In 72 at my first assignment (Albrook AFB, CZ) I worked with a SSgt who had enlisted in 1954 and (under the old board system) had made E-5 by 1960. The man knew the Military Personnel System (we were 732X0s) inside and out. But sit him down and give him a written test and he would freeze. In 73 he was facing his Up or Out threshold. Every one in the department took turns working with him prepping him for the test. It worked, he got his line # for Tech with 6 months to spare. I am sure there are many more just like him and their loss creates a void every day that the AF can not afford.
I agree with what you said. In my unit, my fellow E5s all work together and play on each other's strengths and help build each other's weaknesses. Some want to promote but some are fine being in the "grit" with the junior Airmen and training them, still being mentors and leaders but are pressured to get a promotion due to HYT. I myself, do want to promote but I have learned some people are completely happy with where they're at and don't want to deal with the admin/paperwork side of promoting further.
Read This Next