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NCO Solarium 2015

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

What is it?

The Non-commissioned Officer Solarium 2015, a Sergeant Major of the Army initiative, is a significant effort to inform and shape the future direction of the U.S. Army. This effort brings together 84 sergeants first class and master sergeants, including first sergeants, to U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command’s Combined Arms Center at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, from April 29 to May 1, 2015. Through this initiative, these NCOs will identify issues that will have an impact on the Army into the foreseeable future and provide recommendations to the SMA.

What has the Army done?

NCO Solarium 2015 consists of two phases: online and onsite.

The first phase included a Defense Connect Online session with all participants in March 2015. This session defined the purpose of the Solarium, identified topics for discussion with the SMA, and concluded with the way ahead for the Solarium.

Key discussion topics included: talent management, education, culture, training, vision/branding, mission command and physical fitness. Subsequent online sessions matched participants to a work group with a specific topic and linked them with their group facilitator who recommended readings and guided other discussions in preparation for the onsite phase.

The second phase is at Fort Leavenworth and will consist of two and a half days to finalize the topic presentations to the SMA. On day three, the SMA will address Solarium participants; then representatives from each work group will present their topics and recommendations.

What continued efforts does the Army have planned for the future?

Similar meetings have been held with captains and majors, as well as senior Army civilians. The intent is to continue holding Solarium-type events on a recurring basis, in the continental U.S. and overseas, with all component and cohort groups, to solicit insight to help shape the Army for success in the future.

Why is this important to the Army?

The Army values its leaders’ observations and insights, which will be used to adapt policy, processes, and programs. These Solariums represent a great developmental opportunities for participants and also afford Army senior leaders a forum to engage military members and civilian personnel, at all levels, directly while communicating Army priorities.


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