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Reserve units training jr Officers at the unit level.

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Something i want to address is the training of junior officers (OCdts/2Lts) at the unit level in preparation for their career courses.

I'm seeing this occur in my unit, and was wondering if this is common in the reserves, or just an isolated thing in the unit in question. I know in the Reg F, you don't come across 2Lts who are being mentored from the ground up, in front of troops - probably because common sense tells the Reg F that this type of thing would be disastrous for an officer's career, and for the unit - common sense that seems to be lacking in the reserves.

The type of training i'm talking about ranges from sitting in normal training night lectures, sitting next to Ptes and Cpls, to sending portions of the unit out so these officers can lead recce Ptls and Small pty tasks, using troops as followers, and NCOs as DS. I'm not talking about collective training where the the pl comds/coy comd's are the PTA.

I disagree with this practice for two reasons - for the sake of said officer's authority, and for the sake of the troops being used as training aids for novice Jr Officers' individal training/course preparation.

But the main reason i'll address is for the sake of those officers: In my view, this violates every principle of military hierarchy.  There's no way that an officer, a person who is supposed to be leading, should be getting trained by NCOs in front of troops - ever - regardless how junior they are.

When a novice, unqualified, untrained 2Lt attempts to learn how to do a recce ptl, or a sect atk, he should be doing it off behind closed doors with other officers or sr NCOs, not in front of the the very troops he will eventually be leading substantively. The reasoning is simple - when the Pte's and Cpl's observe him in this learning phase, he's obviously going to lack competence. Troops should NEVER see their officers in this state, because no matter what, when that officer comes back from phase training and takes over the platoon, those troops are inevitably going to say "Oh, this fucking guy. He couldn't even shoot a bearing last time i saw him. He's a bag of hammers". This is not where an officer should be when adopting his first command. Right there he's starting with a credibility deficit - and through NO fault of his own, and will have to work twice as hard as he ought to in order to win his subordinate's respect (if he ever does). This is unfair, inappropriate and utterly wrong, and it should not be happening. The troops shouldn't know anything about their officers prior to them arriving in the formation, much less prior to their completion of their training. When we do this, we're stacking the cards against those officers, and setting them up for failure.

I'm not saying Jr Officers don't deserve pre-training prior to their phase training, I'm saying for the sake of their own authority and credibility, this should be done away from troops. I'm surprised that this concept is alien to anyone, or that i'm the only one pointing this out (NCO's & Officers look at me like i have two heads when i raise this issue).

I remember a few years back, they were even combining QL2(BMQ) with the basic officer's course. Pte Recruits were coursemates with OCdts. This stopped very quickly for obvious reasons - because how could you ever ask a bunch of privates to follow someone who was the guy they had to dress every morning, and who's kit they had to carry on long marches? It simply doesn't work. When you have an officer who barely scraped through a BMQ that Pte(R) excelled at, then the best anyone can hope for that officer is that he make 3i/c of the silverware cabinet in the officers mess one day. Well the exact same principle applies here. Troops should not be in a position to observe their officers when they're green, fucked up, and don't yet know what they're doing, because that impression will always be with those troops. There's a reason we keep that separation, and i feel that this principle is being fundamentally violated in the reserves with the Pre-Phase2/Pre-Phase3 training using troops. And it needs to stop immidiately.

Oh, and this is coming from an NCO, not an officer, in case you're wondering...

...but WTF do i know?
 

cphansen

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This is an interesting question. I can speak to it from the viewpoint of the old Militia before things switched to the PRes setup.

I was a member of  an Armoured Regiment, we actually had a troop of four Sherman Tanks and a training area to exercise them in.

I became an officer as a Provisional Second Lieutenant. Sadly for me that day was the same parade I was to receive promotion to a lance corporal, so the CO decided not to promote me that day, which disappointed me. I was proud of having earned my lonely little stripe but that was the last parade I could chum around with the people I had gone through my training with. I had my basic traing, qualified as a tank driver over the winter, did my JrNCO training and had started my tank gunner course. I was immediately released from my gunnery course and put on a special course run by our reg force SOLAM.

