In the military services, the concern is to keep publicity chance throughout a hierarchy of 10 classs through which officers can accomplish. This publicity flow, particularly for the in-between direction classs of O-4 through O-6, gets really competitory. As a Lieutenant Commander ( 0-4 ) with 13 old ages of military service, it is normal to analyse your publicity potency for future ranks. Most would wish to draw a bead on to go a Flag Officer ( O-7 to O-10 ) but frequently the inquiry is posed, “ What does it take to go a Flag Officer? ” I feel the best manner to reply that inquiry is to analysis the properties and background of the current officer corps.
At the degree of Flag officer, it is assume that you hold the cardinal traits of a transformational leader. You are singled out among your equals as a Coast Guard Flag Officer because less than 1 per centum of calling officers are promoted to flag rank. However, it is frequently said in senior degree ranks of the naval services that “ Ducks choice ducks. ” This means that when it is clip to choose the Flag Officers of the military service, the current Flag Officers frequently gravitate to members with similar calling traits as theirs. In Junge ( 2009 ) , “ What Does a Duck Look Like? ” article, he states those personalities are shaped by many factors which include: where one grew up, went to college, the class of direction, circuit forms, supervisors, and even subsidiaries. As a Coast Guard officer with different calling traits than the norm, my undertaking focused on analysing the lifes of current Coast Guard Flag Officers to find the cardinal factors in what makes a Coast Guard Flag Officer.
Coast Guard Flag officers greatly influence the success and the hereafter of the Coast Guard. They serve as the Commandant ‘s senior field representatives, Coast Guard plan managers, and in places of important duty in other bureaus and military services. Flag officers are members of the Commandant ‘s senior leading squad and must lend well to the promotion of Service ends. They progressively represent non merely the Coast Guard but the Department of Homeland Security, Department of Defense, and federal authorities at all degrees of authorities and internationally. During the first portion of my undertaking, I had the chance to go to the Coast Guard ‘s 2009 Fall Senior Executive Leadership Conference. During this conference, all the Coast Guard ‘s Flags and Senior Executive Service meet for a hebdomad to web and collaborate in on strategic organisational aims. During this clip, I spoke to several flag officers about the journey through the Coast Guard. This was a really enlighten experience because it is rare to hold all the Flags and SESs members in one topographic point. I received a wealth of cognition from their experiences and advice. Below are a sum-up of the 5 cardinal points from my treatments:
- In add-on to command of the proficient or specialised facets of your assignments, you must show the leading, direction, and professional accomplishments necessary to obtain optimum public presentation.
- As you move into senior ranks, you must hold an apprehension of the major issues confronting the Coast Guard as a whole in order to outdo contribute to the overall demands of the Service.
- Joint/interagency expertness is extremely recommended with an aggressive chase of educational chances
- Career way should demo diverseness in assignments, less geographic restraints and be every bit comfy in the Coast Guard operational environment every bit good as the DOD and interagency community.
- Must be able to do the spring from custodies on direction of the daily inside informations to authorising people to execute to being able to take a strategic position, including a wide apprehension of the joint, interagency, inter-governmental, non for net income and private sectors.
The cardinal points from my treatments at the Senior Executive Leadership Conference straight tied in to our leading duties and the difference between leaders and directors category treatment. There is a clip when you are an officer that you genuinely have to distinguish between the two but have features of both. As Kotter ( 2001 ) stated, both are necessary for success in an increasing composite and volatile concern. As a midgrade officer ( O-4 ) , there is a clip where you have to expose more characteristic of a leader than a director, this besides includes traveling from more of a transactional leading manner to a transformational leading manner. Bing able to do this passage is frequently what separates the Captains from the Admirals. What is required of an officer as she/he excels through the ranks is less of an “ exchange ” between subsidiaries and more of a procedure that engages and empowers those around you to execute at their maximal potency.
