Promotion in the Corps...is it a lottery?

#1
OK, perhaps Im a little cynical. Perhaps Im just pissed off at work! :D

Is it not enough to very much enjoy your job, be good at your job(above your peers), and to do extra in your own time(eg Corps/Army sport, AT, organise social functions, train to be an instructor in something etc) ?

Or is it absolutely necessary to be a vindictive, backstabbing, lying, DS/Boss watching, arsekissing, brown-nosing bastardo???? !!!

Is it necessary to always go on the piss with your boss? Drive him where he wants to go...out of hours. Laugh at his jokes, which no-one finds funny? Be 'interested' in his chosen sport(...er only for show, obviously)?

Does anyone else object to this, or do you humour your boss until you get promoted? (Is it possible to be naive and cynical in the same post ? 8O :D )

Admittedly, Ive many years left in the Corps ...but I have seen some rather unimpressive people from other sections/parts of the Corps who have been recommended for promotion...notwithstanding my own.

What are your experiences in the Corps in this regard?
 
#2
Now that is one of life's mysteries.

If I may be so humble as to proffer some friendly advice??

Paste up and move on. Looking back will do you no good. One day you will be in the right place at the right time.

If you don't put a ticket in the barrel, you dont get a chance at the raffle.

It sounds like you have a strong set of personal standards?

If you can get by without compromising your own values and still treating your own blokes fairly, then you can't go too far wrong?
 
#3
Mate,

you are describing every organisation that ever existed, ever.

I'm sure Bakunin bitched about it in his firm. Nelson's midshipmen probably mused at length about brown-nosing. Stalin's clique was rife with it. ACME paperclips in Surbiton has an accounts manager playing precisely the game you describe.

Find a place you are comfortable with and laugh like fcuk at the numpties who have nothing better to do than play snakes and ladders like this. You'll be much happier, as subsonic wisely suggests.

V!
 
#4
personally, i cannot abide asskissers. i do my job to the best of my ability, look after the guys and gals (when i have any), do my secondary duties, do my sports (when my knees allow), and if someone notices and writes my CR accordingly - fine. i do not like people who suddenly perk up and start working when the boss walks in. i am more inclined to down tools at that point, such is my distaste for "show time" and the performing seals. i'm sure you know the type.

as for driving the boss etc... well, i drive my mates. i am intensely loyal and do them favours with no hidden agenda. if the boss is a good egg and needs a lift, i will do it - if he / she merits it. if they are a knob, my car would be permanently VOR. but i steer sharply in the opposite direction if there is even the appearance of "sucking up". i really hate it, have never been accused of it and hopefully never could be.

personally, i am more the stupid gobby type. the one who tells the SO2 why his idea is stupid, or why he should let the guys go home instead of doing some bone pointless task that he just made up.

luckily, i have had some excellent OCs who take this in a positive way, and treated me a little like an amusing, but occasionally useful, social hand grenade. but they also gave me top cover and watched my back, which is nice of them because i am on career self-destruct mode most of the time :)

rambling a bit there... ok, is it necessary to do those things? no. but its ok from time to time, depending on the individual - and if it is done for genuine reasons, not for sucking up. i have had bosses i would invite out every time, because they could be (rank divide temporarily put aside) a good mate... and others who i would not invite to their own surprise birthday party. i deal with it on a case by case basis. there are officers i regard as friends, just as there are SNCOs i regard as knobs. i'm not particularly rank conscious.

now, reader, if you are the career-minded type, i suggest you ignore all the above - in fact do the exact opposite. it hasn't worked for me, and i'm still a staffie after fifteen and a half years. and no, i'm not completely incompetent (well, opinions vary ;)). it's the lack of sucking up and the uncanny ability to hold forth to the wrong person, rather than thinking "hold on - CR caption!!!"

having said that, i get a nice uniform to wear and i can look myself in the face every morning, so i'm relatively happy :D
 

slab

Old-Salt
#7
All your respondents are right - I think favouritism, brown-nosing, politics et al is part of the human condition. Use your time in the Corps to observe and decide how to respond, whilst maintaining standards.

