Military Review English Edition September-October 2014 - Page 69

IMPORTANCE OF FOLLOWERSHIP calling and the autonomy that goes along with this status.”5 ADRP 1 identifies five characteristics that leaders must uphold to maintain public trust: trust, military expertise, honorable service, esprit de corps, and stewardship of the profession.6 When senior officers fail in one of these areas, society’s trust in our Army erodes. Another larger institutional challenge is apparent. If subordinates knew about the unethical decisions made by their leaders in recent events, why did they not counsel and guide their bosses to prevent them from failing? The Army must incorporate followership classes into professional military education courses to develop effective subordinates who are better prepared to prevent senior officers from making unethical decisions. Education accompanied by a culture shift will lead to informed, effective followership. Characteristics of Military Service Education U.S. Army photo by Spc. Steve n Hitchcock/, 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Rgt. In 1867, Gen. William Tecumsah Sherman, who assisted in founding the forerunner of the Command and General Staff College, described subordinate leadership by saying, “we have good corporals, some good sergeants, some good lieutenants and captains, and those are far more important than good generals.”7 Lt. Col. Sharon M. Latour and Lt. Col. Vicki J. Rast describe soldiers as simultaneously both leaders and followers from the day they enter military service, throughout their careers, and into retirement.8 Latour and Rast state that all Department of Defense educational curricula focus on teaching and developing leaders, but few of the military schools spend time developing effective follower cultures and skills.9 They claim the dominant military organizational culture encourages subordinates to adopt a follow me behavior through discipline and lawful orders. The research findings of Latour and Rast show that most teaching philosophies devalue followership in its contribution to warfighting. Latour and Rast conclude that the military services expend most of their resources educating a small fraction of their service members, communicating their value to the military institution, U.S. Army Rangers assigned to 2nd Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, prepare for extraction from their objective during task force training on Fort Hunter Liggett, Calif., 30 January 2014. MILITARY REVIEW  September-October 2014 67