Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

Changes In The Wind

The 'Phibster has his thoughts on the changes to the prospective CPO training philosophy just released by the new MCPON. He doesn't like the changes. Neither do I. Excerpt from the Navy article:
"Effective immediately, we're respectfully sun-downing the word 'induction', and in its place we'll use CPO 365 as the primary term," said Stevens. "I believe that induction is more about a moment in time, and CPO 365 and the development of our FCPOs to become CPOs is not about a moment in time. It's about a continuous time. This is something we're going to do every day, 365 days a year, and so we want to make sure the term we are using is matching what we are doing."
What do you think of the proposed changes? Will it make E-7 just one block up from E-6?


Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is very sad, and a final nail in the coffin for a "non-separation" of Enlisted Ranks, joining all the other military branches. I think it started with the uniform change and O-Gangers sobering up. The Chief's community has strived on being the SME's and the last person to ask to “get’r done”. Being a Chief really means something to those who pushed the hardest to make chief, maybe not the ones that were at the right place, at the right time, and the numbers were in their favor – they just had to pass an exam. Just sayin’. I’ve known the types, and they hurt their young sailor’s unknowingly. Chiefs have always had to improvise and overcome enormous challenges and never quit. When everyone is against you(or at least it seems like it) – it’s no easy task. And when first selected, not all First Class Petty Officers are in that mindset. The "Chief" has to believe in their mind and heart that no task, situation or problem is so great that it can't be solved. Unfortunately, you’ll have a CO or XO that forgets that one Chief who took care of them, covered their ass, and trained them the best way they knew how. Chiefs make things happen. Why?…confidence. Chiefs are not special or unique, yet believe in whom they are...and it is that confidence that allows us to accomplish the things we do. Chief’s now a day are not empowered. But, fate draws in rarely, to that one Captain who does remember, and great things are accomplished. It's all too PC. One step forward, two steps back. You can't get any real work done, or mentoring for that matter, because the generation “not my fault” is too busy gaming/texting/filing grievances in their “off” time. No bad words are allowed…

1/08/2013 9:20 AM

Blogger a_former_elt_2jv said...

"...Mmmm...yeah. You see, we're putting the coversheets on all TPS reports now before they go out. Did you see the memo about this?... ...Yeah. If you could just go ahead and make sure you do that from now on, that will be great. And uh, I'll go ahead and make sure you get another copy of that memo. Mmmkay? Bye bye..."

1/08/2013 9:40 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the MCPON wants to make changes, fine. I'm willing to follow his lead, because there is an implied trust in whomever is selected for that position. But for CPO's to have to find out about this via Navy Times, and have no input or chance to provide feedback?? UNSAT.

1/08/2013 10:26 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Coming next year.... Silver name tapes and belt buckles

1/08/2013 10:32 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The PC movement that took root after Tailhook has grown into a briar patch. This is difficult for me to express in writing but I will try.
Being selected for Chief does not transform one into a CPO. It is a process that takes root from day one. Sailors know who the real Chiefs are and who the drunk posers are. Your level of responsibility increases so dramatically it can be overwhelming. That's where the Goat Locker comes in. When I made Chief I was accepted into a group of hard chargers who never had a thought of non-performance. They had high standards and it was just never thought that there was any other way. I was in the company of the likes of Gary Carr, Dick Taltavall, Wanchai Green and others that the thought of you doing less than what was expected wasn't even considered. The Goat Locker was what motivated and moved the ship.
Leadership is not something a uniform or collar device gives you. It has to be acquired, nurtured and seasoned.
I once had two 1st class and I thought boy do I have it made now. Well both had never been an LPO or never even made a full Westpac as an LPO. One was a 1st class skimmer non-qual and one was SS with Master-at-Arms experience but no real sea-time. When the subject of augment came up they had a great plan. One of them would augment each half. Wrong answer. I explained why both would make the entire run. The younger guys needed the schools and they didn't plus they needed the experience professionally. Two different reactions. The skimmer didn't like it but understood what I meant. The other got all pissed off. I had forgot what it was like to wear dungarees and was all FUBAR. Well the skimmer went on to make a good A-gang chief and the SS didn't make the Westpac at all or make Chief. Wonder why?
When I found out I had been selected I went topside and just thought, "Wow the Navy actually thinks I can be a Chief?" Could I even come up to the likes of some of my former Chiefs? There was such a sense of awe. It was a life changing event. One that I have lived my life around. It's worked through-out my Navy career, 20 years in industry and now I'm with a non-profit. Leadership and doing what's right remains the same regardless of the workplace. This water-downed stuff just muddies the water and creats confusion among junior sailors. A good leader knows when to offer a hand and when a boot may be necessary. I wasn't hazed. I was initiated and inducted into a new life.
Sorry this is so long!


1/08/2013 10:43 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow, all these posts about great chiefs and how they save the world. And how the O-gangers are the smartest of all the military branches and yet all the problems remain decade after decade.

Changing a name means jack squat. Make the Navy about people, make them WANT to stay in. Treat people right and the rest falls into place.

