JCGSC Leadership and Command module is about to end

The students of the Joint Command and General Staff Course (JCGSC) 2021/2022 have passed a Foundation Module and the induction period is over. Within the following nine months, twelve modules are ahead. The last two weeks have been dedicated to the Leadership and Command Module. Students have analysed different leadership theories and practices in order to contribute to their own development as adaptive leaders capable of assuming positions of organisational-level commanders or operational level staff officers.

Today, the Commandant of the Baltic Defence College, Brigadier General Ilmar Tamm held a lecture to the JCGSC students and offered some insights on being an effective Commander based on his own experiences. The lecture was based on his 29 years of active service. He has been assigned to a variety of staff and command posts within national and international institutions.

The Commandant pointed out several tenets that make a person a good Commander or leader. Firstly, it is important to know your leader as it is crucial to build trust and it takes time. “People who you are leading should know you first as a person and then as an Officer”, he said and continued; “if you know the background of the person it is much easier to understand and accept the Commander’s decisions and the reasons behind it”. In his speech, he highlighted charisma, empathy, trustworthiness, fairness, reflection, and adaptivity – which are the hallmarks of a good leader. The Commandant believes that effective command is all about human relations and communication with the appreciation of organisational culture and the ability to adapt to the situation and environment. As well the purpose of explaining the aim or goal is an essential part of being effective. “Make sure that your intention is clear and communicated to everybody and take full responsibility of your decisions,” the Commandant said.

After giving his insights, the Commandant stressed that there is no single recipe to copy and paste, hence the commitment to continuous self-development is a part of being a good leader. The lecture ended with an active questions/answers session and was followed by topics on personal and organisational resilience.

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