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Can email be used to document counselings?

My rater is trying to use emails to document counseling. Is this acceptable for NCOER counselings?

The Mentor - A Comprehensive Guide to Army Counseling and Leadership

Yes as an exception.  AR 623-3 states:

3-7b.(1)(c) While correspondence and telephone conversations may be used as an alternative because of geographic separation, these will be followed by a face-to-face discussion between the rated NCO and rater at the earliest opportunity. Simply requiring the rated NCO to submit written performance objectives on DA Form 2166–9–1A at the beginning of the rating period without a follow-up face-to-face meeting is an unacceptable shortcut of this provision.


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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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  • j.a.


    If I believe my Chain of Command is passing around derogatory emails about me, do I have the right to obtain these? I am a Reservist and I believe that people are writing about me and making decisions and judgements concerning me. I have not been counseled but it seems that many are sharing information. I am not paranoid because they say they have discussed things but wont tell me anything about the discussions. I believe that I have the right to get these communications. Do I have the right to get these through the Freedom of Information act?

    • SGT NICK


      No, and define derogatory. Many people believe that if something they did is being talked about around the unit they believe they have the right to charge people with slander. Remember anything that is not said or heard from you directly is HEARSAY. Slander and defamation most also be untrue and malicious. If your being investigated for wrong doings and people are talking about it, its not slander. Your unit leadership can do an investigation without your knowledge as well. As for the emails, well other people have rights too, like freedom of speech.

      *All views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, The Department of Defense or the US Army.*

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