The Bayonet

Wednesday, Apr. 10, 2013

Leader workshop scheduled April 16-18

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The Center for the Advancement of Leader Development and Organizational Learning will conduct a three-day workshop here next week in an attempt to provide 21st century leader development to various officers and NCOs across Fort Benning.

CALDOL’s workshop, April 16-18 at the Benning Conference Center, will focus on attempting to integrate Leader Challenge, an interactive video-based vignette for leaders to work through, into the curriculum and professional development initiatives on post.

“The Leader Challenge method builds on the idea that actual leadership experience is what develops leaders the most, and challenging experiences are the best leader development curriculum,” said Maj. Jason Wayne, deputy director of the center for company-level leaders at U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. “The focus of these training events is to equip and inspire instructors to use the Leader Challenge method to develop leaders.”

Leader Challenge can be used in both an online or face-to-face environment, and the Soldiers participating in the workshop next week will be instructed in how to integrate both environments into training.

Wayne said the Leader Challenge presents real-world scenarios to challenge Soldiers to look for the best solution, even if it still involves risk.

“We ask leaders in combat to tell us stories on video about their most challenging experiences — hard-hitting, dilemma-type situations that weren’t necessarily covered in their training,” Wayne said. “The experience is designed to be a catalyst for thought and conversation about critical topics. It is a beginning, not an end. It is sometimes messy and unclear, like real life.”

While the scenarios presented in Leader Challenge are invaluable in terms of learning experience, Wayne said the discussion that often results may be just as valuable.

“When combined with the small-group, high-energy facilitated discussions, you create a situation where all participants are engaged in a conversation that requires them to think through and articulate their thought process,” he said. “Participants are also exposed to the thoughts and perspectives of other members of the profession. This creates new insights and helps reveal and appropriately challenge participants’ underlying assumptions.

The workshop will begin April 16 with officers and NCOs from the NCO Academy, Maneuver Captain’s Career Course, ABOLC and IBOLC undergoing two days of instruction.

Wayne said more than 90 officers are expected to participate during the workshop’s first two days.

The workshop will conclude April 18 with one day of instruction for volunteers from units across Fort Benning.

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