A Communication Strategy is a plan that aims at coordinating future activities in regards to set objectives.Communication strategies have evolved over the past years since the commencement of World War I to many other battles. Looking at early developments, messengers were used during war times to give information from one agent point to the other.Alexander, Hannibal, and Ceaser first employed this rapid preparation of the communication plans. They each developed an elaborate system whereby messages were sent from point one to the next. This greatly helped the military execute their activities in harmony. However, despite its usefulness, with its various factors deterred its effectiveness hence creating a negative impact. This led to many other evolutions and communication strategies in an attempt to improve the success of communication plans within the military structures.
Such developments have been brought about due to the previous failure and insufficiency when it comes to relaying important messages. Insufficient communication strategies can lead to disorganization of the military structures. For this reason, some internal and external factors mostly impact military communication strategies in their environment.
Other earlier developments included; the advent of electrical signaling,which is the electric telegraph by Samuel F.B Morse. Then mobile telegraph trains came along. Later on,techniques of visual signaling were brought up followed by mobile technology in 1876 that was used in the military.
Factors that affect the military communication strategies
These factors range from internal to external factors. They can be categorized under physical factors,religious,emotional,cultural etcetera. Therefore, this study shall categorically discuss the factors that have affected the military communication strategies and plans in two sections, that is, internal factors and external factors.
These factors majorly focus on the people involved in the army; the chain of command within. This includes the various personalities, education, training,technology,personnel policies etcetera. Usually, the chain of command used in this case applies the Mission Command Theory,which is a German Concept.This concept denotes a leadership decentralization system. The chain of command is not necessarily followed according to this theory. Anyone is allowed to give authority or directions. This is can also be translated as having the mandate or authority to pass over important information to the group succeeds in the mission. In the case where the military is to wage war with the enemies,then a subordinate has the power or authority to communicate to the rest in a way that will favor their triumph during the battle.
Therefore,once a command has been given out, the entire military has to adopt it,adapt and ultimately put into practice for victory. Some military soldiers have previously used the Mission Command Theory as a military communication strategy in their country in the 1980s. These are like the U.S, British, and the Israeli armies.
However, a problem is prone to arise when beliefs and traditions of command of the state conflict before the adoption of the Mission Command Theory. Such traditions are most likely to influence the adoption and practice of the mission management thus posing an issue with the military communication plans. Therefore, for the success of the army communication plan, traditions on the leadership of the state must be considered before the war.
These involve changes in the warfare as well as in civil-military, relations. It is very crucial to note down the strength and weaknesses of the opponent as well as yours; that is determining the center of gravity.Usually, a spy is an employed to source for information from the enemy base. This will help in planning your communication strategy for success.
Scarce resources and interactive relationships should be built in any military communication strategy for success. Failure to do so will make it easier for the enemy to attack the army hence a setback in military communication plans.
In summary, there are necessary steps to be followed in making military plans regarding communication strategies. For instance, looking at the Mission Command Theory as a strategic plan for establishing communication plans,three things must be taken into consideration. These are; adoption, adaptation, and finally, practice. This indicates a proper leadership and communication system. First, the person is given the mandate to execute orders should be well trained to make an informed judgment on which strategy can be adopted for the mission. This is then followed by the uniform agreement across the military and state command traditions. Once this is done, the army can then proceed to practice the suitable system to attack the enemy for victory.
On the other hand, for the military to ensure success in its strategies, it is also crucial to extensively use spies to gather information concerning the enemy. Information gathering involves being aware of the equipment the enemy plans to use and the personnel they are having. With this knowledge, it is easier to decide on what machinery and arms to come along with in an attempt to counteract the attack. This will help in bridging the gap created by external factors. Also, it should be assumed that the enemy might be having prior information from other spies before the warfare hence, need for proper preparation. Top secrets should be kept within and never be leaked out. This may require a lot of trust amongst the military troupe. The state plays a significant role in support of the army communication plan.
Also, internal factors like education, training, technology,personnel policies and tradition commands must be looked into before waging war. Whoever is being given the leadership authority should be well trained in the current technology used in sea, air and land communication. Education is an important part of the mechanics of flying airplanes and dog fighting. It should be noted that the Mission Command Theory only works well when the leadership traditions of a countrys army are in total agreement.
Angstrom, Jan and J.J. Widen. "Contemporary Military Theory:The Dynamics of War."New York: Routledge, 2015.
Back, George I. "Military Communication". Encyclopedia Britannica. Last modified 2016.Accessed April 29, 2016,/www.britannica.com/technology/military-communication.
Paul, Christopher. "Strategic Communication: Origins, Concepts and Current Debates."Denver: Colorado, 2011.
Shamir, Eitan. "Transforming Command:The Pursuit of Mission Command in the U.S, British and Israeli Armies."Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2011.
Tzu, Sun. "The Art of War."New York: Mineola, 1944.
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