I now work for a charity (predominantly managed by women I have to say) where you need 2 slabs of kevlar on your back - they make the Corps look like amateurs for the pat on the back routine. Machiavelli - right on! Funnily, the one group in the organisation - largely male with a significant ex-forces presence and still relatively non-PC is universally mistrusted and poorly paid. I wonder why?

Perhaps I should start a thread on gender politics?
 
#9
CRmeansCeilingReached said:
cpunk said:
Be good at your job. Surprisingly few people achieve this.
harsh but fair :)
Not always enough. Some units conduct assessments as they should, by the book, others don't. T*ts and tears seem to help! I even saw a documentary about how good looking people (especially females) will get promoted quicker than their peers, simply down to human nature. They also get away with much more (1 case examined was Louise Woodward, big baby eyes and all that).
 
#11
slab said:
All your respondents are right - I think favouritism, brown-nosing, politics et al is part of the human condition. Use your time in the Corps to observe and decide how to respond, whilst maintaining standards.

I now work for a charity (predominantly managed by women I have to say) where you need 2 slabs of kevlar on your back - they make the Corps look like amateurs for the pat on the back routine. Machiavelli - right on! Funnily, the one group in the organisation - largely male with a significant ex-forces presence and still relatively non-PC is universally mistrusted and poorly paid. I wonder why?

Perhaps I should start a thread on gender politics?
Spot on Slab. I too am a civvy and I believe the shared experience that is the Army helps to cool the awful Office politics that exist in civvy street. My career in the Corps (what it was) was very like CRs, but I always felt my Officers knew exactly what the brown-nosing gits were up to.

Keep your dignity you will feel better for it and you will keep good mates when you leave.

By the way I am personally very close and friendly with my old OC despite him dishing me a 3-month bender once! Look past the rank and the promotions and make the best of your time.
 
#13
cpunk said:
Be good at your job. Surprisingly few people achieve this.
Yet they still get promoted! There's the old chestnut about trade skills being a given at SNCO level, but the amount of Sgts to WO2s that I've seen that can't do the basic Int & Sy jobs is truly frightening. I have personally seen very average Warrant Officers bump up their CR by blatant ass-kissing and slurping of the OCs man fat.

There is a lot to be said for right job and right time, there are certain posts in the Corps that will guarantee promotion - provided the incumbent doesn't f**k anything up. As a wise old sage once told the young (and much less cynical) Op Int & Sy "Grey Men Get Promoted". Which kind of explains CRs predicament as he's undoubtably a man of character!

Rant Ends..........
 
#14
Op_Int_and_Spy said:
There is a lot to be said for right job and right time, there are certain posts in the Corps that will guarantee promotion - provided the incumbent doesn't f**k anything up.
Er...which ones? :D I think Id rather like to go there!

Also...the mid year appraisals are out...so Joy Oh Joy in my section. :roll:

if one is considered slightly overbearing,(a colleague, not me...) or likely to intimidate Captains and below, surely this says far more about the Officers in question than the Cpl/LCpl ?

As expected the arsekisser does well, despite having NO credibility in his job.

If they are going to promote the mediocrity, because they do as they are told and NOTHING more save brownose, why am I wasting my time when I can earn a lot more bucks outside?

It is really starting to affect my job satisfaction now.
 
#15
answer to that one, olddearhunter, is get out.

unfortunately this IS the system. if you like army life, you put up with it. you can go one of two paths (very Jedi knightish, this :)) - you be true to yourself, or you do whatever is required to get promoted.

being true to yourself... you will sometimes also get promoted. but you keep your principles and accept the career damage.

doing whatever is required... improves your chances of promotion, but loses you respect amongst your peers and juniors.

whether it loses you respect in your seniors / officers depends on them. some like toadies. some like people with character and integrity.

the career-minded ruthless ones, out for number one... some are very successful, some are less so. they are happy with their lot, and get rewarded by ever increasing rank and money.

the solid, do the right thing, ones with character and integrity, who would not shaft their colleagues or suck up to authority... they stick their head above the parapet when it counts, and do not hide away for fear of damaging their career.

put it this way, we are all soldiers first and i know which one i would rather have by my side.

you can keep your asslickers. i want someone i can trust and rely on.
 
