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A Look into MÄK’s Command Staff Training Approach

Commanders, like all good leaders, are responsible for the people below them. But they can’t do it alone. A commander’s staff exists to support the commander, work as a team, and deliver information to help make good, informed decisions. Training and preparation enable the command staff to function efficiently and properly in challenging situations; training allows the commander and his team to assess the situation, make decisions, and communicate those decisions.

Simulation plays an important role in command staff training; it’s job is to stimulate those situations where learning takes place. The simulation content depends on the echelon (level) and the missions the staff is being trained for. Marine Captains need entity-level simulation to train look-ahead surveillance for convoy protection missions while General Officers need aggregate-level simulation to model wargames for course of action analysis. (And there’s countless more examples of both.)

Modeling all of the elements needed to stimulate a command staff "” all the activity in a training scenario "” is a huge endeavor. Especially when it includes the behavior of opposing forces, the background civilian population, the political and social environment as well as the friendly force operations. To make it happen, commanders either need role players acting out the parts of each unit/entity/vehicle/person or a very powerful, believable, and capable artificial intelligence (AI) solution. Since full scale operations are time consuming and expensive to setup and run, many training tasks use the divide-and-conquer approach of focusing lessons on tasks that are manageable subsets of a complete environment. 

MAK’s simulation tools help command staff groups manage this daunting task. VR-Forces can use Aggregate Level Simulation to model at the brigade and above echelons; VR-Forces and Battle Command can also model Entity Level Simulations at brigade and below echelons. ECOSim specializes in simulating individual human characters. All three have AI to help automate the behavior of units/entities/people and are interactive "” allowing the command staff, training support staff and role players to dynamically control the scenario.


MÄK’s simulation software is designed to work in live, constructive, or virtual simulation environments and they scale from a single computer to distributed networked simulation systems with sites across the world. We have application level tools that are ready to configure for training and we offer software tools to build new training systems, to integrate into your training systems, or to stimulate operational Command & Control (C2) and Mission Command systems.

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