I’m off with the Army right now on a course. When I retired from the Regular Force, I rolled over into the CF Health Services Primary Reserve List. After about a year hiatus, I started working with a Reserve combat medical unit in Winnipeg, keeping my foot in the door regarding management and leadership skills, austere medical practice and such.
A few weeks ago, I took time from my real job to go and give a classmate a hand at the Base Clinic in Winnipeg, where he is the Clinic Sergeant-Major. Despite a full schedule, I had a very relaxing week there, in fact the most relaxing I’d had in over 4 months. I’m now in Quebec doing my Intermediate Leadership Qualification – a form of middle management training I need to be promoted back to the rank I had when I left the Regular Force. This involved 6 weeks of distance learning regarding advanced leadership and management skills, Canadian domestic and international security policy , history, and Canadian Military Ethos and Ethics. I’m on the residential portion now where we’re putting those into practice, as well meeting key players at a national level that influence policy for us at the coal face of the military. We have an eclectic mix of all arms and branches of the military, each of us lending our own slants to the topics we’re dealing with.
So what does this have to do with my military life – I’m a PA, who cares right? Well, I’m not just a PA – I’m a Senior NCO and all that entails regarding leading, caring for, disciplining and administering soldiers, moulding future leaders and mentoring those below and above me in rank. This also rolls over into my civilian job, as I’m expected to show leadership and mentor as well, be it in a stressful situation, teaching a medical or PA or nursing student, or in dealing with patients. It also enhances skills needed to deal with those with authority over me/us, saying what needs to be said, when it needs to be said.
Should be back to regularly scheduled programming in a couple of weeks…