Beyond Transformation: The CPO1/CWO Strategic Employment Model
Just as the Canadian Forces continues to undertake comprehensive transformation, so too must the roles and responsibilities of the Chief Petty Officer First Class/Chief Warrant Officer — the custodian of the profession of arms in Canada. The increasingly complex operating environment demands that the CF redefine and expand the “strategic level” roles of selected CPO1/CWOs in order to optimize their contribution to operational and institutional leadership.
In order to fulfill these roles, CPO1/CWOs will need to be developed systematically, over time, and specifically employed within a model that synchronizes both the institutional and operational requirements of the future defence and security environment.
Adversarial forces have developed sophisticated asymmetric methods designed to circumvent our legal obligations and neutralize our capabilities. Most, if not all future CF operations will demand multi-disciplinary, comprehensive approaches. These will almost always include multi-national coalitions, other government departments (OGD) and non-governmental organizations (NGO). This will drive the need for CF leadership, at all levels, that is capable of understanding, adapting and prevailing despite operational complexity. Innovation, agility and critical thinking will continue to be essential qualities of CF leaders. The CF must not remain static. The emerging reality is far less predictable than that of the past. Duty with Honour describes the paradigm shift this way; “uncertainty, ambiguity and complexity will increasingly characterize most operations in all environments…” 1
The CPO1/CWO Corps represents a vast depth of experience, wisdom, professionalism, ethics and integrity. These core competencies have served the CF well in the past and must remain sacrosanct at the operational and tactical levels. The roles of a ships Coxswain, unit Regimental Sergeant-Major (RSM) or Squadron CWO will remain largely unchanged and must be considered vital ground. Future CF operations will demand both Institutional and Operational leaders with increased situational awareness, enhanced cognitive skill sets, and more comprehensive understanding of strategic level context. In light of this emerging strategic reality, CPO1/CWOs represent a tremendous source of both essential and additional potential capacity. The CF must undertake a systematic and adaptable approach to generate, develop, employ and sustain its CPO1/CWOs towards strategic level employment. Effectively tapping into this unrealized potential will create an institutional and operational force multiplication factor for all three levels of CF leadership.
Deduction: Innovation, agility and critical thinking will increasingly become essential elements of CF operational strategies.
Deduction: The CF must undertake a systematic and adaptable approach to generate, develop, employ and sustain its CPO1/CWOs towards strategic level employment.
The aim of this document is to provide the strategic guidance necessary to undertake a systematic and adaptable approach to the generation, development, employment and sustainment of CPO1/CWOs toward strategic level appointments. The mechanism through which this aim will be accomplished is referred to in this document as the Progressive Model.
The model is designed to amalgamate, indoctrinate and formalize the CF approach to meeting the aim. The Progressive Model will be developed from both an institutional and operational perspective in order to strike the correct balance between strategic level awareness, operational effectiveness and tactical excellence.
Copyright © 2011 Her Majesty the Queen, in right of Canada as represented by the Minister of National Defence.
Produced for The Chief of Force Developmentby 17 Wing Winnipeg Publishing OfficeWPO30734
Cover Photo: MCpl Colin A. Aitken, 17 Wing Imaging
NDID # A-FD-005-004/AF-003
Library and Archives Canada Cataloguing in Publication
Beyond transformation : the CPO1/CWO Strategic Employment Model.
“Produced for the Chief of Force Development by 17 Wing Winnipeg Publishing Office”.Includes bibliographical references.Available also on the Internet.Text in English and French on inverted pages.ISBN 978-1-100-54040-5Cat. no.: D2-289/2011
1. Canada--Armed Forces--Non-commissioned officers--Promotions. 2. Canada-- Armed Forces--Petty officers--Selection and appointment. 3. Canada--Armed Forces--Warrant officers--Selection and appointment. 4. Canada--Armed Forces--Petty officers--Training of. 5. Canada--Armed Forces--Warrant officers--Training of. 6. Canada--Armed Forces--Personnel management. I. Canada. Canadian Armed Forces. Wing, 17 II. Canada. Chief of Force Development III. Title: CPO1/CWO Strategic Employment Model. IV. Title: Au-delà de la transformation : Modèle stratégique d’emploi des pm 1/des adjuc.
UA600 B49 2012 355.3’38 C2011-980159-0E
26 August 2011
CPO1/CWO Strategic Employment Model
As part of my ongoing commitment to CF Transformation, I am pleased to introduce Beyond Transformation – The CPO1/CWO Strategic Employment Model. This model represents an innovative and sustainment of future CPO1/CWOs. Additionally, it exploits past successes and proposes a more comprehensive process which better addresses both the operational and institutional imperatives on the CF.
CPO1/CWOs represent a substantial and significant body of knowledge and professional expertise within the Canadian Forces, and it is my belief that they must feature prominently during the period of continuing transformation. While remaining co-stewards of the traditions, standards and ethos of the CF, they must also demonstrate leadership when addressing the uncertainty and complexity of future CF challenges.
This model is to be used to guide the training, professional development, career management and succession planning of CPo1/CWOs to generate a widening pool of senior NCMs with significant strategic exposure. It will also provide the necessary building blocks for future generation, development, and sustainment of CPO1/CWOs within Key Positions and Senior Appointments. This model reflects the evolutionary nature of transformation and merits the full support of all stakeholders in its implementation.
I am pleased, on behalf of the CDS, to present Beyond Transformation: The CPO1/CWO Strategic Employment Model to the Department of National Defence (DND) and the Canadian Forces (CF).
The purpose of this document is to provide strategic vision and guidance to the communities of interest and practice which shape the professional development (PD) of our future Chief Petty Officers First Class and Chief Warrant Officers (CPO1/CWOs). The model is also intended to inform the employment selection processes beyond the tactical level, through to Key Positions and Senior Appointments (SA/KP).
The current employment model has served us well to this point. However, addressing the challenges of the future strategic environment will demand innovative, cohesive and adaptive leadership. Increasingly sophisticated and complex military operations, coupled with an extraordinary increase in the educational and experiential baseline of Non-commissioned members (NCMs), means that new approaches are required. By proposing an enduring and progressive model to guide the development of training products, PD and career management, the CF will strengthen its future CF Command/Senior leadership teams and will ensure that the CPO1/CWOs appointed to these essential positions are well-prepared to make immediate and meaningful contributions.
