Officers commissioning in units where their friends are ORs

Discussion in 'Officers' started by Mazur_UK, Jun 14, 2010.

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  1. Due to the fact I have the grades to go officer I am hoping to go as an officer into the same regiment and battalion I wanted to join as an OR (1 Royal Anglian). However, at my Sandhurst PO visit I was talking to the C/Sgt and he said the army would not allow me to commission into a unit where I had many friends as ORs. I have had the same response from several other people in the army when I’ve been to recruitment events and the like.

    Is it true that I won’t be able to be commissioned into a unit where I have lots of mates in the ranks? A large part of why I want to join this regiment is because it has so many childhood mates and people I met in the cadet force in both battalions, but I’m now worried that I will be “forced” to serve in another unit.

    I of course understand that there must be a clear separation between officers and ORs. I know this and so do the guys I know who are serving. As long as while we are on duty they call me “Sir/Boss” and we act as professionals then what is the issue?
  2. Given that county Regiments such as the Royal Anglians like local personnel to fill their ranks I can't see why it would be a huge problem provided you and your mates remained professional at work.
    One of my former OC's went to school with one of the Staffy's in my old STRE. Given that at full strength an STRE (Wks) has 4 officers, a WO1,a WO2 and 7 Staffys it is a small working environment to put it mildly. The fact that the OC and Sam had been to school together made no odds and it didn't lead to either the OC or Sam being cross posted simply because they'd known each other before they joined up.
    I am a Staffy but have mates who are JNCO's who I've known for a long time. Just because I'm a Staffy it doesn't mean that all of a sudden I can't be mates with them. Indeed I was best man for my best mates wedding last year and he is a Cpl.
    There have been times where guys who have known me when I was a JNCO start pushing it but I simply remind them that it isn't really on for them to be calling me by my first name in front of a load of other seniors or officers.
  3. You are always 'on duty' in the Army (unless you're a STAB).
  4. Mazur,

    You have been on ARRSE long enough to have probably read lots on this and I was tempted to say you should know better. Long and short you are looking to join the Infantry. As much as you and your mates seem to think that it would be easy to stay mates after work and it would not impact on you - it would. What about the point as a young officer when you tell a mate that he is to lead the platoon across the area where you know there are lots of LMC or NMC PPIED? Now at this point you and your mates would all swear that they would do as ordered without any nonsense but I don't believe that would work.

    Ultimately you can do what you want but I just can't (based on nearly 20 years in the Infantry) see this one working out. Ultimately you would be compromised from the start by the fact that you would be the only officer in your unit who was in this situation and you would struggle to move on from that point. I haven't got the time to really get into this but I don't think this will work. Good luck with joining whether as a soldier or officer.

  5. Wehappyfew, I understand where you are coming from but given the Regimental system it is quite likely nowadays that OR's will have known or have been mates with their Officers prior to them joining. Short of saying "if you come from East Anglia you can't join the Royal Anglians in case you may have known a few of the toms before you joined" what do you do?
  6. Friends as ORs?? Whatever next...
  7. I think you midd WHFs very honest point. Once in the army your childhood relationships are over. There is no way the officers mess and the NAAFI can be on equal footing.
  8. Well there's a long history of siblings where one is commissioned and the other isn't (my CO's brother was a WO1), although they are generally not posted to the same unit... Ditto marriages where one is and the other isn't.

    Go ahead and try for a commission if that's what you want - if you get in then as a subbie you'll likely be in a different pl/coy and that's plenty of separation for a work environment. By the time you get more senior you (and they) will have learnt to deal with it. You should think harder about how you'll face your mates if you try for and don't get a commission - if you still have a burning desire to serve you'll then be in the ranks with them?
  9. Yes, you're right. What would be dismissed as high jinks in the Officers Mess would no doubt lead to disciplinary action in the NAAFI bar (sorry, that is a terribly cynical view of things but not far from the truth unfortuantly).

    I'm not sure about the phrase "childhood relationships". You make it sound like they are still playing tigg in the playground at 16! I would also say there are a lot of immature officers out there as well .
    There is no way that I would forget where I came from or my civvy mates. Just because I joined the Army it doesn't mean that what I did before counts for jack. Fcuk your civvy mates off at your peril.

    What would your opinion be if this guy had been to university and had spent a couple of years working in a civvy job before going for a commission? They are still mates, just a little bit older.
  10. Why not try for the 2nd battalion?
  11. You make life choices, best mates at 16 are strangers at 18. If you join the Army other ranks are a lower form of life than those with a Commission, fact. Or have you spent your OR career socialising in the Officers Mess calling the CO mate and sh4gging their daughters? No mate they would rather breed from cattle. Another fact.

    It is what keeps the Military wheel turning;Masters and Serfs.
  12. Civvi mates? Nope, you've lost me again...resend the key setting!!
  13. I know of several Officers in various Bns who joined units and served with people they knew from school etc. It should not preclude you from joining 1 R Anglian (who in particular are a very close knit Bn). The key importance is that you understand your obligations to the men and where to draw the line (on a Pl night out, show face, buy the beers and leave early before it all turns into a values and standards poo trap). Alternatively, go clubbing with them, but be prepared to deal with the consequences when it goes pear shaped.

    The separate Messes exist because familiarity does breed contempt.

    IIRC one Vikings officer a few years ago had been a schoolteacher before commissioning and had taught some of his soldiers at secondary school.
  14. If this is an attempt to get a bite from the aforementioned lesser mortals, good effort. On the other hand, if you are genuinely serious in your assertations, you will have to pray that that your sheer brilliance precludes you from ever having to rely upon their collective vast experience (assuming you are actually an officer yourself, that is).

    In reality, the path of an officer and that of an other rank is mostly based on choice. A young lad from good stock with a fistful of degrees may decide that a career founded from the ground upwards is a more commendable and respectable path than a commission; alternatively a young scrote dragged up in the arsehole pit of a council slum may view an army commission as a quick path to a better life. You couldn't hold either life choice against either man, so to declare one of them superior to the other is foundless.
  15. What utter nonsense. You join the ranks for one of two reasons, a genuine sense of adventure or because you are a failure.

    Officers join for a number of similar reasons including failure.