Posted on Oct 14, 2014
LTC Brigade Executive Officer
12.3K
73
77
3
3
0
Has the level of professionalism in the Army been lost? Has the bar been lowered so much that it is now acceptable to slander our senior leadres, or any other brother / sister in arms?

I just read through a post on here about our SMA and him wearing glasses on his head and the amount of comments, but senior NCOs and Officers was embarrassing. How did we get to this point?

I'll admit I am tough leader who demands the most / best out of my Soldiers, and in the case of my current assignment, my Marines. I expect my Soldiers / Marines to do the right thing, even when no one is looking. And when they don't, I correct them. I also expect them to correct me WHEN I make mistakes. In any incident there is never a level of slander / disrespect towards each other because a mistake was made.

How did we get here???
Posted in these groups: Leadership-abstract-007 LeadershipRespect__logo RespectZgvwznrr9psdw5lzq6y7ihp6r9qhpdfhlbomkkkntap1slsxqwsblel-onis9qdww00l_q_s85 Disrespect
Avatar_feed
Responses: 22
LTC Board Member
5
5
0
To the question of whether the military is as professional as it should be, I will leave to another discussion.

However, to the question of whether professionalism has been "lost" -- I believe is an easier one to tackle. I have no reason to believe that if one went back 10 or 20 years, or 30 or 100 years, that the rank and file would not have been complaining and poking fun at their leaders exactly the same way they do today. Perhaps back then it would have been in barracks, or in back rooms of officer clubs, or out on a Friday night. However, there is no reason to believe that people have changed. Perhaps it is simply more visible because of social media.

In many ways, our military has become more and more professional.
(5)
Comment
(0)
LTC Brigade Executive Officer
LTC (Join to see)
>1 y
Yinon,

That is a great point about social media and I agree that it is simply more visible because of it.

I haven't done my research, but it seems that ever week there is a commander or senior NCO being relieved for something unprofessional, heck we have had two general officers reduced in rank because of it. Maybe the has always been the status quo and just the media seems to have made it more obivous.

I think what I should have wrote in my original post was more than just this current example involving the SMA. I should have added the little things that I see Soldiers / Marines doing today that weren't necessarily there when I first came in....pants down below their ass, earings in their ears, not standing up when addressed my NCOs / Officers, not giving greatings of the day when passing NCOs / Officers. Now, I would also agree that these don't necessarily make us unprofessional, but they dont help.

Thanks for your feedback.

Brian
(0)
Reply
(0)
LTC Board Member
LTC (Join to see)
>1 y
LTC (Join to see) - As a former Marine myself, I would be shocked to see what you described taking place... at least in a duty environment. Since you are in Okinawa, the concept of being "off duty" is even more vague.

You know what they say... if somebody sees something unprofessional and lets it go, they are in a sense part of the problem. If you've seen these issues in a particular unit, it may be worth discussing it with the officers and senior NCOs of that unit. Culture is made up of small habits, and change has to start somewhere.
(1)
Reply
(0)
LTC Brigade Executive Officer
LTC (Join to see)
>1 y
Agreed, in the duty environment, I rarely, if ever see a Marine acting unprofessional, usually if they don't salute or say something, its because they don't recognize my uniform and where our rank is. I can see them genuinly looking for my rank to be professional and courteous, they just don't see too many Soldiers around here. Off duty (out of uniform) I have seen a few with their pants down low, earings and such. But no where near the number of Soldiers I would normaly see at an Army Base.

And I thin you are spot on with letting it go is part of the problem.
(0)
Reply
(0)
SFC(P) Palmer U.
SFC(P) Palmer U.
>1 y
I think there is always a perception of another branch, however that doesn't make them true. As a Soldier of 14 years and prior Drill Sergeant, I can see where some of the perception can come from. But we shouldn't assume an entire branch "droops their pants" or "wears belly rings". Please do not assume I'm being offended Ma'am. I do believe there is a culture shift happening in our military and it stems from rapid social change. Unfortunately the military, especially the Army, is feeling the blunt of it. This may be because of the Army's size compared to it's sister branches. Every branch has their sterotypes. Unfortunatey, like Major Weiss point out, social media is making all of these visible more than ever.
(0)
Reply
(0)
Avatar_small
Maj Aerospace Planner
5
5
0
Edited >1 y ago
I don't think a little bit of banter towards the man was really slander. I think what you are seeing is the contention that people have towards this issue. I jokingly commented not to demean your service or your personnel. The comment is probably not personal against him but is more so in just how some SNCO's treat small uniform infractions as if they are the worst thing that can happen in your career as if you just committed fratricide. Having been on several deployments I know that this issue hits a hot button. I have seen his Af counterparts run clear across the compound to chew someone out over this. You want to talk about unprofessional, its when someone is being chewed out over a minor uniform infraction, like they are back in basic training, that could also have been a simple mistake. In my service I have even seen SNCO's dress down Lt Col's over not having their reflective belts or their PT shirt got un-tucked.

You mention it was probably a mistake and human error. I agree with you, however I also know that it seems like sunglasses on heads, reflective belts, and tucking pt uniforms seems to be the mindset that it is the most important thing to many of his counterparts. I once was at a right start briefing where the Command Chief at Al Udeid tried to equate tucking PT shirts and wearing the reflective belt to following checklist procedures in the cockpit. To all the flyers we think that was little bit ridiculous because one has absolutely nothing to do with the other. having a uniform that may be incorrect is not going to get me killed, however having the gear up during landing probably will.

A lot of people will call you out if you are not practicing what you preach. In my former career field that is how we keep ourselves in check. We call it roll cal. This is where if you made a mistake in the cockpit that did not break metal, kill you or get you violated by the ATC agency. We called each other out on it. It is how we keep ourselves honest. That is basically what has happened here on this board, that's all. You have to ask yourself is it just keeping good order and discipline or can this be an issue to throw your rank around. In some cases I feel that some people get off on chewing people out. Maybe they have home stress and are projecting out, or they simply have a chip on their shoulder and just want to bully. I can tell from experience that it would seem like the people that are not rational about spot corrections are just trying to throw themselves around.

It is human instinct to comment on when people who accept a position that supposed to be beyond reproach fall short. Especially a community such as the SNCO of any service where they pride themselves of being the perfect examples and setters of order and discipline.
(5)
Comment
(0)
Avatar_small
SPC Team Chief
3
3
0
I believe Professionalism as a whole has been lost at a Societal Level. People paid in the millions of dollars per year cannot even act professional and they have have serious bonuses that can come with acting accordingly. I may be off center here but i have a feeling it may come down to the trend of "everyone is equal". Every kid gets a trophy type stuff that places no emphasis on seniority or real character but rather that; at least you joined so, you should be considered an equal to everyone else. With that being said I have been fortunate enough to serve under/alongside some extremely professional service members of every branch. I have met some real dirt-bags too. What I think it really is though and what others have touched on, is the attention that the disrespectful get, like that soldier who posted on FB how she hid from Flag Call....nobody would have ever really known if; A.) She wasnt completely freaking stupid enough to brag about it. B.) There was no Social Media...I fell like the majority of Service Members will fall into the "Average Category" (those who make a few mistakes but learn from them and for the most part, serve rather honorably) and will continue to do so as long as people exist to take swift and firm action against those who chose to disobey and disrespect customs, courtesies, general doctrine...and those who are just down right shitty human beings
(3)
Comment
(0)
Avatar_small

Join over 1.6 million former and current members of the US military, just like you.

close
Seg?add=7750261&t=2