Initial Leadership Course (24th-26th August)
We arrived at the T.D.F at RAF Leuchars and met some of the other cadets who were attending the course.
We were then called in to a large classroom along with all the staff and had a little meet and greet session.
Individually we were called up to the front of the class to introduce ourselves. This was very helpful as
it allowed us to get to know some of the other cadets and made breaking the ice a lot easier! We were then split up in to“syndicates” (teams) and did a few exercises to allow us to get to know our team mates. We then went back to the RAC (Regional Activity Centre) which we stayed in for the duration of the camp.
Saturday (Day 1)
It begins! We were up, showered and had our uniform ready by 7 o’clock. An early start for some 15 year old cadets! We formed up outside the RAC and marched to the “Warrant Officers and Sergeants mess” for breakfast. Then we got ready for our inspection. The inspection was given by a Warrant Officer who gave us points for each aspects of our uniform. He was very nice and helpful; he gave us some tips on how to improve our uniform.
We then went into classes and learned about some of the different aspects of leadership. Professor John Adair’s theories were the main points we were taught about, the needs of the TEAM, the needs of the TASK and the INDIVIDUAL needs used to successfully complete the missions! After each lecture, within our syndicates, we completed small tasks to increase everyone’s confidence within the group. It also let others in the groups identify the natural followers and leaders. These lessons carried on throughout the day and into the early evening. After tea we all got changed and went into the Leuchars squadron to watch a movie. We watched to ‘Despicable Me’ and then went back to the RAC for the night.
Sunday (Day 2)
Assessment day. Everyone got ready for our final inspection, now in DPMs (greens). We were both feeling slightly nervous because this was our final chance to be good leaders! The second day was a very
practical day compared to the first. We all split up into our syndicates and got our ‘safety gear’ on. This consisted of hard hats, gloves, safety goggles and our coloured bibs. Each member of the syndicate took turns in taking charge in a task.
We were advised to use SMEAC (Situation, Mission, Execution, Ask questions and Check Understanding) to instruct our syndicates in the rules and ways to carry out the tasks. After lunch we carried out a few more tasks and then had a debrief. Everyone headed back to the RAC to clean up and pack the last of our belongings. As everyone said goodbye, most people exchanged numbers and Facebook details. It was time to go home.
Overall, we had a great weekend and met some nice people. We also learned a lot more than we expected! We are looking forward to introducing these techniques, and the other ideas given to us on the leadership weekend to 859 sqn in order to make it the best!
Cpl Lauren MacMichael and Cdt Matt Reid