Military Review English Edition September-October 2014 - Page 70

Sgt. Kimberly Hackbarth, 4th Stryker BCT, 2nd Infantry Division PAO and establishing career paths for a select few while ignoring the vast majority of subordinates in the military service.10 In the Department of the Army Fiscal Year 2015 Lieutenant Colonel Centralized Selection List-Command and Key Billet, published 30 April 2014, only 13 percent of lieutenant colonels were selected for battalion commands, which meant the other 87 percent would remain in subordinate staff positions. This promotion rate supports Latour and Rast’s thesis that the majority of military leadership educational classes are useful to only a small percentage of the force. Moreover, the Army educational philosophy in entry-level officer and enlisted courses implies that by teaching soldiers to follow orders completely, they also learn how to become effective leaders. However, some challenges arise when some of those soldiers and junior officers become senior enlisted and field understood phenomena on earth.”11 Leadership and followership are complex fields of study. They are dependent on each other. There cannot be leaders without followers, and followers need a leader. If leaders fail because of unethical decisions, the subordinate staff officers should also be held responsible because they have a duty to be effective followers. One of the most recognized authors on the topic of followership, Robert Earl Kelley, defines followership not as a subset of leadership but as an equal component to leadership. In his book, The Power of Followership, Kelley introduces a new followership model to describe different followership styles in relation to leadership models.12 According to Kelley, “the primary traits that produced the most effective followers in an organization were critical thinking and active participation.”13 Kelley proposes that an exemplary follower is an independent critical thinker who has learned to be a critical thinker through education and development. The exemplary follower is motivated, has intellect, is self-reliant, and is dedicated to achieving the mission of the organization. Critical thinking is learned behavior that must be accompanied with adequate reflection time. With this concept, the follower, or subordinate, must, as Kelley says, truly “not just follow orders without critical analysis and must participate with the superior for the good of the institution.”14 A soldier with 1st Battalion, 38th Infantry Regiment, Combined Task Force 4-2 (4th Stryker Ira Chaleff, author of The Brigade Combat Team, 2nd Infantry Division), helps a fellow soldier onto the rooftop of Courageous Follower, is another an old, destroyed building to provide protective overwatch for another element of their patrol, 29 January 2013, in Panjwa’i District, Afghanistan. key followership researcher. He uses the military to provide exgrade officers, and just following orders no longer is amples in his book of virtue ethics—examples such acceptable behavior. Further followership developas German guards in concentration camps during ment must be implemented into the organizational World War II, and Lt. Calley and his platoon during culture to develop effective followers at those levels. the My Lai incident in Vietnam—to explain different levels of the leader-follower relationship. Followership Importance in Relation Chaleff ’s followership model emphasizes that to Ethics selective rule breaking is a key attribute of a couraJames McGregor Burns in 1979 wrote that geous follower: “It is not ethical to break rules for “leadership is one of the most observed and least simple convenience or personal gain, but neither 68 September-October 2014  MILITARY REVIEW