For those directly involved in the PD and succession planning of senior NCMs, The CPO1/CWO Strategic Employment Model (SEM) will aid in formulating policies and practices related to the generation, development, employment and sustainment of CPO1/CWOs. I also encourage all members of the Defence Team to refer to this document to maintain a high level of awareness regarding the systematic PD of our future SA/KP CPO1/CWOs.
History reminds us that the effectiveness of any fighting force often depends on the experience, insight, and creativity of its senior non-commissioned membership. By focusing on how best to prepare and empower these highly valued members of the DND/CF team, we can ensure that we remain a truly agile 21st century military force.
Chief Petty Officer First Class
Canadian Forces Chief Warrant Officer
Table of Contents
- The Future Strategic Environment
- The Strategic Objectives
- The Strategic CPO1/CWO
- The Progressive Model
- Summary of Deductions
- List of Acronyms
List of Figures
- Figure 1 - The Progressive Model
- Figure 2 - The Relationship of the Domains Model
- Figure 3 - The Progressive Model Defined
- Figure 4 - The Progressive Model – First Stage
- Figure 5 - The Progressive Model – Second Stage
- Figure 6 - The Progressive Model – Third Stage
- Figure 7 - The Progressive Model – Fourth Stage
The CF invests a tremendous amount of time, training and trust in its CPO1/CWOs in order to ensure that they are expert at their core competencies. However, the complexity of the emerging strategic environment has accelerated the demand for the CF to generate leaders with enhanced critical thinking abilities. These new tools will become essential to achieving maximum institutional and operational effectiveness. Understanding strategic context and determining how it is being interpreted at the operational/tactical levels is pivotal to successfully realizing desired CF end states. CPO1/CWOs must be the commander’s conduit between these two, often polar opposite, realities. The strategic implications of tactical level decisions have become far too important to simply maintain the status quo.
...decisions and actions taken by NCOs, warrant officers and their sub-ordinates can, and often do, have consequences up to and including the strategic and political level as the changing nature of operations expands the roles and responsibilities of NCMs. 2
— Duty with Honour: The Profession of Arms in Canada.
Just as technological innovations have revolutionized recent decades; cultural demographics, human migration, emerging military capabilities, pervasive media, ubiquitous computing, nano-technology and other factors, will combine to revolutionize coming decades and further complicate military operations. These new factors will cause increased scrutiny and influence how the CF recruits, retains, trains, educates and employs personnel. Additionally, they will transform the way we plan operations, shape our perception and impact how we conduct missions. CPO1/CWOs must be empowered with the enhanced skills sets, described earlier, including increased responsibility in order to effectively engage all three levels of leadership. They must be the commander’s eyes and ears, throughout the sphere of command to gauge “the atmosphere”, determine ground truth and provide candid council up and down the chain of command.
Deduction: The strategic implications of tactical level decisions have become far too important to simply maintain the status quo.
The assumptions which are invoked in this document reflect stated levels of CF transformational ambition. The deductions are derived from several departmental publications, which have been offered as mitigating strategies to address the challenges described earlier and promote the evolution of leadership responsibilities. CF leadership doctrine summarizes some of the requirement this way:
Distributed leadership means three things:
- That the essential functions of leadership should be shared to varying degrees with peer and subordinate leaders;
- That the leadership potential of Officers, Warrant Officers, and Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs) down to the lowest level of formal authority should be fully developed and exploited; and
- That the latent leadership potential of all CF members should also be given an opportunity for development and expression. 3
With this in mind the CPO1/CWO SEM assumes the following:
- CF Operations will become increasingly complex requiring the roles of CPO1/CWOs to be expanded and include increased latitude on behalf of commanders.
- CF operations will continue to be guided by Canadian and international law and the direction of the Government of Canada. This places greater emphasis on CPO1/CWOs to ensure that operations are conducted in accordance with the principles that guide the profession of arms in Canada.
- CF operations will increasingly be conducted within the context of a GoC comprehensive approach and will demand that CPO1/CWOs be well acquainted with the associated implications of that approach.
- CPO1/CWOs require increased understanding of strategic context in order to reinforce sound ethical standards throughout the CF.
- Evolving technologies will generate increasingly sophisticated military capabilities which will demand personnel with commensurate levels of technical sophistication. CPO1/CWOs must continuously improve their own awareness of these developments and offer recommendations to commanders in order to “operationalize” them.
- Changes in training consistently create a lag between techniques, tactics and procedures and operational necessities. CPO1/CWOs must call on their vast experience to ensure the CF remains at the leading edge of lessons learned implementation.
The development of the Progressive Model and a plan for its implementation must be undertaken within the following constraints:
- CPO1/CWOs must maintain stewardship of the profession of arms and remain technical experts in their respective CF disciplines.
- The CPO1/CWO SEM must empower future CPO1/CWOs with greater autonomy in order to expand their contribution to CF institutional and operational leadership.
- The CPO1/CWO SEM must enable CPO1/CWOs to be professionally developed on pace with emerging military technologies and CF capabilities.
- The CPO1/CWO SEM must integrate existing CPO1/CWO PD initiatives and assimilate them into the Progressive Model.
- The Progressive Model must be both enduring and continually evolving.
- The Progressive Model must include both the Regular Force and Reserves.
Analysis of this model has highlighted a great many efforts being made in isolation in an attempt to fill specific needs, address staff capacity deficiency or interpret the recommendations of different transformation initiatives. These efforts, though well-intentioned, address parts of the future NCM corps’ requirements not the whole of it. The one enduring theme throughout all the efforts is the need for improving the current system of NCM professional development. In support of the CPO1/CWO SA/KP professional development, this concept makes the following recommendations:
- In order to meet the expectations of Transformation, the CF must undertake a detailed approach to CPO1/CWO professional development
- The CF must develop NCM-specific Professional Military Education
- NCMs must take ownership of the recognition that they are professionals within the profession of arms
- Strategic context must be included in intermediate level leadership training and education
- The CF must adapt the Progressive Model for SA/KP CPO1/CWO professional development
- The CF must create additional opportunities for strategic and operational level employment of a controlled number of CPO2/MWOs and CPO1/CWOs who demonstrate the potential for SA/KP advancement
- The CF must develop common Officer/NCM training at pre-determined points in their respective careers in order to strengthen the command/leadership team construct
- The CF must develop increased opportunities for CPO1/CWO alternative and innovative employment, which is beneficial to both the individual and the CF
- The CF must develop a more flexible career development model that balances individual need with the operational and institutional imperatives of the CF
- The CF must investigate the possibility of devolving certain leadership responsibilities to CPO1/CWOs
Deduction: Innovation, agility and critical thinking will increasingly become essential elements of our operational strategies.