#17
I actually think it's a bonus that our promotion boards are seen as a bit of a lottery, and there is a perception of right place, right time. It means that crusty old gits like me don't get too bothered about not coming off the WO1's promotion board again, and can just get on with the job.
To Olddearhunter I will say this; stick to your principles, mate. There's an awful lot of people in the Corps at my level who can spot a bluffing, brown-nosing type a mile away, and formulate our opinions accordingly. I know who I'd rather work with.
 
#18
Do you still recognise and like the person you see in the shaving mirror every morning ? Self respect is a wonderful thing. Like your education - whether in a classroom or in the University of Life - it is very difficult to take away.

My last OC was an ex-Regular career Staffie from the Corps who had blagged his way to a late entry commission as an IO in the TA. His idea of a training weekend was packing stationery and watching videos of 'Zulu' in the Mess. He had a story for every occasion and had supposedly worked with every OGD in the free world. By my fourth year with the unit I realised that the conversations we had each weekend about promotion, development, training etc. were light years away from reality. He could talk the talk fine, but that's as far as it went. One of the old 'knowledge is power, so I'm not sharing any' brigade. Affable enough bloke, possibly just keen to say the thing he wanted people to hear, but no man management skills and possibly a few bad sectors on his hard drive. Eight years to study for a PhD (never completed)??

Finally, we got 'the call to arms' and Ops Int went off on Ops. I was just in the process of changing civvie jobs so the Adj kindly took my name off the nominal roll. Whilst overseas, most of the Tp threw their teddies out of their prams, people came home on mid tour leave to find themselves sacked behind their backs, a real snafu. I'm reliably informed this chump would wait until Prayers every morning to deliver his 'Vital Int' without having bothered to share it with the Tp beforehand, just so he could look good in front of the CO.

Unit comes back, IO gets gong for his efforts. I could not connect the individual I knew with the citation, especially when we found out that the only 'course' he had successfully completed was Basic Army AT Canoeist ! That's when I realised that I had to move on. Sitting on my hands and biting my tongue was turning me into a sad and twisted moaning git, Victor Meldrew in DPM. He's till there and will doubtless have to have his fingers prised from the post he occupies (and all those possibly fraudulently claimed MTD's). It still annoys me - see vitriol above ! - but that is nothing to the emnity I would be nurturing if I was still under his command.

I'm back to normal now, really, honest, I am..... now where did I put that axe ?

:?
 
#19
olddearhunter said:
Op_Int_and_Spy said:
There is a lot to be said for right job and right time, there are certain posts in the Corps that will guarantee promotion - provided the incumbent doesn't f**k anything up.
Er...which ones? :D I think Id rather like to go there!

Also...the mid year appraisals are out...so Joy Oh Joy in my section. :roll:

if one is considered slightly overbearing,(a colleague, not me...) or likely to intimidate Captains and below, surely this says far more about the Officers in question than the Cpl/LCpl ?

As expected the arsekisser does well, despite having NO credibility in his job.

If they are going to promote the mediocrity, because they do as they are told and NOTHING more save brownose, why am I wasting my time when I can earn a lot more bucks outside?

It is really starting to affect my job satisfaction now.
Any posting that involves working for the "men in black" will guarantee promotion. Everyone I know that's ever served with them has left at least 1 rank higher. The same also goes for the CSM slot at Templer, the last one was a right chopper (ex-Signals, says it all) but still got promoted. Current one is a top bloke however, so will deserve his WO1 at the end of his tour.

Intimidating Captains or below? Surely the duty of every NCO in the Corps, DE junior officers should be bullied - it's the only way the feckers learn that they know fook all
 

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