AR 600-8-19 para 1-12 states:
3-1d. First-line leaders must formally counsel (in writing) fully qualified Soldiers upon attainment of primary zone eligibility who are not recommended by the unit CDR. Written counseling must identify the basis for non-recommendation and include an action plan designed to overcome specified deficiencies. Counseling is mandatory upon initial non-recommendation once fully eligible (without waiver) in the primary zone and a minimum of quarterly, thereafter, until the Soldier is recommended for promotion or is no longer eligible for recommendation.1-27b. There are no requirements to counsel Soldiers who are not selected for promotion to SFC through SGM.1-27c. CDRs and first-line leaders must comply with all counseling requirements (paras 3–13b and 3–23f) for Soldiers eligible for promotion consideration to SGT and/or SSG.1-27d. See paragraph 7–33 for denying ARNG Soldiers consideration.