Deduction: The CF must undertake a systematic approach to generate, develop, employ and sustain its CPO1/CWOs towards strategic level employment.
Deduction: The strategic implications of tactical level decisions have become far too important to simply maintain the status quo.
Deduction: Contemporary and future military operations will increasingly be undertaken within the context of a whole of government comprehensive approach.
Deduction: The CF Command/Leadership Team construct must be formalized in doctrine and supported by senior leadership in order to demonstrate the evolution of confidence in the NCM Corps and support the Progressive Model of strategic level CPO1/CWOs.
Deduction: Subject matter experts and communities of interest and practice must be engaged early and continuously in order to ensure the successful implementation of this model.
Deduction: While the CF’s ability to develop mitigating strategies to close the gap between the current state and the desired state has increased marginally, the factors which widen the gap are increasing exponentially.
Deduction: The requirements of the Progressive Model cannot be accumulated through the delivery of a single course or block of training. It is designed to allow the member to attain the requirements incrementally and to build capacity and experience gradually.
Department of National Defence Documents
- Government of Canada. “Canada First Defence Strategy”, Ottawa: Department of National Defence, 2008.
- Canadian Officership in the 21st Century (Officership 2020), Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy, 2001.
- Defence Strategy 2020 – Formulating the DND/CF Statement of Strategy”, Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy, 1999.
- Duty With Honour: The Profession of Arms in Canada. Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy – Canadian Forces Leadership Institute, 2003. http://www.cda.forces.gc.ca/cfli-ilfc/doc/dwh-eng.pdf [accessed 31 March 2009].
- DND/CF Manual of Abbreviations. Ottawa: Chief of the Land Staff.
- Integrated Capstone Concept (Draft), Ottawa: Chief of Force Development, 2008.
- Leadership in the Canadian Forces: Conceptual Foundations, Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy – Canadian Forces Leadership Institute, 2007.
- Leadership in the Canadian Forces: Doctrine, Kingston: Canadian Defence, Academy – Canadian Forces Leadership Institute, 2005.
- Leadership in the Canadian Forces: Leading People, Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy –Canadian Forces Leadership Institute, 2007.
- The Canadian Non-Commissioned Member in the 21st Century (NCM Corps 2020), Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy, 2003.
- The CF Executive Development Program — A Concept for Development Period 5: The CF Officer Professional Development System” (Draft), LGen (Ret) M. K. Jeffery, September 2008.
- The Future Security Environment 2008-2030 Part 1: Current and Emerging Trends, Ottawa: Chief of Force Development, 2009.
- The Military Leadership Handbook, Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy, 2008.Krulak, Charles C. “The Strategic Corporal: Leadership in the Three Block War,” Marines Magazine (January 1999).
|Adaptive||Able to respond to change and challenges in a positive manner, includes the hallmarks of being intelligent, resilient, robust, flexible, agile, creative, responsive, and enduring.||ICC|
|Command||The creative and purposeful exercise of legitimate authority to accomplish the mission legally, professionally, and ethically.||Canada (CFD draft)|
|Comprehensive||Having a complete and broad understanding of the strategic environment, having an accurate definition of the problem and having set appropriate goals; having the ability to apply a multi-disciplinary approach.||ICC|
|Condition Set||Conditions (circumstances) as governed by the assigned missions in CFDS and the level of expectation of GoC.||ICC|
|Cyberspace||Refers to hardware and social interactions that occur through the virtual world.||ICC|
|Domain||Major divisions within the strategic environment where the elements of national power and influence are exercised: maritime, land, air, space, cyberspace, and human||ICC|
|Future Security Environement||The projection of trends and shocks out into the future. Trends include economic/social, environmental/resource, geo-political, science/technology, and military/security.||Canada (CFD)|
|Integrating Concept||Concepts developed by considering the collective relationships within a particular condition set.||ICC|
|Strategic||A plan designed to achieve a particular long-term aim. The art of planning and directing military activity in a war or battle. Often contrasted with tactics.||Oxford Dictionary|
|Strategic Environment||Where the elements of power and influence are exercised||ICC|
The level at which a nation or group of nations determines national of multinational security objectives and deploys national, including military, resources to achieve them.
The strategic level is that level of war at which a nation, often as a member of a group of nations, determines national of multinational (alliance or coalition) strategic objectives and guidance and develops and uses national resources to achieve theses objectives.
Joint Operations 3-0 16
|Tactical||Done or planned to gain a specific military and planned in order to achieve an end beyond immediate action||Oxford Dictionary 17|
|Tactical Level||The tactical level focuses on planning and executing battles, engagements, and activities to achieve military objectives assigned to tactical units or task forces (TFs).||Joint Operations 3-0 18|
The threat or use of any kind of armed forces. An action or strategy carefully planned to achieve a specific end. The art of disposing armed forces in order of battle and of organizing operations, especially in contact with an enemy.
The art of disposing naval, land and air forces in actual contact with the enemy.
Oxford Dictionary 19
|ALOC||Advanced Logistics Officer Course|
|ALQ||Advanced Leadership Qualification Course|
|ATR||Any Trade Requirement|
|BLMC||Baseline Manning Control|
|BMQ||Basic Military Qualification Course|
|CDA||Canadian Defence Academy|
|CFC||Canadian Forces College|
|CFD||Chief of Force Development|
|CFDS||Canada First Defence Strategy|
|CMP||Chief of Military Personnel|
|CP01||Chief Petty Officer 1st Class|
|CP02||Chief Petty Officer 2nd Class|
|CQ||Captain’s Qualifying Course|
|CWO||Chief Warrant Officer|
|DFSA||Directorate of Future Security Analysis|
|DLI||Defence Leadership Institute|
|DND||Department of National Defence|
|DRDC||Defence Research and Development Canada|
|ELP||Executive Leadership Program|
|FSE||The Future Security Environment 2008-2030 Part 1: Current and Emerging Trends|
|GoC||Government of Canada|
|ICAT||Integrated Capability Analysis Team|
|ICC||Integrated Capstone Concept|
|ILQ||Intermediate Leadership Qualification Course|
|KAP||Knowledge Acquisition Program|
|MOSID||Military Occupational Structure Identification|
|MWO||Master Warrant Officer|
|NATO||North Atlantic Treaty Organization|
|NCMPDC||Non-Commissioned Members Professional Development Centre|
|OGD||Other Government Department|
|PLQ||Primary Leadership Qualification Course|
|PSC||Public Safety Canada|
|SEM||Strategic Employment Model|
|SID||Strategic Initiating Directive|
|SME||Subject Matter Expert|
|TTP||Tactics, Techniques and Procedures|
- 1 Duty With Honour, The Profession of Arms in Canada, (Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy, Kingston 2003), 75.
