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PSAO

To add to the above.

One WO2 I met, having previously known him as a CQ on the BRF, was a star. I genuinely hope he has gone on to be a RSM and commissioned.

There are also two more LE Jocks who I'd assume were RSMs at some point who are also good blokes.

So I suppose I may have been a bit unfair with the above assessment.
 
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Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
When I briefed my (Irish Guards) Bde Comd on this he said: 'DCOS - I want no TA COs in my Brigade, understand?'

I understood and none were recommended.

I'm not saying it was right, but I don't think anybody was really disadvantaged by that, certainly not TA soldiers and certainly not the Army.
I've always despised "Buggin's Turn", and felt that if you aren't good enough to command, you shouldn't have any expectation of doing so (I certainly wasn't, and didn't).

On the other hand, I've known a few reservists who were better leaders, managers, and trainers than some of the regulars that were sent to our TA battalion as CO, as Training Majors, and as RSMs. Perhaps a quarter to a third of those regulars were decidedly "2nd XV" - there wasn't clear space between them and the best reservists, there was very definitely overlap.

It strikes me that if your Bde Comd had said "I don't believe that any of the eligible TA Majors in this Brigade pass the quality line", then I would be impressed that he had taken the time to assess all of them.

If, on the other hand, he was operating from a position of "I've never met a sufficiently-competent STAB, I don't believe that they exist", then I'd suggest that he was yet another chippy ARAB, upset because "career fires, career fires, career stops" (as witnessed by commanding a reserve formation); and would ask on reflection, how many dramas arose from, and how much retention damage was caused by, the worst regular CO that he had - because be honest, one of his COs had to be the least-competent.
 
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On the other hand, I've known a few reservists who were better leaders, managers, and trainers than some of the regulars that were sent to our TA battalion as CO, as Training Majors, and as RSMs. Perhaps a quarter to a third of those regulars were decidedly "2nd XV" - there wasn't clear space between them and the best reservists, there was very definitely overlap.


There is (was) only 1 XV
15th_(SV)_PARA_DZF.svg.png
 

marabout

Old-Salt
It sounds as if the CoC in the sub unit needs to address this issue, although what we don’t know is that the PSAO in question may well be addressing the issue the CoC has directed him to do – just one that the original poster doesn’t agree with.

I was very fortunate, my PSAO was a star during my 4 years in command of a sub unit. He pushed the command decisions and responsibility my way, offered advice when asked (sometimes when it wasn’t, but it was needed - and always in private) and covered up for my lack of military know how running a sub unit in camp. What he most certainly wasn’t was an alternative CoC.

At the start of my tour we had a Regular CO who with the TM pushed most info down the PSAO and PSI networks then back up to the Sqn OCs. We had a little rebellion and got that changed. It worked better in some sub units and worse in others until it became the norm. I know PSAOs got on the phone after being briefed to others just to check until they were happy with their arrangement. Quarterly meetings with the RAO on admin procedure etc continued, but without the command element.

My PSAO taught me how to run a unit in camp, my PSI taught me about the field, but the decisions were mine to take, and mine alone. If my relationship with my PSAO had deteriorated, then he would have been given a shot across the bow, MPAR’d until he understood and OJAR’d. As you said a B- effectively ends a FTRS career. Clearly the Regt 2IC and then the CO would be called in to assist. Action is there and very simple. It wouldn’t be in the interest these days to push it under the carpet as units have so much scrutiny on manning.

I was lucky, but then I think I also invested a significant period of time at the start to ensure I had a good positive relationship. 10 years later, he is still going strong and has done more to ensure the success of that sub unit that any reserve officer ever did, a bit like the RMAS CSgt. His job was primary to ensure the AR element could run the unit in camp.
 

Bubbles_Barker

LE
Book Reviewer
I've always despised "Buggin's Turn", and felt that if you aren't good enough to command, you shouldn't have any expectation of doing so (I certainly wasn't, and didn't).

