Failure to Prepare for Field

Purpose of Counseling

The purpose of this counseling is to discuss why Soldiers are not able to keep their family issues in order when they go to the field.

Key Points of Discussion

We have 4 scheduled deployments every year for training. They are scheduled well in advance and everyone is given at least 90 days notice.

When we conduct field training, the purpose of that training is to demonstrate conditions and circumstances that could be expected during actual operations so that we can prepare for them and know what to expect.

To that end, during our last training exercise at Ft Stewart, we learned that you and your family are completely unprepared for deployment and that your wife is utterly dependant on your advice and support. You were constantly on your cell phone with your wife and kids during the entire exercise. At least once, the radio went unmonitored while you coached your wife through your latest problem. This is unacceptable.

When you are at work, you must concentrate on your work. Distractions should be kept to a minimum. This principle is exponentially more important in the field where there are so many risks. You must stay focused on your job and not your family crisis. The safety of everyone around you depends on it. The mission depends on it.

There are two issues that need to be resolved immediately.

1. In the future, take exercises seriously and PLAN for them. This is no joke. It's not a field trip. When we go to the field we are training for war. Take care of your family issues before going to the field and once in the field, FOCUS on the mission.

2. Your wife is unprepared to handle your absense. If she can't function or take care of the household responsibilities for only 5 days, what will she do during an actual deployment? How much more distracted will you be then? How much more will all of us be at risk because you can't concentrate on your job?

In the future, do not bring a cellphone to the field with you. Prepare your wife for your absense. Teach her how to make decisions and find solutions on her own. Make sure your financial obligations have been met before leaving home. Anticipate events that require action and take care of them in advance.

SFC Gummbels, USA

SPC Causeway, USA

Plan of Action

PLAN for the next field exercise and take it seriously. Anticipate events that will require action during the time you will be absent and take care of them in advance. Prepare your wife and family for your absense. Teach her how to make decisions and find solutions on her own.

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