Quick Estimate


Quick question for someone in the know please.

I'm off on a course soon and I hear a rumour that the quick estimate is to change mid April.

Is there anyone out there knows what the new version is as I've been unable to find out from the infanteers I know.

I appreciate that I should wait for the updated TAM but as you may have guessed I'm from a unit which is way down the food chain for updates and as such I won't get a new copy until I go on the course and it would be really handy to get a heads-up.

Anyone who can help please either Pmessage or email to the address below and in my profile.

Thanks in advance, Humph.

(Woopert, no joy with the suggested attack unfortunately, I was effectively told to wind my neck in :( )

Bad CO

I've just uploaded TAM Pt1 to the downloads page.  It is off the DGD&D British Army Electronic Battle Box CD (Sep 01) so is as up to date as it comes.  Don't worry the TAM is unclas.

Quick Estimate - hah surely the answer is always
two up, bags of smoke and ........  FOLLOW ME!


Thanks for that Boss but I've got that disc and my current tam is that version.

The rumour I've heard is that the estimate changes to just 7 questions to ask yourself instead of the five pages of niffnaff and triv.

I assume the intent is to get away from spending half an hour working out deductions - tasks / constraints so that you can get round to shouting "bags of smoke, up the middle, follow me" a lot quicker than present (of course this is all academic as I dont for one minute believe that anyone sits around with their first section having come under EEF fannying about with a TAM!!!)
The 7 questions is being mooted at the mo as an alternative to the quick estimate, however I (and someone out there may well correct me) do not think that it has been officially adopted as yet.  I work in one of the big clanky organisations on the Ost Front and it has been debated but not adopted there.

I do know that TAM 3 has just been binned however.

But you are correct, the combat estimate is super if you're about to invade a country, as opposed to deploying a battle group!

Bad CO

Ahh the 7 questions, I think they are 'almost' official.  Needless to say anyone who is anyone in the psc world is using them already.  They are also being taught used at both UK CASTs.
Point taken SUMO

But, the 7 Qs are not taught at CAST(G), where the larger formations do thier stuff, and continue to do so (thus speaks the voice of bored experience!)

In the real army, there appears to be no set way of doing it.  Having seen the results of a study across the div, it would appear that people are using a hybrid of the tools available.

Dangerous on a course, however, once again what are we really training for?

The common path appears to be a heavy emphasis on MA then a run through key factors.

The point is as has always been the case.  Do not be a slave to the TAM, whatever format yuo use.  As long as your decision making is considered.

That said the Boche did fairly acceptibly on the old manoeuvre warfare front 60 years ago, using an outrageous decision making process called "intuitive decision making". ie, relying on the commanders' experience and general feeling followed by direction to staff.

Am back on the CAST in the very near future so will try to find out.

The most important thing to bang on about however is "effect" and make sure that your plan is "swept up".  Whatever warfighting has to do with menail chores.

Hope your course is fun.


War Hero
Despite this being an old thread......

Just an update - The 7 questions will now be taught at RMAS which in my view is long overdue. We need to keep things simple and uncomplicated and the answers to the questions posed make it quite clear what is required.
Having used the 7 Questions on TESEX and Bde and Div TESEX in BATUS last year and won every single mission at BG level bar 2 Phyrric victories I reckon the 7 Qs is an outstanding tool at BG level.

Provided you do detailed Mission Analysis and have a CO who is good at articulating his intent and gives his staff their head when it comes to the estimate and planning you have a battle winning process which allows you to get inside the enemies decision making cycle.

The proof is in the pudding and wiping out the OPFOR twice in BATUS ain't bad.

The estimate is still useful for campaign planning or during operations, such as OOTW (eg peacekeeping), when you have more time.

7Qs mean you can produce an ememy focused plan quickly and efficiently without some staff nazi asking why you don't have 3 COAs, just because he has 3 boxes on his clipboard.

Good combative wargaming is essential too in order to test the plan for robustness and produce contingency options.

Blah Blah Blah more military Boll**ks, I am a civi now just hopeing he won't get called up as a Reservist.
Absolutely agree that the 7Qs are good, however, I would argue that there remains a degree of intuition based decision making required in order to use it.  This being the case, I still believe that there is the necessity to highlight the full estimate as a logical decision making process.

Agree with flip-flop, at battlegroup level this can work because of the inherent experience.  I am not so sure at the lowest level as there is no experience base available.  The 7Qs is not a structured decision making process like the old one (which I always thought was cumbersome for a pl attack, but that's not the issue here).  The 7Qs is a fluid process in which follownig the MA (which let's face it, has always been the crux of any decision, and usually produces the course of action which will normally be taken), is an interwoven series of questions.

I agree that the 7Qs are good insofar as they are entirely effects and enemy based (at last), which is where we need to go.

The latest Infantryman has an excellent aide memoire for the 7Qs in a good article.  It is however fairly reminiscent ofthe combat estimate in its handrails, which harks back to the point I made about an initial level of experience.

The point is, only spaz ds at the Hurst and anywhere else caused problems with the old estimate through the lack of their own education.  Having some idiot with a clip-board armed only with a pink to DS a TEWT has never been acceptible and was always going to stifle the candidates in a "it's not in the pink therefore it's wrong" type fashion.  Without being too disparaging, this was mainly an affliction of non-combat arms or TA who do not work with the estimate as regularly.  This was certainly the case with a number of DS on my JCSC, (no AGC names to be published).  A few years in a Log Regt, JCSC then ACSC does not provide the experience base to teach combined-arms tactics at BG level (the tool currently used).  I believe that therein lay the fundamental problem. ie that a number of those instructing did not actually know how to use it realistically or properly.  This was then perpetuated by said 'clip-board man' on the TEWT.

To conclude the 7Qs are good, but we are in danger of expecting our younger members to do something which requires a degree of intuition based on experience they do not have.  They should probably therefore be exposed to both.  They then can choose the tool which they feel is best, based on how comfortable they feel.  

What does anyone else think.
Yes yes yes, but what are the 7Q's.........?

Blimmin hell, it's like asking, "what are the 39 steps"? lol

You had an answer yet Humph?


It is called the Combat Estimate. aka the 7 Qns.  It is being taught, as official doctrine, throughout LWC.

The Qns are:

1. What and why?
2.  What?
3.  What?
4.  Where?
5.  What?
6.  How?
7.  What?

E-mail me for a full explanation.
Would you mind emailing me the 7 Qs as well? I know it sounds a bit odd, but I still mentally run through the Orders headings when I'm planning something, and I use some military concepts when delivering management training (for civilians - now my job!)
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