Mission Command Applied: Book Part 3

Applying Mission Command


The third section is on the application of Mission Command. The first chapter is by Major Darrell Fawley,

“Mission Command in Garrison”, and gives a case study in applying the concept in garrison as well as some ideas on what to do when one’s superiors do not apply Mission Command.

The next chapter by Lieutenant Colonel Chad Foster, “Training for Mission Command,” lays out his ideas on preparing a cavalry squadron for the conduct of Mission Command. He lays out real world examples, the mistakes he and his people had to overcome to make it work and support a culture of Mission Command within the current constraints of today’s U.S. Army culture. Don Vandergriff’s chapter “Developing for Mission Command: The Missing Link” naturally follows Chad Foster’s previous chapter, building on their combined efforts to institute outcomes based training (OBT&E) within the U.S. Army. Don argues that the principle ideas within OBT&E naturally support the Mission Command philosophy.

Next, LTC Grant Martin asserts that in different environments, Mission Command should look different. Grant further describes an environment of explicit objectives as requiring “Type I” Mission Command, while environments with tacit objectives requiring “Type II” Mission Command. He concludes with the idea that the U.S. Army conducts Type I Mission Command fairly well but not Type II, and that conducting Type I Mission Command in Type II environments leads to the problems we see in Afghanistan and Iraq. LTC Daniel Markert and Mr. Scott Sonnon, in “Operationally Fit for Mission Command,” argue that an organizational culture of Mission Command is reliant upon a physiological foundation that enables the mind to see opportunity first, understand the relational effects of the opportunity to the higher commander’s intent, and to communicate effectively to create shared understanding. Specific physical training protocols and programs are required to achieve this. From physical fitness, we then switch to how to apply Mission Command to a law enforcement environment and organization. The chapter “Improving Policing with Mission Command and Community Oriented Approach” by LT Fred Leland focuses on how the philosophy of Mission Command can be used in policing. The conclusion of the Anthology closes with an excellent essay by LTC Chad Foster, “The Liability of Emotional Leadership.” This essay discusses the types of leadership required for Mission Command and, especially explores how toxic leadership is detrimental to the philosophy.

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Mission Command: The 5Ws Part 1

Mission Command: The 5Ws Part 2