Author Topic: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training  (Read 7547 times)

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Offline Ayrsayle

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Might be more appropriate for the radio chatter section...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKZRFDCbGTA

I had a similar conversation as an OCdt with a MCpl while in basic, when I asked him (after the course was completed) "how bad our rooms really were":  "Your room will never be perfect, but that was never the point.  If you remove every speck of dust in your room, I'll pull the vents covers up and pull dust from in there - It'll never be perfect and I'll make sure of it.  Your future in the CAF depends not on you being perfect, but on always striving to learn from your mistakes and striving for perfection.  Which is why I will always find dirt."

It's been a while and that conversation is obviously not verbatim - but it was I took from it.

The little things in life matter - if you can't do the little things right, you'll never be able to do the big things right.

« Last Edit: March 26, 2016, 20:43:37 by Ayrsayle »
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Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2016, 21:08:28 »
Might be more appropriate for the radio chatter section...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GKZRFDCbGTA

I had a similar conversation as an OCdt with a MCpl while in basic, when I asked him (after the course was completed) "how bad our rooms really were":  "Your room will never be perfect, but that was never the point.  If you remove every speck of dust in your room, I'll pull the vents covers up and pull dust from in there - It'll never be perfect and I'll make sure of it.  Your future in the CAF depends not on you being perfect, but on always striving to learn from your mistakes and striving for perfection.  Which is why I will always find dirt."

It's been a while and that conversation is obviously not verbatim - but it was I took from it.

The little things in life matter - if you can't do the little things right, you'll never be able to do the big things right.

Just don't try that stuff with the other guys' pledges: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Dy2fo6E_pI
"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Gamejirada

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2018, 05:38:16 »
It is a new knowledge for me and I believe that everyone who has read this content must get something that is not very useful, certainly.

Online NavyShooter

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2018, 07:50:40 »
One of the points to the so called 'menial' tasks is that you must learn attention to detail.   Attention to detail in a way that is not taught in any other profession in the world.

A dust-bunny in a corner may not be a big deal, but the ability to scan a space and find that 'out of place' or 'dirty' thing is critical further on down the road.

Also consider that the 'menial' tasks of cleaning toilets, sweeping floors, and polishing boots are things that you will never get away from throughout your career.  During Basic Training, you have the opportunity to master these skills without worrying about having other competing pressures.  You get to the point that polishing your boots is second nature, muscle memory.  That means that when I'm polishing my boots later today to fill the role as Parade Chief tomorrow, I will be able to put my mind on other things for the 20 minutes as I polish...it will give me a chance to think about the UDI that I'm working on.

Those 'menial' tasks are also basic life skills.  Sewing nametags on your socks....uses the same stitch that you need to know to sew a wound closed.  Cleaning a toilet in a barracks is the same as cleaning your toilet at home (when you eventually buy one.)  Sweeping a floor...yeah...I have my kids to do that at home now, but I still do it when we have company coming over.

Waxing the floor?  Ok...that one's a tougher sell I admit.

:-)
Insert disclaimer statement here....

:panzer:

Offline mariomike

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2018, 09:21:00 »
Cleaning a toilet in a barracks is the same as cleaning your toilet at home (when you eventually buy one.)

 :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqg4rJPUxGs

Online Rifleman62

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #5 on: January 17, 2018, 10:33:59 »
I remember cleaning the barrack urinals with another guy in the Summer of 1963 while on Jn NCO Crse. We were caught fooling around playing tricks on the other candidates. Our Sgt ordered to clean the urinals. So got some Brasso for the copper pipes and a gallon tin of Woods, Sanitation For The Nation and got to it. It was a Sunday and the Orderly Officer and entourage appeared at the same time as our Sgt and questions arose. By this time our hands were grey and the skin was like rubber that you could pull away. Remember this was before WHIMIS, cleaners, etc.

The Orderly Officer took us to the Shilo Base Hospital for treatment and asked us who told us to clean the urinals etc. We said we were doing the task for Monday inspection as it had to be done. Our Sgt,(the one who ordered us to the task) was standing just behind the Orderly Officer just gave us a slight nod (of appreciation??) that we didn't spill the beans.

This was the old Army. The Sgt was old Army, Korean War Vet.

I had that Sgt as a trainer/mentor for my first 3 years in the Army plus was one of his NCO's. A wonderful fellow. Lesson, when you give troops a task/crap detail, ensure the proper tools are available, a briefing done, and task supervised.
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Offline SeaKingTacco

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #6 on: January 17, 2018, 16:01:21 »
The "mundane tasks" part of your day (cleaning, polishing, ironing) is the easiest part of the day. Enjoy it!

Offline BeyondTheNow

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2018, 16:25:11 »
The monotonous tasks lend aid to teaching someone to follow orders as well, without question. There’s stuff one is told to do at basic and the recruit won’t fully understand the purpose until they start working in another location.