That course lasted the winter and what we were instructed in was Man management, i.e. the care and feeding of troops, map work, voice procedure, staff duties and orders, first aid etc. This was done before we went on our officier qualification course. It was an investment of time and resources by the unit in us and I like to think it paid off. After I qualified as a captain, the SOLAM had retired and transfered to the MIlitia and became my squadron commander, he had no complaints about his 2ic, me.

I don't think my unit did anything different than other units but some time needs to be invested in the training of Jr Officers. Not every Jr Officer was fortunate enough to have served his time in the ranks so some of them had a lot more to learn in a short time. It was hard for them.

 

Jarnhamar

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So by your wisdom NCOs should never CFR and become officers.
 
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Grimaldus said:
So by your wisdom NCOs should never CFR and become officers.

CFR's are already coming from a place that gives them credibility in the eyes of the  the troops. And even then, those CFR's aren't (or shouldn't be) doing their officer training in front of their troops.
 

Fishbone Jones

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...but WTF do i know? said:
...but WTF do i know?

You asked the question. Your answer is 'Not much'. You obviously don't understand the first thing about training and mentoring.
 
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SherH2A said:
some time needs to be invested in the training of Jr Officers.

I agree wholeheartedly. I'm saying that this training shouldn't be conducted by the unit's NCOs, in front of the unit's troops. NCOs (especially jr NCOs) shouldn't be training the very people who will eventually be leading them, and troops shouldn't be in a position to observe their officers being taught how to lead for the first time.
 

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...but WTF do i know? said:
CFR's are already coming from a place that gives them credibility in the eyes of the  the troops. And even then, those CFR's aren't (or shouldn't be) doing their officer training in front of their troops.

Really? Who drives and guns the vehicles they are training in? The Tp WO has always been the Tp O's mentor. His troops know this and it makes no difference to them. That's where he hones his training. You obviously don't know what you're talking about.

Remind us again how much time you have in and what rank you've attained in which trade?
 
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recceguy said:
Really? Who drives and guns the vehicles they are training in? The Tp WO has always been the Tp O's mentor. His troops know this and it makes no difference to them. That's where he hones his training. You obviously don't know what you're talking about.

Remind us again how much time you have in and what rank you've attained in which trade?


16 years combined reg F & Res F infantry, taught 11 career courses and 3 non-career courses. You?
 
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recceguy said:
Really? Who drives and guns the vehicles they are training in? The Tp WO has always been the Tp O's mentor. His troops know this and it makes no difference to them. That's where he hones his training. You obviously don't know what you're talking about.

Remind us again how much time you have in and what rank you've attained in which trade?

So, the "DS" is here to start childish flame wars where they don't even attempt to address the point? Wow. Now i remember why i don't come on here. 
 

Fishbone Jones

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...but WTF do i know? said:
16 years combined reg F & Res F infantry, taught 11 career courses and 3 non-career courses. You?

38+ and have taught too many courses to list, or remember. Reg & Reserve Amour and SS Tech.

Answer the questions. Who drives and guns while they learn. What is the TP (Pl) WO's job? Who mentors them at the school in the field?
 
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recceguy said:
Really? Who drives and guns the vehicles they are training in? The Tp WO has always been the Tp O's mentor. His troops know this and it makes no difference to them. That's where he hones his training. You obviously don't know what you're talking about.

Remind us again how much time you have in and what rank you've attained in which trade?

So, just to be clear, you're saying you think it's a good idea for junior officers to be doing their small party tasks (for their first time) in front of thier future subordinates prior to them going off on their pohase training. Have i got that right?

Have you ever been in a regular force unit (i'm going to guess no). If so, did you see 2lt's puttering around the lines learning what's what from NCOs and other officers?
 

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...but WTF do i know? said:
So, just to be clear, you're saying you think it's a good idea for junior officers to be doing their small party tasks (for their first time) in front of thier future subordinates prior to them going off on their pohase training. Have i got that right?

