View Full Version : Why Lieutenent to Warrant

05-13-2004, 12:37
Hope this is the right place to ask this.

Why did the Army change to a WO in the team and drop the 1st LT? And is there a certain level of WO, as in 1,2,3, or 4 to hold the 180A position?

05-13-2004, 14:28
Originally posted by Kyobanim
Hope this is the right place to ask this.

Why did the Army change to a WO in the team and drop the 1st LT? And is there a certain level of WO, as in 1,2,3, or 4 to hold the 180A position? 180A isn't a position. The position on the ODA is Assistant Detachment Commander. By reg, its normally a WO1/CW2 position, but there is no specified requirement.

Other positions for 180As include Company Operations Warrant Officer, Battalion Ops WO, Group Ops WO and Group Intel WO. These are normally CW3 and up.

05-13-2004, 18:39
Continuity. The current assignment system we have moves CPTs and MSGs way too fast in my opinion. We are actually lucky to keep them for 24 months at the ODA level. The Army has decided to put Warrant Officers on the detachment to slow down leadership rollover. A 180A is not supposed to be eligible for promotion for CW3 if he doesn’t have 60 months on time as an ADC on an ODA. I am expected and encouraged to stay on the same detachment for 5-6 years to bring some sort of stability to the detachment. For the record, I am on my 3rd Detachment Commander and 3rd Team Sergeant (not to mention my 4th Company Commander) I have been on this detachment for only a little over 42 months. By keeping someone like me on a detachment we don’t “hurt” traditional officer careers by keeping them too long at one assignment. When I make CW3 I will be “asked” (read forced) to take an ODB or Battalion position, possibly a SWC assignment.

05-13-2004, 19:36
Thanks for the answers.

So does the WO stay on a team longer than anyone else? I would think the NCOs would stay longer on a team also for the same reason.

05-14-2004, 18:19
Warrant Officers stay on a detachment longer than the NCOs.

11-07-2007, 18:58
how long does some body have to stay a SF NCO to become a Warrant Officer and do that person have to go back though the Q-course?

The Reaper
11-07-2007, 19:44
how long does some body have to stay a SF NCO to become a Warrant Officer and do that person have to go back though the Q-course?


Fill out your profile and learn use the Search button.

That is basic info that has already been covered repeatedly.


04-13-2008, 02:00

Explains a lot, including the surprising officer who had a lot to do with the initial process.

Jack Moroney (RIP)
04-13-2008, 05:15

Explains a lot, including the surprising officer who had a lot to do with the initial process.

There were a bunch of us at the time bantering this around with "Scotty" and the pros and cons got very interesting one major one was that if we could keep LTs we could "grow" better Detachment CDRs, another being that if we could send the LT back to a conventional assignment in the combat arms he would come back better able to understand not only how mother army worked but how to function as that force multiplier when his team became the nucleus for a BN of indig.

04-13-2008, 06:33
Warrant Officers stay on a detachment longer than the NCOs.

How so? I never saw this. There is the inevitable SWC Tour for NCO'S. But how many Warrants do time at BN and GRP.
Once they replaced Lt's with WO. Instead of getting a Team leader with a couple of years Team experience you got one with no experience. To me the WO program was one of the worst Team organization decisions ever made.

04-13-2008, 09:13
In order to get promoted to the higher CWO grades, he must spend time at Bn, Gp and SFCOM.

04-13-2008, 09:41
The missive from the WOA got my heart started.

There were also a disproportionately large number of officers who had not
yet completed college, indicating challenging or limited future careers.
As one of those unfortunate souls, I have to argue the contrary...my career prospects were so limited that the Army sent me to graduate school in my 19th year of service...I was not that exceptional among SF NCOs who attended OCS...a bunch of us wound up with fully-funded graduate degrees...when I decided to retire, SF Branch had indicated an interest to sending me to post-graduate training well after I was retirement eligible...maybe they thought if they kept me in school, I could be kept out of trouble...:eek:

Before the 48 graduate program was detached from JFKIMA, quite a few former SF NCOs attended...once again, the names escape me...