- 2 Ibid., 64.
- 3 Leadership in the Canadian Forces: Doctrine (Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy – Canadian Forces Leadership Institute, 2005), 11.
- 4 The Future Security Environment 2008-2030 Part 1: Current and Emerging Trends (Ottawa: Chief of Force Development, 2009).
- 5 Integrated Capstone Concept (Draft), (Ottawa: Chief of Force Development, 2008).
- 6 Governement of Canada, Canada First Defence Strategy (Ottawa: Department of National Defence, 2007).
- 7 Leadership in the Canadian Forces: Doctrine (Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy – Canadian Forces Leadership Institute, 2005),12.
- 8 E.Salas, T.L. Dikinson, S. Converse, and S.I. Tannenbaum, “Towards an Understanding of Team Performance and Training,” in R.W. Swezey and E. Salas eds., Teams: Their Training and Performance (Northwood, NJ: Ablex Publishing, 1992), 3-29.
- 9 Bernd Horn and Dr. Robert W. Walker eds., The Military Leadership Handbook (Toronto: Dundurn Press, 2008), 387.
- 10 Definition: CPO1/CWO Key positions are normally either Pan-Environment or Pan-CF Personnel selected for these positions and must be in possession of specific skill sets, competencies and job experience requirements. These positions can be either leadership or staff in nature and are utilized in developing and managing CPO1s/CWOs. These positions are not limited to any specific MOSID (ATR). When designated Pan-Environment, these positions will only be open to one Distinct Environmental Uniform (DEU); Director Senior Appointments, Chief of Military Personnel, NDHQ, Ottawa.
- 11 Definition: CPO1/CWO Senior Appointment positions are an integral part of the senior command team at the Pan CF higher formation level. Mentors and leaders of the institution with an increased span and scope of influence, personnel employed in these positions must be in possession of specific skills that are normally acquired through tactical and operational level experience in the respective environment. Personnel in these positions act as highly trusted advisors to the most senior commanders of the CF and in order to fulfill this role, selected personnel must have a varied set of skills, expertise, attributes and competencies. These positions of increased influence require visionary leaders who are change managers and leaders of leaders who act as confidants to most senior officers. These most senior positions require role model institutional leaders who understand their role of custodian of the NCM Corps and co-steward of the profession of arms. These positions are HR focused at the strategic level and are therefore post-traditional, beyond tactical and are not entry-level CPO1/CWO jobs in nature. These non-technical positions are not MOSID related and people employed in these appointments are not filling staff officer functions; Director Senior Appointments, Chief of Military Personnel, NDHQ, Ottawa.
- 12 The Emotionally Intelligent Workplace, Cary Charniss and Daniel Goleman, Jossey-Bass Business and Management Series, 2001.
- 13 Canadian Officership in The 21st Century (Officership 2020) (Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy, 2001).
- 14 The Canadian Non-Commissioned Member in the 21st Century (NCM Corps 2020) (Kingston: Canadian Defence Academy, 2003).
- 15 - Bernd Horn and Dr. Robert W. Walker eds., The Military Leadership Handbook (Toronto: Dundurn Press, 2008), 387.
- 16 Government of United States of America, Doctrine for Joint Operations 3-0 (Washington, DC: Joint Chiefs of Staff, 2001).
- 17 Concise Oxford Dictionary (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990).
- 18 Joint Operations 3.0, Chapter 2, Section 2, “Levels of War”.
- 19 Concise Oxford Dictionary (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1990).
- 20 Government of Canada, DND/CF Manual of Abbreviations (Ottawa: Chief of the Land Staff).
The Future Strategic Environment describes the evolving global reality, in which the Government of Canada (GoC) will employ its instruments of national power and influence in the next time horizon and beyond. The Future Security Environment 2008-2030 Part 1: Current and Emerging Trends (FSE), 4 outlines some of the factors which will combine to manifest this new reality. It includes political alliances, economic disparity and inter-dependence, global security, military responsibilities and operations, resource availability, environmental challenges, health concerns, science and technology advancements and other emerging trends. This is the context in which the CF will conduct operations and some of the factors which will set the conditions, constraints and goals for operational success.
Everything in society is pointing towards more complexity. It does not necessarily mean more complicated…
— Dr. Ross Pigeau DRDC Toronto
2.1 Future Operational Environment
The Future Operational Environment represents the manner in which the factors described in the previous section could combine to influence the conduct of CF operations or missions. These factors will shape the determination of such things as campaign plans, rules of engagement and participation caveats for each specific mission. The Integrated Capstone Concept theorizes that the three traditional domains have expanded beyond Maritime, Land and Air to include Space, Cyber and Human.
The three additional domains are becoming literal battle spaces. 5 In light of this evolution of the traditional concept of warfare, the CF must specifically develop personnel who are innovative, mentally agile and capable of multi-layered critical thinking within dynamic and highly complex operational environments. Canada consistently generates global effects out of proportion to the size of the nation. The CF is a critical enabler to this national capability. In order to continue to transform, the CF must continually develop strategies to ensure our ability to “punch above our weight class”.
The increasingly complex security environment demands approaches that are comprehensive, integrated, adaptive and networked in the execution of national intent.
— Integrated Capstone Concept (ICC)
The demand for the CF to defend Canada, defend North America and contribute to international peace and security remains unchanged and non-negotiable. The Canada First Defence Strategy 6 (CFDS) articulates the expectations of the Government of Canada with respect to defence, sets the guidance for CF operations and outlines the roles and levels of ambition for the CF.
