13th SC(E) CG hosts back to basics forum with unit leaders

Story by Staff Sgt. Joel Gibson, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) public affairs
Photo by Staff Sgt. Matthew C. Cooley, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) public affairs

Fort Hood, Texas —Brig. Gen. Terence Hildner, the commanding general of the 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary), hosted a “Back to the Basics With Leaders” Commander’s Forum for unit leaders at Club Hood here April 1.

The forum was a discussion based, small group centric activity broken up into different topics including a basic leadership challenge, unit maintenance and supply challenge, and unit training challenge.

Hildner said getting back to basics meant returning to many of the Army’s processes and standards of ten years ago and stressed the importance of the individual Soldier.

“Inside this uniform is a person, sometimes we forget about that,” Hildner said.

Hildner said he wanted leaders to think ahead about different problems and situations that might arise and create plans – battle drills – for dealing with those situations. He also said he wanted to ensure company commanders understand their jobs with respect to maintenance.

Hildner spoke to the group briefly and asked questions based on real scenarios that each small group discussed among themselves before a larger group discussion.

“If we discuss the problems as a community we’ll discover problems we didn’t think about,” Hildner explained.

Senior leaders and subject matter experts contributed their knowledge and experience to the small and larger group discussions as well.

1st Lt. Jeffrey Hansen, maintenance control officer for 602nd Support Maintenance Company, 180th Transportation Battalion, 4th Sustainment Brigade, 13th SC(E), said, “I think this is crucial – getting back to the basics – with the Army downsizing and expecting more from less [and] for development of platoon leaders and [lieutenants].”

Staff Sgt. Nicholas Wade, a 15th Financial Management Company squad leader and acting detachment noncommissioned officer in charge, explained why he liked the forum’s format.

“I learn hands on and I’ve learned a lot just going over these thought processes and hearing the general’s thoughts,” Wade said. “I’ve gotten quite a bit out of this.”

Wade went on to explain the importance of going back to basics.

“When we became an Army at war we lost a lot of the little things … we’ve fallen by the wayside in some of these areas.”

Hildner said he personally hosted the forum so subordinate leaders would understand the importance of the initiative. Hildner also said he expected the battalion commanders to conduct similar forums with their subordinate leaders.

“Here we’re taking an entire morning out of our busy day because this important,” he said.


news photoUnit leaders in 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) participate in a small group discussion during a “Back to the Basics With Leaders” Commander’s Forum at Club Hood here April 1. (U.S. Army photo by Staff Sgt. Matthew C. Cooley, 13th Sustainment Command (Expeditionary) public affairs)