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Personal Narrative: My Crucible Experience

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Having served in various leadership positions throughout a ten year military career, I can point to my appointment as a company commander as my most significant crucible experience. Although the vast majority officers prepare for this role relatively early in their career, my assignment to the position occurred abruptly, unexpectedly, and certainly imposed some traumatic qualities within my life at the time. These characteristics seem to fit Bennis and Thomas’ description of a crucible event, of which made this experience somewhat easy to identify. However, upon further analysis, I often reflect upon this experience and
` E/1-5 CAV returned from a 15 month deployment in January 2009. Our combat engineer company had been engaged in route
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Having completed reset, incorporating two young lieutenants, and moving into team level training, we were out doing a out team live fire. We had planned the event in accordance with the battalion concept, but added training enabalers. We were the last company within the BN to occupoy the range, and commander I was relieving warned me that the Division Commander’s driver had been on his range scouting training events. Sure enough, MG Bolger (Pegasus Six) walked onto our range later that day. His initial response was “what are you doing out here”. My response was “Army Training Sir”…..After all, I was still leaving the Army Unbeknownst to me, recent guidance to the BCT CDRs was that no training was to occur on the weekends. To further his anger, the prvious five training events he visted that day were apparently not up to his standard. That being said, and after surviving first contact, he ended up having a great time on our range; to the point where he maneuvered with a young team leader needing a fill in, and presented a coin to PV2 who successfully administered an IV following actions on the objective. Come Monday Morning, I found a hand written note on my desk from the division commander complimenting our range, with this casual remark: “Brent, you’re doing a terrific job”. It seems like such a trivial comment, but I still become emotional when I read it to this…show more content…
And now, I have a definition for what they represent; they were my crucibles of leadership. The’re significance is rofound, as it enable me to overcome a lack of confidence. This set the foundation for what ended u being a very successful 20 month command, to include 10 months in combat where I led, at one point, three EN platoons, an infantry platoon, the BN Scouts, and managed my own Joint Security Staion while occupying battlespace encompsing a sizeable portion of northern Bagdad. Bottom line, I don’t think I could have accomplished that hadn’t I gained the confidence through the early days of my command. In retrospect, I needed that transformation, almost as a mental obstacle that needed to be overcome. But how can I use these experiences to further assist me as an organizational
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