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Military Capabilities

USN chief emphasises small-team fixes for ship-handling problems

25 October 2017

While the US Navy (USN) continues its investigation into its recent surface-ship collisions and review of procedures following those deadly mishaps, early feedback from the USN “operational pause” shows a need for greater focus on small-team development, Admiral John Richardson, the chief of naval operations (CNO), said in a recent email to the service.

“While there is more to follow soon on those important matters, it is clear now that a centre of gravity for our immediate efforts going forward must be to enhance the role of small teams and their leaders,” Adm Richardson said.

“When I hear about problems like persistent lack of sleep, consistently long work hours in port, problems in basic watchstanding, and more, it’s clear to me that much of the fix is with our junior leaders.

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