Granted, this happened after SF had stood up as a branch, but I recall several men of the earlier era that had gone down this path...(I can see faces, but names escape me right now, Colonel Howard being one of them, but he was in a category all his own.)

There were disproportionately few
Military Academy graduates.
Really? When I think back to my time in SF as an NCO, I'd say they were well represented on A-teams...not many came back as field grade officers, however. And anyway, so what? How many USMA graduates server in AG assignments...? How many wind up commanding HHC, USAG and Band? That comment is ludicrous and irrelevant in my opinion.

In addressing the shortages of qualified officers in SF, the biggest sticking points were the opportunities for advancement posed by more than one assignment in SF...one tour was okay, but two tended to be viewed by Big Army as problematic...In my opinion, one thing that held back motivated SF NCOs from going to OCS before the advent of the SFWO was the unlikely possiblity of being able to continue serving in SF after commissioning. Richard and I were able to manage after commissioning (Richard went right to 7th SFGA after OCS, I did a one year indenture in the 509th before going to Toelz). Of the other three or four (including one former team mate), none of them made it to SF after commissioning (although two of them went to flight school).

The Center indicated little interest in the subject, posed no obstructions, and provided little
support beyond use of the unoccupied office.
I find this comment somewhat curious, as well. In 1981, Colonel Maracek, along with several 48 types from JFK (PSYOP, CA, Attache types, not SF) came to BT with a canine-equestrian presentation regarding the future of SF officer career management activities, things in the works. And, of course the 48 guy threw in his opinion about how uneducated, uncultured, former SF NCOs were really dragging the 48 career field threw the mud and that something needed to be done about that. (The battalion XO kept his arm across my back as that BS was being propogated, but Paul E, the MFF team leader, another one of the unclean, spoke for me)...anyway, Colonel M. showed us that in a few years time, their would be three SF "divisions" (SWC, SF Command and an SO Support Command) and that the creation of three MG level commands would make life so much better and allow some of us to make SF our primary means of earning a living. The specialty designation for officers was going to be 11X, or at least that was what was put forward then (yes, I remember it like it was yesterday)...that would allow the longhairs in the 48 field to be untainted by the infidels like Paul and me...

I should have read this thread before I had my coffee...I'm awake now...:munchin

04-13-2008, 10:24
How so? I never saw this. There is the inevitable SWC Tour for NCO'S. But how many Warrants do time at BN and GRP.

Today (at least when I finished the course in 2000), we were expected to do 5-7 years as a Assistant Detachment Commander or Detachment Commander. During my 5 + years (same detachment) I saw, 4 Team Sergeants and 4 Detachment Commanders (not including the 9 months I was in Command) "cycle" through.

In addition there was not a single NCO that stayed the entire time I was there--add that to the 7 + years I served as an SF Medic (all served at the team level, except for 14 months as a battalion medic) I easily logged over 11-12 years on a detachment.

Furthermore, senior NCO positions are now managed just like officer positions (18-24 months) and then they are rotated out--the only exception are Warrant Officers. We are encouraged and expected to stay longer on the detachment.

All WO positions at BN and GP are CW3/4/5 billets, and should be manned accordingly. The same holds true for SWC and elsewhere--there are exceptions based off of injury or family situations.

04-13-2008, 18:54
...Furthermore, senior NCO positions are now managed just like officer positions (18-24 months) and then they are rotated out--the only exception are Warrant Officers...

