Of the eight officers that I had the opportunity of interviewing, two had a Military Intelligence background, three were Army Engineers, and three were Field Artillerymen. From our conversations, I was able to determine the similarities and differences in the organizational culture of each branch.
Military Intelligence Organizational Culture: Academic Oriented, Critical Thinking, Effective Communicators
The Military Intelligence branch of the Army has a very large academic component. Officers are expected to be critical thinkers and great analysts. The role of military intelligence is to gather as much information as possible, validate and screen the information, and then disseminate it to other units or government organizations. Not only does an intelligence officer need to be good at analyzing information, they must also be a great communicator to be able to take that information and ensure that it is shared effectively. The culture within the organization requires its officers to work late if need be, to ask questions to gain a better understanding of the issue or information, and to use logic and reason to come up with intelligence gathering strategies.
Engineer Organizational Culture:
-Combat Engineer: Training Oriented, Attention to detail, Building Muscle memory
– Construction Engineer: Academic oriented, become subject matter expert
The Engineer branch of the Army is a very diverse organization. Its officers are divided into two main components- combat engineers and construction engineers. The two cultures of these components vary greatly. Combat engineers focus on battlefield tactics, hone their craft at breaching, route clearing, and mobility/counter mobility. Thus, the culture within the combat engineer component is very training oriented. Combat engineer units are constantly testing their skills both formally and informally to ensure that they build up muscle memory for combat scenarios. Construction engineers focus more on the academic subjects, such as general engineering, physics, and math, to prepare themselves and their soldiers to build bridges, dams, and other infrastructure within the US and abroad. The culture of construction engineers pushes their officers to get masters degrees to become subject matter experts in their field of study.
Field Artillery Organizational Culture: Attention to Detail, Training Oriented, Broadening Opportunities
The Field Artillery branch of the Army is a combat oriented organization. Its officers drill and train daily to ensure that their howitzers function effectively and accurately. The role of the Field Artillery is to support the infantry and armor units within the Army. Thus, the organizational culture within Field Artillery pushes their soldiers to perfect their duties to maintain their trust with other branches of the Army. Being a combat arms branch, Field Artillery officers are encouraged to seek out different Army schools to broaden their skillset, war fighting capabilities, and to familiarize themselves with the different components of the Army.