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                   Building Team Cohesion Among Trainees, Leveraging Diversity, Equity, And Inclusion
 Building teams from a diverse population is nothing new to the Army. For decades we have utilized the three stages of Army team
building: formation, enrichment, and sustainment, in accordance with ATP 6-22.6. But what is new,
in today’s environment, is having to build teams across multiple generations and from a society
that focuses more on what divides us rather than what binds us. To teach and develop team cohesion amongst the Trainees, we must continue Army team building by emphasizing the proven concept of strength through diversity, focus development equally and equitably, and creating a positive inclusion environment.
As the Army continues to diversify, we must embrace our multiculturalism to enhance our capabilities and effectiveness. This embracement
of diversity begins in Basic Combat Training. We demonstrate strength through diversity by having cohesive and diverse groups of cadre members that set the example for the Trainees, guide discussions, and encourage Trainees to learn about their fellow team members. Learning about their fellow team members is crucial in the formation of a team.
The formation team-building stage allows them to share their life experiences, personal information, build trust, give them a better understanding of how to collaborate, and helps them learn how
to communicate effectively (Department of the
1SG Adam J. Kolar
Army, 2015). Cadre members must guide these discussions to ensure that Trainees do not let prejudices or biases erode team-building events. Cadre members need to ensure that Trainees treat each other with dignity and respect, be ready to guide the discussion through some possibly tough conversations, help break down barriers or societal issues, and reinforce and instill Army Values. Cadre should also provide examples of how diversity has increased our capabilities as an Army. Our wide- ranging backgrounds and skills enable our abilities to win on today’s modern battlefield. The cadres’ involvement also gives us the ability to understand our Trainees. It begins the process of understanding how to best influence and motivate them as individuals and teams.
By understanding our Trainees and having our Trainees understand each other, we can better influence, motivate, and train them to reach their individual and collective goals. Equal opportunity (EO) is the fair treatment of all individuals. Still,
to fully develop individuals and enhance team capabilities, we must look beyond EO and develop our Trainees equitably. Our Trainees have both collective and individual developmental needs.
By capitalizing on events in the formation stage
of team building, our Trainees should feel an understanding and commitment to each other
and the team. At this point, they have entered the
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