RGR - I made E8 list in secondary and was notified I was approved for WOC in the same time period. CSM made a call to me in Panama asking what I wanted to do so they could unscrew it with perscom.
Hmmm, 9 more years team time I ended up with as a WO versus a likely 2-3 years max as a SNCO then off to Bn S3, 1sgt, etc. after that ...well everyone has their reasons and you can't stay on a team forever, but for me leaving team level (whether ODA or 'other') allowed me to make the decision to retire - But by going WO it allowed me to max team time out as well as give back to newer guys coming into the system, both fellow NCOs and Officers. No ticket punching and a great opportunity to look back on service as both an SF NCO serving on a team as well as an SFWO commanding one...the only good deal left after Tm Sgts and Det Cdrs were getting pushed up after 24 months. Heck my first Det CDR had 4 yrs team time and there were Tm sgts with several years in position as well. Lots of experience maintained that way, but it just ceased to be a viable option and WO was supposed to provide continuity...as with all best laid plans we know it doesn't always work out that way.

Best regards,

08-04-2008, 20:16

1. Let me see if I can expand a bit more on the WO Program with my experience. I joined the Army in 81. Went to SF School in 1984. Did team time in 7th/1st GP and SWC, then went into the WO Program as an E-7 with three SF Mos's and more than six years of team time.

2. As a WO, stayed on the same ODA for 4 years straight and then went to the B-Tm. Then it was off to JRTC for two yrs.

3. Then back to a B-Tm after JRTC as a CW3 and then after a year of that, back down to a freefall team for 2 more yrs.

4. Made the CW4 list and then it was up to BN. After that, I did a Joint tour at JIATF and then to 1st SWTG(A).

5. Now back to a GP to one of the two CW5s (Grp Ops WO).

So, what I am saying is that a WO1-CW3 can stay on a team for a long time and can do a B-Tm tour once or even twice. Typically the Bn WO is a CW4. There are a few Joint assignemnets out there and also a handful of slots at SWC and the other Commands (CW3-CW5). Now we can have two CW5s at the Group level....one in the S-3 shop as the Grp Ops WO and then the Command Chief Warrant Officer of the Group. Or you can stay in one Grp for the whole time as a WO.....but I am not sure if that would be a good thing......

I have been in for 27yrs and can now stay in for 40 yrs of WO Service or age 62(I am 44 now so I guess it will be the 40 yrs of WO service if I decide to stay)......so, from my point of view, the WO program is a success and will be around for a long time. Heck, I have even seen a CW5 work at the company level while in the sandbox for awhile.......so you definetly get the bang for a buck when it comes to a WO verses a Lt (an O)....just some words for thought.....be safe out there and always take care of your SOF Brothers.......

08-05-2008, 13:00
"In order to get promoted to the higher CWO grades, he must spend time at Bn, Gp and SFCOM."

Sorry, but this is wrong, for today's force anyways. The new doctrine is that a WO will stay on a Team until CW3(P). Whether it goes down like that or not is yet to be seen, but with TLs and Tm SGTs limited to 2 years (again, doctrinally), it is clear that the 180A is being redesigned to be the source of continuity on ODAs.

Which makes me real glad I made the transition.

01-13-2009, 14:57
How so? I never saw this. There is the inevitable SWC Tour for NCO'S. But how many Warrants do time at BN and GRP.
Once they replaced Lt's with WO. Instead of getting a Team leader with a couple of years Team experience you got one with no experience. To me the WO program was one of the worst Team organization decisions ever made.

Troy, I am surprised you didn't jump on this....hope you are doing good. Take care of Blue (aka Clint) he's getting long in the tooth.

Please Mr. kgoerz explain why you think it was one of the worst Team org decisions ever made?? And please make your argument logical like the good team guy you are.

01-13-2009, 19:20
Originally Posted by kgoerz View Post
How so? I never saw this. There is the inevitable SWC Tour for NCO'S. But how many Warrants do time at BN and GRP.
Once they replaced Lt's with WO. Instead of getting a Team leader with a couple of years Team experience you got one with no experience. To me the WO program was one of the worst Team organization decisions ever made.

