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I had a leader blow up on me and refuse to sign a counseling statement- How should I handle this?

one of my New NCOS had a blowout with me, when I gave him a counseling for missing our unit FRG meeting. He refused to sign the counseling and told me that the Commander couldn't make FRG meetings mandatory for anybody. He expressed to me, he wouldn't sign any counseling, NCOER checklist, and NCOER coming from me. As his rater, how can I approach this situation.

Welcome to the unpredictable world  of leadership. It does not end when you become a civilian either.  The military can get your attention alot quicker.  Bottomline you do not have to deal with the attitude and it can be handled in any manner deemed appropriate from corrective training to UCMU.  His refusal to sign is absolutely fine.  I just don’t think he understands he is setting himself up for failure by not signing forms and having such a bad attitude/tone.  We all have things that get under our skin.  He is wrong! You and the commander can make any meeting or event mandatory (within reason).  For example a hail/fairwell, unit org day, etc.  You just cannot make it mandatory to expend funds.  As a leader he has a duty and responsibility to show support for the FRG.  If appropriate his corrective training could range from: writing an essay, giving a class, or writing a policy letter regarding an appropriate topic.  Here are some ASKTOP post you and he may find interesting.

posted on 01/27/2014 under Q&A
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Mark is a Retired Command Sergeant Major with 26 years of military leadership experience. He held 3 military occupational specialties (Field Artillery, Nuclear Weapons Tech, and Ammunition Ordnance). Mark is one of the leading military authors in the fields of leadership, counseling, and training..

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  • Jo B. Rusin

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    Mark’s points are correct and well taken. However, there may be something else going on with this NCO that you need to check into. It is unlikely that he would ever have made SSG, if this is his normal behavior. He may be experiencing marital problems, which would explain not wanting to attend the FRG, or PTSD/stress related issues, or substance abuse. I would recommend getting the chaplain involved and possibly a command referral to mental health. You and your chain of command need to be calm with an unemotional plan of presentation, but you need to talk with this NCO again. Listen to what is bugging him and then take corrective action.

    If the NCO talks with you this way, imagine what he is saying to his Soldiers. Based on my experience, this is ticking time bomb. You need to address the problem and get it corrected (or the NCO separated from the Army as a last resort) before it explodes.

    • Mark Gerecht

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      Jo, as usual Great Point! The cause is not always obvious. As leaders we have to look for the root cause!
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