Reg and Reserve MI Integration

shifty j2

Old-Salt
Just found out our company is paired with a Reserve Coy. Any suggestions on training that we can provide to benefit the Reserve Coy? The bosses are currently mulling it over but if I can give them a solution early it helps me with admin and actually organising it.

We are both BGISS geographically displaced by about an hour or 2 depending on London traffic.
 

shifty j2

Old-Salt
Ashford, trying to get a steer as to what the reserve s want rather than what I think they want. For a BGISS, it's important for our mill skill s and patrolling are up to scratch, so should I focus on that or basic OpInt at BG level? I want the training to be something they can't do in house

This is the second time I have asked a work related q on arrse, hope I don't regret it whiskey breath. The last time it worked out OK!
 
Chat with their CSM ref what mil skills they have, but as a snot hat I would stick to snot hat trg.
 
Shifty, good luck with this. Email me if you want to know how this pairing previously worked in the 43X area.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Chat with their CSM ref what mil skills they have, but as a snot hat I would stick to snot hat trg.

Have to disagree. Most Corps reservists are well capable enough of doing a bit of basic analysis at tactical level. Half of them are several magnitudes of excellence more professional at it than regular juniors, because they are generally smarter, better educated, used to being held to account for their work, and less inclined to try and fit everything into whatever box Chicksands told them it must be in. Not uncommon that there are at least one or two in the reserve unit whose civvy job makes them wildly better qualified to teach analysis than the regular instructors.

However, Corps reservists don't get even the paltry green skills training that regular juniors have in their P1/2. They also aren't immersed in the military / intelligence environment enough to understand the intelligence architecture, what things are, what they mean, and who to go to for certain capabilities.

As such, a combination of green skills and external capability briefs would be the best way to get reserve COIST to a credible starting point for deployments or exercises.

@shifty j2 Please bear in mind that the other major challenge you have is keeping it interesting. You can't get away with bone training like you can in the regulars - they simply won't turn up. This is also one of those cases where, though it's possible that the regular PSI / staff have the pulse of their unit, you will massively benefit by doing a quick sanity check with the actual troops. There are far too many shitbag reserve-attached regular staff who just don't have a scooby about how to adapt stuff for the different audience.
 
Firstly, time in reconnaissance is rarely wasted. Any information you can get on the current strength and disposition of the unit will be useful to you. The best approach to get ground truth would probably be to get a few drinks down a couple of switched on JNCOs, rather than buttonholing the Sect OC, as you will get very different answers in both cases. The former being more of use to you. This should give you an idea what they are capable of, and perhaps most importantly what sort of training would get them turning up and what wouldn’t. A good opportunity to do this would be to visit on a drill night, incognito if possible (recognise this might be difficult).

The thing is, what training people want to do and what people need to do are not necessarily the same. You mention the word ‘London’ and if you mean that lot I know that their companies range from advertising themselves as pseudo SF and sporting chest rigs (badly I might add) to those that don’t get into the field if they could possibly help it. Put on a weekend of patrolling and depending on whether it’s company one or two you will get a full house or 2 or 3 people – vice versa for AFV recognition. The key thing as stated above is providing training that is interesting. This may not be what you want to hear but few join the MI reserves to do field soldiering, there being much better opportunities to do this in other TA units.

What would a good weekend look like to me? Some mil skills elements, some challenging and fast paced analysis work probably based on a region or area of interest that requires me to generate an output, a decent social event and minimal **** around factor. If it’s a long term thing, variety is the spice of life and you are going to have to keep generating new training material to keep people turning up. Think capability briefs, site visits etc. Difficult to achieve on a weekend but good training will become its own recruiter.

Finally there are good examples of reg-res MI integration elsewhere and finding out what has worked and hasn’t will probably stand you in good stead. Having worked closely with both the regular and reserve MI soldier are not that different and we are seen as a success story for a reason. Good luck.
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Ah, see, using the correct terminology works wonders!
 

Sarastro

LE
Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
He was, they've renamed it. So you're both right. But shifty is more right! ;)
 
The key thing as stated above is providing training that is interesting. This may not be what you want to hear but few join the MI reserves to do field soldiering, there being much better opportunities to do this in other TA units.

A long time ago, in an MI Section (V) far, far away... (OK, it was two decades, I'm getting old)

A young Gravelbelly (a Corps brat, but having run away to join the TA infantry was enjoying being OC Recce) worked in the same department as a young MI JNCO who was being given the chance to run his first weekend's MI training, under supervision of the MI Coy OC, a well-known chicken hypnotizer and Teuchter.

We cooked up a cunning plan. Our Close Recce Platoon would help the MI Section with some field stuff crawling around in the dark doing CTR, using night vision kit (the better to understand its limitations) and in return our lads would get an insight into some MI stuff. The whole thing was set to run over several training nights, and finish up with a full weekend to pull it all together. The bulk of the work was analytical, the muddy stuff was to do with gathering.

Come Sunday ENDEX, we'd got a BE set up where the MI lads and lasses would drive up to the training area for the next lesson, there would be a snap veh ambush (with a well-briefed and rehearsed driver, we weren't utter cowboys), followed eventually by being handed a rifle and given a chance to fight through a properly-run blank-firing exercise.

Of course, it all got horribly complicated when the European Council of Ministers decided to meet in our city on the planned weekend, the place was crawling with the Range Rovers and well-filled overcoats of many of Europe's finest heavies, and District were getting decidedly twitchy about any exercises in the area involving weapons going out of TA Centres - as was I, frankly. The biggest risk weren't the Rhodesian Ridgebacks owned by the MI type whose property was being used as the target, but the rather protective Rottweiler mother and her pups penned nearby (Ex NODUF - don't climb any chainlink fences you encounter, or you will be supper for a furry crocodile)

It all went ahead, there were no dramas, and it was judged to be hugely enjoyable by all concerned. MI types got muddy and had fun (what, blank ammunition? more than one magazine? CWS?) and the Recce mob were hugely amused to find that one of the MI lasses on the exercise was my ex-girlfriend from University...

Retention value? High on both sides. Training value? Arguable for the muddy stuff, but certainly they began to understand exactly how difficult it is to protect a site against a careful intruder.
 
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Will do subsonic, knew there was a reason for asking here! Are you still on the same work one I used before?
Shifty, have just emailed you.

U might spend a brew chatting to RWAC about this as well ;-)
 

jim30

LE
From perspective of ex reserve (other service) in this situation, I'd say that what really helps is when the regs offer something which isn't the same as the reserve can deliver. E.g. turn up and do training using kit, capability or assets which the Reserve may not have access to, or throw training in which they're unlikely to get.

The challenge for arranging reserve training is to not only throw a weekend which makes people want to turn up, but then continuing to throw them for a long period of time. All to often I saw one amazing weekend and the morale buzz wiped out by 3 or 4 utterly dire weekends that followed.
 

shifty j2

Old-Salt
OK, thanks all for your thoughts, some very useful advice and as ever entertaining dits! I'll be writing up some ideas for weekends and try to make them as good as @Gravelbellybelly's weekend.

Thanks again all.
 
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