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What’s in a Soldier? How to Rebrand the Canadian Armed Forces

dimsum

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Furniture said:
D&B posted a couple of great examples or slick HR produced videos, but I wonder if the CAF would be better served by posting actual videos of CAF members doing their jobs, and answering questions about them. Not in the heavily edited, "cut to action" way we do it now, but single take honest conversations. Show that CAF members are real humans, not movie/videogame caricatures.

They may be turning that corner.  On social media, there's been a push for Reddit-like "AMA" video chats with people from different trades.  The one I saw most recently was someone in 3rd Bn R22eR, but there were NCIOPs, etc before that too.
 

CBH99

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Dimsum said:
They may be turning that corner.  On social media, there's been a push for Reddit-like "AMA" video chats with people from different trades.  The one I saw most recently was someone in 3rd Bn R22eR, but there were NCIOPs, etc before that too.


Sorry to be a pain, but would you mind posting a link?

I'm a Reddit virgin, tried to look up CAF stuff just now, but it looks like I'm going to have to spend some time learning how to find specific things on Reddit.  Just a ton of stuff, not quite sure where to look.
 

shawn5o

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HiTechComms said:
I agree with you. I see working in the Military as a job not a career or a calling. Its a contract job and that is all that it is to me. Career is a personal economic choice of employment paths. I have worked with contracts all my life the military job is a contract based on economic and socio exchanges and factors. Its a perfect time to recruit from the young generation since the unemployment rate is so high among the young gen.

I am just a guy so what do I know.

and

mariomike said:
To some, it's a Calling. To others, a profession, a career, or simply "the job".

Whatever a person calls it, loyalty to the organization is what counts. Just my opinion.

My contribution to the CAF was very small. But, I got a lot out of it. More than just a paycheck. For that, I have always been grateful and speak well of it.

and


MJP said:
Loyalty goes both ways and at the end of the day the CAF will forget you ten minutes after you leave. That isn't a criticism of the CAF writ large it is just the reality of an institution the size of ours. One of the problems we have is we still associated people wanting to change jobs/trades/get out of the military as disloyal rather than acknowledging that people change as they mature and want to do different things.


Yup  :nod:  Love my job and my folks, hate the culture and "do more with less" attitude that is out there (except the people saying this always have the resources to add more people to their org or push down tasks to a lower level). I will say the pandemic has been great in getting rid of all the white noise activities that just absolutely consumed real work, hopefully it stays that way come post-pandemic time.

I'd like to comment on the a/m statements concerning career, etc

When I was with Range Control, I had access to the library and read parts of the Opie-Dopies. And if I recall correctly, there was a quotation from a U.S. Army Col (I think) and it went along the lines of that ORs in the military are career pers and for the officer corps, they are professionals - not in a career (along those lines)

MJP - I recall in '75 ('76) when the MPs were desperately short in manperson power and the MP trade was actively recruiting in the other trades. When pl Sgt.  P****** read us that tid bit of news, he looked over each and every one of us and said something like 'we don't have any disloyal soldiers here, do we?'

I do remember he actively discouraged us from applying.

Ahh, good memories  ;)
 

mariomike

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Over the years I have heard, and read, the military referred to as a Calling, a Profession, a Career, and a Job.

Depends on one's point of view, I suppose.

Bottom line, if they ever need volunteers badly enough, there is always the potential of a Draft.
 

FJAG

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Profession is a flexible term.

At one point there were only three learned professions: divinity, law and medicine.

I think the more accurate view is the first one from the Oxford dictionary which reads:

a paid occupation, especially one that involves prolonged training and a formal qualification.

I would think that applies equally to all members of the CAF.

:cheers:
 

mariomike

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FJAG said:
Profession is a flexible term.

At one point there were only three learned professions: divinity, law and medicine.

I think the more accurate view is the first one from the Oxford dictionary which reads:

I would think that applies equally to all members of the CAF.

:cheers:

"The Profession of Arms."
https://www.canada.ca/en/department-national-defence/corporate/reports-publications/duty-with-honour-2009/chapter-1-military-profession-in-canada/section-3-the-profession-of-arms-in-canada.html

The profession of arms in Canada is composed of military members dedicated to the defence of Canada and its interests, as directed by the Government of Canada. The profession of arms is distinguished by the concept of service before self, the lawful, ordered application of military force, and the acceptance of the concept of unlimited liability. Its members possess a systematic and specialized body of military knowledge and skills acquired through education, training and experience, and they apply this expertise competently and objectively in the accomplishment of their missions. Members of the Canadian profession of arms share a set of core values and beliefs found in the military ethos that guides them in the performance of their duty and allows a special relationship of trust to be maintained with Canadian society.


 

HiTechComms

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mariomike said:
Over the years I have heard, and read, the military referred to as a Calling, a Profession, a Career, and a Job.

