Last year was WEIRD for FSOs…
I have been an FSO for over 15 years and the “world of COVID” brought on changes that I had never seen before!
They included the following:
- No On-site Inspections: After March 2020, DCSA halted on-site meetings (indefinitely) and replaced their on-site inspections with Continuous Monitor- ing or Meaningful Engagement phone calls. I found these to be…not too bad. They were easier to coordinate and less intense but usually very helpful!
- WebExes for Orientations: One of our FSO PRO Club Members (see page 4) had their orientation via Webex. The DCSA Rep shared their slides over a screen and the same presentation was provided. Good stuff!
- Shared Drives: Even as of January 2021, the government was still mailing packets of information for clearance subjects. Now, unless you are living un- der a rock, you have seen the emails instructing you to a shared file you can access—2009 says welcome! Hahaha!
- You know who your CISA is!: Most of these shared files are brought to you by your CounterIntelligence Special Agent. If you did not know his/her name and contact information before—you should now!
- Streaming Services: I knew I was in a new FSO world when my Rep asked me to hold up my phone so she could review the facility location plan. Streaming services have also been permitted for identification verifications as well. Crazy!
- Less Phone Services: Not all changes were good! I hope the help desks are back to full strength soon!
For those of you who are full-time FSOs – boy, do you have job security these days!
For those of you who do your FSO work in addition to high-priority tasks – well, we are here for you!
If you have questions or need more information about any of the 6 items above – please reach out to us.
This is about experiencing GREAT success as an FSO. We like to think of this newsletter as a Tony Robbins-meets-adrenaline- shot for your program. So, let’s let old systems be forgot (but we still miss you eFCL!) and embrace a plan for an amazing new year.
The 21-Step Plan to an Extraordinary Year!
We are offering 21 steps for 2021 (see what we did there?) so you can be the FSO you want to be in 2021! It is not difficult, as long as you have the dedication, focus, correct tools, and of course – the FSO PRO team at your disposal!
Follow this path to begin the best FSO Year:
Feed Your Mind
- Make an effort to review the DCSA website at least once a day. They just updated the web design for the website (fancy!) in addition to having lots of updates to keep you informed.
- Take an opportunity to review things posted in the FSO Toolkits, CDSE trainings, and other items that are available to you that can used to benefit your security program, and they are all FREE for you to use.
- Get the free resources that FSO PRO offers with each monthly newsletter or go to our web- site for free downloads. We are also happy to answer “what is this for?” types of questions.
If you need more – we have an “Ultimate FSO Planner” that comes FREE with your FSO PRO Membership—along with other timesaving tools, resources, and FSO hacks!
Make a Strong Plan
- Each year, FSO Pro offers a one-page FREE FSO Action Planner. Get yours today!
- DCSA has also created an Annual Planning Tool with an emphasis for each month (we are not saying they copied our idea, but we are not NOT saying it. Haha!). Use both to plan out your:
- Training – for you and personnel.
- Themes for each month.
- Logins and new account processes.
- Meetings/Calls with your DCSA Rep and your CISA to help identify your critical assets.
- Annual Requirements.
Do Your Worst First
- Right as the year begins, take a huge step forward by doing what you like the least. We all have something that is difficult for various reasons,
- Calling your DCSA Rep.
- Scheduling a “Security Awareness week” with a speaker via WebEX.
- Updating your JPAS and DISS training.
- Conducting specialized training.
- Building your “Security Library” on a shared drive.
- Using NISS, DISS, and SWFT.
Take it from us – who got this from our Mum – you get a great energy surge and sense of victory if you spend January 2021 addressing all the tasks you are likely to procrastinate.
Strengthen Your Network
- Make every effort to improve your communication with DCSA this year – this is a partnership and they need to hear from FSOs – especially with all the new systems. We have to move this forward together!
- Go to the NCMS events (again, via Webex and “hubs”) and talk with other FSOs. You may find a great mentor!
- Participate in FSO PROs polls, contests, and lobbying events on our Social Media – the subscriber list to this newsletter is growing each month—let’s share ideas!
Strengthen Your Body
Okay, this one is and isn’t something highlighted on the DCSA website, but it is equally important to stay healthy. A lot of the FSO work can be tedious and require long hours. Being a physically strong FSO supports all the massive action that we encourage you to take, increases focus, mental clarity, and helps maintain the energy you need. If this is going to be your best FSO year then:
- Do the walk.
- Eat foods with nutritional value.
- Take the vitamins recommended by Mum!
We also recommend Fandomfit.org because we are competitive nerds and like fitness plans that have team competitions and free prizes.
Join The Club!
- Join the FSO PRO Members! You are busy and may not have time to figure something out quickly.
Our membership saves FSOs time and energy as we
- Answer direct questions
- Provide templates you request
- Fingerprint support
- Training videos
- Assist with your inspection prep
- Provide updates the moment we receive it from DCSA
Thank You to all the FSOs out there who have joined the club and are taking the confusion out of their program! The more we grow, the more we are making things just for you such as tools, shortcuts, videos, checklists, contests, and things that add fun and function to what you do. Here’s to you and here’s to even more growth in 2021!
Need more explanation or assistance with any items mentioned this month?
Contact FSO PRO!
Coming Soon: the 2021 Ultimate FSO Planner!
- Monthly Calendars
- NISP Planners
- Training Spreadsheet
- FSO Budget Planner
- Checklists for pre-screening, new hires, personnel clearances, and more!
Get 10% off if you ask This Guy for more information! But FREE with FSOPRO Membership.
FSO PRO thanks all the FSOs out there for everything you do to keep the warfighter safe. Even the smallest task is designed to keep our nation’s information out of the hands of those who would do harm. We, as FSOs, are doing our part to stay vigilant and determined to protect those who protect us, even in our own small way.
That is why we say how awesome you are. And thank you.