By MC3 Michael Lopez
Navy Public Affairs Support Element Detachment Southeast
Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy (MCPON) Steven Giordano and his wife, Navy Ombudsman-at-Large Elka Giordano, met with Sailors and toured commands throughout the Southeast Region's tri-base area June 4-8.
Giordano visited with Sailors and held all hands calls at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay, Georgia, Naval Air Station Jacksonville and Naval Station Mayport.
His visit was part of regular fleet engagement and his first time visiting the area as the MCPON. He took the opportunity to speak with Sailors about making decisions as leaders and the four core attributes of decision making: integrity, accountability, initiative and toughness.
"Those four core attributes encompass how we make decisions," said Giordano.
"We have to have an equal amount of those attributes, because at some point each of you will have to make a decision as a leader that may not be popular, but that's okay because you were put in that leadership position for a reason."
The core attributes come from the Navy's Design for Maintaining Maritime Superiority, which addresses how the Navy will adapt to changes in the security environment and continue to fulfill its mission.
Giordano emphasized that the four core attributes are a Sailor's professional identity and will help to serve as guiding criteria for decisions and actions. He added that Sailors should focus on doing their best to complete the tasks in front of them and growth will follow.
"Anytime you go into a new position, you should be continuously learning every day," said Giordano. "Your ability to advance is going to come from the work you've been doing and your potential to move forward. If you continue to apply yourself to learning and growing, you can bet you will be successful at the next level."
The visit included stops at USS Florida (SSGN 728), Trident Training Facility, Triton Unmanned Patrol Squadron (VUP) 19, Patrol Squadron (VP) 30, USS Iwo Jima (LHD 7), Littoral Combat Ship Squadron (LCSRON) 2 and Navy Recruiting District Jacksonville.
"An all hands call with the MCPON gives us a connection from top to bottom," said Naval Air Crewman (Operator) Seaman Adam Lacey, assigned to VP-30. "The Navy is like any organization where it's important for the head of it to know what the feet are doing. Him getting to hear what we're concerned about will give him a better understanding of things he could focus on."
During a discussion about advancement, Giordano explained the benefits of the Meritorious Advancement Program (MAP) and how it helps commands recognize and advance Sailors with top performance in their rates and pay grades while simultaneously keeping the Navy healthy.
"We realize the attribution that MAP has had for us to fill qualified Sailors in billets," said Giordano. "And we plan on growing the program to result in approximately 25 percent of advancements being a product of MAP.
Giordano went on to congratulate Sailors who were selected for advancement through MAP.
"There is really no greater compliment you can get than your leadership staff identifying you as someone who can perform at the next level," said Giordano. "So you should be proud if you were selected to advance through this program."
Giordano listened to Sailor's concerns and spoke about the importance of balancing work and life commitments, the importance of education and modernizing the advancement exam process.
"I can see how all hands calls like today can give a huge boost of morale across the fleet," said Mineman 3rd Class Zachary Miller, assigned to Mine Countermeasures Detachment 21. "The MCPON coming to speak with us shows that he cares what we have to say, instead of just pushing things down the chain of command. I think showing face in itself can speak louder than words sometimes."
The MCPON took photos with Sailors and left them with praise and final words of advice.
"Continue to be great Sailors in everything our nation and Navy asks you to do and don't forget those around you," said Giordano. "Look to your left and right and understand this is one big Navy family and it's a great thing to be a part of."