I often encounter senior officers and NCOs who express disappointment in Army brigade commanders who perform poorly while in command and in positions shortly after brigade command. The disappointing behaviors that they describe usually include:
1) Inability to build and employ an executive, multi-function team or build informal alliances beyond their own organization.
2) Misapplication of tactical and direct-leadership solutions to executive, interagency, and strategic problems.
3) Poor interpersonal skills (perhaps merely a variation of #2).
4) Inability to adapt to strategic ambiguity and non-linear organizations.
I like linking Best Defense because I know it drives Esli crazy. But I also try to only link guest columnists.
The author has some interesting ideas on how to improve the selection process.
As noted, today the selection board basically gets a look at the officers file and photo, and judges from that.
As a contrast, when a young Specialist is trying to get promoted to Sergeant, he has to appear, physically, before a board of his battalion’s First Sergeants and Command Sergeant Major.
One issue I’ve had for some time with the Army promotion system is that it is focused on fairness. What’s wrong with that? Well, that means that it is NOT focused on finding the best leaders. I’m not sure how a large bureaucracy can do that, and certainly the Army should be as fair as possible. I’m open to suggestion.