I am very excited to share that CECOM is starting a new initiative called Voice Of The Employee (VOTE). We are all familiar with the word and what it represents, but I want to suggest another meaning: it is YOUR voice, and it starts with each of you.VOTE is designed to help us change how we think about surveys and command feedback. It must resonate in our vocabulary, and we must be passionate about what it represents. I know not everyone gets excited about taking surveys, so we want to use a better form — a ballot with your VOTE — to highlight the positive impacts that come from your feedback. Feedback is a gift; it is an opportunity to build our organization stronger and better than we found it.For example, based on recent employee feedback through surveys, CECOM revamped its new employee orientation, expanded supervisor training and instituted a new mentoring program. We need your help to continue that momentum and ensure we are moving the organization in a direction that is best for all of us. Every time you participate in a survey or ballot put forth by leadership, you are shining a light on our potential blind spots. This enables us to continue growing and improving as a team.I ask that we all take action. It starts with asking for feedback at all levels. Feedback shouldn’t just flow down, but also laterally and up. But first, we must establish trust, encourage one another and be careful not to shoot the messenger. We must also share why each VOTE matters and thank our teammates for the time and valuable gift they have provided. Not all feedback is positive, therefore we need to appreciate and evaluate what we do with it. All supervisors must also make sure their employees have adequate time to share their ideas and experiences through surveys.Our first such opportunity will be at the end of this month, with the Defense Organizational Climate Survey (DEOCS). This is an annual opportunity to provide confidential feedback, your VOTE on many of the factors that affect you and our workplace. We will share the results when it is complete so we can all understand the issues facing our organization.Never forget how powerful you are and the impact you have on the Army team you serve. Let’s rally together and build Unity (the U in the SOUL of CECOM). Remember that words whisper, but action thunders. It is through your VOTE that we WILL see change!People First, Winning Matters, Army Strong!Your Command Sergeant Major,Kristie Brady