Air Guard acts, releases EPR training

Air National Guard Training and Education Center/TV
Story by Master Sgt. Michael Smith

Date: 06.13.2013
Posted: 06.14.2013 11:16
News ID: 108671
Acting for EPRs

MCGHEE TYSON AIR NATIONAL BASE, Tenn. - Instructors turned actors are showing airmen the value of the enlisted performance report (EPR) and how to write them in a new training video on its best practice.<br /> <br /> At the I.G. Brown Training and Education Center here recently, the instructors worked with broadcast and education experts to act out the results of good and bad EPRs.<br /> <br /> They said they saw the opportunity to produce a video after training their staff.<br /> <br /> "We saw the need, collaborated with the National Guard Bureau on a shared idea and came together as a team to assist the field," said Tammie Smeltzer, chief for Air National Guard's professional continuing education branch.<br /> <br /> Smeltzer said thousands of Air National Guard members are expected to start writing EPRs in the coming months.<br /> <br /> The training was requested by NGB to address a policy made in March that requires biennial performance reports for drill-status, enlisted airmen.<br /> <br /> The change affects some 65,000 senior airmen through chief master sergeants and is being integrated now through 2015.<br /> <br /> The TEC TV's HD Warrior Network is scheduled to broadcast the 30-minute segment nationally to Air Guard bases, June 13, 2013 at 2 p.m., and June 15, 16 at 10 a.m. and 2 a.m., EST. (Check the WN schedule at angtec.ang.af.mil.) The video is also online: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=180JcaDLDoQ.<br /> <br /> In a skit performed, an airman questions why she received an EPR score lower than she expected.<br /> <br /> "I just got my EPR back and I'm a little disappointed ... I worked my tail off," she said.<br /> <br /> She is told that may have to do with how her performance report was written.<br /> <br /> "I know I haven't done nearly as much as you do around here," said a coworker. "But I happen to know that my supervisor writes really, really good bullets."<br /> <br /> Acting out scenarios, instructors then emphasize the importance of EPR writing.<br /> <br /> An EPR is the Air Force's main evaluation report. Supervisors write accomplishments and feedback in short, bullet statements as well as rate performance on a scale of 1 to 5. <br /> <br /> "Our focus is on the construction of the bullet statements," said Master Sgt. Veronica Ross, director of education at the Paul H. Lankford EPME Center. <br /> <br /> She called the video a "bullet writing 101 for the field."<br /> <br /> "Supervisors will need to be able to construct bullets on their airmen," Ross said. "We want to help them." <br /> <br /> In another bit, a supervisor takes note of an airman's community service for use later.<br /> <br /> "I coordinated the whole event with Habitat for Humanity," the Airman said. <br /> <br /> "That's really great stuff," said the supervisor, who marked the accomplishment down.<br /> <br /> In reality supervisors should routinely track accomplishments to form them as performance bullets, said Master Sgt. Keith Cavanaugh, TEC's first sergeant.<br /> <br /> Both Cavanaugh and Ross are active duty Air Force members who spent years writing EPRs and instructing others. <br /> <br /> "I won't sugar coat it, EPRs take time out of your day that you don't have time for," said Cavanaugh. "However, when I know I can sit down and give my superstars a good rating that makes me proud and excited to do it."