Posted on Jan 29, 2021
CPT Social Work
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Does anyone here ever feel like their chain of command and authorizing authorities place obstacles and limitations to achieving your professional goals? There are trainings that I want and need to take my career where I want it to go, and the motto has always been reiterated to me that, “you’re in charge of your own career.” How does an officer navigate around the limitations set by command when trainings and courses for professional development are not approved and the granting authority is not supportive of these tools for growth? I feel stuck and I’m wondering how I can work around this and “manage my own career” when the resources to help me develop and grow are not facilitated or supported by my commander.
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Responses: 15
MAJ Lno Interagency
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That is an great discussion question and I believe that we lose good officers and leader due to what you just posted. I’ll tell you that I have had three separate officer MOSs and served in every echelon in the army from Platoon to corps to Joint. I have had terrible chains of command and great chains of command. I have found it beneficial to look outside of the chain of command, senior officers 06 and above, who are more likely to guid you through your career. To get access to these leaders is fairly straightforward. Just work through their front office to get time scheduled on their calendar for an office call. Prepare for the meeting with detailed notes and what you want to achieve from the meeting. More than likely they will have the power to make phone calls or point you in the right direction. But you need to be realistic in your expectations. Normally doors open and close very fast during your career. They open after command and again at ILE. After you reach 35 or 15 years in the Army those doors close fast. Which is very unfortunate considering that a 20 year career in most professions is the point to where a employee STARTS to have doors open for them. I could write for days about this but that is my advice. Find a mentor in the 06 and above ranks and work through them.
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CPT Social Work
CPT (Join to see)
2 mo
Hey this is really really great and helpful and I appreciate your response so much. I’m definitely looking for support so it would be great to connect. Thank you again so much.
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2LT Staff Nurse
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2 mo
Hello sir, would you say that the same 35 years old and 15 years TIS window applies for prior service officers?
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2LT Staff Nurse
2LT (Join to see)
2 mo
Hello sir, would you say that the same 35 years old and 15 years TIS window applies for prior service officers?
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MAJ Lno Interagency
MAJ (Join to see)
2 mo
Not sure for service, yes for age. A lot of federal program windows close at age 35 they claim that there is an age waiver, but I’ve never seen a age waiver approved unless the agency is in dire straights. I guess my points were. If you want to get out get out before 35 and if you want professional army development do it prior to 15 years service. 2LT (Join to see)
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MAJ Logistics Officer (S4)
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Does the unit have the resources to support your professional development? Are these trainings you want part of your AOC/ODP or just something you want? Units have financial restrains. If the unit didn't plan or request funding for you to attend additional training, there is a change the money and orders won't be available.
If your leadership is not working with you or supporting your requests for continued education, you could consider transferring to anther unit. Sometimes it's good for all parties to switch it up.
A mentor is always a valuable method support.
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CPT Social Work
CPT (Join to see)
2 mo
That's extremely helpful thank you so much, I will absolutely look into that and I appreciate your response!
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CWO3 Us Marine
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Edited 2 mo ago
What works for a CWO might not work for a Regular Officer. You have to be your best advocate, and be persistent, yet flexible. The Command may see your absence for training as a near term loss, while the Army sees it as a longer term gain. "We can't afford to let her go" vice "You can't afford not to". The yardstick for measuring your training of subordinates is if the shop can carry on with the mission without you there. If you can demonstrate that, your options may open up with follow-on training. Seek out a mentor for advice and support. Stay within the CoC for any actions or requests. Be in the category of leaders that make things happen, rather than watching it happen or wondering what just happened. Be patient and good luck.
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