Accession Number:

ADA339453

Title:

A Formula for How to Screw Up the Army: Take No Risks and Make No Mistakes

Descriptive Note:

Monograph

Corporate Author:

ARMY COMMAND AND GENERAL STAFF COLL FORT LEAVENWORTH KS SCHOOL OF ADVANCED MILITARY STUDIES

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:

1997-12-18

Pagination or Media Count:

69.0

Abstract:

This monograph is attempted provocation an intellectual dare from the author to the reader to think about how the Army views risk taking by its tactical leaders. More specifically, this monograph attempts to answer whether the Armys capstone leadership, operational, and risk doctrine encourage leaders at brigade level and below to productively take risk. The author finds the answer to the research question to be a resounding NO and offers suggestions which might change the answer to the affirmative. Our Armys doctrinal and cultural views of risk are hypocritical. Both offer platitudes that ask military professionals to accept risk, to realize its necessity, and to leverage it confidently on the field of battle. In the next doctrinal breath we encourage aversity to risk by embracing principles that seek certainty and attempt to see the future with perfect acuity. The culture of the Army itself what its members do, say, and think and the way the Army organizes itself only reinforce this aversity. If productive risk taking really exists, the conceptual underpinnings of a model to achieve it must likely come partially from a look outside the profession. The monograph seeks insight into the research questions answer by surveying civilian risk theory and developing a taxonomy of the same. The work then considers distinctions between civilian and military environments to assist in identifying the transferable insights from civilian risk theory to assist in the creation of a model for military risk taking in the leadership domain. Taking this distillation and additionally considering a mix of some selected military risk theory, the monograph presents a military risk taking model. After comparing the elements of the model to Army doctrine, a chapter recommends doctrinal changes.

Subject Categories:

  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

Distribution Statement:

APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE