This blog post is the first in a series titled “Dialogue with the MCPOCG,” written by Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard Steven Cantrell. As the Coast Guard’s senior enlisted leader, Cantrell is responsible for advising the Commandant on workforce issues, and advocating for military benefits and entitlements. He will periodically use this platform to pass information to the Coast Guard workforce.
Good day, colleagues. This is my first blog post in what I plan to be a series that will allow me to share my insight on relevant news and information, socialize new policies and benefits, and to address rumors and correct misconceptions.
I am truly honored and humbled to have been given this opportunity to represent and serve the Coast Guard workforce as the 12th Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard. I’ve been on the job for only about a month and a half, and I’ve had the tremendous good fortune to meet a lot of phenomenal Coast Guard men and women.
I’ve already sent an email to all the Chiefs, Senior Chiefs and Master Chiefs, outlining my expectations and laying out some of the initiatives I plan to implement. I also recently revised the MCPOCG’s Standing Order Two, the Coast Guard’s Chief Petty Officer Strategic Framework. It outlines the mission, vision and guiding principles for Chief Petty Officers.
But, I think that framework, my personal leadership philosophy, is pertinent information for anyone – whether you’re a Chief, aspire to be a Chief one day, or work for/with a Chief.
The mission of the Chief Petty Officer is to deliver world-class leadership to the workforce. We strive to improve the lives and careers of our people and their families while we create mission-ready Coast Guardsmen. Everyone we work with has value and we, as Chiefs, will treat them as such.
The vision of the senior enlisted corps is to be comprised of inspirational leaders committed to developing the workforce, being approachable and responsive to their needs, and connected to our Coast Guard senior leaders.
The Chief Petty Officer’s guiding principles are:
• Compassion – Chiefs must be compassionate leaders who know our people, show an interest in their lives and careers, and foster a culture of treating everyone with dignity and respect;
• Heritage – Chiefs connect our members of our workforce to our past and shoulder the responsibility of preserving our maritime history and traditions, enhancing the pride we have as we serve each other, our Coast Guard, and our nation;
• Integrity – Our integrity and passion to lead should reflect our steadfast commitment to our core values;
• Expertise – Chiefs must be experts in our chosen ratings, in leadership and communications, all of which creates the responsibility to mentor those around us and develop their expertise; and
• Flexibility – Being flexible leaders allows us to accept innovation and inspires trust in the Chiefs Mess.
You’ll see many of these points echo the guiding principles and priorities outlined in the Commandant’s Direction 2014.
Adm. Zukunft and I share the opinion that the Coast Guard’s greatest asset is our people. We are serving in the world’s best Coast Guard and should all be honored to have that opportunity.
I’ll close the same way I close a unit visit or an all hands: “Be good people, be good to other people, and be safe.”