There were many ‘lightbulb’ moments when I got out of St Jean—The, “Ohhhhh, now I get it.” moments. (I’m 40 this year and being on course with a bunch of 20yr olds was difficult at times, because of the “whys” that some would undoubtedly ask.) The ‘why’s’ aren’t important in that moment, it all comes together as course progresses and some things don’t come together until posting.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2018, 16:31:34 by BeyondTheNow »
"Stop worrying about getting back to who you were before it all went wrong. To heal is to understand that the person you've since become is the one who's most capable of doing whatever it is you were put here to do."~SR

Offline daftandbarmy

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2018, 22:07:39 »
It's all about 'routines' (or drills), just like the best high performance athletes:

Sports: Why the World's Best Athletes Use Routines

Consistent routines lead to consistently high sports performance

Routines are one of the most important aspects of sports that athletes can develop to improve their training and competitive performances. The fundamental value of routines is that they ensure total preparation in athletes’ efforts. Routines enable athletes to be completely physically, technically, tactically, and mentally ready to perform their best. I don’t know a world-class athlete in any sport who does not use routines in some part of his or her competitive preparations.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/the-power-prime/201207/sports-why-the-worlds-best-athletes-use-routines





"The most important qualification of a soldier is fortitude under fatigue and privation. Courage is only second; hardship, poverty and want are the best school for a soldier." Napoleon

Offline Eye In The Sky

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #9 on: January 18, 2018, 22:56:04 »
As mentioned, the attention to detail aspect;  if you can't manage to lace your boots up correctly, what makes you think I'll believe (or your staff...) you are capable of reassembling a weapon in the dark?  Or doing veh maint?  The following orders;  you will learn to do what you're told, how you're told, when you're told.  Discipline - there are 4 stages of discipline training in the military, the last of which is the overall goal - self discipline (doing the right thing, the right way, at the right time, even if no one is watching).

Another important lesson 'menial tasks' teach, and possibly the most important one.  Team work.  Station jobs require teamwork.  Kit and quarters, inspections...there is an extremely long list of things that happen in the military that demand teamwork.

If your 'team' can't organize cleaning stations, they aren't likely going to be successful at other things the military is trained to do;  close with and destroy the enemy.  Keep a Bde HQ comm's suite up and serviceable.  Get a SAR aircraft ready to launch in XX minutes.  Replace an unserviceable EO/IR turret, without the usual equipment, using teamwork and thinking outside the box on a CP-140 Aurora and have it make its ONSTA in a theatre of operations supporting a coalition effort against an enemy (true story, turret was swapped out in 71 minutes or something crazy).  It wouldn't have happened at all without teamwork.  And attention to detail.  And some discipline.

 :2c:
« Last Edit: January 19, 2018, 17:44:24 by Eye In The Sky »
Do I love my job?  No.

But does it afford me the ability to go on lavish vacations and buy anything I want?  Also no.

Offline Pusser

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2018, 10:47:37 »
Furthermore, when living in a close quarter environment, hygiene is crucial.  Otherwise, people get sick and not just with colds, but real, serious conditions like meningitis which thrive when everyone is close together.  The Navy has the lessons of several centuries to back this up.  Military service involves going places where there is no cleaning staff, so we have to do it ourselves.  It would be good to know what you're doing.  For those of you going into the Navy, BMQ/BMOQ is only an introduction to cleaning stations...
Sure, apes read Nietzsche.  They just don't understand it.

Offline Eye In The Sky

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2018, 12:33:29 »
Furthermore, when living in a close quarter environment, hygiene is crucial.  Otherwise, people get sick and not just with colds, but real, serious conditions like meningitis which thrive when everyone is close together.  The Navy has the lessons of several centuries to back this up.  Military service involves going places where there is no cleaning staff, so we have to do it ourselves.  It would be good to know what you're doing.  For those of you going into the Navy, BMQ/BMOQ is only an introduction to cleaning stations...

From my 1 afternoon spent touring a CPF back in the late 90s, my memory of how close the living quarters are in a CPF NCM Mess (IIRC we were shown 1 Mess at the bow of the ship?) is the space was limited, quarters were tight and health and hygiene would be of upmost importance to a ships' crew and, in tow, the operational capability and effectiveness of a crew.  I imagine life at sea is challenging enough, let alone being at 50% health that is preventable.
« Last Edit: January 19, 2018, 17:04:18 by Eye In The Sky »
Do I love my job?  No.

But does it afford me the ability to go on lavish vacations and buy anything I want?  Also no.

Offline Dimsum

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2018, 13:18:01 »
Furthermore, when living in a close quarter environment, hygiene is crucial.  Otherwise, people get sick and not just with colds, but real, serious conditions like meningitis which thrive when everyone is close together.  The Navy has the lessons of several centuries to back this up.  Military service involves going places where there is no cleaning staff, so we have to do it ourselves.  It would be good to know what you're doing.  For those of you going into the Navy, BMQ/BMOQ is only an introduction to cleaning stations...

Fully agree.  You can't really get away from others too far when onboard ship, so the "hack" spreads quickly if not contained.
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

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Offline CanadianTire

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2018, 13:59:11 »
Furthermore, when living in a close quarter environment, hygiene is crucial.  Otherwise, people get sick and not just with colds, but real, serious conditions like meningitis which thrive when everyone is close together.  The Navy has the lessons of several centuries to back this up.  Military service involves going places where there is no cleaning staff, so we have to do it ourselves.  It would be good to know what you're doing.  For those of you going into the Navy, BMQ/BMOQ is only an introduction to cleaning stations...

Yep I saw what a lack of hygiene can do in CFB Suffield in 2009. Leadership tried to blame it on diesel-contaminated Buffaloes but the honest truth was that it just people not taking care of themselves...not washing their hands after going to the washroom. At one point over 1/3 of my platoon was out with gastro.
"Theirs not to reason why/Theirs but to do and die." - Tennyson

Offline Colin P

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Re: Why you will have to do mundane tasks during basic training
« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2018, 17:35:31 »
The Soviets had over 300,000 soldiers hospitalized by disease and lost more to disease than combat in Afghanistan, according to some of my reading.