chain of command

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chain of command

The hierarchy of people with authority in a particular setting or situation. I know I can't complain to the CEO directly, but there must be someone in the chain of command that I can talk to!
See also: chain, command, of

chain of command

Fig. the series or sequence of holders of responsibility in a hierarchy. The only way to get things done in the military is to follow the chain of command. Never try to go straight to the top.
See also: chain, command, of
References in periodicals archive ?
The G-20 MOA also memorializes other necessary considerations regarding the separate state and federal chains of command.
40) This is a critical example of why the DSC cannot "wear" two hats at a time and is likely the most important operational and legally intensive aspect of the mutually exclusive chains of command.
41) Where conflict exists, the DSC should notify both chains of command at the earliest opportunity, and both chains of command and the DSC must be involved in resolving such conflicts.
In order to ensure the federal and state chains of command and their respective operations remain separate, past DSCs have utilized two deputy commanders: one NG officer in state status and the other a title 10, federal military officer.
This Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) outlines the separate chains of command and responsibilities of the dual-status commander for the Pittsburgh Summit of G-20 Leaders (hereinafter "the Summit"), which will be held September 24-25, 2009, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, for the purpose of convening world leaders who represent 85 percent of the world's economy.
As such, the dual-status commander is an intermediate link in two distinct, separate chains of command flowing from different sovereigns.
The dual-status commander will have enhanced situational awareness through this dual status, and both Federal and State chains of command will have a common operating picture.
If the dual-status commander perceives that orders provided by the Federal or State chain of command may violate Federal or State law or create a potential conflict of interest or mission conflict, the dual-status commander must immediately inform both chains of command of the perceived problem.
To avoid miscommunication, the Federal and State chains of command should share all documents/guidance concerning their respective missions at the earliest possible opportunity.
If the dual-status commander believes a conflict exists, he should notify both chains of command at the earliest possible opportunity.
If it becomes necessary to make a change to the status of forces, the dual-status commander will ensure both chains of command are aware of the necessity for such changes, but the dual-status commander does not have the authority to make those changes.
In the event that the dual-status commander becomes incapacitated, subordinates will need to be in place to assume command of both the Federal and State chains of command.