What qualities makes a good Marine officer? [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Landmonster
09-11-2007, 23:08
I am considering the Marine Corps for an officer position once I finish my Master's degree.


What qualities make a good officer? The job interests me, but I am also apprehensive because I am not sure what all it would entail. Like many people, getting up in front of a bunch of people and giving speeches and such kind of bothers me. I can do it, but I'm not fond of it.




Additionally, would a Master's degree help me in anyway if I were to make the Marines a career? I am referring to any future advancement potential, higher pay, bonuses, etc.

jrs93accord
09-12-2007, 15:42
To me, what makes a good officer (Marine or otherwise) is to lead by example; to respect the men under you; to seek out and listen to the advice of your senior enlisted non-coms; to command with integrity, distinction, and honor; and to be proud, but not arogant. These are but a few quailities one must possess. A Marine officer is to be above reproach. There is a standard to which all Marine officers are held. That standard is high. Not everyone is cutout to be an officer in the United States Marine Corps. Not everyone is cutout to be a Marine. We are the Few and the Proud.

SEMPER FI :usmc:

USMC1369
09-13-2007, 12:23
Being a good Sergeant first.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/8/8f/Marine_Corp_SGT.JPG

RM
09-13-2007, 18:21
I have been commanded by and later commanded good officers from all sources, the prior service ranks don't have a lock on who and what makes a good officer, this coming from a former Sgt. The best officers set a good example, show integrity in everything they do, put the interests of their Marines ahead of themselves, are decisive, however show good enough judgment that they are willing to listen to their enlisted advisers.

AdminJarhead
09-14-2007, 14:42
Originally posted by USMC1369
Being a good Sergeant first.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/8/8f/Marine_Corp_SGT.JPG

+1 I always look for a good cookie on a new officer when they come to S1 shop to check in.

g27_mengi
09-14-2007, 20:54
Originally posted by USMC1369
Being a good Sergeant first.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/8/8f/Marine_Corp_SGT.JPG

Amen to that.
:drillsgt:

semperfiostoj
09-16-2007, 17:49
A good butterbar knows when to STFU.

Nothing pissed me off more than some pinhead 2ndLt pulling rank just because he could. Contrary to what you may believe, you didn't learn everything you need to know at OCS and there are enlisted Marines that have been doing the job for a lot longer than you have. Don't fix something that isn't broken just for the sake of hearing yourself talk.

RM
09-16-2007, 17:59
Originally posted by semperfiostoj
A good butterbar knows when to STFU.

Nothing pissed me off more than some pinhead 2ndLt pulling rank just because he could. Contrary to what you may believe, you didn't learn everything you need to know at OCS and there are enlisted Marines that have been doing the job for a lot longer than you have. Don't fix something that isn't broken just for the sake of hearing yourself talk.

Actually OCS is not meant to teach anything. The mission of OCS is screening and evaluation, training is very rudimentary and only meant to provide a base line for screening.

After OCS you attend the 6 month long (The) Basic School, followed by a MOS school.

Having gone through both pipelines for Marines, I would honestly have to say I got allot better training as a Lt than did to the rank of Sgt.

semperfiostoj
09-16-2007, 18:38
Originally posted by RM
Actually OCS is not meant to teach anything. The mission of OCS is screening and evaluation, training is very rudimentary and only meant to provide a base line for screening.

After OCS you attend the 6 month long (The) Basic School, followed by a MOS school.

Having gone through both pipelines for Marines, I would honestly have to say I got allot better training as a Lt than did to the rank of Sgt.

Then take my comment and substitute "Basic School" for "OCS".

My point was that many overzealous boot Lts apparently don't understand that golden bars do not magically bestow upon them the knowledge that comes from several years of experience of actually leading Marines and performing the job, whatever the MOS may be. Theory and planning do not trump experience and action.

Congrats on your commission though; must be cool to have seen both sides. MECEP?

RM
09-16-2007, 18:57
Yes, I did MECEP.

corpdriller
09-21-2007, 21:08
Originally posted by Landmonster
I am considering the Marine Corps for an officer position once I finish my Master's degree.


What qualities make a good officer? The job interests me, but I am also apprehensive because I am not sure what all it would entail. Like many people, getting up in front of a bunch of people and giving speeches and such kind of bothers me. I can do it, but I'm not fond of it.




