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Plan Of Action portion of DA Form 4856

Picture of Hartranft
This may seem as a dumb question, but I'm very very new to writing counselings. I've just been assigned as a team leader, and have been given no instruction on how to complete this form, so I've kind of just been going off of other SGT and SSG examples that they have given me.

Normally on this section that is the subject of the post, the unit expects this to be short term and long term goals. But I'm not sure if these are supposed to be my goals for the soldier or the soldier's individual goals for themselves. As i know that my job as their team leader is to ensure that they get their job done correctly and in a timely manner while still meeting all ARs. But I also know that it is my job to know what their personal goals are and to assist them down that path while ensuring that it does not hamper their job and work ability.

Thank you for your time and responses.
Posts: 3 | Location: Fort Bragg | Registered: 26 April 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post

Picture of Go Ordnance
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"Plan of action" means just that... a plan of action. You would develop a plan that you think would achieve the desired results of whatever the counseling is about.


Soldier needs military education to help get promoted.

"plan of action" Enroll Soldier into correspondence courses.

"If you do not stand by me at my worst, you WILL NOT stand by me at my best."
Posts: 719 | Location: Fort Lee | Registered: 18 May 2007Reply With QuoteReport This Post

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See you around again... There's no dumb questions! Just keep asking you always learn something new asking questions!!

Ok a note about "My job as a team leader is to ensure that they get their job done correctly and in a timely manner while still meeting all ARs" Okay...thats not only your job right now because you are counseling that Soldier! you job now is more likely a NCO (Teach, Mentor and Coach) taking care of you Soldier (you already demonstrate your qualities by staying late with you Soldier)... Now on your question; Goals! Thats the Soldiers' personal goals, you do not put goals for him (Thats why is call Soldiers immediate short and long term goals) not leaders immediate short and long term goals for the Soldier. The plan of action... Im sorry but Go Ordnance is wrong... Is not you but you and the individual counsel will develop a plan of action to meet the goals, yes you can input your plan of actions but you need to leave room so that the Soldiers can input his own if he has some, but is good when you encourage them! And if the plan of action was met or not, you do the assessment on Part IV (Assessment) if im not mistaken... Good job and if you need to know any other thing about counseling go to and read the topicabout counseling technique in the forum. Good job and always strive for the best!

Lead, Follow or get the hell out of the way, 'cause I will run you over!
Posts: 73 | Location: Any DZ | Registered: 22 February 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post

Picture of MSG W
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I use plan of action two ways. If the soldier isn't meeting a standard, you both come up with ways to meet the standard. If they have goals, what steps are they taking to actually meet the goal?

It's more of the "how" you're going to get there. That way, you can look back when you do your follow up to see if they took the steps that were planned. If the plan failed and they didn't do anything they said they would, well...there you go.

As far as should both come up with goals. It isn't wrong to tell a soldier they'll be competing for SOM, but it's also important they have a say so in what they want to achieve.
Posts: 404 | Location: Ft. Lewis, WA | Registered: 30 May 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post

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i agree with both of you but also you can have them come up with a logical plan them selves as you do the counseling, it has to be within what the problem or goals they are setting or you are setting, i feel that you should get them involved with the writing of the counseling, not only do you learn how but they do too, make sure that you go back at the end of the 30 days and do the assesment because if the prob continues and you havnt done the assesment you will not be able to do anything about it.
Posts: 8 | Registered: 24 May 2008Reply With QuoteReport This Post

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Hartranft .. thanks for the question to the community.

The Plan of action section content will depend on what type of counseling you are doing.. ie...

On a counseling for negative performance you (the counselor) would outline the plan of action in most cases. ie for a soldier who is disrespectful it might read something like this ... you will stand by the door each morning at 06:30 to 07:30 hrs from 2 June through 6 June 08 and greet each member of the company by rank as they come in the door. example "good morning Pvt Smith"

but for a situation like was mentioned above "improving military education" you will want a give and take discussion with the soldier. you will suggest options and ask questions like: does that sound do-able to you? How much time is resonable to spend on this a week? The bottom line is that you want the soldier to feel that it is their plan and not yours. Trust me they will respond better if it is their plan and not you telling them what to do.

Goals short term might be: get enrolled in ACCP by x date.

long term goals might be: complete X ammount of coures by X date.

let the soldier know you will follow up and see how they are comming along with THEIR plan.

Hope that helps ... RFH
Posts: 212 | Registered: 17 October 2005Reply With QuoteReport This Post

Picture of Top_Dog
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Definitely use this portion. If I have an NCO or junior leader in my unit recommend a soldier for non-judicial punishment, I always look at the counselings. If they did not try to counsel the soldier or take corrective action, I would not even allow this request to go to the CO. However, I would counsel the leader for being negligent in their duties as an NCO. Part of the reason soldiers get into trouble is lazy leaders!

1. Procrastination is like a disease.
Posts: 177 | Location: Just finished serving as a First Sergeant for the 3rd time (which I love), and now working as an Inspector General. | Registered: 12 January 2004Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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