Leadership in different forms & 17160 Stephen Kalyta finds the Commandant’s approach quite interesting

Leadership in different forms & 17160 Stephen Kalyta finds the Commandant’s approach quite interesting

Caption: 27588 OCdt Tristan Perry getting the helping hand from Sgt Bruce.

Savvy Sgt. from 14 Wing Greenwood lends a helping hand to RMC P&Ds

Article by:28057 OCdt (II) Colin Bond

The USMA-RMC Exchange 2018 between the West Point Cadet Pipes & Drums and the Royal Military College Pipes and Drums was a resounding success; thanks in part to the added NCM presence in the form of Sergeant Andrew Bruce, the Pipe Major of 14 Wing Pipes & Drums. He was brought over to help the cadets through the kind permission of 14 Wing Greenwood’s Command Team of Colonel G Michael Adamson, CD and CWO Luc G Emond, MMM, MSM, CD. Through the Command Team’s approval, much need information was passed onto the cadets from the Sergeant’s vast knowledge of experience.

Pipe Major Bruce is an accomplished competitive piper, both as a solo performer and as a member of a Grade 1 (Professional Calibre) Pipe Band; and he utilised this experience to set up the sound for the Combined Pipes & Drums of USMA and RMC. He uses his acquired knowledge of the bagpipes and the techniques associated with them to help foster understanding of the bagpipes. Useful advice on techniques were also passed on for a greater overall knowledge to both bands.

While our Training Wing Pipe Major, Sgt Landry worked with the beginner pipers from West Point and RMC, Sergeant Bruce began setting and adjusting reeds and achieving tone for the evening’s performance at the K-Rock Centre, through Sergeant Bruce’s specialized tuning instruments. As a result, the combined bands and dancers entertained the spectators during both intermissions. Without the Sergeant’s help, the band at the West Point vs RMC game might have had some more serious problems.

Overall, Sergeant Andrew Bruce played a vital role in the success of the West Point and RMC highland band. Not only did the Sergeant play an important part in preparing the band, but giving specific advice to the highland sections to improve their performance. His knowledge and expertise on the pipes, with some help from the tools of the trade, allowed for the RMC vs West Point game to go off without a hitch.


Professional Development – I Years:

Artic Ruck

OCdt (I Year) Maximimilian Bindas

Midweek at the Royal Military College of Canada and it is time again for cadets here to begin their professional development as officers in the Canadian armed forces.

Instead of continuing with different lectures and briefs in leadership or CAF policy first year cadets had a different taste of training.

First years were treated to a short but paced ruck march to take them back to their fond memories of basic training and a simple reminder for some of what lies ahead in their future.

The 6km march lead the cadets around the campus and up passed Fort Henry into the Base here in Kingston. The columns of cadets had an atmosphere filled with music and discussion, a great chance for the Ocdts to get to connect with their classmates and future colleagues.

Despite the heavy falling of snow and sub zero temperatures the morale stayed high, giving the Ocdts a great chance to blow off steam all while sneaking in a little extra physical training.

After a quick hour had gone by the cadets returned to the parade square where they started and dismissed to go begin their academic day.

An odd way to start your day it may seem from an outsiders perspective, but for the Officer cadets here it’s just another day.


II Years – Article MIA


III Years – Third years had an academic morning.


IV Years –

4th Year Professional Development RMC

By: OCdt Badal 27226

Jeannot Boucher

On February 7th, 20546 Colonel Jeannot Boucher, the current commander of 1 Wing, gave the 4th year class a briefing on Leadership and Command in the RCAF. He graduated from RMC in 1997 as a pilot and was posted to 439 Combat Support Squadron in Bagotville. With experience at NDHQ, in deployment to Afghanistan, as well as from appointments in the United States, he came to RMC to share his knowledge with the Senior Cadets of the college.

The Colonel’s main and most important teaching point was the philosophy that leadership is about making people around you better. He added that in order to gain the trust of your subordinates, you first have to give it. Having an attitude requiring your people to “gain your trust” leads to a hostile workplace environment, which subsequently makes trust much harder to foster in the unit. He emphasized the importance of getting your intent across clearly, because then even if everything else is lost in translation, it is still possible to complete the mission. The CAF is known for the ingenuity and versatility of its members, and the ability to convey and act upon the intent of the commander is a major reason for that.

Colonel Boucher gave further advice in the form of choice quotes and phrases. The phrase “Start with why” repeats once again the importance, as a leader, of communicating your intent. The Colonel quoted Mahatma Ghandi – “Be the change you wish to see,” echoing the principle of leading by example. He gave an example of this by sharing how he started competitions among his soldiers. He bought anyone who could beat him in a run breakfast. Within a few years, the unit had developed a strong culture of exercise and good health.

To end his brief, the Colonel talked about Courage – having the courage to do the right thing, especially when it’s hard. Having the courage to report a friend to his chain of command, knowing that they will not like you for it, but that they will be better off in the long run, is hard. It can be even harder when the punishment is severe.

Colonel Jeannot Boucher’s advice, coming from a pilot, is nevertheless applicable to leaders in all trades. This briefing gave a fresh perspective and many insightful anecdotes that are sure to help the RMC Senior Cadets in their future careers.


Finding  the Commandant’s approach quite interesting

Article by 17160 Stephen Kalyta

Stephen Kalyta

I found the Commandant’s approach as highlighted in the past article of eVeritas quite interesting. For one, the notion of the then Commandant General Dallaire showing up in my room at Halloween would have been terrifying. The General or DCadets inspections were feared like the bubonic plague might have been in its day, which for those who may be wondering, happened a few years before I arrived at CMR. The second reason this struck me was the contrast in how some from the Public may view the college as somehow stuck in time when a visit from the Commandant was feared.

Clearly the current Commandant is showing the desirable leadership attribute of knowing your people and promoting their welfare. This is a highly regarded leadership quality both within the military and a rarity in business, in my opinion. The point is for an institution with a history in the 19th century, its leaders are expected to leverage the best of traditions it has to offer, while simultaneously building and broadening its foundation.

In fact it was Sir Isaac Newton who said, ” I have seen further than others, it is by standing on the shoulders of giants.” The institution has produced many giants, and for those it has, they serve as a lighthouse aimed at new paths that accommodate the organic, ever-adapting needs of the Canadian Forces. The privilege of being that giant is not in the exclusivity of your own view, but the base you create to improve the field of view for others.

You are all giants of your own making. May courage steady your hand and may wisdom make its aim true.

This article is offered for training purposes. It should not be seen as a substitute for obtaining professional counselling.

Previous Stephen Kalyta articles, in this series:

Mindfulness Part 2

Mindfulness Makes Better Warriors (part 1)

Perfection versus Good Enough


‘Gratitude toward Self’

Mid-term monsters and an altered academic reality

Oh what a night!

Cadets and Valour

Calling out all cadets with bars…

17160 Stephen Kalyta weighs in on auditor general’s report and gives Officer Cadets something to ponder