I’ve come to appreciate a handful of things about basic military administration and organization since I’ve spent some time away from it. As a leader, you have the very real responsibility of keeping your organization knit together and operating functionally and smoothly by mastering those administrative/organizational exigencies. We often lose sight of just how fundamental much of what we do in the military is.
From my brief foray into the civilian world, let me share just a few things I miss.
One of the very first stops an officer makes when he or she arrives to a new unit is the office of the Adjutant. It makes sense as the Adjutant is usually the S1 Officer-in-Charge, the personnel manager and supervisor, in charge of handling the personnel manning of the organization. But the wise and experienced officer knows that the Adjutant is more than just a pit stop. He or she is a gatekeeper, a hub of information, and one of the leaders in the organization who has the boss’s ear.
Here are some pointers from this Adjutant, ranging from how to best use an Adjutant’s skills to your advantage to how to best manage your records and career.
April is “Month of the Military Child,” or as they are perhaps better known within armed forces communities, military brats.
I’ll thicken the terminology and further introduce “Army brat,” which better identifies my three daughters, considering my branch of service. They are Army brats, just like I once was and just like my father was too. My mom was even an Air Force brat.
Despite the generational legacy, we don’t really celebrate the month in our home. However, the occasion does provide me now with an opportunity to reflect on what being an Army brat means to me, both as an alumnus of that group and as the father of three young brats.
Note: I decided to drop the “In Between” phrase from these post titles to try and clean them up as they’re shared around the interwebs, but the idea is the same. Sometimes I don’t have anything particularly funny or snarky to write, and sometimes I’m in between more serious pieces. In those periods, I still have things I want to write about, they just fit somewhere in between. This is the sixth post in a category I call “In Between.”
With readiness being such a trendy topic these days, I’ve started thinking about the difficulties associated with that word in the context of my branch, the AG Corps. As an S-1 type (and again as a commander), I dealt ceaselessly with the monthly Unit Status Report (USR). Perhaps the most frustrating portion of the report for me was in the “shades of gray” interpretations for non-available personnel.