In this post, I want to talk about how to create a successful Army unit. I will share 10 questions every Army leader should ask themselves, if they want to take their unit to the next level. These are questions that will help leaders ensure they are creating a positive work environment for their subordinates: an environment where they can learn, grow, and succeed.
These questions are designed to help every leader IMPROVE their unit and create a successful organization. I truly believe these questions can apply to the newest Corporal or the most senior General Officer. Let’s get started.
# 1 Do my subordinates know what is expected of them? In other words, have ALL leaders clearly shared their expectations with their direct reports? Have counselings been done formally, in writing? Are the Unit Leader’s expectations posted on the bulletin board and shared with every Soldier?
# 2 Do my subordinates have the resources and equipment they need to get their job done with ease? Does the unit have all of the equipment authorized on the manning documents? If not, has it been requested? Is the equipment serviceable and working properly? Do the Soldiers have the supplies they need on hand to make work easier for them?
# 3 Do I praise my subordinates at least once a week? Do you let your Soldiers know where they stand with you at all times, or do they have to try and read your mind to figure it out? Do you provide constant feedback or do you only talk to your Soldiers when they mess up?
# 4 Do my subordinates have someone that sits down and does career planning and career mapping with them? Do Soldiers know what they need to do to get promoted? Are they educated on the promotion process? Do leaders sit down with Soldiers and do Career Counseling? Do leaders help their Soldiers set goals and develop and action plan to attain it?
# 5 Are my subordinates informed about new opportunities inside and outside of the unit? Do the leaders within the unit post job openings? Are Soldiers notified about open positions both inside and outside of the unit that they are eligible for?
# 6 Do my subordinates know the vision and mission of their organization? Has the Unit Commander posted their vision for the organization? Do Soldiers know the mission of the organization and have a clear understanding of what the leader sees the organization becoming in the months and years to come?
# 7 Are my subordinates ever asked for their input on things? Do unit leaders just bark orders all the time or do they ever ask for feedback? Are Soldiers encouraged to share ideas and offer practical solutions on ways to fix things?
# 8 Do my subordinates feel appreciated for their efforts? Do leaders make their subordinates feel appreciated by doing the extra things, like providing feedback, submitting Soldiers for awards, doing team building events, and praising Soldiers?
# 9 Do my subordinates know how their efforts fall into the bigger picture of things? Are leaders explaining how each Soldier’s job fits into the bigger picture and why the organization needs the Soldier to do their job well?
#10 Do my subordinates think of this as a winning organization? If so, why? If no, why not? What do Soldiers think about the unit? What do they like and dislike? Why?
Answering these 10 questions can help any leader improve their Army organization, and create a positive environment for Soldiers to learn, develop and excel. No, it won’t be easy. But, if you take some time to answer each question honestly and objectively, there is no doubt in my mind you can build a successful team of warriors.
What are your thoughts? Leave a comment below to let me know what you think.