Could a STAB be a TA MI Battalion CO or RSM?

Discussion in 'Int Corps' started by walrusboy, Jan 8, 2012.

Welcome to the Army Rumour Service, ARRSE

The UK's largest and busiest UNofficial military website.

The heart of the site is the forum area, including:

  1. As we have Int Corps TA Lt Cols and WO1s, could a STAB take on the role of CO or RSM in a TA MI Battalion, on a two year contract, say?

    If so what would be their TA and/or civvy career profile?

    As I hold neither of the stated ranks I have no personal interest in this, other than to see the venom and outrage of the usual deranged suspects.

    Please carry on.
    • Like Like x 1
  2. Yes. Ability is in no way a limiting factor in the Corps.
  3. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    Ability, or lack thereof?
  4. TA INF have had CO(v) past present and possibly in the future.
  5. In principle yes (although I must add that I am not from an MI background). But, to do it properly, the issues of ABILITY and AVAILABILITY are critical. The people selected need to have both.

    The strongest TA candidates are usually too busy with serious civvy commitments (senior job, own business, whatever) to be able to put in the necessary time. I have served under both Reg and TA COs and in most cases (but not all) the former have been the pick of the bunch.
    • Like Like x 2
  6. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    With FTRS not an option for a TA CO, you are left with the need to find someone who is able to do well over 100 days per year around their normal occupation, many of which will be during the normal working week.

    Whilst possible, this seriously limits the number of applicants. Once quality is then factored in, you may not have a genuinely viable TA candidate very often. Does a second rate TA CO trump a good quality Regular one just because they have a better knowledge of the TA?

    Again, not Int Corps, but I have never had a TA CO or RSM, and am very happy with that state of affairs.
  7. I wasn't in MI either. Unfortunately, the offer (in the Infantry anyway) used to be that instead of paying you Lt Col's pay 24/7/365 for the tenure of your appointment (which still made you cheaper than a Regular) they would pay you for 4 days a week, the idea being that you could do all your COing from Friday to Monday. Not really a good enough deal to make you think about resignation/sabbatical from a civilian job. OK for those with the flexibility of self-employment, though. I don't know if that has changed, but I would have thought that the Infantry (and probably the Int Corps) now needs all its TA commands for regular officers.

  8. Yes we have had....But what was the outcome of the CO(v) when compared with a Regular CO?..Most i have seen end up with the Trg Major running the show, not all, but Most.
  9. Could only work on an FTRS type basis. I know in the past it was done purely on days but frankly those days are thankfully long behind us and cannot and should not return. Having said that, I am open to offers.
  10. Ex R SIGNALS, but have served with the TA, so feel qualified to comment. There are certainly opportunities for TA Officers to achieve Commanding Officer status, subject to them achieving the usual qualifications and having the ability (hopefully not gained purely on time served and no other options being available!). However, in the case of the RSM being found from within the TA ranks; this would seriously impact on the Regular Army A1 promotion board across all cap badges and would further reduce the opportunity for quality WO's to achieve the ultimate rank. I believe a number of quality TA Warrant Officers are serving/have served as SVWO or similar, so I personally would retain the status quo.
  11. Yes they could, but they shouldn't. I base this statement on the good old days when I personally experienced both. Maybe we were unlucky but as a newly minted LCpl in the then Int & Sy Gp (V) we had a succession of TA RSMs who ran the range from incompetent to barely adequate. Looking back I suspect that to get there they'd had to abandon the trade side of things and concentrate on the shouting, waving silly sticks and concentrating on trivia agenda - in other words, nothing relevant to the job or why people joined. Either way, they were most definitely not regarded as role models by me or my peers.

    Then, following one particularly awful example, we had one of the PSIs take over. And my God, what an improvement that was. All of a sudden we saw what being an RSM was all about. Not they they've all been perfect, some are better than others at getting what the TA is and how to get the best out of it. All in all though, far, far better.

    As to TA COs, I only had one in my time and I struggle to remember either his face or his name. His regular peers - well, I know who they were. Says it all really. Again, not all the same quality wise but never a bad one. And the one in particular who undertook a reign of terror in the Officers Mess to raise the quality line ? Again, helped to redefine leadership for me. And get rid of a lot of Cold War ballast who, again, were not regarded well by the rank and file.

    I think I'd sum it up as seeing the value they add for MI as being primarily focused at their ability to connect us to the rest of the non(V) world. A TA candidate, (unless they're just retired of course) cannot hope to have the same breadth and depth of knowledge, experience or contacts. If they did, then yes they'd be good enough. But we have turned ourselves into what we are today because we have had competent, unwavering and dedicated support from the management. We move back to the unavoidably insular casual labour version at our peril.
  12. I agree with the majority of responses to this thread. While it is theoretically possible for a TA Int Corps Lt Col to command either 3 or 5 MI and equally possible that a TA Int Corps WO1 could be appointed RSM of either unit, for all practical purposes it won't happen unless there are some major undefined changes. There are too many ambitious and capable regular army officers and WO's who are available, full time, now. So why go through the the rigmarole of trying to find someone from the TA, in the right rank and with the right experience and capability who is prepared to put their civvy job on hold and has an understanding spouse/partner etc? It's a nice idea, but one that doesn't really pass go.
  13. Well, look at history please posters! By the end of WW2 most Commanding Officers, Brigade Commanders and even Divisional Commanders were TA. Historians will tell you that the best formation fighting out of and onwards from Normandy was 43 Wessex Division, a TA Formation. The Int Corps had a 26 year old Brigadier, one Enoch Powel. Now to the question, the reason why you seldom get TA Commanding Officers is that all TA CO Posts have become havens for Regular Lt Colonels, this will increase as Regular Command slots become rarer. My view is that some are very good, others are appalling and use the TA as a stepping stone. One of the current roles of the TA is regeneration in the event of mass mobilisation, not properly preparing and selecting suitable TA Officers for Command will jeopardise this function. What a TA Major unit needs is an efficient LE 2IC who will do the J1/J4 stuff and a good Training Warrant Officer to deliver J3. You can then have a TA CO and RSM, I again reiterate that they must be properly trained before hand.
  14. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    Why would the training Warrant Officer be doing current ops instead of Trg (Ie G3 rather than G7)? Perhaps showing you are a little out of touch?

    More importantly, are you suggesting that a TA unit with a regular CO would somehow fail to respond if they were called en masse for a full scale LSDI? If so, why? Surely the CO (reg or TA) would be in post and ready to take the unit away?
    • Like Like x 1