Bridge the communication gap between Ops, Maint

  • Published
  • By Senior Airman Shawn Martin
  • 62nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron

I'm a crew chief in the 62nd Aircraft Maintenance Squadron here and in my years on the flight line, I have noticed a number of pitfalls in which maintainers could possibly be trapped. The most prominent would have to be a sense of complacency and an inability to see the big picture.

As maintainers, it's very easy to be wrapped up in the day-to-day routine and have little idea how our efforts affect the mission. I believe that effective communication between aircrew and maintainers is an essential tool that we can utilize much more effectively.  

The free flow of communication and information will play a vital role in not only building trust between operations and maintenance personnel, but also in opening the eyes of Airmen who otherwise may not have buy-in.

Hearing directly from operations personnel about mission details (when possible), helps engage maintainers and provides a deeper understanding for us that what we do matters.

Think of yourselves as our employers on the flight line. As officers and leaders, making sure your employees understand the big picture as well as the part we play in the success of our missions will help us better understand why decisions are made and how those decisions will directly impact operations.

In a few months I will put on staff sergeant, and as a supervisor of other Airmen, I will stress the importance of communicating with leadership, and I will ensure that Airmen understand their role in each mission.

I just want you all to know that the success of our mission relies on the sturdy foundation of open and effective communication. As a supervisor of Airmen and as a crew chief launching and recovering jets every day, I am asking you directly to help close the gap.  

This will improve morale and increase the success of our flying in the future. In order to gain that necessary motivation and personal accountability for achieving success, it will take a conscious effort from both sides.

If you talk, we will listen. Know that aircraft maintainers put every ounce of passion and focus into performing their duties, and we want to hear from you.