Cadet Wing Leadership – first in a series by:(IV) 27168 NCdt (IV) Marie-Frédérick Grégoire – CWPIO
26825 OCdt Stefan Bobes, pilot by military occupation and an Electrical Engineering student, proudly held the position of Cadet Wing Commander (CWC) during the fall semester of 2016.
He was the true definition of a ‘Model Cadet’ and provided us with a perfect example of leadership, especially to the newest members of our RMC family – the first year cadets. He started his military career in 2012 at CMR Saint-Jean.
In CMR, he was a member of Iberville squadron and held the position of Cadet Squadron Leader (CSL). I was fortunate enough to meet with OCdt Bobes to discuss his experience as CWC.
What was your reaction when you got the news of the CWC position?
At first, I wasn’t sure what was going on. I was in Montreal for an engineering tour and people started texting me and wishing me congratulations and at this point, I had no idea why? I figured that I was part of the new Top 5 but was completely oblivious to the fact that I was the new CWC. I called my parents immediately when I officially found out that I was the new CWC and then it all hit me. I was a bit stressed with the new responsibility at hand of being the new CWC. As luck would have it, two of the new top 5 cadets did Primary Flight Training (PFT) over the summer with me. We had discussed a lot about the changes we wanted to bring to RMC in the upcoming semester.
What would have been your greatest leadership learning as CWC?
I thing the main thing would be to explain to people why we are doing things. You always have to pass on to the troops what the commander’s intent is and why we are doing certain things within the cadet wing. Often people do not understand the intent or don’t see the bigger picture. With this comes dissatisfaction. I learned that you cannot make everyone happy but you have to implement certain things for the greater good of the majority.
To whom would you look up to during hard decision? What would you do during hard moments?
I would go seek advice from my closest friends and ask them for a second opinion before making firm decisions. Even if my friends didn’t have the highest bar positions, they knew me and would help me seek solutions during difficult decisions. It is always important to ask for some help when you need it.
How did you manage your position and school work load?
I tried to find a balance between the two. Sometime I would do one more than the other. When I knew that my academic load would increase during certain weeks, I would delegate tasks a lot more to my senior barslate during those weeks and vice-versa. This is where trust comes in. No one person can do everything all by themselves. You need to be able to trust your team and work together towards your goals.
What would be your best recommendation to new cadets here in RMC?
Planning and time management are key to success at RMC. Set goals for yourself, make a plan on how to attain them and thrive to always do your best. Don’t be scared or shy to seek help. The key to success is to make goals and sticking to them.