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Odierno: Leader development No. 1

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Posted: Wednesday, February 19, 2014 4:30 am

Amid the drawdown and the “hammer of sequestration,” the Army’s No. 1 priority in the budget continues to be leader development within both the officer and noncommissioned officer ranks, said Chief of Staff of the Army Gen. Ray Odierno. “We cease to be effective as an Army if we let that go,” he said.

The general spoke during a discussion at the Council on Foreign Relations on Feb. 11 in Washington, D.C.

It’s important that the Army retain the lessons learned over the last 12 years of war and “incorporate them as we look toward the future,” he said.

To do that, Odierno said, the Army recently published its leader development strategy as well as an array of new doctrine focusing on mission command.

The leader development strategy focuses on a “leader-centric view of being adaptable, flexible, and able to adapt to the situation on the ground,” he said, adding that the future environment is likely to be “complex and asymmetrical” with insurgency, conventional warfare and a rapid flow of information within and between the populace.

That means soldiers on the ground will have to call the shots in a decentralized fashion, he said, rather than calling up the chain through higher headquarters.

The general said when he talks to soldiers about the profession of arms, he often focuses on what he calls the “three Cs,” which include competence, commitment and character. “That’s what underpins everything we do,” he said.

Army News Service

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