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Duo briefs Airmen on importance of communication
Larry and Meagan Johnson, professional speakers, tour a KC-135 Stratotanker after presenting a seminar for Airmen at the base the theater Oct. 27, 2010, at McConnell Air Force Base, Kan. The Johnsons spoke to almost 1,400 Airmen about understanding the differences between newer and older generations. The event was hosted by McConnell Unified Services team. (U.S. Air Force Photo/Airman 1st Class Armando A. Schwier-Morales)
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Comprehensive Airman Fitness: Duo briefs Airmen on importance of communication at McConnell

Posted 11/4/2010   Updated 11/5/2010 Email story   Print story


by Airman 1st Class Armando Schwier-Morales
22nd Air Refueling Wing Public Affairs

11/4/2010 - MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan. -- Delivering McConnell Airmen a personal look at communications between generations, a father-daughter team held two seminars at the base theater, Oct. 27, 2010.

The McConnell Unified Support team hosted Larry Johnson and Meagan Johnson, professional speakers from the Johnson Group as part of a continuing effort to enhance Airmen and their families' well being, balance and resiliency.

"Our goal is to develop better understandings of our generational and relationship differences so that we are better at communicating and coping with our differences," said Lt. Col. Robert Mallets, 22nd Mission Support Group deputy commander. "These two speakers helped shed some light on these differences for our McConnell team."

Mr. Johnson offered Airmen insight he's gained as a "baby-boomer," and presented Airmen with a three-tier model to improve conflict resolution, particularly between spouses took the stage first. Using knowledge he gained through the years, he presented Airmen with a model to improve conflict resolution. He called it the Productivity Acceptance Leave model.

The PAL model gives Airmen three options do something if their relationship with their significant other is troubled. First, be Productive and try to change the situation, or, Accept the differences and live with them and Leave if you can't accept the differences.

"The PAL model gives you a non-violent and rational approach toward tough situations," said Shawna Lake, 22nd Medical Support Squadron medical information systems administrator. "It allows you reasonable options to try and solve the issues at hand, and can be used in everyday life for common stressors."

Using audience interaction, humor and personal examples, Mr. Johnson communicated his message to Airmen.

"I hope [the program] raised Airmen's awareness to be sensitive to people who are different, and offered different opinions as to what people need," said Mr. Johnson.

Mr. Johnson's daughter, Meagan, also spoke about the differences between the generations and how to resolve and understand these differences.
"The program shows that there is often a simple solution early on and if you examine it with my father's model, then you can side-step a much more serious problem later on," said Mrs. Johnson.

Preventing conflicts and improving the morale of the Airmen at McConnell was part of the overall goal according to the base safety office, the program reemphasized base priorities.

"Bringing the program here is an intricate part of accomplishing the mission," said Maj. Glenn Clark, 22nd Air Refueling Wing and 931st Air Refueling Group chief of safety. "It allows us to take care of our people by showing them the tools they have available to help ensure Airmen's private lives are squared away, through effective communication."

The Airmen who attended included more than 1,400 member and included people from the traditional generation, baby boomers, generation x and generation y. The knowledge they acquired can be applied at their work center or at home.

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