The mindset of Navy brass needs to turned on its head. This time it's the fat enlisted club, err, goat locker but that exact same problem is there in the wardroom.

1/08/2013 11:19 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Everything that is FUBAR about the NAVY and the goings on....Man... I think the STAR Circle is where people should start to look... But they won't... Pretty Sad.. All The Firings... All the negative Change for sake of change.... Look to the Top, Change the top... But it won't happen, it just doesn't matter. Sad..... Look out for your shipmate.... not the way it is anymore. Sad...

1/08/2013 12:53 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Make the Navy about people, make them WANT to stay in. Treat people right and the rest falls into place."


The inverse, of course, is also true - for the smart ones anyway. Which may be why we read so many interesting stories about our sub force in the Navy Times.

You can only push guys so hard to cover your own asses before they discover shellfish allergies, develop alcohol addictions, go crazy, attempt suicide, or just plain check the fuck out and do the bare minimum before running away from the Navy at top speed after their first enlistment. After you send a half dozen guys to rehab over Christmas standdown, have a cook go crazy during a fast cruise, see previously good guys desperate to do anything they possibly can to get the hell out of your clutches, and maybe look at a couple suicide attempts, maybe you'll realize that your stupid, fake, hardass routine wasn't the best way to treat the crew after all, hey COB? (True story btw, currently ongoing - I'm out of the Navy for years now and watching from afar, but just waiting for this clown of a E8 I refer to to get fired.)

What can I say? Shit floats. I learned everything I know about leadership from the negative examples of what not to do in the Submarine force, and the positive examples of how a great team operates that I saw when I got out.

1/08/2013 1:05 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

SUBFORCE Leadership throws out words like Culture and Retention.. More power point presentations are given to point out the way "it needs" to be..... but they are not following their own model.... Times are changing and not for the better...

1/08/2013 1:35 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am Embarrased by the Navy Leadership. I made it in 2005 as part of the transition group. The CPO leadership now i would not follow into battle, would not believe they have my back nor would i trust them with my life or the life of my sailors.... We are going to loose a boat one day and this "PC" navy will be the reason why.

1/08/2013 3:19 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

COs need to learn to empower their Chiefs, not castrate them. Yes, there are some good COs, and my last one was excellent (I wonder if coming from the enlisted ranks had anything to do with it?). I had a love/hate relationship with the subforce after I had qualified senior in rate. I would say the number one reason I did 6 and quit, just above the politics of the nuclear navy, was my chief.

I believe an excellent goat locker can positively affect retention. You also get a lot of nukes who can do their job better than anyone else, but know absolutely nothing about people or leadership. Those guys get promoted to chief. I don't know how it worked up forward. The point is, they can call this shit whatever they want, but you still need to make good chiefs. It's typical navy bureaucracy to change the name on something, but still run a sub par program.

Another note, they need to fire commanding officers who castrate the goat locker.

1/08/2013 3:28 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

and here I thought that all that time I spent as a FCPO was training to become a Chief. Or at least good Chiefs identified good FCPO's and helped develop their professional skills and leadership ability so they could step into the role as Chief when the time came.

Silly me.

1/08/2013 3:47 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you want to make something happen then take a chance, quit brown-nosing and quite telling your CMC's that their ideas are great and need no improvement. You are part of a Chief's Mess which means you say your piece. This is the Chief's fault and I am one of them. Stop looking out for yourselves and man up. We've been warned about our season going away for years and we've done nothing but become yes men.

1/08/2013 6:16 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

When exactly does all this training take place? As you all well know, E6s on boats do a tremendous amount of physical labor (and paper pushing, as implied above with "TPS reports") - not simply holding onto a mug like on the surface. If ALL E6s are mandated to Phase I, is Big Navy going to send extra bodies to the boats to ensure all the work 1st classes aren't doing while they're Phase 1ing gets done? Why don't they just eliminate urinals while they're at it?

1/08/2013 9:00 PM

Blogger DDM said...

Call it initiation, induction, transition, CPO 365, whatever. I was initiated in 1991, one of the last years of the no holds barred initiations. The thing that stood the test of time in my time as an active duty Chief 1991-2008 was trying to live up to the standard of the CPO Creed. Flowery descriptions and buzzwords are just whip cream on horseshit. Use the money for this program to buy parts IMHO.

1/09/2013 2:37 AM

Blogger Curt said...

+> The Important Training for the PO1 to CPO happens the first year after the Chief is 'Included' in the CPO Mess, after the Pinning - Not before.
-->> Becoming a boot CPO in a hard-charging Goat Locker, and being Mentored/Trained by the BEST to BE the BEST, That's The Thing!!

=> What happens in the 12 Hours, or 12 weeks, or 12 Months just prior to being Pinned to CPO...
-->> Not So Important!

1/09/2013 11:47 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The training during induction season is a waste of time. Quit training so much on navy policies that should be known by ALL sailors and actually provide more extensive training on planning, admin, and things to do or not to do to get fired. We need to have less surface fags running the Navy so we an eliminate these BS requirements.