Honestly I avoided that comment specifically, it sounded suspicious, like he was trying to piss someone off without providing specifics relevant to today's army. His frame of reference I am guessing is 20 odd years ago. So be it. Today the Tm Sgt is on a two yr track, for better or worse. Sure there may be exceptions, but that is exactly what they are...exceptions. This fact speaks volumes about today's careerist emphasis, and the problem set within SF. I can't tell you how many CSMs I have met who told me they wish they had gone WO once they figured out the writing on the wall. It is the new standard for people who are truly interested in team time, and ready to put the team first by acting as a source of continuity.
2LT? Gimme a break, the Cold War is over brother. Frankly if WO vs 2LT is the crucial point of a persons arguments to better SF, I think you need to get your head wrapped around the modern problem set. I just spent 20 minutes typing it into this text box, but decided against it...too much dirty laundry on the internet. You want my real opinion, PM me.

The Reaper
01-13-2009, 20:55
I can vouch for kgoerz and the fact that he is a stand-up guy and recent retiree.


01-13-2009, 22:42
I didn't intend to question the man, as much as express my own lack of understanding the statement. I only know what is rocking my world currently, and it damn sure isn't the 2LT vs. WO question. I reiterate my offer to discuss relevant issues elsewhere.

01-14-2009, 09:33
2 questions for the Chief's:

Is the WO Candidate in SF typicaly a junior or senior NCO?

Do you guys go to WOC at Mother Rucker or is there a separate SF WOC now?

01-15-2009, 09:17
Easily the dumbest of 20 years worth of dumb events...I was in the last WOC class to include 180As, before the "trial" implementation of Ft Bragg's 180A WOTTC course, which includes a 2 week candidate phase.

The program as I understand it, was a two year trial. I am certain it will NOT revert back to Rucker-based training. There was simply nothing there to justify SF candidates attending.

The targeted candidate for the program is at approximately 10 yrs of service. As insane as today's force management is, that means virtually nothing.

01-16-2009, 19:33
Your words could best describe the whole Warrant Officer Program Redeux in the 1980's.
Before then , in all MOS's except aviation, they used to take the 15 to 20 year Senior NCO, graduate of the school of hard knocks, master tradesman in the field, skilled technician; and send him to "Charm School" for 2 weeks and anoint him a Chief Warrant Officer. After that, Commanders, NCOs' (including SGMs), and the Soldiers would take the Chiefs word as the last word, when it came to how to do the job. A CWO used to be the best damn job in the Army; by an act of Congress, they could not assign you out of your career field.

"When you Commission a product, you hope for success.
When you Warrant a product, you guarantee satisfaction."
Nuclear Weapons Warrant Officers Motto

01-17-2009, 04:51
I agree with Troy of course. The relevancy of the 2LT vs WO argument is non-existent from education to experience to leadership. I only poked at Troy a little because he is a good warrant and getting him fired up is always interesting. On my part, I tend to forget that some of the discourse that occurs on this forum is with great SF soldiers who come from a different time and place. I too spent 20-30 minutes writing a retort to kgoerz and I will also admit that it is a comment I often hear from guys that have little actual experience with WO and the experience they do have was with one of our 1% brethren. (ie the 1% rule that 1% always slips through the cracks no matter how tightly the box is made.) The only thing I will point out though is this fact. Increasingly, the only people that have an understanding of SF’s core mission, UW, are warrants which is a testament about the guys becoming WOs. When I bring up the question of SF’s mission to the officer side of the house or the senior enlisted we talk DA, SR, COIN or CT. If UW is brought up the understanding of UW is that it encompasses DA, SR, COIN or CT at a hyper-conventional level.

