It feels unfamiliar to take charge of a group of army dudes to plan a cohesion, but because the higher-ups decided to pick out a completely NSF planning committee this year for the first time in seven, I’m the chairman for the organisation of my unit’s anniversary in late November. It’s not like anything I’ve experienced before. In RI and RJ everyone seemed to be bent on making everything the best thing they’ve ever done thus far; in the army you get far less enthusiasm. There’re people who seem determined to give the impression that they can’t do anything properly; there’re people who actually can’t. Many, of course, are both. One of my 8 members also happens to be my storeman, who has been stringing together MCs (mostly milking a spinal fluid problem, with occasional bizarre variations like a sprained thumb from falling off the bed after a bad dream) and hence by the time he gets back on the 9th I wouldn’t have seen him for almost a month. When he’s in camp I couldn’t trust him to do anything anyway. He stares blankly at me at any instruction until I decide to call the other storemen to do the job for him.
I’m not a great leader in this sense I think, if a great leader’s expected to see and bring out the best in each of his members, however unpolished they are. I definitely know now that it’s one thing to say you believe in everyone and quite another thing to persist in utilising everyone equally when some guys just get the job done five times faster and better than others, and you’ve six weeks left to cohere the hell out of 156 people!