the counseling system cpl 0206 n.
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  2. Individual Profile • High School Graduate • Recruit Training Graduate • School of Infantry • MCT/MOS School • Marine Barracks Washington


  4. PURPOSE The purpose of counseling is to ensure, by mutual understanding, that the efforts of leaders and their Marines are continuously directed toward increased unit readiness and effective individual performance. MARINE CORPS ORDER: provides the policy for the counseling program.

  5. POLICYStates that counseling is a vital and essentialtool for developing juniors, improving individual performance, and enhancing unit productivity.

  6. POLICY Maintain as a part of traditional leadership Develop skills through continuing education Increase individual performance/productivity Enhance ability to improve their performance Counsel with a new senior/junior relationship Conduct sessions on an individual basis (ranks)

  7. FREQUENCY Initial counseling occurs within 30 days L/Cpl’s and below receive follow-on counseling every 30 days after ICS: - what is expected - brief session - discuss strengths and weaknesses

  8. FREQUENCY Cpl’s through Col’s will receive follow-on counseling approximately 90 days after the ICS and subsequent sessions every 6 months. NOTE: Follow-on counseling can occur more frequently due to exceptional performance or unaccepted behavior.

  9. BENEFITS • Senior’s expectations are understood. • Junior knows where he/she stands regarding performance. • Increase unit effectiveness and readiness.


  11. Two occasions when counseling should occur: 1) INITIAL 2) FOLLOW-ON

  12. There Are Common Elements To Both: • Both participants should prepare • Follows a predetermined agenda • Both should participate fully and actively

  13. INITIAL COUNSELING SESSION (ICS) • Occurs whenever a new senior/junior relationship is established • Within 30 days after the start of the new senior/junior relationship.

  14. ICS Accomplishes Several Objectives: Make the senior’s expectations clear Ensure junior understand those expectations Set goals or targets, make plans to meet them Help junior understand your leadership style Achieve highest level of future performance Understands the mission/status of unit: - assign primary/collateral duties

  15. FOLLOW-ON SESSION The purpose of these follow-on sessions is to ensure that your Marines are on track.

  16. It Should Accomplish The Following: Deal with both strengths and weaknesses Reinforce successes and correct deficiencies Identify/analyze past performance problems Identify a mutually agreed upon solution Review progress of targets in past sessions Modify or add new targets, as appropriate

  17. THE TYPES OF COUNSELING SESSIONS Counseling sessions can be conducted in a variety of ways. They can be very formal, planned sessions, such as the initial and follow-on sessions. They can also be informal which are unplanned corrections of minor problems.

  18. THERE ARE THREE TYPES OF COUNSELING SESSIONS: 1)DIRECTIVE: • Senior centered • Analyze situation/solution • Inexperienced or immature • Stressful / Non stressful • Senior has total control

  19. The Three Types of Counseling Sessions: 2)NONDIRECTIVE: • Junior centered • Owns problem/solution • Help the junior to mature • Attitude problem • Non-stressful situation

  20. The Three Types of Counseling Sessions: 3) COLLABORATIVE: - Draws on direct/non direct - Offers senior great flexibility - Succeed if senior is accepted


  22. The five parts of a counseling session apply to all formal sessions, both the initial and the follow-on counseling sessions. The five parts are: • PREPARATION • OPENING • MAIN BODY • CLOSING • FOLLOW-UP

  23. PREPARATION • Review and evaluate performance: - cover performance since last session - cover both good and bad performance • Define objectives: - clear idea of what both want to accomplish - analyze performance problems - solutions to the problems - targets for next performance period

  24. PREPARATION • Set the agenda: - follow sequence agreed upon - start with positive comments - senior decides type of counseling approach • Time and place: - scheduled way in advance - no interruptions - 45 minutes to one hour

  25. PREPARATION Setting: - both parties are relaxed - have a clear mind - fresh air; room temperature - seating arrangement

  26. OPENING • Relaxed atmosphere • Understand why they are holding the session: - go over objectives and prepared agenda - invite junior’s comments

  27. MAIN BODY • Guide the discussion: - ensure all objectives are met - move around agenda if situation dictates • Encourage junior participation: - concentrate on what is heard and seen

  28. MAIN BODY Agree on targets / plans for improvements: - both have ideas on what targets should be - challenging; may add or drop some - junior understands and agrees - resources are available

  29. CLOSING Review and summarize items discussed Ensure junior understands results of session End on a positive, encouraging note

  30. FOLLOW-UP Documentation: - MCO 1610.12 recommends documentation - punitive action for wayward Marines - prevents accusations of harassment/unfairness - use small leader’s notebook - use only by the senior and junior

  31. MONITOR JUNIOR’S PERFORMANCE • Refer to performance targets • Encourage /reinforce good performance


  33. There are six techniques essential for an effective counseling session: • SETTING TARGETS • PROBLEM SOLVING • QUESTIONING • ACTIVE LISTENING • GIVING FEEDBACK • PLANNING FOR IMPROVEMENT

  34. SETTING TARGETS Defines what the junior will be expected to do as a result of the counseling session. • Stated as a result: - to be achieved by a certain date • Measurable: - gauge progress toward targets; use as a guide - standards should be quantitative • Realistic: • - don’t try to shoot for the moon

  35. SETTING TARGETS Challenging: - stretch - doing the uncomfortable until it becomes comfortable Must: - stated as a must; must stay committed Limited in number: - three to five

  36. SETTING TARGETS Set by the senior and the junior: - junior participation in setting targets Revised: - situation dictates

  37. PROBLEM SOLVING Analyzes the junior’s performance problems and developing solutions to them. Senior’s knowledge and experience helps to define what the problem is , what is causing it, and how to solve it.

  38. PROBLEM SOLVING Compare actual performance versus targeted performance. Determine if junior is part of the problem Obstacles impeding performance

  39. QUESTIONING Technique to draw the junior out or to clarify what is said. • Closed-end Questions: - answered with a yes or no • Open-end Questions: - usually begins with how and why - involves junior more deeply into discussion

  40. QUESTIONING Probing Questions: - follow-up questions - requires the junior to explain a thought Interpretive Questions: - clarify or amplify what the junior has said

  41. ACTIVE LISTENING Interpreting what the junior is saying and observing what is being done. • Listen for threads of meaning: - mentally summarize points being made

  42. ACTIVE LISTENING Distinguish between facts and opinions: - Listen for changes: (Verbal cues) 1) tone of voice; rate of speech; hesitations - Nonverbal cues: 1) avoids eye contact; slumping in chair 2) scowling; clenched fists

  43. GIVING FEEDBACK Lets the junior know what you think about performance or summarizing what the senior understands to be going on in the meeting. • Deals with things that can be changed • It is timely • Satisfy the junior’s need, not yours

  44. PLANNING FOR IMPROVEMENT Developing a plan to build on the strengths of the junior to overcome shortcomings. • Junior should play a role in developing a plan • Feels more committed