I was a couple classes ahead of Troy WOC in Rucker. Unlike him though, I have started to question the possible relevancy of WOC. I agree that Rucker is not the place to send us, we end up teaching there as much as the instructors. However, the “pain” of going through Rucker was a filter of sorts. I can not, nor will not, speak on the current combined program (WOC into WOBC). I plan to check it out thoroughly when I go to the Advanced course this fall. What I would like to see would be a SF specific WOC that is physically and mentally demanding. This is for two reasons. First and foremost it is a credibility issue. I feel that if SF WOC was truly challenging then maybe some of the questions regarding the durability and capability of the WO would become diminished. Second, it would be a filter or screening of sorts. While we would always have to deal the 1% rule, I think that it is a Newtonian law of sorts, it would give the regiment guys that truly want to take the WO position.

Again, I have to jump on the bandwagon about force management. Its not great to say the least. Typically, WO come from the E7s among us. (One of my classmates, and now COW, came out on the E9 list while we were in WOBC. Also, contrary to popular belief, most of the guys in my class would have been TM SGTs. However, due to the limited amount of time TM SGT now get on a team and the overwhelming desire to stay on ODAs many of these guys opted to go WO.)

However, as time goes on I think that we will see that this will be the more common path for the 18X guys who elect to stay in the regiment. The vast majority of these guys have their undergraduate and sometimes graduate degrees. (Currently, 7 guys on my ODA have undergrads and the rest have some college.) They could become officers, some will, but for the most part they are interested in be WOs.

Of more relevance right now would be the education system and pay of the SF WO. Currently, as Troy can attest, SF WO are increasingly placed in command positions. Troy was the Det. Cdr of his ODA while deployed and I have been the Det. Cdr of my ODA for the better part of 2 years. However, up until most recently our education system was the basic course, advanced course, staff course and senior staff course. While the SF WO is not a “technical” warrant in reality that puts us out of going to any “whiz bang” technical schools. However, SF WO are the only combat oriented warrants thus placing any type of educational curriculum fully in line with the SF line officers. Thank goodness we are evolving as a force, the warrants, and people are recognizing that SF WO need to have the same if not more educational specific requirements in regards to the SF mission; thus, NPS slots and now CGSC slots.

As for pay…..that would be a five page diatribe on my part; however, in my most articulate manner I would sum it up as this: We are cheap help.

....my 2 cents and 2 pages worth

01-17-2009, 21:23
"God made Warrant Officers to give the junior enlisted someone to worship, the senior enlisted someone to envy, the junior officer someone to tolerate, and the senior officer someone to respect."

The Reaper
01-17-2009, 21:41
"God made Warrant Officers to give the junior enlisted someone to worship, the senior enlisted someone to envy, the junior officer someone to tolerate, and the senior officer someone to respect."

Beerhunter, if you are not trolling, you are certainly giving that impression.

Furthermore, you are asking questions that are easily answered by a little searching and reading.

As you are not SF, the personnel and assignment issues pertaining to 180As are of no real concern to you.

I recommend that you acquaint yourself with the Search button and google functions, and stop stirring the pot here.


01-18-2009, 20:03
My $.02. I came out of the Navy Diving community. In the SPECWAR/EOD/Diving community CWOs where the guys who had the experience & credibility to answer all your questions. They were the guys who enbodied institutional knowledge. The problem with being a CWO was you were no longer operational.

Now I am in the Guard and my company's TLs are CWOs because we don't have 18As. I like it that way. We have 2 CWOs that made the jump at E7, another E7 waiting to go, and our newest CWO was a TmSgt. The idea of being a "Chief" is something I kick around quite often.


01-23-2009, 16:10
Easily the dumbest of 20 years worth of dumb events...I was in the last WOC class to include 180As, before the "trial" implementation of Ft Bragg's 180A WOTTC course, which includes a 2 week candidate phase.

Troy, I suspect that put us in the same WOBC - the one where we got the "whoops, did we forget to tell you that SDAP isn't part of save pay anymore" speech? (And I'm not so sure WOC was useless - until I went there, I thought that the NCOES was the dumbest thing ever devised by mankind. Now I know better.)

