A typical Navy staff structure is shown in figure 1-1.
In addition to the commander (usually an admiral), the
staff includes a chief of staff, personal assistants (the
PAO and JOs may be included in this category) and five
staff divisions. These divisions are the major structural
elements of the staff and may be designated by letters
and numbers as follows: administration (N-l),
intelligence (N-2), operations and plans (N-3), logistics
(N-4) and communications (N-5). A joint staff,
comprised of personnel from more than one service,
uses the letter J before the division number.
On small staffs (below fleet and force), titles of
officers heading the various sections vary from the
above designations, depending on the rank of the
commander. For example, instead of a chief of staff, you
might find a chief of staff officer or an assistant chief of
staff for administration. It all depends on the size of the
The commanders personal staff performs duties
prescribed by the commander and is directly responsible
to him. This staff group, normally composed of aides to
the commander and staff officers handling special
matters over which the commander wishes to exercise
close personal control, usually includes the PAO, and in
major overseas commands, the political adviser.
When reporting to a new command or staff, you
should examine the staff organization and become
familiar with the functions of the various divisions.
Become thoroughly familiar with your internal and
external audiences of the organization and the extent of
their knowledge of command activities.
COMMAND AND STAFF ACTION
A military organization is designed primarily to be
victorious in battle. Decisive elements of a problem
must be promptly identified and accurately defined.
Command decisions must then be made and translated
into timely orders to be carried out by subordinates.
Figure 1-1.-Typical modern staff organization.