Chaplains host training for Volunteer Airmen in Hawaii

  • Published
  • By Staff Sgt. Melissa Dearstone
  • 134tyh Air Refueling Wing

Chaplains from the 134th Air Refueling Wing hosted leadership training for Volunteer Airmen during their deployment for training here, July 5.

The training was inspired by the book, The 5 Languages of Appreciation in the Workplace, by Dr. Gary Chapman and went over different techniques to make the workplace a better place.

“These type of trainings are so important because they get people interacting with one another,” said 134th ARW chaplain, Capt. Seth Hammond. “The Airmen may not know each other and by the end of the training they get to know each other in a positive way that will help them communicate effectively as well as get to know one another personally.”

The training began with a lesson on words of affirmation, which deals with the importance of being recognized and appreciated within the workplace.

A survey done by the Department of Labor stated that 64% of people left the workplace due to lack of appreciation.

According to the book, recognition is more about recognizing performance and appreciation recognizes performance, but also shows value towards the individual.

Within this topic, the importance of communication was also discussed.

134th ARW chaplain, Maj. Derick Wakefield said, communication is a skill that has to be learned and when it comes to communication, our word selection, non-verbals, and tone are extremely important.

“People often believe what they see, not what we say,” said Wakefield. “If our non-verbals do not match what we are trying to say, then they tend to believe what they see.”

Another highlight of the training was a personality test that Hammond began his part of the training with.

The quick test was done individually and associated you with an animal that had associated traits pertaining to your personality.

Hammond said that it is important to know what type of personalities you are associating with in your workplace and relationships, because it helps you understand the person and how they work.

According to the book studies have shown workplaces that take this test and understand their employees have seen an increase in productivity, less staff turnover, high customer rating, and higher profitability.

Other topics that were discussed were acts of service, quality time, tangible gifts, and physical touch.

These types of trainings are important and give the chaplains an opportunity to reach out to a larger group of Airmen that they may not be able to at their home station due to scheduling conflicts.

“What we are hoping to do, is help people be empowered and to gain confidence in who they are and also who they work with,” said Hammond. “It helps Airmen to understand their own temperaments and how they and other people are wired as well as how they can compliment each other.”

Not only do the chaplains get the chance to spread the message about this book and how to make the workplace better, the Airmen get knowledge as well that they will be able to use.

“These types of training are very helpful for me,” said Staff Sgt. Lisa Maxwell, contracting specialist with the 134th Mission Support Group. “It’s very important to know what kind of personalities you are working with because then you know how to approach them, and there tends to be less miscommunication.”

As the training wrapped up, the chaplains wanted everyone to be able to take something away from this training back to their home station.

“One of the things I want the Airmen to get out of this training, is for them to understand that everybody does not speak the same language,” said Wakefield. “We should be able to communicate to people what is effective to motivating ourselves and it is equally important to know what motivates someone else so they can live up to their potential and meet the expectations you set for them.”

The chaplains were part of the approx. 80 Airmen from the 134th ARW and 241st Engineering Installation Squadron, that deployed to Hawaii as part of their annual training.