FORT RUCKER, Ala. (March 14, 2013) -- The Leading Change Team met with senior leaders March 7 to inform them of the importance of the LCT's two standing initiatives and how the two groups can benefit from working together.

The primary goal of the meeting was to build a foundation from which the LCT and the senior leaders group can move forward for lasting, positive change throughout the U.S. Army Aviation Center of Excellence and Fort Rucker, according to CW5 Matt Sivacek, an instructor at 1st Battalion, 145th Aviation Regiment.

"This is going to be a great opportunity for us to make a lot of changes within units, to become empowered and to help other people become empowered to make change," he said.

The groups talked about what the LCT is, its history, some of its successful past actions, its mission, how it goes about making change and how it is structured.

"The CG knows he can't do it all, so the more we can get the lowest level people involved in change the more likely that change will last," said Sivacek.

"There are always barriers, challenges and environments that cause frustration because people have no control over it. That is one thing that LCT is phenomenal at. That is one reason the LCT was created, to knock down those barriers," he continued.

The LCT admitted that one of its biggest challenges was operating without or with few senior leaders and that collaborating together will benefit everyone.

"We have learned that without the senior leadership's counsel, we have lost a little bit of the [connectivity] to the hierarchy of USAACE. That is what the senior leader's group is going to bring back. The executive officers and the deputy directors know what is going on in [their] organizations more than anybody," said Sivacek.

According to Wade Becnel, deputy director of the USAACE Directorate of Simulations, guiding coalitions always have to have senior leadership involvement because people don't manage change, they lead change, and that is why the LCT and the SLG want to work together.

But the LCT wants people, not just senior leaders, to be a part of the positive change that happens on post instead of being a witness and subject to what those changes are.

"People can either be a victim of change or they can be involved in shaping the change," said 1st Sgt. Gabriel Gonzalez, cadre at the NCO Academy.

LCT officials told the senior leaders that workers' scope is limited if they stay in their "little cubbies," and gave insight into two standing issues that the LCT is working on -- professional development and developing Communities of Practice.

"The professional development initiative is specifically dedicated to providing educational opportunities to any personnel on USAACE at no cost," said Christina Parker, supervisor instructional systems specialist for the Directorate of Training and Doctrine. "We focus on Army Learning Model 2015 strategies, meaning we have workshops on generational influences and how to use PowerPoint as an ALM tool, among other things."

Parker also discussed organizational process improvement.

"We have people bring a process that they use every day within their organization, and we walk them through the process of defining it, analyzing it and measuring it, as well as coming up with courses of action. We teach people how to work through the process and understand what they are looking at, what it is that they can do and how to present that information to leadership in order to get support," she said.

The other initiative that was discussed was the work the LCT does with developing Communities of Practice, both in person as well as out in [websites] behind the DOD firewall, such as MilSuite or MilBook.

Some of the practices that have already started are the supply community practice, the Instructor Community of Practice and the Defense Travel Administrator Community of Practice.

"Basically it is connecting people that are within the same fields, such as instructors or first sergeants. They can share experiences and knowledge with each other inside their COP," said Gonzalez.

With policies changing every day, LCT officials spoke on why these two programs are beneficial to the senior leaders.

"You need to look at what you're doing, how you're doing it and how you can do it more efficiently. You have to understand the inefficiencies that are happening. It is important to understand, as senior leaders, to go that route during fiscal uncertainty," said Cathy Krisp, Directorate of Resource Management.