I’d like to share seven tips to improve the Army Officer and NCO relationship. Most Officers and NCOs get along great and work well together. They are like a well oiled machine. But in some rare cases the relationship is dysfunctional or could use some major improvements. Whether you have a great Army Officer and NCO relationship or a bad one, I can offer you a few helpful tips to help you improve. These are things I used during my military career that worked well for me. This advice is for both NCOs and Officers.
# 1 Conduct Your Counseling
As the Officer, you should always conduct your required written counseling with your NCO. This includes the initial counseling, quarterly counseling, event oriented counseling, promotion counseling, etc. Sit down with your NCO from day one and tell them your expectations. Put everything in writing and show them that you are a professional and care about their success.
# 2 Know Your Role and Stay in Your Lane
From the beginning of the rating period the Officer and NCO should sit down and determine who is responsible for what. The easiest way to do this is to take out a dry erase board and list everything your section is responsible for. After you do that, assign tasks that the Officer is responsible for and tasks the NCO is responsible for. That way whenever something happens, you know which person is responsible for doing that task. Once you do this exercise, make sure that you stay in your lane and don’t try to do your boss’s (or subordinate’s) job for them.
# 3 Be Good at Your Job
Take pride in what you do and be your best. When you are good at what you do, your boss won’t have to worry about you won’t have to worry about your subordinates either. This means you need to be reliable, do what you say, and be technically and tactically proficient.
# 4 Treat Each Other with Mutual Respect
You must treat each other with mutual respect. Even if you don’t like each other, you should treat each other well. If nothing else, respect the rank not the individual. Please know that all relationships are founded on mutual respect.
# 5 Always Keep the “Mission” as the Top Priority
Always keep the mission the # 1 priority. Put your personality differences aside if needed and focus on mission accomplishment. When you do that, you have a common purpose. The unit, the Soldiers and the mission are always the most important thing. Your needs come second.
# 6 Maintain Open and Honest Communication
Both the Officer and NCO need to be able to communicate with each other openly and honestly. There should always be two way communication. The Officer needs to provide honest feedback and needs to know how to listen to her NCO. The same holds true for the NCO. If the NCO has a problem, she should be able to address her Officer without fear of reprimand. The day the two of you stop communicating with each other is the day you lose your leadership effectiveness.
# 7 Be Supportive and Loyal to Each Other
As a team, you should be loyal to each other. That means you support each person’s decisions, even when you don’t agree with them. It also means that you don’t talk bad about each other. If you have a problem with the other person, you talk to them about it and no one else.
These seven tips should help you improve your Army Officer and NCO Relationship. To be honest, relationships are never easy, especially work relationships. If you can follow the advice in this article, you should at least improve your relationship. What are your thoughts?
If you have any opinions or questions, please post them below. Thank you.