Additionally, would a Master's degree help me in anyway if I were to make the Marines a career? I am referring to any future advancement potential, higher pay, bonuses, etc.



As others have said LEADERSHIP and INTEGRITY.

Know that loyalty is NOT one way.

Take care of your Marines and they will take care of you.

Don't be afraid to make the hard choice.

Know the capabilities of your Marines. It could save lives.

Be a hard-ass when you have to be, but never be a pu**y.

You don't know everything.

Know your job and everyone elses under you.

Train someone to take your place. That way if something happens to you or you move on, your Marines will be taken care of.

I loved all of my time as a Marine. As a Sergeant, I enjoyed the repect of my peers and those up and down my chain of command.
BTW..... It's not a job, IT'S AN ADVENTURE!!!

USMC1369
10-05-2007, 22:43
And don't TOUCH a fraxin' compass until you pin on Captain. I mean that; there's nothing worse than perpetuating a stereotype. Fat security guards, Irish cops, and LOST LT'S!!
;)

No really - Good luck - Keep us posted. Here's some stuff I have received; the first a note after graduating Sgt's course and the other two on Plaques that still hang over my desk.

"The most dangerous leadership myth is that leaders are born-that there is a genetic factor to leadership. This myth asserts that people simply either have certain charismatic qualities or not. That's nonsense; in fact, the opposite is true. Leaders are made rather than born." Warren G. Bennis

"Pull the string, and it will follow wherever you wish. Push it, and it will go nowhere at all." Dwight D. Eisenhower

"The ultimate leader is one who is willing to develop people to the point that they surpass him or her in knowledge and ability." Fred A. Manske

Marine8541
10-06-2007, 00:33
Originally posted by RM
I have been commanded by and later commanded good officers from all sources, the prior service ranks don't have a lock on who and what makes a good officer, this coming from a former Sgt. The best officers set a good example, show integrity in everything they do, put the interests of their Marines ahead of themselves, are decisive, however show good enough judgment that they are willing to listen to their enlisted advisers.

Good post. I was very lucky when it came to serving under some great officers but by far two stick out as subpar and they were both Mustangs. Just because a Marine was a good NCO certainly doesn't mean he'll be a good officer. The only thing that I'd add to your post is try to keep the politics to a minimum.

usmc4641
10-21-2007, 20:37
Anyone here get to serve with Gunner Walker? I had the opportunity to serve with him from time to time. He is something else.

cce1302
12-26-2007, 12:05
Anyone here get to serve with Gunner Walker? I had the opportunity to serve with him from time to time. He is something else.
YEah I was with him in Iraq in 2005. At BD, then Habbaniyah a little. Were you there?

ro42023
12-27-2007, 08:45
in all actuallity being a Marine isnt a job, its a choice. you will be put in a postition of leading a lot of Marines in a very short time. i have a 2nd lt coming and trying to shake things up. i am older than him, i have more time in service than him and i have been doing this "job" longer than him. im a Sgt and in the below zone to pick up staff. i have been leading marines since he was in high school. now he comes in with a degree in something, i dont know what it is and he is in charge of almost a whole squadron. he thinks he knows more than he really does and tries to show it. slow down listen to the people around you that have been doing this for a lot longer and dont act like you are in charge of them. they already know you are in charge of them, but you dont have to tell them and make them feel like they arent nothing because you are an officer and i am just a sgt.

inkslut
12-30-2007, 21:11
Being a good Sergeant first.

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/8/8f/Marine_Corp_SGT.JPG

Amen to that! I wish the Marine Corps would have passed the "Corporal First" rule years ago when it was proposed. I think it would have made a better Marine Corps.

AdminJarhead
12-30-2007, 21:53
Amen to that! I wish the Marine Corps would have passed the "Corporal First" rule years ago when it was proposed. I think it would have made a better Marine Corps.

Yeah then no one would be an officer though. I came in two years ago after already completing 4 yrs of college and earning my bachelor's of science. I enlisted thinking that in order to know how to lead I first needed to know how to follow. Now two years later and a Coporal, I have no desire to trade in the strips on my sleeve for the bars on my collar. Just my oppinion of course.

GreenDrake
01-02-2008, 07:13
Then take my comment and substitute "Basic School" for "OCS".