January 2010 saw the CF engaged in Humanitarian Assistance Disaster Relief (HADR) in Haiti, Winter Olympics 2010 in Vancouver, anti-piracy off the horn of Africa, major counter-insurgency in Afghanistan and conducting our domestic baseline tasks, simultaneously. Each of these missions comprised a varied condition set and involved a variety of OGDs, our continental defence partner and in some instances diverse international coalitions. This is the new Canadian strategic reality defined. Contemporary and future military operations will increasingly be undertaken within the context of this whole of government comprehensive approach.
The Panel proposes a new and more comprehensive Canadian strategy for Afghanistan—a strategy that honours the sacrifices Canadians have already made.
— Independent Panel on Canada’s Future Role in Afghanistan
DEDUCTION: Contemporary and future military operations will increasingly be undertaken within the context of a whole of government comprehensive approach.
There are three defined leadership levels within the CF: tactical, operational, and strategic. Leadership at each level requires specific preparation, PD and competencies. These are not meant to be isolated individual components practiced at a particular level, but rather the cumulative result of training, education, experiences and lessons learned from each level and applied at the next. Like building blocks, the components at each level are essential parts of the foundation required for progression to the next.
The tactical level is most familiar. It encompasses the largest group of CF leaders. It is the level where our leaders “cut their teeth”. Although technically it is the lowest level, it is arguably the most difficult, given the new strategic reality. At this level the Command Team construct is most evident, easily discernable and critical. Decisions taken by these command teams involve the potential taking of, or loss of life within the pervasive “fog of war”. Additionally, our most junior leaders are expected to clearly understand implicit command intent and translate it into explicit tactical action. This paradox is described in CF doctrine: CF philosophy of mission command explicitly recognizes the necessity of allowing subordinates maximum freedom of action consistent with commander intent. 7 The stakes are often greater and more immediate. CPO1/CWOs are an essential conduit between operational intent and tactical decisiveness.
At the operational level, leadership usually receives their guidance in the form of things such as Strategic Initiating Directives (SIDs). It then becomes their responsibility to turn that strategic intent into operational plans. This is somewhat less complicated, in that the head of mission is normally a senior diplomat, or equivalent. This means that operational level commanders, can primarily concern themselves with the military aspects of the mission, notwithstanding their contribution to a comprehensive approach. CPO1/CWOs are generally more comfortable at this level, as it represents a more direct progression from the tactical level. This being said, operational level CPO1/CWOs would also greatly benefit from higher awareness of strategic implications, at this level.
At the strategic level, CF leadership directly engages with government at the national level with respect to all things concerning the CF. This level represents the interface between national policy and the judicious use of armed force in the pursuit of objectives in the national interest. Government priorities are established in high level capstone documents such as CFDS. In turn it is the responsibility of our strategic leadership to set the conditions for the CF to meet those priorities. There is generally insufficient formal preparation for the members of leadership teams at this level.
There exists a sort of no-fail on the job training. When addressing the Executive Leadership Program (ELP) class at the Canadian Forces College (CFC) VAdm (Ret) Ron Buck asserted “…the CF generates outstanding operational and tactical level leadership but does not sufficiently prepare our senior officers for strategic level leadership.” The CPO1/CWO SEM is specifically focused on CPO1/CWOs at this level. However in order to prepare any CPO1/CWOs for strategic level employment, the Progressive Model, must include all CPO1/CWOs at the operational and tactical levels to ensure a strong developmental pool of candidates who have been gradually prepared.
…the CF generates outstanding operational and tactical level leadership but does not sufficiently prepare our senior officers for strategic level leadership.
— Vice-Admiral (Ret) Ron Buck, former VCDS
The CF Command Team construct is generally defined as “a distinguishable set of two or more people who entered, dynamically, interdependently and adaptively toward a common and valued goal / objective / mission, who have been assigned specific roles or functions to perform and who have a limited life-span of membership”. 8 This description applies well to the operational and tactical levels. However at the strategic level it is better described as a Senior Leadership Team.
Understanding and applying the construct is largely contingent on environmental background, branch, trade or community of practice. The Command Team however, is widely accepted as the combination of a Commander and CPO1 or CWO. Each is the senior ranking member of his or her respective corps (Officer/NCM) and their individual spheres of influence and specific skill sets are merged to form the final level of leadership for their organization. Although the premise is sound, in practice, this applies predominantly at the tactical or operational level.
The strategic level is quite different. At this level the Command Team evolves into a Senior Leadership Team. There is the commander, who engages with the political level to determine how national priorities are to be converted to institutional excellence. He or she can rely on several layers of operational and tactical level Command Teams to turn them into operational best practices. Institutional excellence, however, is much more ambiguous and difficult to define. This is where the strategic level commander(s) must depend on their most senior and experienced CPO1/CWOs to have a broad understanding of this strategic level context and sufficient increased responsibility to independently assess its implications.
The CPO1/CWO must maintain just as comprehensive an understanding of how this strategic context will impact the operational and tactical levels. He or she must then be able to inform the commander’s decision cycle, this is achieved this by engaging with an extensive network of CPO1/CWOs at all three levels, to leverage their professional expertise, technical knowledge and operational experience in order to recommend potential courses of action. The number of CPO1/CWOs who actually operate at this level must be carefully determined.
Although the command team construct can be developed and implemented down to the platoon or detachment level, it carries ultimate responsibility and accountability at the higher levels described. The Military Leadership Handbook cites:
Development and implementation of the construct at the lower levels, will serve to introduce and familiarize more junior officers and NCMs to the utility and effectiveness of this approach. It will also reinforce confidence early-on and progressively in each member’s respective strengths and capabilities. The end state is realised when officers and NCMs culminate to form a higher level command team, knowing exactly what each other brings to that team and can capitalize on each others strengths. 9
DEDUCTION: The CF Command/Leadership Team construct must be formalized in doctrine and supported by senior leadership in order to demonstrate the evolution of confidence in the NCM Corps and support the Progressive Model of strategic level CPO1/ CWOs.
Five strategic objectives (SO) were developed in support of the Progressive Model.
- Foster a Common Command and Leadership Culture
- Maintain Stewardship of CPO1/CWO Professional Competencies
- Strongly Contribute to CF Institutional and Operational Leadership
- Enhance NCM Career Opportunity with Increased Flexibility
- Support Strategic CPO1/CWO Professional Development
Each SO supports the aim and reinforces both the institutional and operational requirements of the model. The model, in turn, must support the operational imperative of the CF. These SOs are not meant to be prescriptive or to outline (the how). They are meant to be identify and describe each component requirement (the what) and demonstrate their support of the aim (the why). The how is best left to the communities of interest and practice.