Depends on one's point of view, I suppose.

Bottom line, if they ever need volunteers badly enough, there is always the potential of a Draft.

Draft is a terrible idea so is conscription. If the people are not willing to fight for their country then maybe the country is not work fighting for.
The country I was born had conscription and had major issues with it, they got rid of it and now they have a professional army and lots of young people want to be in the military.

You also are forgetting about the fact that Canada like most of the western countries are experiencing the prolonged epidemic of Obesity. I don't think there is enough non fat people that would even qualify for the military draft.

Oh lastly most Canadian's have a dual citizenship..
 

Michael OLeary

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HiTechComms said:
Oh lastly most Canadian's have a dual citizenship..

"According to Statistics Canada, almost 3% or 944,700 individuals had multiple citizenships as of 2011."

https://blog.tugo.com/en/blog/new-entry-requirement-for-dual-canadian-citizens-flying-to-canada/
 

daftandbarmy

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FJAG said:
Profession is a flexible term.

At one point there were only three learned professions: divinity, law and medicine.

I think the more accurate view is the first one from the Oxford dictionary which reads:

I would think that applies equally to all members of the CAF.

:cheers:

.... but you've left out the world's first and second oldest professions, of course :) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World%27s_second_oldest_profession
 

a_majoor

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A few thoughts:

More than one writer has pointed out there are actually "two" armies (although this could apply to any branch) - the long service professionals who did this more out of love or avocation than a "job", and those who flock to the call of arms when the need arises (think of the surges of recruiting historically at the start of the Boer War, the Great War, WWII and even Afghanistan) but demobilize once the situation ends. Branding for one group will not necessarily translate into effective branding for the other.

The other issue is related to how soldiers integrate into the larger society. Even today, my wife, who worked in the clerical/administration trade, needs to take formal courses to get a certification for pay, human resources and other aspects of her trade that she had successfully conducted for years - in the real world, all that training and experience counts for nothing. How many other trades cannot carry over? (for that matter, I actually don't know if you can come into the Army with a skilled trade and have it recognized - I recognize this is the case for professions like doctors or lawyers, but what about a mechanic or heavy equipment operator?).

Fanshawe College in London, ON is working on some aspects of the integration issue (the President of the College is a former Lt General and commander of the Canadian Army), but this is one of how many? Being able to bring usable skills in and out of the military could help tremendously for attracting the typical short service member.
 

mariomike

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HiTechComms said:
Draft is a terrible idea so is conscription.

If you say so. They got Elvis.  :)

The US had it in WW1, and from 1940 to 1973 ( WW2, Korea and Vietnam ).

 

HiTechComms

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mariomike said:
If you say so. They got Elvis.  :)

The US had it in WW1, and from 1940 to 1973 ( WW2, Korea and Vietnam ).

The US is not Canada.

In addition please keep in mind that what was 70 years ago and might not be a relevant boiler plate assumption.

https://www.gallup-international.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/10/GIA-Book-2015.pdf
We are shutting down the entire country for Covid where the predominantly the casualties are of advanced age. How will the country react to mass deaths of younger people to a war? (Lots of good questions)

Not to mention last time Conscription was enacted in Canada it almost fractured the country.
https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/conscription

In regards to the previous poster that posted the dual citizenship in numbers from 2011.
Canada's population circa 2011 33.48 million
Canada's population circa 2020 37.71 million

I didn't see any actual links to stats just a number which I am a bit skeptical.
The sources I looked at https://www12.statcan.gc.ca/census-recensement/2016/ref/dict/pop016-eng.cfm

Even if that was the case of ~1 million dual citizenship holder it doesn't account of PR of immigrants like India which doesn't allow for dual citizenship. India is now the makes up the largest immigration chunk of immigrants
https://www.forbes.com/sites/stuartanderson/2020/02/03/indians-immigrating-to-canada-at-an-astonishing-rate/?sh=42120c4f2b5f

I am a bit skeptical of numbers because of the sheer amount of immigrants coming into Canada and the government increasing the quotas even more. 350k or more per year.

I am a dual citizenship holder and I am a 1st gen immigrant and that is my perspective.
 

rmc_wannabe

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mariomike said:
Bottom line, if they ever need volunteers badly enough, there is always the potential of a Draft.

Ask anyone who has worked with conscripts from different armies while deployed; I would rather have half a section of volunteers than a platoon of conscripts.

Hard to get quality work out of people that are marking time until release, with no other motivation than going to jail.
 

mariomike

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rmc_wannabe said:
I would rather have half a section of volunteers than a platoon of conscripts.

Volunteers are great.

Unfortunately, sometimes, like during World War Two, civilians had to be "volun-told" to join.
 

