The term “cohesion” features prominently in discussions of military effectiveness, especially at the small-unit level. Most people have at least an intuitive sense of what it means, but understanding how to develop and nurture it in practice is a challenge. That’s even more true as technological advancement continues to make constant connectivity with the outside world easier, even from a battlefield. How do soldiers’ stresses from home impact cohesion? What about when soldiers no longer process shared traumatic experiences together?

John Spencer spent twenty-five years as an infantry soldier and officer, including leading troops in combat. His new book, Connected Soldiers, is based on both his personal experience and deep research. He joins this episode of the MWI Podcast to discuss how unit cohesion affects military performance and how leaders can foster its development.

You can listen to the entire discussion below, and if you aren’t already subscribed to the MWI Podcast, be sure to find it on Apple PodcastsStitcherSpotifyTuneIn, or your favorite podcast app. While you’re there, please take a moment and give the podcast a rating or leave a review.

Image credit: Sgt. Taylor Hoganson, US Army