I truly believe it's a good idea to give your Company Commander a gift when they leave their duty assignment. In most cases, the Company Commander has made a huge personal and family sacrifice to lead a unit for 18 to 36 months. Assuming the person did a great job, or even just a good job, their soldiers and subordinate leaders should chip in and get the Company Commander a gift. This is a nice personal touch and in my opinion, is the right thing to do.
For the purpose of this article, I would like to share some gift ideas for Company Commanders leaving command. Of course, these gifts could be used for any service member leaving a duty position, either for ETS, retirement or transfer.
1. A Unit Guidon: Traditionally, a unit commander will receive a unit guidon or replica unit colors when they leave a unit. In most cases, the guidon is framed and comes with a unit coin and a little plaque inside of it. It is a prized possession for most former commanders.
2. A Unique Plaque: You could make a unique plaque with the unit motto, a catchy phrase, a few words of the person's contributions and even a picture. Most plaques, depending upon the design, can be made for $30 to $100. You can get a real nice plaque for about $75.
3. A Picture: You can take a photo of everyone in the section and have everyone sign it. Once you do that, you can get the photo framed and give that as the going away gift.
4. A Gift Card: Money talks. You could have everyone in the office chip in what they can afford and get the person a gift card to one of their favorite places. This is a great idea and is normally very appreciated.
5. Custom Clothing: You could have a custom-made jacket or shirt with the unit motto or venture logo and give that to your commander as a going away gift.
All of these gift ideas are a wonderful way to recognize your Commander's efforts and contributions to a military unit. If I had to recommend the best option, I would tell you to get your CO a framed guidon. Trust me, that is what they want to get!
If you are a First Sergeant, Company XO, or Platoon Leader, make sure that your Company Commander doesn't leave their duty position without getting some type of gift from the unit. It's the right thing to do!