Sharpened Steel Improves Leadership, Training

#LetsGoShooting #RoadtoAwesome #KeepPounding #AmericasArmyReserve #USArmyReserve #WeaponsMastery #USARCombatTeam #USARPistolTeam

Fort Knox, Ky.

Events held by the Hatchet Battalion leads to multiple Soldier training successes, Excellence In Competition, and the Army Reserve’s national-level marksmanship program.

Soldiers of the 2-397th (104th Training Division) conducted a Leader Training event called Sharpened Steel at Fort Knox to hone skills necessary to Soldiers and leaders. The Hatchet Battalion successfully completed two Excellence In Competition events with several Soldiers earning permanent awards for their superior performance.

Holding both pistol and rifle versions of Service Conditions (Combat) Excellence In Competition events at Fort Knox, the pistol event resulted in one Soldier being awarded the EIC Bronze Pistol badge and the rifle event had two Soldiers achieving the distinction. This was the first time the Hatchet Battalion held either event and their command reports a heightened Soldier interest growing as a result.

Their training began with each Soldier establishing Data On Previous Engagements at each yard line and cadre like Sgt. 1st Class Frasier noticed the advantage of using these types of targets. “For many, it was their first time seeing how their shot groups opened up as they moved further from the target.”

The training culminated in an Excellence In Competition Rifle event consisting of timed stages from 400, 300, 200, and 100 yards, and then a Close Quarter Battle stage shot at 75, 50, and 25 yards. The Pistol event was a mix of precision and speed from multiple positions and distances at 30 yards and in. This training is a holistic test of Soldier lethality because it incorporates short and medium range engagements, different shooting positions, speed reloads, and – in the Rifle event – a 25 yard rush to each firing line.

Even Soldiers finishing lower in the rankings found value in the event. Supply NCO Sgt. Vanderpool explained, “I’ve never been taught a lot of the marksmanship techniques that were shown. I learned a better way to hold the M16 and gained confidence in my marksmanship skills.”

In addition to the event being a tremendous training opportunity, Sgts. 1st Class Daugherty and Combs received their EIC Bronze Badge, which supersedes the expert badge on the Army Service Uniform, for scoring in the top 10% of the match.

Also during training year 2019, the Hatchet Battalion had two Soldiers compete as members of USAR Competitive Marksmanship Program, with Sgt. 1st Class Combs participating on the Service Pistol team and Command Sgt. Major Michael Ball participating with the Service Conditions/Combat team at the Armed Forces Skill At Arms Meeting. Their participation on the teams has improved the Battalion’s marksmanship training as they bring what they’ve learned back to the unit. As an Army Reserve Drill Sergeant unit, the Hatchet Battalion’s Drill Sergeants will take what they’ve learned and teach it to new Soldiers in Initial Entry Training, which will immediately impact marksmanship skills across the entire force.

https://www.usar.army.mil/News/News-Display/Article/1965677/sharpened-steel-improves-leadership-training/

Army Reserve Soldiers Enhance Retention with Postal Match, History

#LetsGoShooting #RoadtoAwesome #KeepPounding #AmericasArmyReserve #USArmyReserve #WeaponsMastery #USARPostalMatch

Solid training events are an ideal way to enhance Soldier retention and Postal Matches offer an approach accessible to all units.

Fort McCoy, Wis.

Members of the Great Lakes Training Division (84th Training Command) led by Cpt. Joshua Gisi (HHD Commander), Master Sgt. Jeffrey Bruce (Senior Command Career Counselor), and Sgt. 1st Class Theodore Stevens conducted Army Reserve Postal Matches during their weapons qualification at Fort McCoy. The training created a very high qualification rate, with all but one Soldier in attendance passing successfully.

For the Postal Match, the GLTD Soldiers fired the Margaret Thompson Murdock and William James Sutton Postal Match. “We are a One Star Command providing Observer Trainers for command group operations and this was our first time firing any of the Postal Matches. It was a test run for us,” said Master Sgt. Bruce. “We also reviewed the biographies of the Soldiers each match is coined after. The unit appreciated the historical connection, especially the Equal Opportunity lessons found in Maj. Murdock’s story. The new revisions to the Postal Match are a dramatic improvement over the old design and we appreciated all the changes and updates.”

In addition to the training value, which integrates well with the Army’s current progressive and gated Weapons Training Strategy detailed in TC 3-20.0, these Postal Matches also provide a high retention value. “I am a Senior Command Career Counselor and as Special Staff to a Brigadier General, I work with all of our down trace units on retention, sponsorship, and recruiting programs. Being able to help a down trace unit conduct a Postal Match adds value of me doing a Staff Assisted Visit,” said Master Sgt. Bruce. “I am proud of my HHD allowing me to test my ability to add this training to their event so I can offer it to other units. I feel these Postal Matches enable me to do my job better, make drill time more enjoyable, build morale with in units, improve marksmanship skills, and add value to the Army overall.”

Good training such as this is an ideal way to increase Soldier retention throughout the Army Reserve. “When I was an Army Reserve Career Counselor, a Water Reclamation unit I supported had the strongest retention with Soldiers fighting to join,” said Master Sgt. Bruce. “It’s not that water reclamation was overly rewarding, it was because the unit hosted a Schützenschnur (German Armed Forces Badge for Weapons Proficiency) every year and they created a massive draw as Soldiers enjoyed serving when they were able to do motivating training. Postal Matches are a way every unit can offer something similar for their Soldiers.”

Unit: 84th Great Lakes Training Division (GLTD)

Other News:
https://www.usar.army.mil/News/News-Display/Article/1950559/army-reserve-soldiers-enhance-retention-with-postal-match-history/