My point was that many overzealous boot Lts apparently don't understand that golden bars do not magically bestow upon them the knowledge that comes from several years of experience of actually leading Marines and performing the job, whatever the MOS may be. Theory and planning do not trump experience and action.

Congrats on your commission though; must be cool to have seen both sides. MECEP?


Always got a kick out of human behavior, especially in the Corps. the butter bars try so hard to establish themselves and pull rank. By Captain they usually get their stride and cool off.

1985 4Runner
01-02-2008, 08:47
Remember the NCO's are the backbone of the Corps.

Biscuitsjam
01-05-2008, 23:56
I'm Army National Guard...

The bad LTs always try to make their men do extra work to look good in front of their commanders. He also never questions bad orders or stands up for his men when they're getting shafted. Sometimes he's headstrong and won't listen to anybody else, while other times, he lacks confidence to the point that he can't even trust himself. Either way, he's failed to develop a good relationship with his NCOs or listen to his advice, so he's completely on his own out there and the NCOs (and men) are only too happy to see him fail.

A good officer is the opposite. He listens to his NCOs and takes their advice without giving up command. He makes sure his men get good training, even if it means a little extra effort every now and again, but he shields them from the BS when he can. He places the men before himself, eschewing some of his special benefits and privileges. The men trust him to look out for them and in return, they give him their full effort.



You'll recognize a bad officer because he'll return to his unit in the middle of a 10-day field exercise after returning from the rear. He'll have just had a good night's sleep, a shower, a nice shave, and a hot meal. As he walks up in his freshly-laundered uniform to his platoon, that's been up 22 of the last 24 hours, trying to catch a few minutes of sleep in the freezing mud between missions, he'll ask why they aren't conducting training. If he's really feeling ornery, he'll immediately start yelling at a private who didn't blouse his boots properly. This kind of LT doesn't give a damn about the men under his "leadership," but he's absolutely terrified that he'll look incompetent in front of his commander.

Ignition
01-07-2008, 22:20
I still love telling one of the boot LT's. that he forgot to sign for the Hummvee keys. And watching him go up to a gunny and ask where the form was to sign for the hummvee keys.

There is a difference between 1. an officer who pretends like he is always right, and his way is always right (what Marine isnt a cocky son-of-a... and 2. the one that never had common sense to begin with, even before the Marine Corps.

As a boot LT. I would say strive to learn from your SNCO's they will either hang you out to dry or save your ass.




Seeing a boot LT tell a MGySgt that "Excuse me, you didnt render me the proper salute and greeting of the day" is about the best comedy gold one can expect to ever see.

uashooter
01-08-2008, 00:29
I'm interested to hear what RM, or another Mustang, thinks about balancing the needs and wants (there is a difference) of your men with the requirements of the mission.

When I get commissioned, I'd rather have the respect of my men than have them think I'm a "cool officer." That said, I think one of the greatest responsibilities of an officer is to take care of his men. No doubt, it's a hard balance to maintain.

wild bill kelso
01-15-2008, 22:06
A good butterbar knows when to STFU.

:supergrin:Remember that buterbars are like puppies - what they don't break, they ***** on. Fortunately, like puppies, they eventually grow out of it (with a little inspiration from Master Gunny). My advice - fly under the radar and rely on your men. They will make you or break you - and if you EARN their respect, they would die for you. I know.......

standerson
01-15-2008, 23:51
Let me give you an example of one:

April 19th, 1989 on board the USS IOWA (BB-61) there was an explosion that killed 47 sailors.

The C.O. of the MARDET was Capt Bolander (sp?). He saw what was going on and started bringing drinks to the men who were fighting the fires and recovering bodies.

Someone ask him why he had done it and his reply was something like "It was the most important thing I could have done at the time"

That man earned the respect of everyone on board that ship.


USN (Ret)

obxprnstar
01-16-2008, 16:06
+1 I always look for a good cookie on a new officer when they come to S1 shop to check in.
Cookie?

gruntmedik
01-16-2008, 16:32
Cookie?

Good conduct award--given after 3 years with no trouble.

USMC1369
01-16-2008, 16:43
http://www.omsa.org/photopost/data/505/medium/2525USA-USCMLSCG.jpg