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11 Rules for Majors

1.Thinking is your metric: critical thought is implied from a field grade officer.

2.Discipline your language: precise, concise, and articulate, formulated thought; up and down the chain of command

3.Play chess, not checkers: maneuver vs. attrition; thinking multiple terrain features ahead – shaping, each piece plays an important and shifting role; application of strategy applied against your mission; the institution is king and must be protected.

4.Know the talking points: the institution’s, your unit’s, and the intent behind them.

5.Understand the speed of decisions: understand the process of decision-makers and adjust; understand decision space for your commander.

6.Don’t be a one-trick pony: break out of your comfort zone; demonstrate Humility.

7.Identify the “Say-Do” gap. the major is the thermostat vice the thermometer – climate control; ensure intent is clear and inspect to follow up.

8.Learn to artfully advise: what does the boss not know about this problem? Speak to risk to force and risk to mission, resources, and culture; you must have an opinion – you are not neutral.

9.Don’t use yourself as an example: it makes it seem like it is about you – appearance of self-centeredness or close-mindedness. Be open to others’ beliefs and your opinion being changed.

10.What got you here won’t get you there: figure out what got you here and figure out what you need to adjust to get you on to the next opportunity.

11.Do not reward selfishness: examples of rewards include opportunistic billets, deployments, and evaluations.

Content drawn from Majors Lunch, Spring 2019

Colonel Everly

Commanding Officer, TBS