Serving my country is one of the bravest and greatest things I have done in my life. I was the first sergeant of Bravo 796 of the 14 military police brigade. Being the first sergeant was one of the most exciting jobs I have ever done, yet tough and hard, with a lot of personal responsibilities. The position is a bit challenging and demanding, so I had to be tough too. On a single day, the things that you I had to do were many, with many people complaining that they cannot get a hold of you. This might have been true, because of all the jobs that had to be done.
My job was people. Dealing with people’s problems every day, starting from their health, welfare, discipline, and morale to mention but a few was the order of the day. From the time that I started my day, sometimes as early as one o’clock in the morning, having to deal with people’s problems and at the same time complete my duties at the end of the day, was so tiring. Most of the time, I had little or no time to do the paper work, as most of the duties involved outdoor activities. There was also no enough time spend with my family.
The job requires that the needs of the country and the service be put before the personal needs. By doing this, I was able to enjoy the rewards of my military career. I also had to be skilled enough in matters concerning the army, because the position requires a person that is knowledgeable enough. Therefore, a lot of learning was necessary, for me to meet the demands of the position. I was mobilized for Global war on terrorism on the July of 2006 up to January 2009. Our mission was to train and to provide disciplined, physically fit, motivated, tactically and technically fit military police soldiers.
The soldiers had to be familiar with the values of the army, and their character and conduct had to be pleasant, and reflecting the values of the military. In my experience as a first sergeant, one of my duties was to over see the smooth training of the soldiers in law enforcement duties. Some of the subjects that were taught were basic law enforcement tasks, reports and reforms, responding to incidents, unarmed self defense, maneuver and mobility support operations and enemy prisoner of war operations.
I had to ensure that the soldiers were familiar to and fully understood the concepts that these subjects taught. Since the first sergeant’s position is the one at which all units merge, there are several key duties that are attached to this position, including holding formations, instructing the platoon sergeants, advising the commander and assisting in the training of the enlisted members. Relationship with the soldiers When the young soldiers to be first arrive at the training grounds, many of them are not aware of the reality of military training.
They are not used to being shouted at and to obey orders, even when they do not feel like. They are also not used to being woken up so early in the morning by an officer shouting so loud at them. For many of them, it is their first time to leave home, or to be away from home alone for the first time to stay on their own. Despite these difficulties, they have to be treated in a manner that will harden them. As a sergeant, I had to treat the soldiers in such a way that they will able be to survive, even at the worst conditions.
They have to live where they are asked to live, even when the situation is uncomfortable. However, these difficulties are imposed on purpose, to adjust the soldier’s attitude to the military way of thinking. Furthermore, it makes it easier to impose self discipline, obedience, loyalty, military rules, military policies, etiquette and sacrifice among other values and customs of the military to them. Some people say that the military officers gain pleasure in making the lives of the soldiers difficult. However, from my experience, I would not say that this is true.
They only adhere to the rules of the military, to train the soldiers both physically and psychologically, in order to tear apart the civilians, and build from scratch a dedicated, physically fit and a proud member of the United States Armed Forces. Being in direct contact with the soldiers, and at the same time able to influence them for the better using your power is the key to earning their respect and to understand them. This is one of the most importance things that the first sergeant has to do. Your influence is so important that it determines whether a company will fail or deteriorate.
As the first sergeant, I had to take all the knowledge I had and effectively pass it to the commanders of the units to teach it to the soldiers effectively, and at times training them myself. Being the first sergeant, you can only know if your efforts in training the soldiers have been effective through the behavior and the work of the soldiers. Normally, I had to make sure that my behavior, especially when around the soldiers is at its best. If a sergeant’s behavior is rotten, then the company will definitely copy that, and the results will be rotten soldiers.
I also had to be completely involved and aware of every thing that goes on in the army, especially with the soldiers. This is why the position is so important, that most people refer to it as the livelihood or the blood of the army. A sergeant is required to act as an exhibitionist, to display his impressive character to all the other members. Sometimes, it may be said or thought that he is boasting; such a behavior is not egotistical, but it is required and can be viewed as a way of setting the example.
Therefore, I had to ensure that my behavior is exceptional and outstanding. By doing this, it is assumed that the members of the unit will want to be exceptional too, putting aside their differences involved at a personal level, and work or live as brothers. As the duty of the first sergeant, I had to train the members of the units to the best of my interests, and be proud of them and their achievements. This entails praising the soldiers and talking proudly of all their success and positive attitudes to different people.
In my experience, I learnt that a first sergeant’s role is important, in that he should act as the leader for the soldier’s success, and should he fail, the unit members may fail too. To attain the best of the soldiers, he needs to discipline them and be tough, to ensure their behavior is pleasant and acceptable in the military. He should also be a wise counselor, giving them advice whenever they need it. Being a provider is also a major duty of the first sergeant to ensure that they are comfortable. I also had to be a confidant to the soldiers of my company, listening to them and also being a friend in general.
These are some of the aspects that bring the sergeant and the soldiers closer, to establish a close relationship comprising respect and concern to them. Relationship with the captain A unique relationship comprising of respect and confidence should exist between the sergeant and the commander. This relationship should not be the buddy to buddy kind of relationship, but one based on the work values. In most cases, such a relationship with the captain is not so common with officers of other ranks within the military.
Being the first sergeant, I had to ensure that the will of the captain is carried out. When the first sergeant is given the title during his appointment, then he is automatically given authority to pass his ideas to the captain, to ensure the learning of the soldiers is as effective as it can be. While advising the captain, I sometimes found myself arguing or disagreeing with him on several matters. This is where there the authority, professional relationship, past experiences, and loyalty with the captain was required.
At times, there are situations when the captain is not as experienced as the first sergeant. This may lead him to disregard the advice given to him by the sergeants. There can also be times when the sergeant’s reasoning has saved the captain’s reputation, which signifies the important role of the sergeant as the advisor to the captain; that failing to take the sergeant’s advice may lead them to making blunders that may cost them their jobs. In conclusion, I would say that the role of a sergeant is very important in the military training ground.
Being a good leader, showing all the desirable characteristics, and above all things being able to interact with people of all kinds were some of the characters that guided me. Otherwise, I would not have been able to execute the position’s duties, and my job would have been a lot harder. Training the soldiers to the best of my knowledge for the sake of the countries safety was my priority, and today, I am proud of the service I gave my country. References 1) Military, Global security. org, 2009, retrieved on 2/9/2009 from http://www. globalsecurity. org/military/intro/enlist. htm
Courtney from Study Moose
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