Tag Archives: G-1

HRC leaders reach out to Fort Bliss NCOs at town hall

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By MARTHA C. KOESTER
NCO Journal

Is it true that assignment officers at U.S. Army Human Resources Command save the great jobs for their friends? Or, that assignment officers sit on the promotion boards?

HRC’s Command Sgt. Maj. Wardell Jefferson has heard many of the fallacies about HRC and urges Soldiers to reject the myths.

“A lot of [the negativity] is [because of a] lack of education,” Jefferson said before a town hall for senior noncommissioned officers in December at Fort Bliss, Texas. “What we try to do is inform the field of what we are doing and why we do it …

Command Sgt. Maj. Wardell Jefferson of U.S. Army Human Resources Command (right), with Command Sgt. Maj. David Davenport of U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (left) and Sgt. Maj. Derek Johnson, deputy chief of staff G1 sergeant major at Headquarters Department of the Army, take on talent management during the third town hall in November at Fort Eustis, Virginia. (Photo by Martha C. Koester / NCO Journal)
Command Sgt. Maj. Wardell Jefferson of U.S. Army Human Resources Command (right), with Command Sgt. Maj. David Davenport of U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (left) and Sgt. Maj. Derek Johnson, deputy chief of staff G1 sergeant major at Headquarters Department of the Army, take on talent management during the third town hall in November at Fort Eustis, Virginia. (Photo by Martha C. Koester / NCO Journal)

If a Soldier doesn’t get a promotion or assignment he or she wants, “it’s not because the assignment manager doesn’t like you or doesn’t want to send you to those locations,” he said. “It’s because you have to meet certain criteria. The way we dispel those myths is to talk Soldiers through it and educate the leaders. The leaders can help us to educate the Soldier on how the assignment process works.”

Jefferson and Maj. Gen. Thomas Seamands, HRC commander, visited Fort Bliss on Dec. 14 to reach out to both noncommissioned and commissioned service members. For Jefferson and Seamands, the advantages of doing these HRC road shows are twofold.

“There’s a benefit for us at HRC because we get to come out here and listen to the Soldiers in the field, to find out what’s on their minds and how we can make things better for them and their organizations,” Jefferson said. “The other part is for us to show transparency. We inform the Soldiers of what’s going on and what kinds of changes are taking place within their career management fields. That way, they are aware of what’s taking place and how it affects them and their families.”

As the Army downsizes, Jefferson said talent management is not just HRC’s responsibility.

U.S. Army Human Resources Command Sgt. Maj. Wardell Jefferson (right), with Maj. Gen. Thomas Seamands, HRC Commander, discusses professional development with noncommissioned officers Dec. 14 at Fort Bliss, Texas. Jefferson says road shows are part of HRC’s efforts to show transparency. (Photo by Mehgan Portillo, NCO Journal)
U.S. Army Human Resources Command Sgt. Maj. Wardell Jefferson (right), with Maj. Gen. Thomas Seamands, HRC commander, discusses professional development with noncommissioned officers Dec. 14 at Fort Bliss, Texas. Jefferson says road shows are part of HRC’s efforts to show transparency. (Photo by Meghan Portillo, NCO Journal)

“We [at HRC] identify the Soldiers that need to move to these different positions in our Army, but once we place Soldiers on assignment, then the unit has the responsibility in managing that talent,” Jefferson said. “The leaders on the ground ensure that Soldiers get to the right schools they need in order to develop the talent and go forward.”

He also recently spoke about the issue during Army Training and Doctrine Command’s third town hall in November at Fort Eustis, Virginia.

Many questions and complaints heard during HRC’s road shows are linked to recent revisions in Army policy.

“It’s just the fear of change,” Jefferson said. “When we decided to make the change to a new noncommissioned officer evaluation report, a lot of people were in an uproar about it. But now that we have been doing this NCOER for almost 12 months, not a lot of people are arguing about it. Now, it’s just learning how to write those evaluations. Same thing with STEP,” the Select, Train, Educate, Promote policy for promotion.

Jefferson often offers his assistance to Soldiers at the road shows. If, for example, a Soldier has an issue with his or her assignment and is not connecting with the assignment officer to discuss it, Jefferson will take the Soldier’s information and meet with the assignment officer in an effort to get both parties in touch. Also, if Soldiers continue to take issue with a certain policy or question its relevance, they may count on Jefferson to take up the debate with the deputy chief of staff, G-1.

