Carrying-out coaching and mentoring sessions inthe Actual Artillery Fire Support Missions
Several soldiers with ranks of Privates and Private First Class from the 6th Field Artillery (Deadly Accurate) Battalion (6FAB), who were deployed in the area of Central Mindanao received their “baptism of fire” during the actual fire support provided to the operating troops of the 6th Infantry (Kampilan) Division, Philippine Army in its recent law enforcement operations.
Their deployment came after the Pre-deployment Training including the series of mentoring and coaching sessions direct from their senior NCOs and Officers led by Lieutenant Colonel Francis Anthony M Coronel, the Commanding Officer of 6FAB.
LTCOL CORONEL, who visited his troops on-site, emphasized to his Battery Commanders to always lead by example in managing their respective firebases during fire missions. He also articulated the importance of mentoring and coaching especially for the newbies in the field, “This will result to more team harmony that will lead to greater performance output. He also said that honing of skills must be continuous with the veteran NCOs until such time it will be passed-over to the next generation of cannoneers. The learning curve can be a two way process from feedback and insights from both old and new soldiers.”
Coronel added to constantly remind the troops about the symbiotic relationship of each member of the artillery gunnery team, “Remember that each member is as important as the other. Thus, the accurate and quick delivery of fire can only be achieved when you work as a team. We cannot afford to lose lives because of our inaccuracies and delays.”
The artillery gunnery team is composed of Forward Observer (FO) which serves as the eyes and ears, the Fire Direction Center is the “brain” which computes the data provided by the FO and the Firing Battery is the muscle of the gunnery team. The newbie cannoneer’s exposure was focused in the operations of the firing battery.