1/09/2013 5:00 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have seen both spectrums of good and bad CPO's. Sad to say, one bad Chief is enough to sour even the most hard charging blue shirt to get out. I served with some outstanding CPO's and aspired to become the type that they embodied. But it took only one barely functional drunk E-9 to wreck my ambitions and to make the Navy my career. Upshot was, despite the crappy eval he gave me, I turned down what was considered some of the best shore duty assignments and got out.

1/10/2013 10:28 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

The issue is Nukedom is an engineering billet and it's assumed that people will progress to be managers.

I have test engineers who have been test engineers for 20 years and are the best at what they do. The worst thing to go for many of these guys would be to move them into a manager role or put them in a less technical role.

In the Navy however, the idea of management/khaki is forced even for people where it's not the best fit for them or the Navy. But then if they don't become Chief (aka, working manager)s they are considered shit bags, etc etc.

Reason # 1,543,234,546 why the Nuclear Navy is fucked up.

Going from E6 to E7 is not the quantum leap people want to hype it up to me. It starts the very day the enter the program and how that person is nurured and treated.

1/10/2013 10:43 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am sadden we came to this, I am not a Old Chief, Senior and or Master Chief when I retired by any means, I hate some of the Old ways but at least I made them better and change it to suite time changes and used the wisdom in the old ways to make the future better for those change ranks and changing uniforms. The Old initiation had a reason and purpose just needed tuning and a little TLC. To remove it all together is sad and a lost. The Ideal of being different gives a huge sense of respect, Honor, and Pride. Now that is gone. I see proof everyday it is gone, we see as a group as proof it is gone. I can tell you the issues the NAVY alone is having is the leadership shift and the taking away of a CPO, CPO's in six years is crazy and also takign away. Some may deserve it and others do not. But is is eroding the structure. Proof is and I do not even have to say it and it is in the papers, The Number of CO's lost last year 2012 and the ships having issues and Drugs and the lost of leaders is proof enough that the path the Navy is going is wrong. I wrote a heart felt letter 4 years ago to MCPON West and he sad what the hell was I talking about, Just Recently I saw the New MCPON make a Navy times comment on the very same issues I told Rick West. I laughed and shook my head and I gave up right there. The Ships conditions are below standards, Crews are below standards and we are experiencing more accidents and more firing than any time in our history. We honor the fallen and the Medal Honor winners in the Past and they be ashamed where we have gone in the future and failing further behind. What I see is sad and uncalled for. I told a 4 star what was the issues when I retired and the fix is easy. Changing and making the fix work is or must be to hard for people. Maintaining Pride and respect is a hard job everyday, when you do not even try, then what we have happening now is the out come of not trying. Going Deep, MMCM/SS/Ret 30 years and 8 days Henry G Schwind. 28 years I wore my fish, Never had such issues in my time! Dolphin wearer since 1983!

1/11/2013 12:38 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

You and Linda hosted our initiation! God Bless and long life. Thank you for the lessons you taught our peer group. It WORKED.


1/14/2013 3:12 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hagar - the 'Ten-Speed' we know is John Schwind and he wears wings not fish. This is a different Schwind me thinks.


1/18/2013 7:07 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

It took me 16 years to make Chief. I made more mistakes than most sailors EVER get to get away with. MY Chief stood up for me, took me under his wing and straightened me out. I am the last of the TRULY Initiated, I miss my Old Navy and I pity the New PC navy (note the lower case n as you no longer deserve a Capital N). I'm happy that I am retired now, I couldn't tolerate the standards you have fallen to.

1/20/2013 9:13 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

As a former JO (SWO-N) my feelings about chiefs are definitely mixed. The ones I had, frankly sucked. One was fired from 6 divisions. Another a SCPO was on the ROAD and eventually got fired by AIRLANT for being such an idiot. I had one SCPO who was decent, and my "first class" chief saved my @ss for over a year. I'm pretty certain I would have been a better O if I hadn't been trained by such a crappy SCPO.

I don't buy the notion that Chiefs are fantastic simply because they're Chiefs. A lot of them suck. The problems go beyond initiation (or lack of initiation). The culture from top down is lacking. Too PC & too much butt kissing. Same thing goes for zerOs. Unfortunately they both reflect society outside the Navy.

BTW, all the fundraising did piss me off. Getting commissioned isn't cheap either and ensigns don't get a uniform allowance (it's a loan) and don't get to sell cookies for the all the other crap they need.

1/25/2013 6:11 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I made Chief and was INITIATED in 1966. At that time when a First Class was recommended he was assumed to have been qualified. It's true that when I put on Khaki's I was immediately respected and treated as a Chief. I comtinued to learn and become more qualified for the next eleven years.

Unfortunately, it looks like to me that Chiefs are now Junior Officers. No more Chiefs Clubs. Pretty soon Chief Quarters aboard ship will probably go away too. Establishing a MCPON was one of the worst ideas ever. Too bad.

8/11/2013 10:07 AM


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