Sunday, January 1, 2012

Reminder for Commanding Officers For 2012 - Command Responsibility is Absolute

The Commander's responsibility for his command is absolute and he must and will be held accountable for its safety, well-being and efficiency. That is the very foundation of our maritime heritage, the cornerstone of naval efficiency and effectiveness and the key to victory in combat.

This is the essence of the special trust and confidence placed in an officer's patriotism, valor, fidelity and abilities. 

Every day in command tests the strength of character, judgment and professional abilities of those in command. In some cases, Commanders  will be called upon to answer for their conduct in a court of law. In all cases, they will be professionally judged by seagoing officers -- a far more stringent accountability in the eyes of those who follow the sea.

We in the Navy would have it no other way, for the richest reward of command is the personal satisfaction of having measured up to this responsibility and accountability.

From the CNO's Memorandum For All Flag Officers and Officers in Command of 2 October 1976.


Anonymous said...

Captain Lambert,

The words of CNO to All Flag Officers and Officers in Command ring true in my mind, for the full Navy career that was allowed me by almost every every Commanding Officer I served under. When I was a young Bluejacket I stood with my hat in my hand a few times before more than one of them, and was administered justice fairly by each one. Today as I ponder the Commanding Officers that have been relieved for cause, and knowing that my transgressions were probably even worse than they committed, I suddenly feel very fortunate, that is only due to a few Commanding Officers who evidently thought I would make a decent Sailor that I was allowed to complete a Navy career.

Very Respectfully,

Justin Rogers ENS, USN (1170) said...

To me, leadership (in what I envision a commanding officer exercising) is not efficiency, effectiveness and safety. It simply has to deal with decisions that carry consequences. It's been said that he who will not risk cannot get ahead. Bold decision making (that of course BUILDS a team) enhances one's leadership!!!

Anonymous said...

ENS Rogers,

You are correct in saying that if you do not risk you cannot get ahead. But it needs to be further explained that if you are involved in unnecessary or undo risk, to yourself, your crew or your ship, failure is just waiting for you. Did the 22 Commanding Officers (relieved for cause) last year know their risk?

Very Respectfully,