On a more serious note, I think the community missed a bet by appointing the candidates at the 2 week mark. There was a real opportunity to make the course more selective by holding the decision whether to appoint as a 180A to the end of the course. That would have made the course more of an evaluation of whether a candidate should be a 180A, rather than a foregone conclusion. (Of course, that would have never happened in the numbers driven SWC environment of the last few years - maybe things will be different now.)

As far as the original question goes - its a tradeoff: with a WO, you get a 2IC (or in a lot of cases, an ODA commander) who has a good bit of SF experience and know-how; with an LT, you get a chance for extended professional development for a soldier who may some day be a team commander.

In my opinion, the tradeoff is well-worth it. In the absence of a CPT, a WO can make a credible team commander, and with a CPT, can make a real contribution on the planning, intel, and ops-intel fusion side of the house. I started in SF before the transition, and my experience with an LT XO (as a young corporal and sergeant, so I was pretty much in the same boat) is that they're pretty much in the mouth shut, ears open and learn mode. I think the "seasoning" of an LT is less important than having a fully capable, experienced person who can either command the team, or advise the commander on the best way to employ an ODA.

And, if an LT wants to be an SF ODA commander in the future, it's not like he's not able to get valuable experience beforehand. In the GWOT, the line between SOF and conventional has blurred (maybe too much, but that's a different topic) and a conventional infantry platoon leader probably has experience with training and working alongside indigenous troops, working through interpreters, dealing with and influencing local nationals. Heck, I remember running into a platoon size patrol in a small Afghan town in 2003 - the PL was all of 23 years old, and (until we showed up) in command of the only US forces within a hundred kilometers. He was dealng with local officials, working with the ANA and AMF in the area to coordinate their activities, scoping out the AO, and so on. Before the war, many seasoned ODA commanders couldn't claim that kind of experience.

My concern is more with the SF warrant program itself - the genesis of the warrant officer program in SF was to get the best of the best into leadership positions - to select and train the most capable and most experienced SF NCOs who had the qualities necessary to be good officers. I think that, with manning pressures, we've lost sight of that goal.

I don't think (less the inevitable 5% who slip through the cracks) that we're selecting bad people for WO. I do think that we're not focusing on experience the way we should, and there are several reasons I feel that way.

1) Taking the 18F requirement out of the pipeline was (IMO) a terrible idea. Almost any experienced SF NCO is going to understand operational planning, if only through osmosis (although I think we ought to require SF ANCOC as a prerequisite for warrant as well.) That's not true of the intel process. On many teams, the 18F goes off into his corner and pops out every once and a while with an area brief or a target nomination. How he gets there is often a complete mystery to other members of the team. How can we expect a WO to be the "go-to guy" for intel-ops fusion if he doesn't understand intel?

(And yes, I know that there is intel training in WOBC. It might be different now, but when I went through, they tried to compress a 3 month course into as many weeks. Those of us who had had the 18F course thought it was extremely rudimentary; those who hadn't were learning enough to pass the test, but not mearly enough the understand the process.)

2) I think that the 3 year ODA requirement is inadequate (especially given the access at less than 10 years goal) Some of the 18X people are approaching their three year mark. You could end up putting a warrant officer on a team who has never been on a JCET, never done an HCA or CD mission, never deployed to any country outside of a war zone, never had to deal with country clearances, the embassy, coordinate with a host nation's military on an equal footing - and the warrant is supposed to manage the long range training calendar and take care of the JCET paperwork, etc. It's very possible that a three year SF veteran will have spent their entire time doing one job (eg FID or DA) on one team for two to three rotations. To me, that's just not enough experience, or enough different experiences, to make a good candidate for a SF WO.

