[September 2, 2019] The U.S. military is far better organized than most civilian companies. You will find more structure, honesty, and focus in any military unit compared to their civilian counterparts. This is the reason that today, I’m providing 13 methods the military organization is better than civilian businesses.
Yesterday, I was speaking with my neighbor whose son recently retired from the U.S. Army as a Captain and went to work for a New York City contractor. The young Captain was appalled at the laziness of his fellow workers, how sloppy they were in dress, and how much time they wasted on personal affairs while at work. Between the office gossip and the mental-physical laziness, he was disgusted.
The U.S. military has operational and organization practices that give it a boost over nearly every other organization. What follows are some I carved out from my own experience. However, much of the article is based upon work done by Christopher Littlestone, who is the editor in chief of Life is a Special Operation. 1 I highly recommend his work.
What follows is a list of 13 ways the military is better. You too can use these to improve your work:
- Codified Codes of Behavior and Values: The first thing people encounter with the U.S. military is that they have codified behavioral standards and values. Loyalty, Duty, Respect, Selfless Service, Honor, Integrity, and Personal Courage are just a few you will find in all their value sets. They require all their members to memorize their values and live by them on and off duty.
- Standards: Military leaders make it clear what you have to do to achieve a particular task. If you do not meet the standards, you are counseled. If you do not comply, you are removed. Many organizations are slow to remove or fire under-performing employees.
- Equal Pay: Much has been said about how females and racial minorities are paid less than their white counterparts. The military has a written pay scale that is based on rank and time in service; there is nothing about race, gender, religious preference, etc. in their pay.
- Physical Fitness: All members are required to stay in good physical shape. Commanders schedule physical fitness tests several times a year and require weekly physical fitness training. Healthy people are more efficient workers, are happier, and have fewer medical problems over their lifetimes.
- Open Honesty: The military calls it like it is. If you are a failure, they would tell you that and try to help you. Honesty is part of the culture. Direct communication is required. If you made a bad decision, they would tell you. If you’re fat, they would tell you. They do this so they would not make this mistake again.
This article is Part 1 of 2 used to address ways the military is better organizationally. Tomorrow, I will provide the remaining eight ways. I hope you enjoyed the list. Please comment on ways your organization has improved its mission.