“If it’s something we think we should look at, we’ll take that back to the Army G-1 and say, ‘We have got this feedback from the Soldiers out in the field. Maybe we could look at this policy, and see if it’s still relevant or if we need to adjust it,’” Jefferson said.

As for those NCOs looking for advice on how to get ahead in the Army, Jefferson said it’s all about self-improvement.

“The way you do that is by going to military schools, by taking the hard jobs and developing yourself and making sure that you are technically and tactically proficient in your career management field,” he said. “Also, reach out to your mentors and find out what else you need to be doing. But the most important thing to prepare yourself for promotion, regardless of what job you are in, is do the best you can and ensure that your evaluation says exactly how you did in that position. Along with going to the schools, that’s the major way to develop ourselves.”

The command sergeant major said he has grown a lot in his 18 months on the job and learns something new every day, especially in his interactions with Soldiers.

“I want to make an impact on the Soldiers and families because that’s what it’s all about,” he said. “Our job is to ensure that Soldiers and our families are taken care of, and I am very passionate about that. There are going to be some Soldiers saying, ‘It’s just HRC again,’ but there is another Soldier out here who I am going to have an impact on ─ something that I am going to say today is going to impact him and his family, or I am going to be able to assist them with something and they are going to put that trust back in HRC and think, ‘Well, maybe they are not the bad guys.’”

Jefferson often leaves NCOs with the same bit of advice ─ develop a passion for what they do, and success will come.

“If you are passionate about something, you are going to be successful in doing that,” he said. “Remain competent and relevant. If you are a leader, all these changes affect all of our Soldiers and their families. You have to know what’s going on in our Army today in order for you to be an effective leader.”

Army to stand up new Resiliency Directorate

By JACQUELINE M. HAMES
Army News Service

WASHINGTON — Army leaders announced Oct. 21 that a new directorate would be established in the Pentagon under the Army’s G-1.

The Resiliency Directorate will be stood up Nov. 4, said Lt. Gen. Howard B. Bromberg, deputy chief of staff, G-1, speaking during a panel at the Association of the United States Army Annual Meeting and Exposition.

The panel discussed the service’s Ready and Resilient Campaign, and Bromberg said the new directorate will be responsible for leading a cultural change Army-wide.

Bromberg said one of the challenges the Army faces in the upcoming years is force readiness in the face of downsizing and budget constraints.

“So, how do you maximize your readiness? Well, you maximize equipment by maintaining your equipment, or you can maximize your people also, by keeping them in resiliency training,” he said.

The G-1’s goal is to take resiliency concepts and translate them into something commanders can do and touch, he explained, emphasizing the long-term effort that will be involved in a cultural shift toward resiliency.

The G-1 has already reorganized, Bromberg said, adding that the new Resiliency Directorate is being established with no overall growth in personnel.

“The responsibility of the directorate will be to be the synchronizer and the driver and energy at the department level for making resiliency the cultural change across the Army.”

The Army is now in phase one of that change, Army Vice Chief of Staff Gen. John F. Campbell said, asking non-commissioned officers to lead the change at the ground level.

“After more than a decade of fighting both in Iraq and Afghanistan — really it’s the longest conflict our nation has been involved in — we have to have the ability to rehabilitate, reset and reshape the force,” Campbell said.

Campbell said he wants to take the lessons learned about resiliency over the past few years and apply them to help Soldiers, families and civilians.

Lt. Gen. Patricia D. Horoho, the Army’s surgeon general, discussed key points for bringing resiliency to Soldiers. The first is to ensure support systems are delivered to where Soldiers are, and to do that, the medical community is nesting their support within the larger Army community, so everyone is working together to improve the readiness and resilience of Soldiers and family members.

“The second point that I’d like to make is that it really is meeting people where they need to be met. So, it’s the synchronization of those programs and capabilities, and it’s making sure that we don’t wait for them to come to us, that we try to do that outreach,” she said. Horoho added that it’s important to make sure the programs being presented to Soldiers are the right programs, the ones that will do the most good.

Campbell acknowledged that as the Army entered the fiscal year, new budgetary challenges would appear, limiting resources for resiliency training. He said that senior leaders will be faced with tough decisions, and will need to assess risk and prioritize programs, but he hopes non-commissioned officers and leaders out in the field will provide candid feedback so those decisions are the right ones.

“We can’t afford to be redundant. We have to take the right resources and make sure we get the biggest bang for our buck on all of our posts, camps or stations to take care of our Soldiers and our families and our civilians,” Campbell said.