Are there any downsides to having a rank structure? Does it force people to think about themselves and their own importance rather than the task at hand? Does it appeal to, and encourage, the wrong kinds of sentiments in people "I could be a WO1" rather than "I could do that job". I was talking to an Iranian bloke (he'd call himself Persian!), his mother's Zoroastrian, he said something interesting, "I try not to think about myself too much. It isn't good for you. Look outwards, look at others, think about your actions". Now obviously in a lot of circumstances you need to know who the company commander is - there would need to be (probably) some public display of role. But it might be a useful revolution in attitude if roles, rather than ranks, was the organisational emphasis. Not "I am", "But I must", not "I'm entitled", but "I'm obliged". No?