Leader development is the means for growing competent, confident, self-aware leaders who are prepared for the challenges of the future. Future Force leaders must be multifunctional, capable of supporting the range of military operations within the our environment, comfortable with ambiguity, information systems literate, and capable of intuitive assessments of situations for rapid conceptualization of friendly courses of action. Through the leader development process, NGAW works with our State’s senior leadership to develop leaders with character and competence for today and tomorrow to be trainers, role models, and standard bearers. Leader development through progressive, sequential, and continuous education and experience throughout one’s career benefits the Army, Air Force, and the leader.
NGAW facilitates gathering today’s leaders to develop future leaders who are prepared to meet tomorrow’s challenges. An essential component of this development is mentoring. The term mentorship refers to the voluntary, developmental relationship between a person of greater experience and a person of lesser experience that is characterized by mutual trust and respect. Mentorship impacts both personal development (maturity, interpersonal and communication skills) as well as professional development (technical and tactical knowledge, and career-path knowledge).
The goal of mentorship is to assist the lesser-experienced person in reaching his/her personal and professional potential. It is critical to understand that mentorship is not any one behavior or set of behaviors, but rather includes all of the leader development behaviors (for example, counseling, teaching, coaching, and role modeling) that are displayed by a trusted advisor.
The strength of the mentorship relationship is the fact that it is based on mutual trust and respect. Assessment, feedback and guidance accelerate the developmental process and enhance performance. When this occurs within a mentoring relationship, even higher performance results. Mentoring requires taking advantage of any opportunity to teach, counsel, or coach to build skills and confidence in the mentored. Mentoring is not limited to formal sessions but can include every event from quarterly training briefs to after-action reviews to casual, recreational activities.
One of the most important legacies that today’s senior leaders can leave on the Army is to mentor junior leaders to fight and win future conflicts. Mentoring develops great leaders to lead great Soldiers.
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