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Officer Specilisations

Discussion in 'POC Section' started by Stroll147, May 5, 2020.

  1. Stroll147

    Stroll147 Active Member

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    Hey,

    Why are there so few officer specilisations, it just doesn't make sense to me that there's only signals, ML and Landing Craft Group. I understand why you don't have ones like sniper because it isn't needed (you dont have a whole troop of snipers so don't need a sniper officer) but why are there so few, and if i do ML can i only lead a ML troop or only be in raiding group if I am landing craft etc.

    Any info greatly appreciated, Thanks!!
     
  2. 03092014

    03092014 Royal Marines Commando

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    What other ones do you think there should be?

    The reality is that as an officer progresses in his career he is needed in more planning and staff based roles. It is the job of SNCOs to be the subject matter experts.
     
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  3. vellichor

    vellichor New Member

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    Prior to AIB I asked my ACLO what officer specialisations are currently available, here's what he came back with:
    landing craft, signals RSO or SFC, heavy weapons, SBS, mountain leader, intelligence, pilot, physical training.
     
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  4. Advocado

    Advocado Royal Marines Commando

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    The reason there are only that select list of specialisations available, accurately provided by @vellichor, is because those are the only areas that require specific management.

    I've seen a fair few of your threads now and it's positive to see a young 16 year old lad with a positive attitude striving towards the goal of Royal Marines Officer, however I feel that you don't quite understand the role so let me offer some guidance.

    On a previous post you stated you were unsure whether to join as an OR or an Officer, you wanted to be a bootneck but you were adamant you wanted to lead, lead, lead! Which is a hoofing attitude. But OR's and Officers are both leaders dependent on the stage they are at in their career. The key difference is that whilst Officers host leadership skills in abundance, they perform more of a management role than a specific leadership role.

    I'll give you an on camp example and an in the field example.

    On camp: An officer in a troop commander role will lead the troop for their troop phys. He will most likely decide what sort of phys they are conducting in order to give the troop a 'beat up' for an upcoming exercise or deployment and he will definitely be at the front of the troop setting the example as the duty phys ninja. However for the remainder of the day, he will most likely be in a managerial role from his desk. Writing reports, submitting paperwork for upcoming exercises and writing training programmes with the help of the troop sergeant.

    On camp: A Corporal in the role of a section commander performs a leadership role, without the added background management role. A section commander will lead during the phys, he will lead in terms of teaching his marines new skills, perfecting current ones, running ranges for the lads, jacking up exercises, the list goes on. He isn't managing the lads, he is there doing it all with them and striving to ensure that his section are ready to close and kill with the enemy when the troop commander launches them. At the end of the day, he is in the grots with the lads having banter and wets.

    In the field: An officer in a troop commander leads in terms of forumlating plans, delivering orders and executing them. For troop/company/unit level evolutions the troop commander is leading the lads and he in overall command of his troop. However, when the rounds start going down I would argue that again he is back into that managerial role, you won't see him fixing his bayonet and charging into battle. He's in cover, on the comms, with his map out, perhaps a drone feed or a satellite picture. He assesses the situation, forumulates a plan, then executes it by briefing his JNCOs (the corporals in a section commanders role) then launching them on their relevent taskings. He is essentially moving the chess pieces (his three sections) around the battlefield to achieve his aim.

    In the field: The JNCO (Corporal) has now been briefed on his tasking from the troop commander. Now he will lead his section by deciding exactly how he wants to achieve the mission he has been set by the troop commander and executing it alongside his marines, as oppose to sitting back in that managerial role.
    For example, my troop commander may task me to secure a building, but its up to me whether I want to blow in the front door, use an assault ladder and assault on the first floor, make a diversionary dummy entrance on one door while the main assaulting fireteam goes through the other door, and I will be there with my lads leading them every step of the way, then I'll report back to the troop commander when the job is done.

    So now take a look back at those specialisations. Those are all areas which require specific management by someone who fully understands their role. Every other specialisation in the corps either doesn't require that management from an officer, or it isn't so much of a nichè area that an unspecialised officer cannot manage them.

    I hope this helps mate, you can lead down both the OR or Officer route in the corps. The Officers will manage from the start of their career which is a great deal of responsibility and warrants the extra training and pay/benefits. ORs won't find themselves in that management role until they are a SNCO.

    This is also why a degree would go in your favour, its proof that you can manage your own life before you're trusted to manage other peoples.
     
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  5. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Admin

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    Your ACLO needs to get with the beat.

    Those are the old specs.

    Aircrew Officers transfer to RN nowadays. Those remaining Officer Specs are as indicated in post #1, plus UKSF.
     
  6. Chelonian

    Chelonian Moderator

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    Excellent summary by @Advocado

    A reasonable person might deduce that the primary role of an Officer is that of management.
    This doesn't mean that he or she will 'fly a desk' for an entire career but it also implies that managing a specialised skill set does not require the same level of practical experience as, say, an SNCO who has devoted a significant part of his career to being a SME.

    Leadership is required and expected from everyone from the most junior Other Rank to the Chief of the General Staff.
     
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  7. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker Admin

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    Put another way, you don't need to be a doctor to manage a hospital, likewise a ship's Commanding Officer probably doesn't know how to set the tappets on a main engine.
     
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  8. 03092014

    03092014 Royal Marines Commando

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    Great post.
     
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  9. Stroll147

    Stroll147 Active Member

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    Thank you very very much, just trying to gather as much info as possible and your post is a gold mine!
     
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  10. Stroll147

    Stroll147 Active Member

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    Thanks for the example, this has made it actually make sense now!