Your job is what you make it. If you float from duty title to duty title thinking of only your own career, you’re collecting EPR fodder from that position without thinking or making a difference. I get it, no one wants to be NCOIC of the Snack Bar. However, the ‘coveted positions’ are sometimes cheapened by duty title chasers looking to gobble up EPR fodder. Instead of being resentful of those individuals, blaze your own trail.
You can shine without that coveted position in the squadron. Instead of waiting for a ‘promotable’ position to open, I volunteered for something unorthodox. What I found was a duty section that needed a boost. My approach; reinforce the importance of my subordinate’s duties and focus on the people. When any of them concocted a new idea or concept, I encouraged it and gave them the autonomy they needed. I emphasized their baseline duty performance through their evaluations and leveraged my experiences to aid them in any ventures.
Find gaps in your organization. For me, there were not nearly enough ties to the community that my organization serves. Once I gained some connections, I leveraged those to provide opportunities to my subordinates and organization to shine. If the position you hold has people asking, “What does that person do?”, that’s an opportunity for you–show them. Don’t think of your duty position/title as a listing of AFI requirements–its a summary of your experience and skill applied in a different way. An AFI cannot possibly cover everything you are capable of.
Always think of your workcenter and the effect you have on it and the people within it. As an NCO, its not about you anymore–its about others and making the organization better.