STAVANGER, Norway – Rear Admiral Jan C. Kaack, Commander of NATO Joint Warfare Centre (JWC), held his first All-Hands Call in the Centre’s Harald Haarfagre Auditorium on August 23, 2019.
During the event, Kaack introduced himself to JWC’s staff, sharing his first impressions as well as his intentions for his tenure as Commander.
“I do have the pleasure to serve alongside you for the next three years,” Kaack said. “I am married and father to three wonderful kids. We are all very happy to live in Stavanger and experience the Norwegian way of life.”
His first impressions
Welcoming his appointment as Commander JWC, Kaack said he was very excited to join the Centre’s "One Team" with his family.
He noted that he had already developed a deep appreciation for the JWC’s workforce and values since he took over on July 10. “You all managed to create the impression of a very capable and highly motivated organization with a very special 'One Team' culture,” Kaack said.
“This view has been supported by everyone I spoke with so far; be it our customers, or some of our key leaders or partners. Clearly, the Joint Warfare Centre is successfully delivering its core role in directing NATO’s major joint exercises. However, significant challenges have been added to our mission on-the-go. So, my question is not, are we fit for purpose? It is more, are we fit for the future?”
Kaack explained how he wanted to incorporate his views into his work with the JWC during this transformative period and his excitement in meeting staff in the coming days.
“I clearly see a window of opportunity for us as NATO’s lead provider of operational-level training and exercises. The Joint Warfare Centre is a crucial part of the most successful Alliance in history; therefore, I am interested in helping to design possible new roles ourselves and making our ambitions clear on how to make training in NATO better and how to best prepare our wonderful organization for it. Who could do it better than us?”
"The Joint Warfare Centre is a crucial part of the most successful Alliance in history; therefore, I am interested in helping to design possible new roles ourselves and making our ambitions clear on how to make training in NATO better and how to best prepare our wonderful organization for it."
His intent in the short term and what staff can expect
During the event, Kaack announced his intent to conduct a thorough functional and strategic analysis this autumn to enhance the JWC’s strengths and opportunities and to evaluate NATO’s new requirements with regards to exercises and warfare development.
“Go beyond standard procedure and take calculated risks – I embrace this attitude,” Kaack said, adding: “One Team, One Vision. This is who we are, and it is the soul of our organizational culture. Our mission is crucial for NATO’s enduring success, and you are the ‘One professional, inspired and excellent Team’ who does it, adding value to our Alliance on a day-to-day basis. Thank you all for your dedication and commitment. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to serve alongside you!”
Rear Admiral Jan C. Kaack addressing staff at Newcomers' Training, August 19, 2019. This year, the Joint Warfare Centre welcomes more than 50 new staff members and their families to the organization.