Leadership: Marine Mail Makes a Comeback


January29, 2007: The U.S. Marine Corps has revived its suggestion box. Back in 1995, marine commandant Charles Kurlak instituted the Marine Mail program. Any marine with a useful suggestion, was encouraged to send it to the commandant. The only catch was that the suggestion had to meet one of four criteria;

@ What are we not doing that we should be doing?

@ What are we doing that we should do differently?

@ What are we doing that we should not be doing?

@ What new concept or idea should the Marine Corps investigate to improve its war-fighting capability?

Hundreds of useful ideas came in over the years. Some of them proved very useful. Soon, there was an email address for Marine Mail as well. But over the last few years, the program was not promoted much, and fell into disuse. The current commandant, James Conway, changed that by announcing that Marine Mail was still around, and marines should make use of it.

Marine Mail can be tricky. Marines are warned not to use it for things that should be handled via the chain of command, or other channels (like the Inspector General for criminal matters). What the commandant is looking for is things that affect a lot, or all, marines, and that only the commandant can get moving. This could be anything from weapons, to tactics, to how the uniform is worn. A lot of the suggestions are about seemingly little things, at least to the senior officers, but that mean a lot to the majority of marines.

Commandants have also found Marine Mail a good way to find out what's happening throughout the Marine Corps, and get a heads up on things that need a closer look at. If you're a marine, you know the email address for Marine Mail.




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