News | Aug. 28, 2020

Troop Support leaders focus on resiliency during a pandemic

By Janeen Hayes DLA Troop Support

Like many organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic, the Defense Logistics Agency Troop Support had to shift its work environment from in-office to completely virtual.

DLA Troop Support senior leaders took a pause from the mission to focus on self-care and the care of their employees during a virtual resiliency training program held August 19 and 21.

“The goal of this training was to provide leadership with an overview of resiliency skills and some tactics to practice these skills in real life situations both at home and in the workplace,” said Patricia Lynch, chief of the Command Support Organizational Transformation branch.

The Organizational Transformation team enlisted the assistance of the Army Training Center to achieve this goal.

The ATC has an Executive Resilience and Performance Course that introduces various models and techniques to help employees deal with the challenges that come along working in a virtual environment.

“The hope of the training is to think of some strategies to shift the mindset,” said Gabrielle Carter, the Master Resiliency Trainer who led the sessions.  

Communication in the workplace, dissecting the cause and effect of reactions, and reflecting on positivity or the “joy” in situations are a few themes that were presented in the training.

“The communication part of the training is something I will always strive to achieve in my professional career,” said Mary Martin, Division Chief, Future Operations J3/5.  “Communication is paramount at DLA, in working with all colleagues: superiors, peers, and subordinates.” 

For Subsistence Director Army Col. Eric McCoy, focusing on the positive when working with his team was beneficial.

“The techniques for mindfulness and shaping conversations were insightful,” he said.

DLA Troop Support Indo-Pacific Commander Navy Cmdr. Shani LeBlanc agreed.

“I believe the piece on joy really stood out to me when it comes to how I listen to others,” she said.  “I will work harder to acknowledge how I’m responding and interpreting their moment or ’joy.’”

Ensuring leaders are equipped with the tools to remain healthy and positive both professionally and personally during this time is essential, Lynch said, and the leaders appreciated it.

“In most organizations I have served, we focus on resiliency within the workforce but neglect to look at resiliency for leaders — I appreciated the crosstalk between leaders within Troop Support on challenges that we are all facing and the techniques we are using to cope,” McCoy said.