An Army 4-star general says military leaders need to get on social media and start interacting with all those darn kids

Leadership

VIDEO: Marine Commandant Gen. Neller talks about social media misconduct

When senior military leaders aren't yelling out their office windows for soldiers to stop walking on the grass, they should probably be checking out what they're talking about on social media platforms, according to the top Army general in charge of forces in South Korea.

In a post for On The Green Notebook, a military blog focused on leadership development, Gen. Robert B. Abrams writes that "being engaged on social media is becoming more of an imperative by the day," before listing 10 reasons why others need to get on board.


Abrams, 58, puts his money where his mouth is: He shares his thoughts and interacts directly with his nearly 10,000 followers from his @DogFaceSoldier Twitter account regularly, and thinks other leaders need to get on board since, like it or not, social media is here to stay, and young troops are using it more often to stay in the loop and talk about what's important to them.

For leaders, Abrams says, social media can help you become better connected to what's happening in the news and with the DoD — not just what's happening in your branch of service. He also mentions how distant and insulated you become the more senior you are, but that distance can be considerably cut down sometimes by seeing what the kids are talking about on the Gram.

"Social media gives us the opportunity to hear directly from our service members about what is bothering them, or the challenges facing them and their families," Abrams writes. "It is not always glamorous – not unlike reading the inside of a porta-potty at NTC – but the majority of the time, you will get unfiltered, grassroots feedback, and that is something we can all benefit from."

As you can imagine, troops aren't always going to tell a general visiting the base for an hour what's really on their mind, but they will often say what's on their mind in public social media posts. "Your subordinates are all over social media," he writes. "As such, these platforms provide another venue for them to have access to you – think virtual open door policy. After establishing credibility, you might even get the chance to actually help people."

Read Abrams' full article here >


Editor's Note: This article by Matthew Cox originally appeared onMilitary.com, a leading source of news for the military and veteran community.

U.S. Army aviation officials have launched an effort to restore full air assault capability to the 101st Airborne Division — a capability the Screaming Eagles have been without since 2015.

Read More Show Less

The U.S. military's withdrawal from northeast Syria is looking more like Dunkirk every day.

On Wednesday, the U.S. military had to call in an airstrike on one of its own ammunition dumps in northern Syria because the cargo trucks required to safely remove the ammo are needed elsewhere to support the withdrawal, Task & Purpose has learned.

Read More Show Less

President Donald Trump belittled his former defense secretary, James Mattis, by characterizing him as the "world's most overrated general," according to a Washington Post report published Wednesday.

The account from numerous officials came during an afternoon closed door meeting with congressional leaders in the Cabinet Room of the White House on Wednesday. In the meeting, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer reportedly brought up dissenting views towards the president's decision to withdraw the vast majority of roughly 1,000 U.S. troops stationed in Syria.

Read More Show Less

Retired two-star Navy. Adm. Joe Sestak is the highest ranking — and perhaps, least known — veteran who is trying to clinch the Democratic nomination for president in 2020.

Sestak has decades of military experience, but he is not getting nearly as much media attention as fellow veterans Pete Buttigieg and Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii). Another veteran, Rep. Seth Moulton (D-Mass.) has dropped out of the race.

Read More Show Less

After preliminary fitness test scores leaked in September, many have voiced concerns about how women would fare in the new Army Combat Fitness Test.

The scores — which accounted for 11 of the 63 battalions that the ACFT was tested on last year — showed an overall failure rate of 84% for women, and a 70% pass rate for men.

But Army leaders aren't concerned about this in the slightest.

Read More Show Less