Programme CASTLE

My mate came up with the concept that became CADUCEUS and I always felt that the concept was great up until you needed Supervisors and the impact of losing them was not understood, as the closest most Offrs come to them is as an OpsO, where they delegate everything and it magically happens.
One of the things they were most reliant upon was unit buy in, and I still don't think it's clear how OC/COs will be measured against soldiers progression through the matrix, I'm interested in any insights as I'm now blatantly behind the curve.
Another issue they had was a junior officer was in charge of the Officer bit, but there was no way that they were enlightened enough to work out what the needed to and could change...IMHO.
As you said, change is probably a good thing and at least someone is doing something, I just hope that there's a solid reversion plan.
I know two of the main instigators of Caduceus and it is largely a copy of the NATO DoDCP programme, but with a wider scope. It makes great sense in principle and if you keep people long enough, invest in them and push commanders to meet standards it seems to work. As a philosophy for an entire corps of a national army, that has many niche responsibilities outside its mainstream role, I am yet to be convinced.
 
All kids relate the Army to tanks and guns and blowing stuff up.

Kids in general know about Logistics (it may not flick their switches, but they understand the meaning). They know about Engineering, Intelligence, communications, cyber, police, medics. They even know about horses!

Younger generations do not relate to the word signal when it comes to a job and it’s probably no coincidence that the AGC have the same recruitment issues as the R Signals?

I never expected that the R Signals would seriously consider changing their title, much in the same way as Cavalry, Dragoon’s or even Guards? But it sparked a debate

That debate has at least resulted in a change in trade names to include words such as Cyber, Information, Networks, Infrastructure, supply.

Obviously all unneeded though, stopped people focusing on pertinent issues like how RD WO’s can bull brown canvas boots ^~
Yes, but...they need to stop calling their techs 'Engineers'. It confuses everybody else, including me. The other day I was having a converstaion with one of the sgts and he was talking about checking something with their 'Senior Engineer'. He meant the T1 Sgt Tech ffs. That is not a senior engineer. At best, it is almost a junior engineer.
 
Yes, but...they need to stop calling their techs 'Engineers'. It confuses everybody else, including me. The other day I was having a converstaion with one of the sgts and he was talking about checking something with their 'Senior Engineer'. He meant the T1 Sgt Tech ffs. That is not a senior engineer. At best, it is almost a junior engineer.
The RAF didn't go down that road, and I don't know why we did. We're even calling the Telemechs engineers now which doesn't help. But then, the Corps has had the perception that only officers can be engineers for quite some time.
 
I have probably relayed (bored everyone with) this story before, however, I had a long recruiting conversation with the then Corps Col and his recruiting staff about how Royal Signals meant absolutely nothing to the average young kid on the street. And if anything probably brought to mind railways more than cutting edge communications.

Oh how we all laughed ^~

Another part of the Army I was not invited back to give my informed (data led) opinion on recruiting :)

Which Corps Colonel was this?
 
The RAF didn't go down that road, and I don't know why we did. We're even calling the Telemechs engineers now which doesn't help. But then, the Corps has had the perception that only officers can be engineers for quite some time.
Errr...and Foremen...obvs. You know, the people with the engineering degrees.
 
You’ve served long enough to know the Royal Corps of Signals doesn’t have the monopoly when it comes to toxic behaviour by those supposedly in Command who fcuk their soldiers around just for the sake of it!
No doubt bullshitting Warrant Officers existed (and may still exist) in our Parent Corps!

I certainly experienced much worse behaviour outside of my Corps, especially when attached to Infantry Battalions.

My tuppence worth from an Infantry perspective.

Officers

2nd Lt - Capt - Never met one who was toxic. Maj and above - Whole new ballgame.

So by whom, and at what point is the trip switch in their heads operated ?

WO1's

Can only think of 2 that would come under the toxic banner - And I think that would come under '' Power corrupts......... ''

WO2's

Cannot think of any that would be classed as toxic.

Sgt's / CSgts

Cannot think of any that would be classed as toxic - Although there were a couple who would be classed as dicks.

