From the Green Notebook

Lead with the best version of yourself.

Podcast V2

From the Green Notebook


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Strength in Inclusion

by Jakob Hutter

A unique characteristic of the United States military is the diverse makeup of people and their ideas. 

When service members of different races, ethnicities, religions, sexual orientations, and other identities have a shared understanding and commitment to the same mission the team can perform at a higher level, are more likely to be innovative and adaptive to shifting circumstances, and more likely to achieve organizational outcomes. 

The Science and Art of Command

by Michael Everett

Does the Army practice Mission Command? Or Command and Control?

After the 2019 update to ADP 6-0 Mission Command, many young leaders are confused about the terms command and control and mission command.

The bottom line is this: Mission command is the United States Army’s approach to command and control (C2). It became clear that doctrine devoid of C2 is not the optimum way to communicate where mission command lies in the spectrum of warfighting. The 2019 version of ADP 6-0 makes it clear that mission command is meant to enable the command of troops and the control of operations. This vital piece of information clarifies the purpose of mission command and how to frame its implementation.

The Field Grade Leader and Domestic Operations: A Primer


by Rick Chersicla                                                                             

You’re in garrison, and you get the Warning Order (WARNO) for the Battalion (or Brigade) to deploy for a real world mission. Your organization, however, is not preparing to deploy overseas, or for an Emergency Deployment Readiness Exercise (EDRE), but is instead preparing to deploy and support civil authorities within the United States. 

The odds are that very few—or perhaps none—of the personnel in your organization has conducted Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) operations. You and your leadership may find yourselves asking “what is DSCA?” on the eve of an operation, and more importantly “how can we prepare for it?”

Defense Support of Civil Authorities (DSCA) is support provided by federal military forces (and DoD civilians, DoD contract personnel, and National Guard forces in a Title 32 status) in response to a request for assistance (RFA) submitted by civil authorities. DSCA operations can be in response to manmade or natural events and can range from hurricane relief, to supporting wildland fire fighting, to COVID-19 vaccination support at the request of FEMA. 

Given the frequency with which some Governors activate their National Guard for emergency response operations, many Guardsmen are well versed in DSCA operations. While Active Duty forces respond to domestic crises with less regularity than National Guard compatriots, they can still prepare for DSCA missions, rather than end up in an on-the-job-training situation when time could be of the essence.

Leading at the Crossroads of Experience and Personality

by Kyle Trottier and William Branch

Upon being selected to serve as the BCT Executive Officer (XO) and BCT Operations Officer (S3), William Branch and I held a series of sensing sessions with each Battalion Commander and Battalion Command Sergeant Major (CSM), peer battalion field grade officers, the brigade staff, key leaders on the division staff, and finally the brigade commander and CSM. Our intention was to understand each command team and their staff leaders to inform how we would best be able to enable the success of each battalion and the brigade as a whole throughout the duration of our time in these positions. Will and I developed a simple rubric to visualize and understand the experiences of commanders using Personnel, Supply, Equipment Readiness, Training (P, S, R, T) and the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) to understand personality characteristics. These two products allowed us to understand the previous experiences of each leader and ourselves, and inform where and how we as the brigade XO and S3 could best communicate with and enable that command team. This methodology also informed how we could best lead the brigade staff and our coordination with the division staff.

This article aims to share these lessons with field grade officers soon to assume Key Developmental (KD) positions and assist them by providing a way to quickly understand themselves and their commander. Ultimately, these lessons can help Soldiers prepare to lead their formations both effectively and adaptively.

Urban Combat Fitness: Preparing Today for Tomorrow’s Fight

by Benjamin Phocas

Urban warfare is a costly endeavor with a broad litany of demands. Among these vitally important demands, one that requires months if not years of preparation, is physical fitness. 

The physical toll of combat has long been a known quantity. However, the nature of urban terrain means that warfare conducted within its environs presents more physical challenges compared to other environments. A useful starting point to better understand the demands of urban warfare is 9/11. Firefighters moved as fast as they could up 110 flights of stairs, wearing up to 75lbs of gear. Anyone who has replicated this grueling physical event as part of a memorial workout knows just how physically taxing this can be without gear or the added physical stressors of combat. In a modern urban battlefield, soldiers will be doing this with all the added stressors of combat, day after day, potentially week after week. 

It is time to seriously consider how we prepare soldiers for the physical challenges of urban warfare. 

A Leader’s Challenge: Sharing Information in a Low-Information Environment

by Joel Concannon

Leaders have always struggled to balance two virtues of communication: transparency and necessity. They strive to be open and honest with their team, while also controlling the quality of information. Doing one of those too much, or not doing either one enough, can degrade trust in an organization. In my experience, this balance is difficult, but possible. 

It requires asking two simple questions: is this information factual, and is this information necessary? If it does not fully meet both of those criteria, it should not be shared. If it cannot be shared, it is important for “ambiguity tolerance” to overcome the discomfort. Let’s take a look at why this is crucial.

S3,Ep 25: Danny Warshay- How to Solve Problems

Joe interviews Danny Warshay, the founding Executive Director of the Nelson Center for Entrepreneurship at Brown University and author of See, Solve, Scale: How Anyone Can Turn a Problem into a Breakthrough Success. In this episode, Danny explains how entrepreneurship is a process that anyone can learn, and that anyone can use to turn a problem into a solution with impact. Joe and Danny talk about why large organizations have antibodies against innovation and how leaders can use the see, solve, scale process to address unmet needs wherever they work.

Click here to listen to the episode

Meet Danny

Danny is first and foremost an entrepreneur. He began his entrepreneurial pursuits while an undergraduate at Brown as a member of the Clearview Software startup leadership team. Apple acquired Clearview in 1989, and since then, he has co-founded and sold companies in fields ranging from software and advanced materials to consumer products and media (acquired by Medline, Time, Belo Corporation, Sealed Air, Penton Media).

Since 2005, he has been teaching and leading workshops on entrepreneurship around the world. Brown’s Critical Review has recognized his course ENGN1010, The Entrepreneurial Process, as the highest rated course on campus. Danny received an A.B. in History, magna cum laude, from Brown University (Junior Year at Hebrew University in Jerusalem), and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

In addition to spending time with his wonderful wife (Dr. Debra Herman ‘87) and three terrific children, Danny loves the mental and physical challenges and rewards of vinyasa yoga. He is also an avid (and tortured) Cleveland sports fan.


Win a From the Green Notebook and TRX Elite Fitness Box

This month, we are teaming up with TRX Elite to provide subscribers to The Monthly Reading List Email an opportunity to win a limited edition FTGN and TRX Elite Fitness Box that includes a copy of My Green Notebook, TRX Tactical Gym, 18” foam roller, Bandit Bundle, Glute Bands, and a one year membership to TRX Training Club. Even if you don’t win the box, all subscribers will receive a limited-time special FTGN discount to the TRX Elite Online Store in the April Monthly Reading List Email. 

Don’t forget to check your inbox! The winner will be announced and we will include the discount code in April’s The Monthly Reading List Email on April 30, 2022. 

Click here to sign-up

A Tale of Two Majors: A Simple Way to Seek Shared Understanding

by Tom Dull and Matthew Schardt

It is the middle of the night and the Brigade is on schedule to uncoil and maneuver into the vast training area of the National Training Center (NTC) in just a few hours. Two Army Field Grades, Majors, are conducting one last condition check as the night battle staff works around them in the Brigade Tactical Operation Center. They are preparing for the imminent operation and  reviewing Friendly Forces Information Requirements (FFIR) such as ensuring the sustainment, fires, and collection assets in place for the next transition.