39 PM »



All member activities must be approved by the Squadron CC, and in some wings require Wing approval.


(I did mention emailing all Senior members, so that would include CC. He could squash it if he didn't like it. )

Oh my.  I was at Walmart last night and started talking up CAP with a guy and his sons.  I'll make sure to call the CC next time and get it approved before I do that type of recruiting activity again.  ;)
« Last Edit: October 19, 2018, 07:36:49 PM by etodd » Logged
MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO
Eclipse
Too Much Free Time Award

Posts: 29,246

« Reply #12 on: October 19, 2018, 07:53:22 PM »

"Emailing all seniors" is not "approval".

The commander "being aware" is not "approval".

This seems to be a misconception with well-intentioned members.

Some wings require specific approval for these types of things in advance, sometimes as much as 30 days
because that insures that any protections needed insurance-wise are in place formally.

Everyone is friendly until someone trips on your recruiting table and sues CAP.
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etodd
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 1,304

« Reply #13 on: October 19, 2018, 08:05:36 PM »

"Emailing all seniors" is not "approval".

The commander "being aware" is not "approval".

This seems to be a misconception with well-intentioned members.

Some wings require specific approval for these types of things in advance, sometimes as much as 30 days
because that insures that any protections needed insurance-wise are in place formally.

Everyone is friendly until someone trips on your recruiting table and sues CAP.

Yes, of course.  Its all for good reasons ... in our so very lawyer happy world now.

Just another reason why so many things just don't get done, why folks get discouraged, why you can't "strike while the iron is hot".

You can't even have two folks handing out brochures impromptu, when they see they happen to have a couple hours free this afternoon, due to all the red tape. Got to plan it weeks in advance.

Yes ... I get it.  Its just all very sad.

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MS - MO - AP - MP - FRO
Spaceman3750
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 2,654

« Reply #14 on: October 19, 2018, 08:50:12 PM »

"Emailing all seniors" is not "approval".

The commander "being aware" is not "approval".

This seems to be a misconception with well-intentioned members.

Some wings require specific approval for these types of things in advance, sometimes as much as 30 days
because that insures that any protections needed insurance-wise are in place formally.

Everyone is friendly until someone trips on your recruiting table and sues CAP.

Yes, of course.  Its all for good reasons ... in our so very lawyer happy world now.

Just another reason why so many things just don't get done, why folks get discouraged, why you can't "strike while the iron is hot".

You can't even have two folks handing out brochures impromptu, when they see they happen to have a couple hours free this afternoon, due to all the red tape. Got to plan it weeks in advance.

Yes ... I get it.  Its just all very sad.

I will give you an example that you might like better because it doesnít involve lawyers. As a commander, I am very concerned about the image of my squadron and the organization. Recruiting wise, I want to know where and when my squadron is being represented, and have the ability to decline an opportunity if it is not in line with my or the organizationís goals. This is especially true where new or inexperienced members are involved.

That being said, if one of my members came to me volunteering to run a recruiting activity, Iíd probably be pretty swift to act.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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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.
blombardo
Recruit

Posts: 17
Unit: NER-PA-007

Squadron 123 Group 6 PA
« Reply #15 on: October 23, 2018, 03:07:19 PM »

I was hoping that this was a different topic based off of the general 'lack of a universal communication system' / IT / chat solution related... but its more of a 'someone is slow to reply' complaint...


The Training in E services -- Office Basic Course - is very handy and may help you to solve your communication issues; or at least give you some references and tools to help you solve the issue.


This is a problem that is very common in CAP.  I've been in many positions where I need answers and can not get them; too many to list and - of course-  it would be inappropriate to explain them or imply people who have failed to reply. 

Personal experience:

Lets just say that - as a new member with about 15 months of service -- I have been very frustrated with this -countless times - from people that I rely on to train me or give me direction to accomplish squadron goals who do not take the time to respond.   FORTUNATELY I've managed to meet other people outside of my immediate area (at conferences) who have been insanely helpful, have devoted MANY 90 minute long phone conversations to help walk me through things...  There are a LOT of great people in CAP who are happy to DROP WHAT THEY ARE DOING and help you any time of the day...  You just need to find a few.

