Army leaders and military experts will focus Oct. 13 on Army readiness – including Soldiers’ training, modernization and Army leadership – during the Association of the U.S. Army’s Annual Meeting 2020 as part of a panel discussion on “The Readiness Balance.”
The four-day virtual meeting beginning Oct. 13 and concluding Oct. 16 will include “Contemporary Military Forum” panel presentations as part of the theme “The Time Is Now.” U.S. Army Forces Command Commanding General Gen. Michael Garrett will lead the readiness panel with four panelists: M. Wade Markel, RAND senior political scientist; Cynthia (Cindy) Bedell, director of Computational and Information Services, U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command – U.S. Army Research Lab; U.S. Army Pacific Command Commanding General Gen. Paul LaCamera; and Director of the Army National Guard Lt. Gen. Jon Jensen.
To view the online panel presentation and the virtual AUSA Annual Meeting 2020, go to: https://meetings.ausa.org/annual/ .
“We train to standard – not to time,” Gen. Garrett told the virtual Maneuver Warfighter Conference 2020 last month. “This means commanders need to make time to re-train – and do it again until Soldiers get it right and never get it wrong. I call this the “Foundational Training Approach. More than just skill acquisition, mastery is a mindset. It is difficult to achieve; and requires grit, persistence, and determination. Most importantly, it requires time … Time is one of our most precious resources.”
The FORSCOM annual training guidance for fiscal year 2021 integrates the Army's People Strategy as a priority of building and sustaining readiness, while also supporting and synchronizing modernization activities.
“Key to implementing the Army's People Strategy,” the guidance says, “is cohesive teams that embrace equality and inclusion and create an environment that addresses the three issues that break the trust of the American People:” sexual assault/harassment prevention; suicide prevention; and addresses diversity issues. Additionally, three conditions exist that prompted this year’s training supplement: 1) the COVID-19 coronavirus operating environment; 2) any possible changes to the fiscal environment; and 3) the Regionally Aligned Readiness and Modernization Model (ReARMM) implementation.
The guidance’s focus on proving needed training time for units’ leaders and includes a Foundational Training Day – time dedicated for team building among Soldiers and units.
“Commanders are the catalyst for building cohesive teams,” Garrett said in the guidance. “Commanders' actions educate and train leaders to understand and implement measures that build and maintain trust with Soldiers and Families.”
Small-unit training is one of the best ways to develop leaders – and investment in leader development is essential, Garrett told the MANWARCON audience in September at Fort Benning, Ga.
“That is why I directed commanders to dedicate and protect time each week for what we call ‘Leaders Time Training,’” Garrett said. “Time is the greatest commodity in life – you can invest it or spend it. We must invest in our teammates so that they will be there for us when we need them most. Units already are taking action to operationalize these efforts.”
“I have always believed that by increasing emphasis on individual and small unit skills – and empowering NCOs to execute this training,” Garrett said. “Soldiers can become masters of the fundamentals, and in turn, those Soldiers will – one day – train their Soldiers to a level of mastery. Our Soldiers in our crews, squads, and platoons are the first ones to face our adversaries – and our Nation expects them to win…and if you haven’t already heard – Winning Matters.”
“The best units I have been in had highly trained crews, squads, and platoons that could win at the point of contact, Garrett said at Fort Benning in September. “When these small teams encountered an obstacle – anticipated or not – they could quickly defeat it and move on the next objective. Winning at the point of contact generates organizational momentum, which permeates throughout the unit. The formations where I experienced this sort of momentum achieved it through disciplined training and high standards on individual and small unit tasks.”
The AUSA Annual Meeting themes of “The Readiness Balance” and “The Time is Now” also emphasize the relationships between training and modernization.