Choice to Flag Officer in any service is a difficult strict procedure regardless of the military service. In carry oning the 2nd portion of my undertaking, I found that a batch of similarities between the other four services when it comes to the publicity of Flag/General Officers. It requires a high aptitude for military subject, dedication to the service, political understanding and the ability to continually do the right picks in hard times. It ‘s a consensus across the services that go toing a service academy increase your opportunity of going a Flag Officer. For illustration, 56 per centum of Navy Admirals graduated from the Naval Academy and 75 per centum of Coast Guard Admirals graduated from the Coast Guard Academy. The mean clip it takes to do O-7 in the services is between 25.2 and 27.7 ( ( Harrell, Thie, Schirmer, & A ; Brancato, 2004 ) . Over 90 % have proficient grades and all have at least one Master grade. In add-on to the above, the current CG Flag Corps demographics are as follows:
In reexamining the information from my research I have ground to be optimistic and pessimistic sing my opportunities to of going a flag officer. I have become a maestro of my trade with a forte in Ashore Operations and have invested in life-long acquisition gaining my 2nd Masterss in the spring. On the other manus, my accession point into the Coast Guard is through OCS versus the Academy and I am a minority female. Presently, the highest superior Afro-american female is a ( O-5 ) and merely three Afro-american females have received that rank in the history of the Coast Guard. Despite the mentality, I know that the statistics do non specify my hereafter. The Coast Guard is an of all time altering organisation where history is made every twenty-four hours. As Phillips ( 2003 ) points the Coast Guard lives and breathes leading and this leading has no boundaries.
In add-on to what I learned during my undertaking research, I want to foreground a really inspirational lesson where I learned to be “ relentless in my optimism ” despite the challenges of transformational leading. This was the category visit by Admiral Stillman and our instance survey on Deepwater ( Kee & A ; Newcomer, 2008 ) . Admiral Stillman led the Coast Guard through a disruptive clip with the Deepwater plan. His treatment during category was really motivative and provided indispensable counsel for future leaders in any sector be it public, private, or non-profit. This was an of import lesson in alteration leading because it forced you to acknowledge the negative side of alteration leading and how strong civilization plays a portion in alteration. Some of his most powerful take-aways from his treatment were:
- Be passionate in measurement: You have to be able to mensurate your success and failures. You have to get the hang the art of simplification and be able to efficaciously mensurate results and end products as a leader. Measurement of public presentation is the key to success in stewardship.
- Identifying metaphors to simplifying things ; Steal unashamedly to non reinvent the wheel. Major issue for companies is knowledge direction
- Do non allow the perfect become the enemy of the good. Make non blow money in effort to accomplish flawlessness.
- Culture ever win. Culture does non impart itself to alter.
- Be relentless in your optimism
My professional ends are to further my professional development as a Coast Guard officer and set up an expertness in public disposal. Bing a military officer is different from any other business. Each officer receives a committee, saying that the President has “ particular trust and assurance ” in the ability of this individual to move for the Nation. The words in that committee centre on leading and followership, and the curse that each officer takes makes clear that their highest commitment is to the Constitution. Similarly, to the basicss of public disposal and public service, the military compels forfeit for the greater good. In analysing my personal and professional development while in the MPA plan, it would be most appropriate to use standards similar to what I used making my research on “ What Makes a Coast Guard Flag Officer. It is the same standard that is used to see who are “ best qualified ” from among their equals for publicity as an officer in the Coast Guard and is centered on public presentation, professionalism, leading, and instruction. The chief papers that is used is the Officer Evaluation Report ( OER ) . Those officers who continually develop and show their capablenesss against this standard, place themselves to be among those best qualified for uninterrupted publicity to finally Flag Officer.
The Officer Evaluation Report is an ideal manner to measure my strengths and failings and development through the plan against my professional ends. The OER is divided into four rating countries that included several public presentation dimensions. The four rating countries that I will measure my experience against are Performance of Duties, Communication, Leadership Skills, and Personal and Professional Qualities. The Performance of Duties evaluation country measures an officer ‘s ability to pull off and acquire things done. The 2nd is Communication Skills, which measures an officer ‘s ability to pass on in a positive, clear, and converting mode. Third is Leadership Skills, which measures an officer ‘s ability to back up, develop, direct, and influence other in executing work. The last rating country is Personal and Professional Qualities, which measures selected qualities that illustrate the person ‘s character.
The Performance of Duties evaluation country includes public presentation dimensions of planning/preparedness, utilizing resources, results/effectiveness, adaptability, and professional competency. My first semester as a pupil challenged every dimension in this country. I took four categories and a lab, which required me to set rapidly to my new life manner. I was no longer waking up at 0530 to travel into my office as the Supervisor of the Port of Miami and pull off daily operations. As a pupil, I woke up at my leisure and was merely a director of my clip, category agenda, and prep. Every ounce of planning and readiness had to travel into reading and forming notes for categories. I had to accommodate rapidly to an environment where I was wholly out of my component. Once I got over the initial daze, I excelled at executing my responsibilities as a pupil. The nucleus classes taken during my first semester laid the foundation for a calling in public disposal, particularly PAD 200.
