TSB advisors give critical help to Guard, Reserve

| March 28, 2014 | 0 Comments


Sgt. 1st Class Brian Rethage
2nd Battalion, 196th Infantry Brigade

Soldiers serving in a training support brigade (TSB) fill a niche in the Army that is both challenging and rewarding.

Their dedication to supporting Guard and Reserve forces directly impacts the growth, development and combat readiness of a force pool that impacts the overall health of the Army.

As our nation withdraws troops from conflicts overseas and returns to garrison operations, units must maintain combat and sustainment operational knowledge while combating complacency.

This process is also true for units within the Guard and Reserve components that endure a complex operational environment with several challenges to mission readiness unfamiliar to their active duty counterparts.

It is within this environment that members of 2nd Battalion, 196th Infantry Brigade, in support of the Army’s Total Force Policy, work to enhance these organizations through a close partnership built on tactical and technical knowledge combined with enhanced leadership techniques.

Filling the role of a TSB, 2-196th is able to bring knowledge of the six war fighting functions to their units of advisement through a small team of senior noncommissioned officers and officers.

The decisive effort of a TSB is to prepare reserve component forces for deployment to execute or support combat operations. The 196th has remained partnered with its supported reserve component units throughout Overseas Contingency Operations, providing training assistance during pre-mobilization, post-mobilization, and de-mobilization training.

We assist with planning and executing the Army Force Generation Cycle and with meeting the ARFORGEN Aim Points in every phase of the cycle, as well as the ability during deployment to reach back to the TSB for support. This assistance can only be accomplished if an atmosphere of mutual respect and trust exists.

TSB advisors bring a fresh perspective, with current military trends, into units constrained by limited knowledge outside of their own organization’s operational climate, and assistance to those Soldiers who don’t hold technical expertise as a result of fluctuating military occupational specialties. It is because of these challenges that the active duty advisor plays an influential role in the health of reserve component organizations.

Using Army doctrine, tactical knowledge and their technical expertise, advisors serve as a combat multiplier for their organizations. Working hand in hand with Soldiers filling Active Guard/ Reserve positions and unit command teams, the advisor assists in assessing the unit’s needs and the development of a training strategy, while aligning with the ARFORGEN model. These engagements aid in the development of training plans and exercises that increase tactical and technical proficiencies by steering leaders through the eight-step training model.

It is during this time that the advisors challenge leaders and staff to think dynamically in order to cope with the constraints of time and the demand to meet the Army’s mandated training, a commander’s intent and unit training requirements. Through doctrine and experience, 2-196th advisors drive their units of advisement to consistently review and revise their training strategies.

The advisor is embedded during training, observing and applying the art of Socratic questioning to push leaders to develop their understanding of events and develop possible courses of action. Engaging leaders at all company levels, the advisor introduces perspectives on different leadership styles to compel their Soldiers to achieve those standards.

Providing perspective, assistance, feedback and doctrinal advice, the Soldiers of TSBs are a fundamental asset in the effectiveness and preparedness of the Reserve Component units they support. Finding ways to work within the atypical structure and limited time constraints provide a challenge, watching a unit grow and develop provides the sense of accomplishment.

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Category: News, Standing Columns

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