The point of the warrant officer is to provide some depth of experience and continuity on the team, especially given the (again, in my opinion, really dumb) personnel policies that restrict the longevity of the team commander and team sergeant. That means that the warrant oficer should have some knowledge and experience to draw upon above and beyond the average team member. (In fact, we might be better off if we drew WOs primarily from 18Zs who were finished with their 2 years, rather than E-6 and junior E-7 candidates.) I'm concerned that the numerical shortages in the WO field are driving short-sighted decisions about who we access and train as 180A, and in the long run, that can only hurt the 180A program.

my $0.02

01-23-2009, 19:47
Great points and arguments Hardroad; however, I am not sure that the SF WO you are describing is practical or possible today, and in my humble opinion should not have been the baseline when the program was started.

We currently have guys who have 5-7 years on teams and all they have done is combat rotations. With 6-9 months on and 6 months off the days of JCETs et al are rare. They are going to have to be learned again.

Additionally, in your point the practice of taking former 18Zs as Warrants does not work 100% of the time. (I had an 18Z make the same comment 5 years ago and say that SF WO should have 18yrs on a team before they become WOs.....please) Most of the time, when a guy has become an 18Z he is toward the end of his career and ready to make SGM or finish up. In addition, most of our 18Zs are in their late 30s or 40s and are finding it sucks to get up in the morning un-crink the bones and move out. (I am not saying this is true for all 18Zs, I have some friends who are studs and make the young guys wish they were dead after a PT session.) I say this because the days of the WO sitting in the back of the TM RM and typing concepts while the team trains are gone. In fact, if a WO tries that now he is branded a S!@# Bag and his team tries to move him along.

Hell, they were branded the same thing in the past. How many times have all of us heard derogatory comments about WO. When you ask why the guys, usually SR E7 or 18Z, say “All my WO ever wanted to do was sit in the back of the room and make power point slides or type concepts. They never went to the range and ducked out of all things with the team.” (Trust me on this I have seen this happen twice in the last 8 months.) Also, I have seen my fair share of SR NCOs who would be “qualified” in your argument to be WOs but don’t know their 4th point from a hole in the ground about UW or the full spectrum of SF OPS. I have also seen dudes with 3-5 years on the team who not only understand such things, but can conceptionalize the 3rd and 4th order effects of said operations. THOSE are the guys we need to be hunting and recruiting. Those are the guys that make the regiment revere the WO position. If we work off of seniority alone, we give guys like kgoerz a very good reason to believe that WO was the worst team decision ever made.

Today the WO is as much if not more of a combat leader as any other officer in the regiment. He should be expected by his team to throw on his ruck and keep up. He doesn’t need to be the best, but he needs to be right there with the team. The days of the old sage WO1 or CW2 sitting in the back of the room and just interjecting wisdom should not have happened in the past and those of us in the W01-CW3 typically don’t want to see them happen again.

When it comes down to brass tacks it should be the WO and TM SGT on that ODA that makes the decision if a guy is capable of being a good WO or not. Not his time line, JCET participation etc.

I do agree with you on the 18F issue. I think that as the WO you are the fusion cell of the team and it should remain as a criteria.

When it comes down to it for knowledge, we need to improve the 180A education course, period. 180A NEED to be the SME on all things UW/Ops/Intel and that needs to be the focus of our training.

I know that this post will ruffle a few feathers. Also, I can not be as articulate as is my typical nature…its 0230 here now. Sorry. BLUF WO are COMBAT LEADERS. SF Leaders lead from the front. WO NEED TO BE the example of an SF Officer. That means recruiting guys that are in the jr E7 range, putting them through a process beyond their WO and TM SGT picking them to insure we have the right guy, and then putting him through the best SF educational system we can produce.

my 2 cents

Soft Target
01-24-2009, 17:40
Who jumps the generator?

01-28-2009, 22:18
QUOTE=Soft Target;245756]Who jumps the generator?[/QUOTE]

It's probably not a coincidence that the G-76 went out of the inventory not that long after the transition from a 1LT XO to a WO Asst Det Cmdr . . .

Backwoods, I don't think we're that far apart on what a good WO looks like. WOs need to be physically able to and mentally eager to lead from the front, and they need to be the guy on the team who really gets the concept of UW.

