Delineating Officer Performance and Its Determinants

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Abstract

The U.S. Army faces complex challenges in building and sustaining its officer force. It needs to identify and develop individuals who can adapt to many different mission types and to the various environments in which the Army operates, develop the strategic and tactical leadership skills necessary to perform effectively in higher ranks, and embrace the Army's warrior ethos. To create a performance-based foundation for accessing, assigning, training, and retaining officers, we conducted a job analysis study. Using Army doctrine, protocol, training manuals, and input from a number of Army officers, we identified 46 leader and management major duties that officers must perform with a high level of competence. The list is intended to be relevant for all Army officer positions and levels up to lieutenant colonel, though the relative importance of and time spent on specific duties varies by level, position, branch, and mission. We also identified 55 stable individual difference attributes and attitudes that underlie the determinants of officer performance and retention. We framed our study according to 2 models of job performance, 1 specifying the determinants of job performance and the other specifying the major components of job performance. The integrated models provide a theoretical basis for designing personnel systems or interventions to impact specific components of officer performance and for predicting their likely outcomes.

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