On the other side of the coin there are also a lot of people who are NOT going to drop what they are doing, they are too busy and you are a very low priority for them... Perhaps they have other legit things happening so its no fault of their own -- but from your perspective they are just ignoring you and acting incompetent....   once you identify these people who fail to reply - get used to it; things will not likely change.  Send a politely composed email to them asking if there is something 'you ' can do to better communicate with 'them'.. put the blame on yourself so that you dont insult or annoy them and maybe you'll get lucky and they will tell you - 'o hey, yea I work a lot.. its better if you email, text, call, skype, messenger, slack, whatever me'...


I believe CAP has a HUGE communications problem - systemic and catastrophic. - Not for Emergency services... Not for national communications that come down through email -- but in every other aspect of the program at local and group levels.  I would like to see a forum like CAPtalk employed nationally and all members of CAP would automatically be able to access it through the same E services login...   Every conversation could be made in public- and helpful info could be offered by people around the world.

When I approached my chain of command initially with suggestions they are quickly rebuffed with a simple 'we like our chain of command system, we do not see any need to use any other communication system other than Email and weekly/monthly conference calls'...  Heck I could not even get national / wing / group to offer lists of all squadrons and duty positions with contact information - so that I could at least know WHO ELSE I could seek advice from... even if they live a thousand miles away.. maybe they have the answer that I need...  No, you're supposed to be assigned a mentor who answers all that.. who would use the chain of command to find you someone else if they don't have the answer... But what if you dont have a mentor? none are available... then you have no backup solution to find answers... (aside from CAPtalk here - or going to other squadrons to meet other people)

This is frustrating for someone who sees the benefit of 24/7 collaboration on a national level across all cap members; especially if you're from a small squadron with limited support and slow (or no) answers.   

*I'm very happy that Captalk exists - I wish national had adopted a forum system like this - and expanded it... I wish captalk would also expand more ... this is a great site.

You can not get 60,000 people involved in a program and expect them all to have the same communications standards.

I suggest  that you type up a communications policy that your squadron commander could choose to adopt at a local level.. this may be the only viable option.

We've had to create one of our own - to state simple things like.. 'no phone calls or text messages after 9pm / but chat systems and emails can be used 24/7 -- people must adjust notification settings so they dont get bothered at inappropriate times.'

Our cadets, parents and basic members are expected to communicate once per week -- STAFF positions are expected to check messages and reply once per DAY; morning or night. -- This of course also depends on what chat systems you employ.  If using Messenger, Discord, Captalk or other avenues you have more options to get replies.

-If you're in a staff position there should be a reasonable expectation of a timely response -- but - again - its a volunteer group and some people choose to volunteer for 2 hours a month at a meeting -- and ignore every other communication medium in between that time...  Others choose to spend every last second of their waking life doing things for the squadron; then everyone else falls in the middle...

I invite you to join our squadrons Discord server - its an experiment - comparable to SLACK but more cadet friendly.

https://discord.gg/3p7jsRp


Discord is a solution that may solve your squadron problems... assuming everyone was to agree to use it.  There are over 30 different chat apps available that could solve your problems..
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Sr Member Brian Lombardo, CAP
Squadron123, IT, PAO, Logistics
PA Group 6, Assistant IT
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Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 356

« Reply #16 on: October 24, 2018, 09:02:02 AM »

There used to be an official Air Force discussion forum that had your name, rank and email tied to it.  I canít for the life of me remember the name and I donít know if itís still around, but I think it was geared towards professional development and mentoring.

I think a similar concept would work for CAP but you probably wouldnít get a lot of participation.
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PHall
Salty & Seasoned Contributor

Posts: 6,314

« Reply #17 on: October 24, 2018, 11:32:19 AM »

There used to be an official Air Force discussion forum that had your name, rank and email tied to it.  I canít for the life of me remember the name and I donít know if itís still around, but I think it was geared towards professional development and mentoring.

I think a similar concept would work for CAP but you probably wouldnít get a lot of participation.

You mean if you can't hide behind a screen name you won't play? (Not aimed at you directly.)
People should not post anything they aren't willing to say face to face, but, screen names and such give people false courage.
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Jester
Seasoned Member

Posts: 356

« Reply #18 on: October 24, 2018, 03:13:06 PM »

I think that's a big limiting factor, but there's similar format on the 8 zillion CAP Facebook groups. 

Other issues would be:

- getting people to actually use it (like older seniors who tout being "technologically challenged" but really just refuse to learn).

- people getting butthurt about something said on the internet and calling commanders.  I'm sure it happens here and Facebook, and not only do commanders not need to be spending time drying somebody's tears based on internet comments, but there's also plenty of commanders who would probably hammer people over it as well.
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