The value of investment in leadership training cannot be overstated and the Armed Forces have always invested heavily in their leaders from an early stage. DMG(SW) has long since been recognised as an example of best practice across the wider RN in the field of leadership training and development for Junior and Senior Rates prior to attendance at LRLC and SRLC. Since being first developed by then SO2 Training, Lt Cdr Holland, the course has grown and expanded into it's present guise and recently 17 candidates from the RN and RAF took part in the latest DMG (SW) Leadership and Development week.
The 7 day course provides a valuable platform for potential LNNs and PONNs to build on their experiences to date and helps them anticipate what will be required of them on their promotion courses. Candidates covered a variety of topics in the first 2 days including core values and standards, leading parade training, coaching and mentoring and the delights of Defence Writing! On top of this there was the RNFT assessment to ensure everybody was fully awake on the Thursday morning.
For the remainder of the course, candidates relocated to Dartmoor for more practical leadership training. Many miles were covered over Dartmoor terrain and techniques such as radio communications, navigation (including a night time evolution), leadership qualities, improving individual presentation skills, NATO Sequence of Orders and of course, in true Dartmoor style, an insight into the correct use of the wet and dry routine were put to the test. During this part of the course, candidates received a visit from Surgeon Commodore Hughes, Commander Defence Medical Group, who was keen to talk to students and gather their views on their work experiences. He also offered advice to students on leadership and leadership styles which the group found most helpful.
The week culminated in a 24 hour exercise which included many Practical Leadership Tasks (PLTs). In operating outside of their comfort zone, each individual found that personal limits were tested but, despite this, morale remained high and the team pulled together to complete every task. Overall, the course provided each individual with the chance to learn new skills, improve existing ones, develop strengths and identify weaknesses for future development in preparation for their individual leadership courses.
With many thanks to LNN Barber for the original content of this article.