- 01-04-2012, 11:51 #31
It is interesting that the man advocating the adherence by the army to contempory theory on leadership and management is I believe a management consultant, brought in by companies to teach them the latest buzz words and fads. I would have slightly more respect for that opinion if he had not had to leave the army at lower middle management level having failed to ascend any higher.
The comments on management are a good illustration. The situation 20 years ago is different to now, management is taught at several different levels, including management theory whilst at RMAS. He advocates the import of 'structured approaches' maybe the sort peddled by management consultants?
- 01-04-2012, 11:56 #32
Apologies really fascinating. You put exactly my thoughts in a much more eloquent manner than I did.
- 01-04-2012, 11:57 #33
Sorry 'bout that, junior, but 2 World Wars didn't make much of a dent on the Regular Army's tribal attitudes, and I'm not holding out much in the way of expectation that the prolonged unpleasantness in South Asia will have any real impact in the longer-term: least of all with yet another drawdown to be coped with post-withdrawal.
On the other hand, Captain Pangloss, you are entitled to your view of the world, even if it seems to be one that ignores evidence that doesn't make you feel comfortable.Summer grasses - all that is left of the dreams of soldiers
- 01-04-2012, 12:02 #34
- Join Date
- Aug 2005
Stonker, sorry old man, you are completely out of touch. Your peers might have been too thick for you, the future is much brighter.
I do not know many officers who give a tinkers cuss about cap badges or regiments. Pride yes, belief they make us what we are? Not a bit.
As for junior, yes I am younger than you. Do not confuse age with wisdom, you have grown old but do not seem to have grown at all.
Last edited by really?_fascinating; 01-04-2012 at 12:17.
- 01-04-2012, 19:22 #35
I am old - and therefore out of touch - according to you, only today's experience counts - we can afford to ignore everything that went before. As barriers to meaningful change go, that one borders on near-genius.
As to the line abbout how good your kit is - I won't dispute the quality of the kit. You might want to review how it came into service. Most of it is the result of the UOR system: high-speed (and therfeore high-cost) procurement of kit for a given contingency of limited duration. The purchases are not matched, for the most part, by a long-term plan for their logistic sustainment.
As Meridian has pointed out on this site, and on the Think Defence website, the praise heaped on the efficiency with which the UOR system has learned to operate in the last decade, should not be allowed to mask the fact that the (strategically more important) long-term procurement system is no closer to running effectively (let alone efficiently) than it was when Maggie was banging the drum of 'smart procurement'.
Like I said, you can teach management and leadership theory: if the audience is not both morally willing to, and intellectually capable of, translating taught theory into taut practice - fuckall changes. Deckchairs get moved around, fists get plunged into buckets of water, there's a lot of superficial showing off - but in the end it's business as usual. It takes real leaders (ones who are more concerned about the mission than about their promoton) to put proper management in place in such an environment.
O - I forgot to add to my earleir ppost about the institutional inability of the Brit military to learn from experience: we spent 30 years immersed in NI, and went to Basra full of hot air: it took a while before the penny dropped - Brit institutional understanding of NI was limited to the personal experience of those still serving - which meant there was a complete blind spot at any level below CGS, as to what went on between '68 and '71. and a near total dearth of Battalion-level experience dating back prior to 1991, at which time some COs were Capts.
Then there was the Balkan experience - which also seems to have been pretty much ignored as far as doctrine is concerned.
But as you say: I'm sure everything in the garden is rosy now. I should just sit back and let the young professionals sort it all out.
Forgive me if I don't hold my breath, but I'd like to ask you to tell me what measures the military are planning to use to reassure us know-nothing civvies that constant progress and operational capability improvement is actually being achieved by the new-blood cultural revolution of which you are one of the vanguard?Summer grasses - all that is left of the dreams of soldiers
- 01-04-2012, 19:52 #36
- Join Date
- Aug 2005
I am interested in the past. But not bound by it.
Inability to learn from experience? You were out by Granby. I served on Granby,in NI, Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq and Afghanistan as well as other little trips away. I have learned and try to pass on stuff from all of those. I have seen real change, driven some of it and resisted others. As have my peers.
I did not say all was rosy (it surely isn't) but I do not recognise the intellectual turpitude that you allege at every turn. Everyone going through RMAS now gets a hood dose of management training, leadership theories and self awareness are the cornerstone of things like JOLP and some people even read books. I know of two Majors where i work who are doing post graduate courses in leadership and who apply that in work.
Oh and while we are on it, you called me junior, hence my old man comment. Do not lecture about the arrogant, closed minds of the Army board and then attempt to belittle me for being younger than you. when was the last time you read what someone posted and tested their view against your long cherised prejudice.
I serve in an Army where Lts are employed to call in air, guns, UAV and avn. Where a 19 year old Private can take DNA swabs and operate a metal detector, ECM kit and talk to the locals. Where female medics serve, with no objections, alongside the infantry and where RAF Polk men can be found well forwards. Don't believe we have not changed. You might have atrophied, the Army has not. As for your peers - if I were the boss, they would all have lost their jobs five years ago when the money ran out, to be replaced with some of our genuinely bright young things. It is your generation holding us back.....
- 01-04-2012, 20:27 #37
Re-visit your research, perhaps?
As it happens, I was involved in the Op GRANBY lessons learned process - in the sense of joining HQ 1 (BR) Corps just at the point when hard evidence and weapons intelligence were being written out of the official script in favour of 'preferred versions' of the truth, for cap badge advantage, around things like (f'r one instance) the effectiveness of MLRS.
As for 'it's my generation holding us back', on that we agree: my generation is currently in charge, and will (unless a significant reform happens, initiated from outside the Army) continue to promote in its own image.
Our Army has a lng track record of achievig operational excellence, only then to walk away from its achievements in favour of a return to 'proper soldiering'
I'll salute the achievements of the troops on the ground over the last decade: I find it much less easy to salute those responsible for directing and supporting them, from their desks in MoD.
And I'd caution you on this point above all: don't make the mistake of assuming that what has been achieved in the field in the last 10 years, will be embedded in perpetuity in an Army whose budget and manpower resources will be pared to the bone the moment the last man is out of Afghanistan.
Last edited by Stonker; 01-04-2012 at 21:46.Summer grasses - all that is left of the dreams of soldiers
- 01-04-2012, 21:03 #38
I love this. Stonker thinks the reason he didn't get promoted beyond middle management is due to the unfair system and it's failure to recognise his intellectual capacity and moral brilliance. He alone was a real leader with the vision and ability to carry the Army forward to the promised land of management psychobabble.
The thick passed over has been
- 01-04-2012, 21:22 #39
I'd suggest that personal attacks are less effective than targeting an members posts and theories? Just a thought...RAC(TA) - 2006-2009
Royal Navy - 2009 +
Sir Walter Raleigh declared in the early 17th century that "whoever commands the sea, commands the trade; whosoever commands the trade of the world commands the riches of the world, and consequently the world itself." This principle is as true today as when uttered, and its effect will continue as long as ships traverse the seas."
- 01-04-2012, 21:32 #40
Dai: check PMsSummer grasses - all that is left of the dreams of soldiers