Leaders plot MCoE direction during On-Site
August 7, 2013
By Nick Duke
FORT BENNING, Ga., (Aug. 7, 2013) -- Leaders from across the Maneuver Center of Excellence gathered July 30 to share ideas and discuss ways to plan a strong direction for the MCoE going forward.
The MCoE Senior Leader On-Site is a team-building exercise intended to allow senior leaders and subject matter experts to review and identify strategies for near, short and long-term solutions for the MCoE's future direction, while also maintaining its reputation as a premiere training installation, according to the event's mission statement.
Those who participated discussed ways to refine MCoE objectives, share best practices, identify opportunities, made recommendations and established priorities for improving the maneuver force's combat effectiveness in the areas of training, leader development and education, capabilities development, doctrine, best practices across the installation, MCoE reorganization and the sexual harassment/assault prevention and response program.
Leaders were broken into seven different groups, one for each of the topics discussed.
In the groups, facilitators managed discussion and helped to develop an out-brief that was then delivered to MCoE commanding general Maj. Gen. H. R. McMaster and the rest of the attendees at the conclusion of the event.
Each out-brief contained suggestions as well as timeframes for implementation of suggested procedures.
Col. David Davidson, commander of the 316th Cavalry Brigade, was the facilitator for the group that discussed training.
The group focused on common themes of ensuring Soldiers remain grounded in the fundamentals of Soldiering, continuing combined arms training for the maneuver force and maintaining a focus on creating agile and adaptive leaders.
One of the group's suggestions was to perform a task analysis to ensure training at the MCoE is meeting all the needs of the operational force.
"We need to ensure that we know that what we produce here is meeting the needs of the operational force, as well as meeting those foundational fundamental requirements that the operational force may not be asking for," he said.
On the topic of capabilities development, Col. Daniel Barnett of Capabilities Development and Integration Division said part of the problem facing capabilities development efforts is a lack of understanding.
"We have to educate our own force, and everyone needs to understand what it is we do at capabilities development and how they fit into that," Barnett said. "We just borrowed from the CDID mission statement to show that it's not just about materiel solutions."
Col. Richard Timmons, who facilitated the discussion on doctrine, said the discussion focused on minor changes to the way doctrine is discussed rather than an overhaul of doctrine itself.
"We didn't come up with anything earth shattering, but we did have some good discussion and it was a good dialogue," he said. "One thing we'd like to do is prepare a doctrinal bulletin, and that would drive a semiannual doctrinal forum, where we'd have the stakeholders come together and we'd talk about emerging doctrine and educate one another about what's going on."
George Steuber, deputy garrison commander, helped to facilitate the group discussion on best practices across the installation, a discussion that focused mainly on the Army's Ready & Resilient program and other initiatives aimed at improving the overall health of the Fort Benning community.
"The good news is Fort Benning is leading the rest of the Army in what we're doing for Comprehensive Soldier and Family Fitness," he said.
With the On-Site over, each breakout group will be responsible for submitting an information paper summarizing its findings and recommendations to the Directorate of Plans, Training, Mobilization and Security, which will then consider them for implementation.