Finally, the list of components which supports each SO is not meant to be definitive. In fact, it is meant to generate discussion. This will inform the definitive lists of requirements. Once determined, the requirements would be included in an implementation plan.
The CF has amassed an extensive catalogue of valuable lessons learned over the past two decades. These lessons have been forged in an un-relenting operational tempo and at very high costs. They have also rein-forced the necessity and effectiveness of the CF Officer/NCM command and leadership teams. The CF must not simply disseminate the utility and employment of this approach anecdotally. The lessons must be captured in CF doctrine in order to survive personnel change and provide an enduring reference to build upon, rather than condemning future generations to re-learning the important lessons when the operational tempo abates. In order to foster a common command and leadership culture, the CF must:
- Develop and promote unquestioned confidence in each corps’ abilities
- Develop a common understanding of each corps’ respective strengths
- Pursue opportunities for common PD
- Encourage an open, continuous and candid discourse between corps
- Develop and realize a collaborative vision for the future CF
- Employ both officers and NCMs based on knowledge and not on rank
- Indoctrinate mission command and implicit intent versus explicit intent
- Introduce and encourage this common culture early and often
This model is predicated on the idea that officers must always be officers and NCMs must always be NCMs. Each Corps has its own vital roles, responsibilities and self identity as well as proud and professional membership. The model recognizes that the Canadian Officer/NCM construct is very strong and should never be weakened. In order for future CPO1/CWOs to progress through Senior Appointments 10 and Key Positions 11 they must first master and exemplify CPO1/CWO professional competencies. Although this topic has generated frequent and passionate discussion, the model considers the following to be the core competencies that the CPO1/CWO must embody:
- Demonstrate and promote loyalty up and down the Chain of Command
- Prepare CF members for the judicious application of managed force
- Exemplify and promote physical fitness
- Achieve and promote technical and tactical excellence
- Master self-discipline and ensure group discipline
- Exemplify CF ethical standards
- Demonstrate courage of action and conviction
- Safeguard the customs and traditions of the CF and the profession of arms
- Maintain and exploit his/her extensive human network
- Promote and influence morale
- Protect and enhance the prestige and professionalism of the NCM Corps
- Communicate effectively
- Lead institutional change
For the purposes of this model, the future CF command team construct has been described as the merged competencies and spheres of influence of a commander and a CPO1/CWO at the tactical, operational levels. CF leadership teams have been described as those that exist at the strategic level. The result will be Officers and NCMs, at all levels, who are intellectual and emotional equivalents 12 and are not required to be aca-demic equivalents. In order to meet these objectives, the institution must:
- Devolve specific leadership/command team responsibilities to the SA/KP CPO1/CWO
- Demonstrate shared command intent and unity of purpose
- Enhance CPO1/CWOs opportunities to provide candid and accurate ground truth
- Ensure this model is recognized and endorsed by senior CF leadership
- Leverage the CPO1/CWO collective body of knowledge
- Exploit the competencies of the NCM/Officer team as a force multiplier
- Inform and transform concepts into effective policies, and Tactics, Technique and Procedures (TTPs)
- Disseminate and contextualize strategic intent
- Enhance CPO1/CWOs’ abilities to support and inform the decision cycle
- Empower CPO1/CWOs to exercise and exploit their tremendous personal authority
- Provide NCM-specific situational awareness to the command team
The components of this SO are perhaps the most contentious and difficult to reconcile. The Progressive Model identifies the need for an evolutionary and deliberate approach in order to generate, develop, employ and sustain future SA/KP CPO1/CWOs. The Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) and communities of interest and practice must be engaged early and continuously to ensure that parallel initiatives are considered, and a realistic implementation plan is designed. In order to support this SO the CF should:
- Identify and indoctrinate CPO1/CWO competencies which enable global CF employment at that rank level
- Encourage exchanges to OUTCAN, allied armed forces or inter-governmental positions to gain wider perspective
- Create multiple career paths, which encourages knowledge beyond trades
- Indoctrinate knowledge-based versus qualification-based career progression
- Review and/or redefine Any Trade Requirement (ATR)/Baseline Manning Control (BLMC) assignments and NCM General Specifications (GS)
- Employ future CPO1/CWOs and SA/KP CPO1/CWOs based on knowledge and competencies
- Enhance opportunities for lateral progression at the operational and strategic levels
- Continue opportunities for commissioning from the ranks
- Combine succession planning with a “member driven” career plan and military education
- Develop employment/ training opportunities which afford progressive and continuous exposure to the operational and strategic levels
- Evolve the career management system to a career counselling system which allows increased flexibility, promotes family stability and encourages retention
Both Officership 2020 13 and NCM Corps 2020 14 call for the transformation of the CF into a learning organization. Targeted professional development for each corps as well as specific, common PD for both corps will help to enable this end state. Additionally, progressive and evolutionary PD will facilitate the implementation of this, and other CF institutional models. In order to remain innovative, agile and empower critical thinking the CF should:
- Develop strategies designed to enhance the critical thinking skills of NCMs
- Enhance NCM-specific military, post-secondary level, accredited programs
- Expand self-directed virtual learning through a user-friendly 24/7 virtual web tool
- Design and pursue progressive common Officer/NCM PD
- Expand effective NCM written and oral communication skills
- Foster a commitment to learning through recognition for prior learning education/ experience
- Streamline and synchronize military education opportunities
- Implement mandated NCM writing (essays, service papers, technical memoranda, reports, briefing notes)
- Protect blocks for continuous education opportunities, including second language training, without penalties
- Identify areas for CF integration in emerging environments
- Remain at the cutting edge of Information Technology and lessons learned analysis
DEDUCTION: Subject matter experts and communities of interest and practice must be engaged early and continuously in order to ensure the successful implementation of this model.
The CPO1/CWO SEM offers that future SA/KP CPO1/CWOs must be innovative, agile and possess advanced critical thinking skills. They must also be strong contributors to future CF Command/Senior Leadership Teams immediately upon appointment, by participating in the decision-cycle which converts strategic context into operational and tactical effectiveness. It has been determined that this transition must not come at the cost of the experience-based, highly effective CPO1/CWO core competencies. Frustrating the CF’s ability to realize these goals are: operational tempo; operational imperative; training deficit; competing priorities; disconnected parallel initiatives; and transformation confusion.