Michael OLeary

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HiTechComms said:
In regards to the previous poster that posted the dual citizenship in numbers from 2011.
Canada's population circa 2011 33.48 million
Canada's population circa 2020 37.71 million

I didn't see any actual links to stats just a number which I am a bit skeptical.
The sources I looked at https://www12.statcan.gc.ca/census-recensement/2016/ref/dict/pop016-eng.cfm

Even if that was the case of ~1 million dual citizenship holder it doesn't account of PR of immigrants like India which doesn't allow for dual citizenship. India is now the makes up the largest immigration chunk of immigrants
https://www.forbes.com/sites/stuartanderson/2020/02/03/indians-immigrating-to-canada-at-an-astonishing-rate/?sh=42120c4f2b5f

I am a bit skeptical of numbers because of the sheer amount of immigrants coming into Canada and the government increasing the quotas even more. 350k or more per year.

I am a dual citizenship holder and I am a 1st gen immigrant and that is my perspective.

You are going to have to do better than that to prove your assertion:

HiTechComms said:
Oh lastly most Canadian's have a dual citizenship..

Not liking the response you received does not support or prove your opinion, or negate the information you didn't like.
 

HiTechComms

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Fair enough..

I should have phrased it differently.

Most incoming immigrants at the rate of current immigration rate will insure that most immigrants if not all will have dual citizenship or at least PR in their own home country.

Simply adjusting for historical data of immigration will statistically make that point more realistically plausible.

Canada is simply far out pacing any other modern country of demographics through immigration rates. We are talking about 13-15% demographic change in less then ten years, I didn't accommodate for birth rates which are abysmal in Canada any way.
I am using extrapolation for my assertion based on immigration numbers.

Astronaut Canadians, Birth Tourism is an issue. To simply think that 1st gen immigrants would fight for Canada is overtly optimistic. I am curious if CAF actually keeps stats on this? Statistical outliers do exist and I acknowledge that.

Canada has numerous other and bigger problems. Like: Aging population (Immigration included), Apathy, Obesity.

One thing that this forum and the original article has made it clear is that CAF has a recruiting problem. I would like to see some raw numbers on actual CAF demographics out of intellectual curiosity. I think that most people given the choice wouldn't join and fight for Canada, immigrants or not.

There is far to much Nuance to this issue then simply having appealing recruiting drive.
I think it might be easier to have a war or crisis ala 9/11.*shrug*
 

CBH99

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You aren't wrong about a crisis being an excellent recruiting opportunity.

During the Afghan war years, recruiting was at an all time high.  I was a unit recruiter at the time, and I had people calling me, e-mailing me, or coming into the office almost daily.


The footage, constant news coverage, video going up on Youtube & the likes, and the solid PR of 'bad guys doing bad things, and Canadians helping' were all excellent for recruiting. 
 

daftandbarmy

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CBH99 said:
You aren't wrong about a crisis being an excellent recruiting opportunity.

During the Afghan war years, recruiting was at an all time high.  I was a unit recruiter at the time, and I had people calling me, e-mailing me, or coming into the office almost daily.


The footage, constant news coverage, video going up on Youtube & the likes, and the solid PR of 'bad guys doing bad things, and Canadians helping' were all excellent for recruiting.

And after the war was over they all left: for the Regs or civvy street. Very few stayed on in the reserves, where I am at any rate.

There's got to be a way we can achieve a balance of some kind.
 

CBH99

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I stayed in for a little while during that period, and I believe most of the members who left was because the army went back to 'garrison life'.

There was no longer a focus on specific training for a specific task, with the expectation that the member would be deployed to a theatre & conducting those tasks for real in the near future.  There was no exciting 'end goal', sort of speak.

It went back to being parade square focused, patch focused, with no need to produce a productive or lethal product at the end of a training cycle.  And that, is where most members left, and why we have a hard time retaining members now.  (In my opinion anyway)


:2c:
 

MilEME09

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CBH99 said:
I stayed in for a little while during that period, and I believe most of the members who left was because the army went back to 'garrison life'.

There was no longer a focus on specific training for a specific task, with the expectation that the member would be deployed to a theatre & conducting those tasks for real in the near future.  There was no exciting 'end goal', sort of speak.

It went back to being parade square focused, patch focused, with no need to produce a productive or lethal product at the end of a training cycle.  And that, is where most members left, and why we have a hard time retaining members now.  (In my opinion anyway)


:2c:

Agreed, as discussed else where, the PRes especially, but the CAF as a whole has a crisis of purpose right now. We have no goal or end state, no white paper saying we must have a brigade group ready and able to deploy anywhere.

STARS has attempted to give some direction to the Pres, however in my opinion many see it as a if we can do it cool, not a we must accomplish this.

Without a clear purpose, we cant hone our training to be better, nor can we hope to be rightfully prepared for the next conflict.
 
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