JNCO's

Not many Cpl's would come into the toxic bracket - They would be found out at LCpl level and managed out the door / or rank removed. In most instances it would have been due to immaturity and not a desire to be a toxic individual.

Something to think about.

When working with other Units, I always operated on the basis of - Your unit, your rules, and did not get involved in their unit foibles / madness / bullsh!t.
 
They don't get degrees any more, HQ R Signals let relevant contracts lapse and then didn't look particularly hard for the money to secure anything with other universities...or so I believe.
I know! Crazy or what. I seriously believe that if I had my time again I wouldn't go the FofS route. Instead I would go SF/Rangers, then quit at about the 12 year point and move on with my life. That may sound odd, but I have mentioned on here before why I joined the army and I got plenty of that for the first 10-12 years. Then I became a FofS and the excitement tapered off, but being a FofS was a really good job in its own right so was well worth it. I was 'older' by that point anyway and jumping around in fields and forests was rapidly losing its attraction.

That was a really bad move on the part of the corps hierarchy. Terrible!
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
My tuppence worth from an Infantry perspective.

Sgt's / CSgts

Cannot think of any that would be classed as toxic - Although there were a couple who would be classed as dicks.

Not quite so sure about that. CSgts in a position where they can exercise independent power (like stores) I might have called toxic. Sgts with a weak or absent Plt Comd can be toxic within the platoon. The same, to an extent, can be true of section commanders, but it's harder for them to get away with if not supported or ignored by their platoon or coy staff.

Toxcity just requires certain conditions to manifest - those include actual power; concentrated in one person; and little oversight. Someone with the wrong qualities is likely to show them under those conditions.

Officers

2nd Lt - Capt - Never met one who was toxic. Maj and above - Whole new ballgame.

So by whom, and at what point is the trip switch in their heads operated ?

I think this is broadly correct, and I think there are a number of reasons:
  • The first big filter for officers is beige. That is the point beyond which you almost exclusively have those who at least entertain the idea of staying for 5-10 more years and making a 'serious' career of it. This happens between about 2 years in each peer group (senior captains in their last jobs).
  • The filter doesn't operate correctly. It is only deliberately selective for good qualities for a tiny percentage. Otherwise it simply retains those who don't leave. ICSC is a natural break point. There is no intrinsic value to staying an extra year (9 months even with the shorter course) to learn how to Army more, so many who are wavering decide to cut away then. So you get a rapid change in the average quality of the cohort.
  • Survivorship bias: those who remain convince themselves they have been selected for being 'best', and it equals hubris and arrogance.
  • Careerism is made really very explicit. Both on the part of the individuals who already had it now openly showing it, and by individuals being told (by mentors, COs, desk officers) they need to display more of it. In the Army system this means increased focus on what their 1 and 2 ROs think.
  • Staff jobs are more likely to put officers in an environment where they are surrounded mostly by other officers, so they are increasingly detached from soldiers and ground truth.
  • Competition becomes more explicit and personal. Within a regiment / Corps, with a few exceptions for the very large Corps, they now know exactly who they are competing with for CO and above posts. Often their single command appointments (at Major or Lt Col) are therefore periods for them to directly compete, using the unit as the instrument. This often isn't healthy competition, generated by and driving a genuine team ethos, it's more usually competing for the whims and favour of their specific superior. How toxic this is partly depends on the superior, therefore. This sets up a feedback loop, as the superior was selected by the same system, and is probably doing the same thing one up.
As I've said elsewhere, together this produces a sort of cultish institutional dedication, sycophancy and careerism among Majors and above, which reduces their openness to seeing or acknowledging problems, and, because everyone does it, normalises the worst elements of careerism.

I would suggest that although you are unlikely to meet a toxic Captain or Lt, you do meet many who display the discernible seeds of toxicity at later ranks.
 
Not quite so sure about that. CSgts in a position where they can exercise independent power (like stores) I might have called toxic.

I said that was my tuppence worth from an Infantry perspective.

CSgts ( stores ) don't have independent power in the Infantry.

