Warfighting strategy steers Navy fleet

Published on LCDR Natasha Connew (author), Mr Todd Sweeney (photographer)

Topic(s): Plan Pelorus

HMAS Adelaide in Jervis Bay. The Canberra Class Amphibious Assault Ship (LHD), also known as a Landing Helicopter Dock, will provide the Australian Defence Force with one of the most capable and sophisticated air-land-sea amphibious deployment systems in the world.
 (photo: Mr Todd Sweeney)
HMAS Adelaide in Jervis Bay. The Canberra Class Amphibious Assault Ship (LHD), also known as a Landing Helicopter Dock, will provide the Australian Defence Force with one of the most capable and sophisticated air-land-sea amphibious deployment systems in the world.

Commander Australian Fleet Rear Admiral Stuart Mayer has encouraged all Navy members to embrace the Navy Warfighting Strategy 2018, launched at HMAS Watson late last year. 

“The Navy Warfighting Strategy outlines how we are going to get from the Navy of today to the Navy of the future," Rear Admiral Mayer said.

"A Navy capable of generating and deploying self-supported and sustainable maritime task groups capable of accomplishing the full spectrum of maritime security operations with lethality."

Navy Warfighting Strategy 2018 outlines how the Fleet Command will achieve the objectives set by Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett, in Plan Pelorus - Navy Strategy 2018, particularly the plan's first objective: Warfighting.

“The vision for the future does not change our ongoing requirement to deliver against government-directed operational outcomes, and further emphasises our need to be flexible and adaptable in our delivery of a scalable and structured maritime force,” Rear Admiral Mayer said.

“Much of what we do today will continue as the Navy Warfighting Strategy is implemented.” 

He said the strategy did not seek to diminish the important work being done now, but there were still challenges to be overcome in order to shift the focus from being a Navy that generates and deploys single units to a Navy that generates and deploys task groups.

“The Navy Warfighting Strategy will not be achieved by awaiting solutions from above, success will need a cultural shift towards individual accountability and innovation, rather than a mere change in hardware and processes,” Rear Admiral Mayer said

“Our platforms are pieces of metal, what makes them a capability are you and I. I urge you to think Navy-wide but take action at the unit level.

“Think about the challenges we face as a Navy and use that to inform the way you act at the individual, team and unit level.”

Rear Admiral Mayer said all Navy members needed to be prepared to try something different and to savour the journey that comes from trying, whether you succeeded or failed. 

“Everyone has a vital contribution to make to the warfighting effort," he said.

“We are all about to embark on this journey as one team.

“I want all within the Command to be actively involved and for us all to be the ruthlessly professional warfighters we are capable of being.

“I encourage you to have discussions about what you think it means to be a warfighter, how you contribute to the warfighting effort, and how your team can continue to move forward to achieve the goal of sustainable task group operations.”