(U.S. Marine Corps/Sgt. Sarah Anderson)

What can we do to counter the negative effects of ambitious promotion seeking? I offer the following:

  1. Don't look at your evaluation
  2. Speak truth to power
  3. Strive for impact, not promotion

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Task & Purpose/Aaron Provost

An interesting conversation has sprung up in the Air Force regarding the officer promotion system recently, led by the pseudonymous Col ‘Ned Stark’ over at War on the Rocks. His May 2018 article provided an insider’s view on how the Air Force’s promotion system functions, who it affects, and why it’s failing. His account is shocking — and instantly relatable.  

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Photo via DoD

A highly decorated Kirtland Air Force Base colonel who refused to sign a certificate of appreciation for a retiring master sergeant’s same-sex spouse says he was wrongly disciplined for following his religious beliefs.

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U.S. Army photo by Pfc. Joel LeMaistre.

Equality for women in the workplace comes up all the time in the media, in casual conversation, in sports, and even in political debate. It’s an unavoidable topic in the early 21st century. Not just wages, either, as it turns out even today women get pushed into staff jobs, and many evaluations are biased against them. The military is similar. Women are often told, “You can’t go to that assignment because you wouldn’t be able to shower,” or “It’s too dangerous for a female,” or “You can’t lift/hit/run/jump/lead that, women just aren’t ‘designed’ that way,” or a host of other excuses we are told are in our best interests.

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Photo by Mark Bonica

The choice to become a career Army officer is more than just choosing a job. It’s a transition into a life unique and separate from the civilian world. The Army becomes our community, our culture, and our family. The word “officer” stops being a thing that you do, and becomes a thing that you are. You literally dedicate your life to the Army.

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