They either come under command of the CSM / OC or in the QM's Dept under the command of the RQ's & QM's.

The odd outlier might come from attached personnel - REME etc.

Sgts with a weak or absent Plt Comd can be toxic within the platoon.

I never denied that - I said it was not something that I had experience of. I also said that personal experience was of d!cks rather than toxic individuals - Something which occurs when someone is promoted beyond their capabilities **

The same, to an extent, can be true of section commanders, but it's harder for them to get away with if not supported or ignored by their platoon or coy staff.

I previously indicated that such individuals were usually identified at LCpl level and either, managed out the door or they do not stay LCpls for long as rank would be removed pretty quickly.

I think this is broadly correct, and I think there are a number of reasons:

On this we can agree.

** You can add that to your list of bullet points regarding Officers.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
CSgts ( stores ) don't have independent power in the Infantry.
You are mistaking my most obvious experience for my only experience: I was in the infantry for a time. In some cases, storesmen really do have independent power: they bamboozle and overrule officers nominally in charge with (usually invented) citation of The Rules, or simply say one thing to the officers and do another thing with the soldiers. As with Section Commanders or Sgts, it requires weak, absentee or complicit officers, but the Army has enough of those.

I'm thinking mostly at Coy level, but some RQs and QMs behave the same. I've twice seen RQs at large units refuse to give op issues because they didn't think the deploying soldier's capbadge warranted them DCC kit: infantry capbadge deploying to HQs got it; non-infantry deploying to a ground role did not. It got stamped on hard when discovered, but in one case had been going on for nearly 2 years.

The 'stores are for storing' mentality surely isn't unknown to you, nor the fact some get away with it.
 
You are mistaking my most obvious experience for my only experience: I was in the infantry for a time.

So was I - A whole 22 years.

In some cases, storesmen really do have independent power:
I'm thinking mostly at Coy level,

At Coy level the CQMS is under the command of the CSM / OC - He has no independent power.

they bamboozle and overrule officers nominally in charge with (usually invented) citation of The Rules, or simply say one thing to the officers and do another thing with the soldiers.

In that case - Would that be a toxic individual or an individual that was a d1ck to Officers ?

I've twice seen RQs at large units refuse to give op issues because they didn't think the deploying soldier's capbadge warranted them DCC kit:

RQ's in the main being WO2's and not CSgts.

Would this be a case of limited kit and my troops are getting issued it first ? I suspect that was pretty widespread.

The 'stores are for storing' mentality surely isn't unknown to you,

As you are referring to mostly Coy level - Perhaps you could enlighten me as to what goodies a CQMS holds that he would rather store than issue out ?

Bearing in mind that I left 20 years ago and the goodies might have changed from the sh!te we held when I was a CQMS.
 
I know! Crazy or what. I seriously believe that if I had my time again I wouldn't go the FofS route. Instead I would go SF/Rangers, then quit at about the 12 year point and move on with my life. That may sound odd, but I have mentioned on here before why I joined the army and I got plenty of that for the first 10-12 years. Then I became a FofS and the excitement tapered off, but being a FofS was a really good job in its own right so was well worth it. I was 'older' by that point anyway and jumping around in fields and forests was rapidly losing its attraction.

That was a really bad move on the part of the corps hierarchy. Terrible!
It's a different Corps now. By my ten year point I'd been to Germany, Emerald Toilet and Cyprus. NI is just another garrison location, Germany gone and very limited places in Cyprus. Unless you go to 18, most of the jobs are pedestrian in my opinion. I think you'd be lucky to find excitement now, and with no Tp SSgts, the Sgts are getting smashed with J1.
 
It's a different Corps now. By my ten year point I'd been to Germany, Emerald Toilet and Cyprus. NI is just another garrison location, Germany gone and very limited places in Cyprus. Unless you go to 18, most of the jobs are pedestrian in my opinion. I think you'd be lucky to find excitement now, and with no Tp SSgts, the Sgts are getting smashed with J1.
Why are there no Tp Staffies? Genuine question.
 

Latest Threads

Top