Executive Officer

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The Executive Officer is the second in command of a vessel, starbase or installation.

The XO, as it is abbreviated reports directly to the units Commanding Officer (CO).

Primary Roles

The primary role of the XO, is as it says on the tin, he/she holds the office of the executive. Both, within corporation and the military, the XOs role is a heavily administerative one involving alot of liasing and alot of paperwork. Within the world of starfleet, the XO is directly responsible for the welfare and performance of the crew below him.

As part of this role, the XO has to maintain order and discipline of its subordinates in front of the hierarchy, is responsible for recommending and organising promotion, and for recognising when a team member may need training or assistance and to offer that.

Secondary Roles

Secondary roles are usually more administrative. Conducting the day to day running of an installation or vessel is the role most observed. Liasing with department heads and addressing their needs is also a big part of the XO's day. An old military term says that 'The captain shall only be disturbed with matters of the upmost importance... I decide that importance'

On smaller vessels, the Office of the executive may only contain a handful of crew, meaning the officer can then take onboard secondary duties elsewhere. Onboard a starship, the XO is usually just tasked with his/her primary role and on bigger installations, may be required to perform tertiary tasks such as command of an outpost or support ship. To offer an unbiased view and to show co-operation, sometimes an XO can be recruited outside of the traditional routes as was the case with the Bajoran Militias Colonel Kira Nerys and The USS Voyagers Lt. Commander Chakotay.

Ranking Structure

On smaller vessels where fewer crew are required to operate, the XO can be any rank, usually a lieutenant. Within the British Navy, the Executive Officer also held the posting of First Lieutenant, or the 'Number One' onboard submarines or frigates.

On larger vessels and some outposts, the XO usually requires more experiance to operate. Ranks Upwards from Lieutenant Commander through Captain are seen, although usually a full Commander is more common.

Major starbases and headquarters that are flagged, usually by an Admiral; will request an Executive Officer capable of command to complete the day-to-day running of the installation. These are very rarely less than a full Commander. A more traditional role may also apply to this individual, as Attaché to the Flag.

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