Army First Sergeant Career Advice and Success Tips

This post is for current and future Army First Sergeants.  I want to share some tips and advice on what you can do to be successful in the job, so you can make a difference and build a cohesive, effective, combat focused unit.  I’m going to share some of my favorite blog posts and articles on this website with information that will benefit Army First Sergeants.  These tips/articles are listed in no particular order.  Feel free to check out the ones that interest you the most.

#1 Army First Sergeant Duties and Responsibilities

In this post, I will share some of the most common First Sergeant Duties and Responsibilities.  The 1SG is responsible for a lot of different things, but this is a short list of the most important things, the top priorities.  If you want to know what you should be doing, this is the post for you.

# 2 Jobs to Have Before You Become a First Sergeant

If you want to get promoted to E-8 in the future, and get your diamond, this is the post for you.  I will cover a list of some important jobs to seek out before you take the 1SG billet.  These are developmental jobs you should have as an E-5, E-6 and E-7.  These jobs will make you more competitive for promotion to 1SG and they will help develop the skills you need to succeed as a First Sergeant.

# 3 The Journey to First Sergeant

This is a guest post by a former First Sergeant.  He talks about his NCO journey from E-5 to First Sergeant.  I think it is a quality read and a good perspective for anyone trying to learn from a former 1SG.

# 4 Five Things I Learned from My Army First Sergeant

This is a post I wrote as a former Company Commander sharing my experience working with my 1SG.  I talk about how he helped me and what I learned from him.  This is from an officer’s perspective, but I still think you will find it very helpful.  These might be some lesson you can teach your Company Commander when you are working with them.

# 5 Top 5 Lessons I Learned as a First Sergeant

This is another guest post, where a former 1SG shares what he learned about leadership and life while he served as a 1SG.  This is another great post to gain perspective about what you might learn in the job.

# 6 Top 5 Reasons to Be a First Sergeant

There are literally hundreds of great reasons to serve as a 1SG.  Of course, leading Soldiers is the best and most important reason.  In this post, I will do my best to whittle that big list down to the top five reasons that make the job so good!

# 7 Army 1SG Initial Counseling Packet

This is a counseling packet I created for Company Commanders to do their initial counseling with their First Sergeant.  If your Company Commander hasn’t formally counseled you in writing yet, you might want to point them to this post.  This is also a good ‘shell’ to use with your subordinate NCOs.

# 8 How to Take Care of Soldiers

This is an important post that I wrote about how to take care of Soldiers.  It would benefit any Army leader, especially First Sergeants and Small Unit Leaders.  This will definitely be an eye opener, especially for some people in the Army.

# 9 How to Develop Quality Soldiers

One of your primary duties as a NCO is to develop future Army leaders.  Your goal is to develop quality Soldiers who are prepared for positions of increased responsibility.  You want to identify people with potential and help them learn new skills and get promoted.  Read this post and learn how to do it.

# 10 How to Write Army NCOERs

As the 1SG, you will oversee your unit’s NCOER program.  Your job is to know what right looks like and to provide insight and mentorship to your subordinate NCOs, so they can write an effective NCOER.  Learn more about how to write Army NCOERs.

# 11 How to Manage Your Time

Time is our most precious asset, especially for Soldiers in the ARNG and USAR.  Part-Time Soldiers have two day to do what most Active Duty units have 30 days to do.  Learn how to manage your time effectively so you don’t get burnt out and frustrated.

# 12 Command Team Relationships

As a 1SG, you have a unique relationship with your Company Commander and Company XO.  The three of you will work closely together to make sure your unit is successful and gets the job done.  Learn what a good Command Team Relationship looks like.

# 13 How to Balance Your Family Time, Career and Military Responsibilities

This is one of the most important posts on this blog.  I will talk about the hard act of balancing all of your responsibilities, to include your day job, hobbies, family time and 1SG duties.

# 14 What to Do Outside of Drill Weekend

This post outlines what you should be doing outside of drill weekend every single month, so you can be an effective leader.  A big part of your job is what you do “off duty” when you’re not at drill weekend.

Final Thoughts

There you have it folks.  This is a list of my top 14 articles for Army First Sergeants who are looking for career and success tips.  I wish you all the best in your new job and I hope your experience is rewarding and fulfilling.

I hope you take the time to read each article on this page.  Feel free to share this page with your peers and friends.  Don’t forget to share it on Facebook or leave a comment below.  I look forward to hearing from you. Thanks for your service.

5 thoughts on “Army First Sergeant Career Advice and Success Tips”

  1. I believe that this post can help many who have just entered the Army, or are reaching for First Sergeant status set some goals, and have a map to reach those goals.

    I would highly suggest going to each one of these links and either printing them, or making notes of the primary points throughout them. They can help you get to First Sergeant.

    It is a tough position and carries a lot of responsibility, but when you are a First Sergeant, you can carry your head high with pride.

  2. The 1SG job is perhaps the most demanding position but was my most enjoyable position. There is a lot to learn and you have to be willing to listen to other and develop a strong since of teamwork and trust. Without trust there is no team. As the 1SG you must walk the walk and talk the talk. This does not mean you will be perfect but when you make mistakes you need to learn from them. Do not be tied to doctrine. Seek out alternate sources of information on leadership and counseling. The internet has changed how we share information. There are tons of lessons learned out there. Don’t be shy learn from others

  3. This post really speaks to me and I agree wholeheartedly with the advice given here. I am not in the Army, though I did grow up on an Army base and attend JROTC in high school. At the time, I always told myself that if I didn’t have the chance to be a commissioned officer, I would absolutely strive to be an SNCO, in particular a 1SG. My JROTC instructor and mentor was a retired First Sergeant and he frequently spoke about what you mention in #13, the balance of family, career, and military responsibilities and gave us advice on how to cope with the problems we’d face if we decided to go the same route as him. Maintaining balance of all responsibilities is difficult, but leading and developing soldiers into excellent service members is highly rewarding.

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