FORT HOOD- Command Sgt. Maj. Michael Grinston recently visited with Soldiers in the 13th Expeditionary Sustainment Command. The purpose of the visit was to be the guest speaker at an NCO induction ceremony the unit was hosting, but. Grinston, Command Sergeant Major for U.S. Army Forces Command, took the opportunity to spend the day with the unit.
The day started off as every Army day does, with PT. Grinston led a two mile enlisted run across Fort Hood to build Esprit De Corps.
"I think as a military we have to start with physical fitness every day," Grinston said. "I don't look at physical fitness just as a part of what we do to keep ourselves physically fit. It's a training event that teaches NCOs everyday on how perform leadership tasks and train Soldiers"
Later that morning Grinston served as the guest speaker at the 13th ESC's NCO induction ceremony. Command Sgt. Maj. Cheryl N.M. Greene, 13th ESC Command Sergeant Major, reached out to Grinston a couple of months prior to see if he was willing to be a part of the ceremony.
"The importance of the Induction Ceremony is to celebrate the newly promoted Noncommissioned Officers into the Corps," said Greene. "It is a milestone within a Soldier's career that signifies unity, a sense of belonging, and that we have not forgotten about the traditions of the Corps and our obligation to acknowledge our Noncommissioned Officers and we wanted to have prominent senior NCO like Command Sergeant Major Grinston welcome them."
"The 13th ESC asked me to be a part of their NCO Induction ceremony and I was very proud to do that." Grinston said. "I think it's important that we recognize our NCOs because our NCOs are the best in the world. Every army in the world wants to be like us. So I think it's important when we promote Soldiers to NCOs we recognize them appropriately."
Grinston spoke to the newly promoted sergeants about mastering the fundamentals.
"As an NCO no one should know your job better than you," Grinston said. "And sometimes we're not mastering those fundamentals. We may be doing them, but we're not mastering them. As an NCO I believe that if you master your fundamentals you'll do exceptionally well in the Army."
"After seeing three or four of these ceremonies prior to becoming an NCO, this was the top ceremony I've seen and it was a great experience to be a part of it," said Sgt. Leanne Lucas, a human resources NCO with the 13th ESC.
After the ceremony Grinston took the opportunity to get out and speak with Soldiers in the 13th ESC. He had lunch with several Soldiers at Freeman Dining Facility giving insight on what is going on in the Army.
"Sometimes why we do things doesn't filter down to the lowest level," Grinston said. "Sometimes you know what is going on in the Army, but you don't know why we're doing it and I like to provide perspective."
Grinston also conducted a battlefield circulation to get out and see what the Soldiers in the 13th ESC do on a daily basis.
The final event during his visit was an NCO Town Hall at the 13th ESC Chapel. This provided an opportunity for NCOs to ask the FORSCOM command sergeant major some questions.
"The questions Soldiers ask me are amazing," Grinston said. "Questions can range anywhere from the operational to the strategic message of the Army, to the basic Soldiers asking what advice I have for them for them to make Sergeant or promote from sergeant to staff sergeant."
"When one of the most senior CSMs takes time to develop, mentor, talk, and listen to the concerns of our junior NCOs in the Corps it effects them greatly." Greene said. "It is important because it shows the Soldiers that our leaders care."
"One thing Command Sgt. Major Griston said that stood out to me was to learn from great leaders you've had and put that knowledge in your backpack and carry that with you throughout your career." Lucas said. "That's something I often hear senior NCOs say, so it was good to hear him say that."