My concern is that we're not setting the bar high enough for the WO1/CW2 fresh out of WOBC to go to a team and be that guy. I agree that seniority shouldn't be the only, or even the primary discriminator (I once had a boss who told me that some people have seven years of experience, and some people have one year of experience seven times - it all depends on whether you keep learning and growing with the job.)

I do think that it requires some seasoning on a team to get to that point, and it takes understanding how operational planning is done, and it takes knowing how intel gets fused with ops to realize the commanders intent. There's a dual feedback loop involved that not everyone on a team gets: intel drives ops, the results of ops drive intel, but also commander's intent drives intel and ops, and the results of both allow the commander to refine his intent. The WO needs to be able to step onto a team able to manage that process for the commander, and also step onto a team able to lead it if necessary.

So the challenge is: how do you make sure that someone selected for WO is that smart, dynamic guy who gets UW, who has enough experience to know how things work, who isn't broken or burned out, and who has the training necessary to do the job?

If it were my call, I'd do the following:

1) set the accession requirement for 5 years of team time, maybe waiverable to 3 for exceptional performers.

2) re-instate the 18F requirement and add a requirement for ANCOC (like before, if a candidate were selected as a WOC, they could be routed through the schools - I don't think it needs to be a requirement for selection.)

3) push the appointment of a WO further forward into WOBC, and use the opportunity to use the first portion of WOBC as a vetting process (I don't know what the right answer for that is - a board of WOs, some sort of officer stakes, some sort of academic standard - but we should use WOBC to vet the selection process.)

I agree that WOCS was pretty much a waste of time and didn't select for the traits the SF community needs in an officer, and I suspect that SF fought to take it out of the pipeline to incent good SF NCOs to take a shot at being an officer, but getting to appoint our own officers is an opportunity we're not exploiting.

Anyway, my $0.02 . . .

04-19-2011, 11:53
I had some spare time so I thought I would look at the 180A thread. What is interesting to me is the way the Warrant is viewed by the different Groups one was in. While attached to 5th during OIF II, I was amazed that the senior enlisted were still having the “us against them” battle when it came to the Warrants. As a young NCO in 10th, I watch the first batch come to the teams; they were for the most part the most experienced SF Soldiers I had ever met when it came to UW. When my time came to make the decision on whether to stay enlisted or go Warrant there were only a few factors to consider. The first was my name was on the E-8 list with 12 years in the Army, as posted here previously, that meant only two more years on an ODA and by the way I was one year into a three year SWC tour. Secondly, would I be recommended by my Team Sergeant and SGM? This is not a mandatory or by any regulation need, but it’s the most important recommendation you can receive. As the years went by and I was moved to the ODB and eventually the Senior BN Warrant position, I still use this recommendation as the rule as did the Group Senior Warrant because if you are the guy they would want on their team as an Assistant Detachment Commander, you were the guy that I wanted to replace me. The Warrant program is continuing to change with the times as it should. The old LT vs WO has been dead a long time, anyone who thinks differently either hasn’t been in SF for a very long time or spent a very short time on an ODA. The SF Warrant is a very different animal from a shave tail LT. May be this should be post on the 18A thread also; just to give a heads up to anyone thinking of becoming one. By the by, of the 8 more years on an ODA becoming a 180A gave me, 4 were as the Detachment Commander, three of those while in a CIF, one as the SOCCE CDR in the Balkans. As the COW I assume the Company Command for the first two weeks on the ground during OIF II, the commander stayed behind to assist in his second daughter’s birth and wanted the 18As to concentrate on their ODAs. Trust is a wonderful thing and while I always preferred to have a CPT on the team so I could mentor the next Company, Bn and eventually Group CDR, I never knew an 180A to turn down a command. Lastly my mentors all the way up to my retirement were E-8s and 9s, towards the end of my career they were my peers and we had grown up together but I always sought out their knowledge and advice, still do.