Training for military personnel is an important mandatory process, education for the military has become an area of interest in military operations. This is because the potential use of military force has become more complex, both technically and politically (Mujkic, Asencio, & Byrne, 2019). This, therefore, calls for not only training the leaders thoroughly but also ensuring that they have the requisite education. This paper will highlight the various aspects of education versus training of military leaders.
There has been a growing school of thought that military leaders should be both trained and educated. Servicemen leaders are always bestowed additional responsibilities; therefore, leadership training is very important as it improves their skills to enable them to provide efficient governance (Mujkic, Asencio, & Byrne, 2019). Moreover, through training and leadership development, military leaders progressively and sequentially mold their leadership skills and confidence that enables them to take decisive actions. As a result, the leaders will also be able to assess their weaknesses and strengths before liaising with high ranking officers. Further, continuous, and deliberate training of military leaders enhances subordinate confidence (Nazri & Rudi, 2019). The soldiers should believe in and have trust in their leader; usually, soldiers can follow orders willingly when they trust their leaders (Nazri & Rudi, 2019). When soldiers and their leaders cooperate in their operations, their mission is always achieved, however dangerous it may be. The selfless cooperation and trust is very essential for the leader as he or she will have ample opportunity to lead with confidence.
Additionally, the training of leaders provides them with experience to help junior officers in their undertakings. First, the leader needs to have regular communication with his/her juniors; this allows them to understand the challenges their juniors face and advise them on how to overcome those challenges. This interaction enables the leader and those under their command to cooperate in order to avert scenarios where soldiers take their own lives when overwhelmed with challenges (Laurence, 2011). Moreover, training leaders equip them with skills such that they can counsel their juniors on how to advance their careers; a great leader is one who understands the strengths, capabilities, and weaknesses of his or her subordinates (Nazri, & Rudi, 2019). This knowledge is very important for the leader to assist his juniors and their families because family is an integral part of a soldier’s success and morale. However, leaders also need thorough leadership education to complement their training. Military education is to advance military schooling for special personnel and senior officers; this process is done in strict adherence to military values and prescriptions (Syme-Taylor & Jalili, 2018). Military leader education is very crucial as it provides the leader with an intellectual capacity to plan for battlefield success. In this way, the leader will be equipped with vital skills in fostering stable military relations and critical analysis.
Moreover, education to the military leaders is necessary as it cultivates an aspiration for excellence. The military is trained to address critical situations such as protecting vital national interests, defending the nation, serving the citizens, humanitarian and disaster relief, combat, or training operations, among others (Mujkic, Asencio, & Byrne, 2019). This means that military leaders need education and training to enhance their critical knowledge, understanding, and quick decision-making in very delicate situations (Mujkic, Asencio, & Byrne, 2019). Also, military leader education is very important to enable them to predict and deal with the nettlesome environment. Such unprecedented occurrences need a daunting command of everything from learned knowledge of history, and social science to the documented hard-won battlefield experience (Laurence, 2011). Military leaders only get to learn these through education by being exposed to the ideas in the teaching space and by a divergent reflection on their personal experience. Additionally, military education to the leaders is a multiplier through which what the military did, is doing and intends to do is magnified. Leaders of different units in the military need to understand what is required of them, even in the face of adversity (Murray, Berkowitz, & Lerner, 2019). These may include effective communication and coordination between different combat units in terms of armor, artillery, infantry, and air power. This cooperation enables the military to create enough depth in their defensive lines against their enemy. Success can only be achieved if the unit leaders are efficiently cooperating.
In conclusion, through military education, the leaders will be able to learn and understand the history of war, emerging battlefield trends, and what to expect and guide their juniors accordingly. Further, military leader education imparts in them new knowledge to enable them to maneuver the constantly changing battlefield. With technological development, there is a lot of shift that the military must acquaint themselves with. The enemy is always employing hidden means in an effort to beat the military system. This can only be overcome when the leaders are much informed and are one step ahead of the enemy.
Laurence, J. H. (2011). Military leadership and the complexity of combat and culture. Military Psychology, 23(5), 489-501. https://doi.org/10.1080/08995605.2011.600143
Mujkic, E., Asencio, H. D., & Byrne, T. (2019). International military education and training: Promoting democratic values to militaries and countries throughout the world. Democracy and Security, 15(3), 271-290. https://doi.org/10.1080/17419166.2018.1519802
Murray, E. D., Berkowitz, M. W., & Lerner, R. M. (2019). Leading With and for Character: The Implications of Character Education Practices for Military Leadership. The Journal of Character & Leadership Development, 6(1), 33-42.
Nazri, M., & Rudi, M. (2019). Military leadership: A systematic literature review of current research. International Journal of Business and Management, 3(2), 01-15. Doi: 10.26666/rmp.ijbm.2019.1.2
Syme-Taylor, V., & Jalili, D. (2018). Professional Military Education. In Routledge Handbook of Defence Studies (pp. 98-112). Routledge.
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