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Swiss Armed Forces College hosted NCO Intermediate Leadership Course

Working in a multinational environment is always going to be challenging.  Working within an Alliance that contains 28 Nations, Navy, Army and Air Force personnel, civilians and contractors has the potential to be a real test to even the most experienced of leaders.

The NCO Intermediate Leadership Course in a Multinational Environment hosted by the Swiss Armed Forces College aims to arm Non Commissioned Officers with the necessary skillset to become an efficient leader in what is undoubtedly a unique environment.

Located in Lucerne, the course is funded by the Swiss Armed Forces and run by Command Sergeant Major Michael Giroud with guest instructors joining him from the NATO School in Oberammergau.  Accommodation and a dining hall are provided on site and an icebreaker and weekend programme is included in the course.

The programme includes subjects such as Cultural Diversity, Ethical Behavior, Counselling in a Multinational Environment, Effective Communication and Conflict Management.  Many NCO’s will have explored these topics in their home countries but the real benefit is gained from open discussion and practical exercises alongside colleagues from other nations.  The conversation is allowed to flow and ‘Chatham House Rules’ apply giving people the confidence to speak openly.

The course is built around a personality profiling system called DISC.  In simple terms, the DISC helps us better understand ourselves and our colleagues and why we react to people and situations in the way that we do.  There are four descriptive terms within the profile – Dominant, Inspiring, Supportive and Cautious.  By answering a selection of questions and plotting your answers on a graph, your personal profile will be revealed.  Further investigation into the system will reveal where you fit into a team, understanding other members of the team and how to deal with individuals depending on their profile.  The DISC will be referred to throughout the course which will highlight its benefits and explain the theory behind it.


Whilst the majority of the course is classroom based, there are opportunities to get out into the countryside where team building events and leadership and management exercises take place and the final exercise sees you ‘deployed’ at 05:00.  The scenery is stunning so a camera is a must.

Attendance comes highly recommended by all those that have previously completed the course and any OR-6  or OR-7 that wishes to build on their current experience would be encouraged to attend.  For further details, speak with CSM Moyer.

OR-6 Paul Berry works with colleagues during a team building event

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