In today’s post I want to educate you about the most common Company Commander duties and responsibilities.
Please keep in mind that Company Commanders are ultimately responsible for everything that happens or fails to happen in their unit.
The buck stops with them!
Listed below are the “big things.”
Keep in mind this is not an “ends-all” list for Company Commander duties.
Every unit and command is different.
Things come up.
It would be impossible to list “everything” you will ever be responsible for.
However, this list is a good starting point, based upon my experience as a Company Commander, and by interviewing other current and former commanders.
# 1 Mission Planning: As the Company Commander, you write the OPORDs and plan all future missions.
While your NCOs handle the day to day operations of the unit, you are the “future operations” officer.
You should constantly be planning and thinking about upcoming training, with a big focus on the next 30 to 180 days out.
This is one of your most important Company Commander duties.
# 2 Setting Priorities – As the CO, you set priorities for your unit and for your subordinate leaders.
These priorities are determined by your mission and your Battalion Commander’s objectives.
You must decide which tasks are most important and make sure your unit does the most important things first.
# 3 Collective Training: It’s your job to plan, resource and assess collective training for your unit.
Collective training is training at the squad level and higher.
Think of collective training as “group training.”
NCOs focus on individual training and officers focus on collective training.
Basically, you need to ensure your squads and platoons (and the company) can perform their wartime mission.
# 4 Property Accountability: You are the primary hand receipt holder for your unit.
You must ensure all equipment is maintained properly and accounted for at all times.
Inventories must be done on time and to standard.
Your unit must safeguard the government’s property and be fiscally responsible.
Other Posts You Might Enjoy:
- The Company XO & Company Commander Relationship
- Company Commander Initial Counseling: Tips for Battalion Commanders
- How Long Should Army Reserve and National Guard Company Commanders Stay in Command?
- Top 5 Army Retention Ideas for Company Commanders
- Top 7 Tips for Lieutenant Company Commanders
# 5 Pay: In the National Guard and Army Reserve, it’s your job to sign the Form 1379 to make sure Soldiers are paid accurately and paid on time, after each training event.
You don’t prepare the form yourself, but you review it to ensure it is accurate and sign your name to approve it.
# 6 Morale: The Company Commander has a direct impact on Soldier morale.
A good commander will keep their troops highly motivated.
You can do this by providing tough training, leading by example, setting high standards, recognizing good performance, and making sure your Soldiers are taken care of.
# 7 Unit Readiness: The Company Commander must ensure their Soldiers and equipment are ready to deploy at moment’s notice.
They make sure their Soldiers are trained, medically qualified, know their job and know how to do their Warrior Tasks so they can do their job and come home safe.
They also keep a close eye on equipment readiness, training readiness and personnel readiness.
They track each Soldier and each piece of equipment on an individual basis.
# 8 Physical Fitness: It’s your job to ensure Soldiers take the APFT minimum once per year (for M-Day Soldiers).
Make sure the APFT is done to standard.
Your biggest challenge is trying to get M-Day Soldiers to do PT on their own, outside of drill weekend, so they stay in shape.
Lead by example by passing your APFT and HT/WT.
And, always take your APFT in front of your troops.
# 9 Discipline: Company Commanders are ultimately responsible for the discipline in their units.
They do this by enforcing the Army standards, establishing policies and procedures, setting a good example, and dealing with issues as they arise.
# 10 Senior Tactician: The Company Commander is the senior tactician in the unit.
They must be technically and tactically proficient and know how to lead their unit in combat and peacetime.
# 11 Role Model: The Company Commander is a role model for everyone under their command.
Your Soldiers are always watching you.
Even when you think they aren’t, they are.
It’s your job to set the example for your unit.
Your Soldiers will do what you do!
# 12 The Mission: Your job is to make sure the mission gets done, done right and done on time!
Whether your mission is to clean the armory or to fight in combat, completing your mission is your top priority.
That doesn’t mean you do it yourself.
It just means you ensure it gets done.
In most cases, the Army pays you to get things done through other people, so it’s your job to delegate and supervise.
# 13 Decision Maker: As the Company Commander, you are the decision maker.
95% of your decisions are easy to make.
You make the “big bucks” from the other 5% of your decisions.
These are the tough decisions that aren’t always fun or easy to make.
Collect the facts, seek input, and make an informed decision.
Don’t be wishy-washy or indecisive.
Don’t run to your boss to get advice.
Don’t be scared to make a decision.
That’s what the Army pays you to do.
# 14 Recognition: This is another important part of a Company Commander’s job.
Send hand written notes.
Give away challenge coins.
Put Soldiers in for formal and informal awards.
Tell people that you appreciate them.
Do the little things for your team members.
The little things matter!
# 15 Leader Development: One of the most important things that a Company Commander does is leader development.
This is the process of preparing your subordinates for positions of increased responsibility.
You do this via counseling, training, one on one mentoring, sending Soldiers to schools, challenging your followers, and helping each person develop their potential.
Basically, your job is to grow your leaders and future leaders.
As you can probably tell, there are many different Company Commander duties.
Although it is a tough job, it’s very fun and rewarding too.
I hope you are up for the challenge.
What are your thoughts?
Did I miss anything?
If you have experience as a Company Commander, leave a comment below to tell me what you think the most important duties of a Company Commander are.
I look forward to hearing from you.