Have you ever been in a regular force unit (i'm going to guess no). If so, did you see 2lt's puttering around the lines learning what's what from NCOs and other officers?

Put the shovel down and stop digging. I have lots of Reg time, and you haven't answered my questions.
 
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aesop081

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...but WTF do i know? said:
Now i remember why i don't come on here.

Unfortunate you couldn't remember before starting this thread  eh ?

Anyways, to the point

I have seen many situations as you describe and have yet to see any negative results. I think even the troops understand that JOs have to learn somehow. Everyone started out not knowing what they were supposed to do.

In the RCAF, training officers and junior NCMs on the same courses is very common. The sky has yet to fall.

...but WTF do i know? said:
16 years combined reg F & Res F infantry, taught 11 career courses and 3 non-career courses. You?

Lots of d**** on this site bigger than yours.


 
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recceguy said:
38+ and have taught too many courses to list, or remember. Reg & Reserve Amour and SS Tech.

Answer the questions. Who drives and guns while they learn. What is the TP (Pl) WO's job? Who mentors them at the school in the field?

I suggest you go back and read my whole post. I don't repeat myself on Wednesdays. I'm not talking about leaders leading their subordinates as a team in collective training, i'm talking about green, untrained officers doing "pre-phase2/3" training, i.e. small party tasks, recce Ptls and sect atks prior to having received formal instruction. Do you need me to explain the difference to you?
 
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recceguy said:
Put the shovel down and stop digging. I have lots of Reg time, and you haven't answered my questions.

I answered yours, now answer mine: Do you think it's a good idea for junior officers to be doing their small party tasks (for their first time) in front of thier future subordinates prior to them going off on their pohase training. Have i got that right?
 

Jarnhamar

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...but WTF do i know? said:
CFR's are already coming from a place that gives them credibility in the eyes of the  the troops.

Not when they were poopy troops that had to be the ones getting dressed.
I've seen a few goofy troops turn into good officers- same guys I jacked up, poked in the chest or seen crying into their pillow.  I don't have any lack of respect for them as officers due to their performance as troops- everyone has a role to play.

I'd rather be lead by a young LT who's had a platoon train and mentor him how to be an LT over someone who's just learned their shit from phase training.  People make stupid mistakes, it's the weak self-conscious soldiers who don't let that crap go and use it to forever colour someones service.

Why do you sound like your girlfriend broke up with you and now you came here to try and pick a fight?
 
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CDN Aviator said:
Unfortunate you couldn't remember before starting this thread  eh ?

Anyways, to the point

I have seen many situations as you describe and have yet to see any negative results. I think even the troops understand that JOs have to learn somehow. Everyone started out not knowing what they were supposed to do.

In the RCAF, training officers and junior NCMs on the same courses is very common. The sky has yet to fall.

Lots of d**** on this site bigger than yours.

I'm not the one who started the pissing contest. That was the "Directing Staff"

As for your point, you can't really compare the dynamics between off'r/NCO in the RCAF to that in the infantry.
 
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aesop081

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...but WTF do i know? said:
As for your point, you can't really compare the dynamics between off'r/NCO in the RCAF to that in the infantry.

Having been both in the combat arms and the RCAF, i will say that while the dynamics are different, the core essentials are the same.
 

Fishbone Jones

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Jnr Officers need to become crew commanders and patrol commanders before becoming Tp Officers. I'm not talking about collective training either. They do this with subordinate as drivers, gunners, members of recce patrols etc.

What about the guy that is to become a MCpl? You don't think he should lead troops from his unit on training before he attends course? Should he benefit from the help he can receive and not a young officer? Throw him on course cold, I guess. If they can't make it, they can paint rocks.

I guess I've just always been used to everyone acting professional and mature. Giving their best to ensure everyone benefits from the training, no matter who or what the goal of said training is.

People that can't do that are sad and useless to us and their team mates.
 
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