The rating country of Communication Skill, which includes the public presentation dimensions of speech production, hearing, and composing proved to be my biggest failing. Speaking will likely ever be a failing because I think it is natural to be nervous when talking in forepart of an audience. However, I have embraced it more over the old ages due to the figure of presentation and the array of subjects that I have had the chance to present presentation on in categories. Despite the sum of composing that I did in my regular occupation in the Coast Guard, the passage to academic composing proven slightly hard. Major of the authorship required in the armed forces is really short, concise and to the point. Writing has ever been a failing that I had continued to work on over the old ages. Due to the sum of authorship required in several of the categories, I took it upon myself to patronize the Writing Center. The centre is an underutilized resource that I feel more pupils should take advantage of piece at George Washington. My clip at that place proved to be a fantastic experience that has highly helped me during my term of office.
My strengthens over the semester proved to be in the rating country of Leadership Skills, which covers the public presentation dimensions of looking out for others, developing others, directing others, teamwork, workplace clime and ratings. In bulk of my categories I was supply the chance to work in squads and complete squad assignment. Throughout my calling, I have had chances to pull off squads every bit good as to work in squads ; nevertheless, the experience during some of my categories did turn out to be rather different. During category this semester, I enjoy taking the Motivation and Leadership Self-Assessment. It complimented the Myers-Briggs instrument that I had the chance to take in PAD 201. The Motivation and Leadership Assessment showed an interesting tendency with power being my highest class followed by stewardship, accomplishment, and association. I personally felt that these appraisals made the experience of working in a group more intriguing. Despite my ISTJ nature, I made a scruples attempt to non to be disdainful due to my experience or my normal place in of being the “ foreman ” . My dominant introspective detection allowed me to be more self-reflecting on my function in the squad through analysing the group kineticss and taking into history my squad members MBTI type. After understanding the personalities in the group, I was able be more of leader and address issues or struggles that arose suitably.
The rating country where I felt I improved the most was in Personal and Professional qualities. This rating country included dimensions in enterprise, judgement, duties, professional presence and wellness and wellbeing. My experience at George Washington sparked my enterprise to make and accomplish more in respects to my professional and personal ends and going a transformational leader. After make up one’s minding to go to George Washington, I thought it would be my last educational experience in which I would gain a grade ; nevertheless, I decided due to my experience over the last twelvemonth to prosecute a doctor’s degree grade. In add-on to my chase of a doctor’s degree grade, I have dedicated a batch of clip over the last two semesters helping the Coast Guard with its Diversity Outreach mission. Currently, Congress is keeping the Coast Guard to the highest degree of answerability in every facet of their missions including diverseness. Unfortunately, the Coast Guard has fallen short of these criterions late when it was reported that snares had been placed among the personal effects of an Afro-american pupil and so of a white female officer who was carry oning race dealingss developing in response to the find of the first noose. Such sheer racism and hatred is wholly unacceptable-especially among those who are developing to be leaders. Therefore, over the last twelvemonth while in school, I have championed several major enterprises that have improved race dealingss every bit good as diverseness in the Coast Guard. These enterprises have created policies that allow the populace to see that the Coast Guard is dedicated to hold a diverseness work force that represents the American people.
I know that I am in a alone state of affairs compared to the other pupils in category because I have acted in my function in public service and leading as a member of the armed forces in the United States Coast Guard for about 13 old ages. This category was a fantastic experience because it allowed me to larn more about leading on a theoretical degree every bit good as portion my leading experience with others. In re-reading Character in Action, I made me realized blessed I am to be a leader in such an astonishing organisation. Our work and duties are like no other. We deal with state of affairss like the “ Distance Command ” on a mundane bases and are better leaders for it.
- Harrell, M. C. , Thie, H. J. , Schirmer, P. , & A ; Brancato, K. ( 2004 ) . Aligning the stars: betterments to general and flag officer direction. Arlington: RAND Corporation.
- Johnson, C. E. ( 2001 ) . Meeting the Ethical Challenges of Leadership. Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.
- Junge, M. ( 2009, 05 21 ) . What Does a Duck Look Like? Naval Flag Officers in 2002. Retrieved 10 13, 2009, from Information Dissemination: hypertext transfer protocol: //www.informationdissemination.net/2009/05/what-does-duck-look-like-naval-flag.html
- Kee, J. E. , & A ; Newcomer, K. E. ( 2008 ) . Transforming Public and Nonprofit Organizations: Stewardship for Leading Change. Vienna: Management Concepts.
- Kotter, J. ( 2001 ) . What Leaders Truly Do. Harvard Business Review, RO11F.
- Phillips, D. , & A ; Loy, J. ( 2003 ) . Fictional character in Action: The US Coast Guard on Leadership. Annapolis: Naval Institute Press.