This current state may not change in the near term; it may in fact become more complex. However, we also realize that the status quo is no longer acceptable. Documents such as Officership 2020 and NCM 2020 were written a decade ago, and although some progress has been made, they remain largely unimplemented. Therefore the CF must redouble its efforts to transform into a learning institution. By renewing the commitment to invest in its CPO1/CWOs, the CF can slowly move from being a rules-based; to a rules and value-based organization. This will enable senior leadership to confidently conduct operations with the knowledge that all members understand the strategic implications of their actions. The evolution of the current employment model must begin with the CPO1/CWO, as they represent the conduit by which the greatest number of CF personnel, both Officer and NCM, can be engaged and influenced.
Although the CF currently has very high quality SA/KP CPO1/CWOs, the system by which they are professionally developed, appointed and transitioned through their various positions, is less than optimal. There are disparities between environmental commands, branches and trades with respect to the length of time it takes for a CPO1/CWO to become qualified for employment beyond the tactical level.
This means that the CPO1/CWOs whose Military Occupational Structure Identification (MOSID) requirements slow their progression have greatly reduced opportunity to progress to KP or SA positions.
Generally speaking, within the trades which have much faster progression through the ranks, the quicker a member makes it to the rank of CPO1/CWO, the more restrictive the current model becomes. Inequities also exist in the number of employment opportunities which expose CPO1/CWOs and a limited number of CPO2/MWOs to the strategic and operational levels prior to SA/KP engagement. Although there are significant staff capacity gaps at those levels, there are relatively few mechanisms which allow these positions to be filled by qualified CPO2/MWOs or CPO1/CWOs. Finally, the current approach lacks flexibility. CPO1/CWOs, whether at the strategic, operational or tactical level, require a degree of stability in their careers in order to balance personal demands, such as family imperatives, with those of the CF.
In the near term, the evolution of the officer/NCM roles and relationships will likely be characterized by shifts in the division of responsibility and, a greater overlap between generalist and specialist competencies. In the future the changes could be profound and compel a more fundamental reorganization of the two corps.
— Duty with Honour: The Profession of Arms in Canada
This quote summarises the gap between the current state and the desired future state, while inadvertently implying the challenges which lie between conception and realization. This model was written with the understanding some will always believe that, “good enough will always be good enough”. However, as outlined earlier, the changes which impact how the CF conducts operations can no longer be ignored. Just as we were slow to react in the aftermath of the Cold War, we also risk being unfavourably reactive during the current strategic evolution. The knowledge gap between officers and NCMs is being rapidly eroded by the advent of the technology age where access to knowledge is only a mouse click away.
The technology gap between the Cold War warriors who comprise a dwindling minority within the CF, and the digital natives who represent the CF’s future, is widening. There is a widening gap between the time it takes the CF to prepare for new threats and the time it takes those threats to manifest. There is also a gap between the need for training and the need for education. Training allows one to react to known threats while education enables the intellect, flexibility and agility to recognize, analyse and neutralize future threats.
There is an information assimilation gap between the new “generation Y” subordinates, who communicate in the virtual cyber world and their leadership at the strategic and operational levels. Finally there is a gap between abilities and employment. The success of this model will be directly contingent on the level of support from both senior officers and senior warrant officers.
Deduction: While the CF’s ability to develop mitigating strategies to close the gap between the current state and the desired state has increased marginally, the factors which widen the gap are increasing exponentially.
The success of this model will be directly contingent on the level of support from both senior officers and senior warrant officers.
The CF constantly faces urgent, varied and sometimes conflicting priorities. The expectations Canadians have of their Armed Forces are understandably high and deservedly uncompromising. The CF assures Canadians that our highest commitment is to the young men and women who selflessly serve within our ranks.
This model supports that fundamental contract, by recognizing CPO1/CWOs as the instrument by which the widest variety of CF members can be positively influenced, regardless of rank. In order to empower its people, the CF must first strengthen the foundations on which CPO1/CWO core competencies are built. This must begin at the strategic level and flow down through both the operational and tactical levels. Realization of this construct holds the following implications for the CF:
- NCMs must take ownership of the CF’s recognition that they are professionals within the profession of arms
- The development of future SA/KP CPO1/CWO demands a methodical, adaptable, well-conceived and progressive model
- The implementation of the Progressive Model will require the engagement and endorsement of the highest levels of CF leadership
- Implementation will additionally require universal and consistent application across the CF
- SA/KP CPO1/CWOs are and will continue to be the driving force for the successful information, modification and adaptation of this model
- This model will strengthen future CF command/leadership teams at all levels by acting as a force multiplier to both institutional and operational leadership
- The CF must analyse and implement the devolution of certain leadership responsibilities to its SA/KP CPO1/CWOs, signalling commitment to this model
- The CF must design and introduce NCM-specific, military-focused education programs which enhance critical thinking skills, support the decision cycle and help turn strategic context into operational excellence.
The following graphic provides a visual representation of a Progressive Model for CPO1/CWO professional development from a graduated, flexible and comprehensive perspective. The development of the concept was also undertaken from both an operational and institutional perspective. The strategic guidance provided was very broad and afforded the Integrated Capability Analysis Team (ICAT) a great degree of flexibility with respect to what was to be analysed, why it was important to the model and how it would impact the CF.
The Progressive Model is a well-conceived, comprehensive, methodical and adaptable approach to the generation, development, employment and sustainment of CPO1/CWOs from initial appointment to transition and throughout their advancement. The model additionally balances the needs of the individual, throughout his or her progression, with the operational imperatives of the CF. Finally, the model takes into account the need for a greater degree of flexibility in the professional development of CPO1/CWOs, which provides increased options for employment, pan-CF exposure, lateral progression and alternative employment. The model depicts this as a highway which includes collector lanes, on ramps, express lanes, interchanges and off ramps. Each aspect of the model is described in the sections which follow.
