"We’re not doing enough in leadership and workforce development," said Lt. Gen. Rick Lynch, commanding general of the U.S. Army Installation Management Command (IMCOM). "We need proactive systems to develop leaders and the workforce."
Speaking March 31 at AUSA’s Installations Symposium and Exhibition in San Antonio, Texas, Lynch said to bolster leadership, he is looking at "operationalizing the installations management community" by allowing military and civilian leaders from the operations side "to join our ranks" and bring their experience to IMCOM.
Likewise, IMCOM leaders would take positions within the operational force where they can eventually bring that experience back to IMCOM.
"We can develop ourselves," Lynch said.
John B. Nerger, IMCOM’s executive director, said for garrison commanders, they shouldn’t re-think their approach to developing civilian leaders. Many of those garrison commanders will have civilians under them for the first time, and the principles to develop competent, agile and adaptive soldiers works on civilians.
"Stick to basics," Nerger said. "Give them a sense of mission and life-long learning."
Nerger made a parallel to his childhood job as a paperboy where he was immediately instilled with the value of bringing information to community members instead of simply just delivering newspapers. Likewise, new civilian workers should know their expectations and the importance of their mission within the Army family.
"We do that too much – we don’t recognize the power of assimilating people into an organization," Nerger said.
People who have had the same job for multiple years should also be encouraged to move within the workforce and train into other job opportunities, he said.
IMCOM Command Sgt. Maj. Neil L. Ciotola told attendees to explore the value of courses and conferences that can be used to stimulate leader development. Information and knowledge gathered by leaders has a trickle-down effect throughout an organization.
"The more we can share and pass on, the better it makes the institution," Ciotola said.