Today we took our Communication Skills workshop outside. Their objective was to recover secret documents held at various cache sites in Seoul. They were responsible for all mission prep, communication, strategy, and execution.
Prior to the team meeting we met with the leadership team to ensure they understood the mission for the day, provide them some insight to each target, advise them on our expectations, and a few clues on potential pitfalls. What I love about the team here is their openness to teaching.
The team assembled for a final meeting to discuss the plan. Each member was able to provide input. I enjoyed the fact that much of the strategy for execution was given by the team, with final approval coming from the leaders.
The team hit their first cache area within a few minutes after departure. The original plan was to find the first cache together and then split into teams of two. This was so they could find all the objectives. They are Asian, they wanted to complete all 25 targets in the three hour time frame. When I did this exercise in Europe a few years ago they hit the second one and went for a latte.
In the area they quickly found that even though their smart phones got them on the objective, it was not specific enough to get them on the cache. I then handed them my Garmin so they could get closer.
It was a great feeling finding the first one. Though one of the rules was for them to use stealth, you can’t blame 10 new cachers to be so secretive on their first find.
The energy level and excitement increased as the team continued to find several targets. After 4-5 finds and one unsuccessful find, I had the team break for lunch on the road. Interesting note….team was great at finding secret cache site with stolen company documents…team struggled finding a place to eat. Its Korea, you can’t swing a stick without hitting someplace to eat. Then again, its Korea, food is a big deal. We eventually found a great little place where we were treated to spicy octopus and rice. Very spicy. Very good.
We returned from the mission, did a debrief, and when class had hit a point of exhaustion, we broke a bit early.
It was great to be back in a role I am very familiar with. I got excited as we got deep into the mission planning phase. I found myself falling back into those good habits you learn while on a combat or recon patrol. If you have been in this role you know what passage of friendly lines is. Imagine now you are doing your head count as your troops cross the wire….out of the elevator…..