Although this model is intended for the professional development of CPO1/CWOs, there is also a significant role to be played by CPO1/CWOs in the implementation and successful management of the model. Early identification of NCMs who demonstrate outstanding potential would be the responsibility of ships coxswains, unit RSMs and squadron CWOs. These tactical level CPO1/CWOs, who are at the coal face of operations, NCM evaluation, training and professional development, would partner with career managers (career councillors) and the identified NCM to mutually develop a career path. The CPO1/CWO would then seek out and connect his or her NCM with a qualified mentor. This group would collaboratively discuss the members’ expectations, ambitions, requirements, potential and personal goals, in order to outline the steps required to realize a plan.
This section of the model demonstrates entrance into the PD highway by means of the collector lanes which represent the Basic Military Qualification, trade-specific training, the intermediate levels of leadership training and trade specific employment at the tactical level, from Ordinary Seaman/Private to Chief Petty Officer Second Class/Master Warrant Officer. At this level tactical and technical expertise are developed and perfected, building the foundation of NCM core competencies. In addition awareness of strategic context could be progressively introduced into the curriculum of the leadership courses.
Qualified mentors with operational and ideally strategic level experience would be engaged at this stage, to advise the NCM on education opportunities, employment possibilities and progression strategies. The Military Leadership Handbook offers: “
If mentoring is ideally suited to address the needs unique to each individual it might indicate that mentoring should be supported by any organization” . 15 The mentor/mentee relationship would also be critical to building awareness of strategic implication through the discussion of real-life examples with ethical or moral dilemmas, for example, in an operational or disciplinary context.
This next stage of the model reflects CPO1/CWO employment at the tactical level where the Coxswain, RSM or unit CWO would accrue valuable experience in his or her core competencies. On the professional development highway they would perform their primary duties, while entering the first interchange where they would also be afforded the opportunity to attain additional training or development prerequisites to be qualified for progression to the next level.
The disparity of promotion rates through the ranks of some trades may mean that this is as far as the CPO1/CWO can progress. However this does not mean the end of his or her utility to the CF. In fact once tactical level employment has ended and succession to the next levels are not attainable, a CPO1/CWO becomes an invaluable asset to the CF. Varied employment opportunities must be developed to leverage this great body of practical experience. The model refers to these opportunities as off ramps or alternative employment. These could be OUTCAN postings, concept, doctrine or capability development lessons learned analysis or any other staff capacity which would benefit from engaging CPO1/CWOs.
The CF is organized and optimized for tactical level employment. This is both necessary and logical because our core business is resident at that level. However, the greatest percentage of CF activity does not involve our core combat capabilities. They do involve the assessment of threats, development of TTPs, development of capabilities, provision of deterrence and development of training strategies to prepare our members for their primary roles. These are some of the institutional imperatives which ensure that the CF remains well-trained, well-equipped, well-disciplined and well-prepared. Since CPO1/CWOs are the custodians of the traditions and customs which make us armed forces, it seems logical that they should be intimately involved in the development and evolution of our profession and our forces. Staff responsibilities, in which we are lacking sufficient capacity, are a natural fit for CPO1/CWO experience and knowledge. Other prospective employment possibilities have been suggested earlier in this model. However, the development of these opportunities is best left to SMEs such as Chief of Military Personnel (CMP).
This next stage of the model depicts progression to operational level employment. The CPO1/CWOs employed at this level will have attained the necessary additional training and development perquisites to move on to this level. This is the second highway interchange where the CPO1/CWO is first selected for key positions. Once again there may not be sufficient time or opportunity to progress beyond this level. However, there should be the same type of additional alternative employment opportunities as the ones afforded at the previous level. There would also be additional development perquisites to be acquired at this level, for onward movement to the next.
Sustainment of a deep pool of prospective eligible candidates from which to select SA/KP CPO1/CWOs is crucial to both the Progressive Model and the CF. Education and training modifications are central components to the sustainment of both the implicated individuals and the model itself. There are many examples of how officer and NCM training and education opportunities are being amalgamated throughout the CF for specific goals. Strategy 2020, Officer 2020, NCM 2020 and Duty with Honour all call for a fully professional NCM corps and the need for the CF to transform itself into a learning organization.
Initiatives such as KAP, ELP, ALOC, the Technical Warrant Officer Course and Command and Staff College are all examples of attempts to satisfy this need, and the disconnection in attempting to realize that goal. CFC asserts that over a 20-year career the CF invests approximately 180 days of education in its NCMs. This must be expanded and enhanced to form the foundation for transforming the CF into a 21st century learning institution.
To respond effectively to the external environment, the profession will need to continually develop a higher order of understanding and knowledge of new forms of conflict.
— Duty with Honour: The Profession of Arms in Canada
As a recognized profession, the CF has the ability to develop its own professional curriculum, standards and certification. Centres of excellence such as CMP, DLI, NCMPDC and CFC must develop specific education to better train NCMs to think critically and gain a more broad-based understanding of the strategic environment.
These must not simply be modifications to Officer Curriculum, but rather focused, exclusive and tailored towards NCMs, while supportive of the Progressive Model. The NCM corps also bears a tremendous responsibility with respect to ownership of the idea of themselves as professionals within the profession of arms. NCMs must embrace the idea of professional writings, professional opinions on subjects germane to their trade craft and participate actively in the evolution of their own professional development. The levels of education of recruits and indeed our entire NCM corps have increased dramatically. CF educational institutions must shape the potential, created by these levels of education, and turn them into military context that supports the operational art.
The Progressive Model is designed to enable the selection, appointment and transition of future SA/KP CPO1/CWOs. By adopting a construct that is based on a methodical series of graduated requirements, this model will ensure that at the operational and strategic levels, there will be a strong pool from which to select each SA/KP CPO1/CWO. By placing some of the onus on the individual and some on the CF, the model ensures a mutually beneficial contract between the two. It also ensures that only the best prepared and strongest candidates will eventually qualify for selection to these positions.
This final stage of the model depicts progression to the strategic level. The sustainment section highlights the need for synchronization between the many uncoordinated initiatives designed to promote NCM education for various specific reasons. What is required is the systematic development of an evolutionary and adaptable approach which designs and regulates the education requirements at the successive rank levels. Additionally, there may be the need for a comprehensive NCM-specific course at the DP5 level which satisfactorily prepares CPO1/CWOs for strategic level appointments.
DEDUCTION: The requirements of the Progressive Model cannot be accumulated through the delivery of a single course or block of training. It is designed to allow the member to attain the requirements incrementally and to build capacity and experience gradually.
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