On the other hand, I've known a few reservists who were better leaders, managers, and trainers than some of the regulars that were sent to our TA battalion as CO, as Training Majors, and as RSMs. Perhaps a quarter to a third of those regulars were decidedly "2nd XV" - there wasn't clear space between them and the best reservists, there was very definitely overlap.

It strikes me that if your Bde Comd had said "I don't believe that any of the eligible TA Majors in this Brigade pass the quality line", then I would be impressed that he had taken the time to assess all of them.

If, on the other hand, he was operating from a position of "I've never met a sufficiently-competent STAB, I don't believe that they exist", then I'd suggest that he was yet another chippy ARAB, upset because "career fires, career fires, career stops" (as witnessed by commanding a reserve formation); and would ask on reflection, how many dramas arose from, and how much retention damage was caused by, the worst regular CO that he had - because be honest, one of his COs had to be the least-competent.
He wasn’t chippy - but the TA frustrated him immensely, it’s the antithesis to the Household Division after all. He was very good at knowing his officers and we spent equal time with our numerous reserve battalions as we did with the single regular one. I just think we had a bunch of very average post-Cold War types and he wasn’t impressed with them much. Predictably they had a very different view of themselves - which did them no good at all. We had one decent reserve CO in my time there and he was a Sapper.
 
Predictably they had a very different view of themselves - which did them no good at all. We had one decent reserve CO in my time there and he was a Sapper.

But as we know, regulars aren't immune to that particular disease... (see: sundry threads on toxic COs and GOCs, as witnessed by the schadenfreude when they get caught breaking COVID rules / fiddling their kids' school fees / abusing their staff car privileges / writing edicts about sandwiches, dinner party seating, or biscuits for morning coffee).
 
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Thought the reserves had done away with LADs
Yes its LADs / LASSes these days!!

Sent from my SM-G973F using Tapatalk
 
My PSAO taught me how to run a unit in camp, my PSI taught me about the field, but the decisions were mine to take, and mine alone. If my relationship with my PSAO had deteriorated, then he would have been given a shot across the bow, MPAR’d until he understood and OJAR’d. As you said a B- effectively ends a FTRS career. Clearly the Regt 2IC and then the CO would be called in to assist. Action is there and very simple. It wouldn’t be in the interest these days to push it under the carpet as units have so much scrutiny on manning.

Presumably the PSAO would have been NRPS and not FTRS then?

Although the TOS were changed to FTRS, I understood that for posts such as PSAO, continuity was to be a continuing factor. It would not be in the interests of the Unit to have the postholder change every 3 years. I suspect that "a B- effectively ends a FTRS career" could lead to a lot of churn in these "old NRPS" type posts, whereas previously it was more of a job for life? Did a B- previously end a NRPS career?
 
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Without going in to the nuts and bolts of each whine from the unit, are you sure that the PSAO isn't bringing them up to a standard as close to their regular counterparts as they can be ?
I spent time with the Sapper Reserves and at least 4 disappeared for the duration of my posting there. I am happy to say that was down to my holding them to account on a weekly basis. They were delighted to take their bounty and attend the social occasions but not so diligent at producing the goods on a regular basis.
From what I saw of the R Mons RE, they had the worst "leadership" of any AR unit I've ever seen.

The Officers and Seniors getting coaches to dine out the RSM, leaving the blokes at Nook Camp with nothing to do, not even a bar.

A Captain giving a Fullscrew a nasty, spiteful b*llocking in front of his subordinates and a notably handsome WO2 from another unit, for being slightly late at the Armskote.
 
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From what I saw of the R Mons RE, they had the worst "leadership" of any AR unit I've ever seen.

The Officers and Seniors getting coaches to dine out the RSM, leaving the blokes at Nook Camp with nothing to do, not even a bar.

A Captain giving a nasty, spiteful b*llocking in front of his subordinates and a notably handsome WO2 from another unit, for being slightly late at the Armskote.

Rough timeframe ?
 

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