Hello to all...
I hope that this finds everyone well. I hope that with the holiday season upon us that everyone takes a little time to stop and give thanks for what we all have; regardless of religious beliefs. I recently had an amazing experience. I am sure that I am no different than any other father out there that watches his young children grow up and finally ...FINALLY graduate and move into adult hood. Now the experience that I am talking about is not the typical graduation of my children. More specifically the graduation of my recruits. Yes it is official. In a couple of days these fine young (probies) will be thrown to the wolves so to say! I can not tell you how proud I am of these recruits.
I tell you this to tell you something else. We are increasing our shift personnel by 26 percent. What the.... are we thinking? Where are all of the "Old Salts"? Where are our leaders? Where is the experience? I will tell you where it is... it is that 26 percent. Yes, these recruits are going to be our leaders...someday. I had one of my captains come up to me a while back and he said, "Chief, These guys we are getting...they are better qualified, smarter, better trained, and in much better shape than we are." My response, "I know... I trained 'em." Officers it is your job to take these new... recruits, cadets, probies, what ever you call them... under your wing. Run with the enthusiasm of these young people and use it to motivate the dogs, slugs, individuals in retirement mode...what ever you call them. We all have 'em. Use this motivation to get their cans out of the recliner and onto the drill ground. Don't be mortified at the possibility that a 20 something may know something you don't. I read a funny statistic the other day. The amount of information in the world has doubled in the last five years and will continue to do so (John C. Maxwell's book Attitude 101). Are you scared of the "dot com" firefighter? I say you shouldn't be. If you are reading this you are the "dot com" firefighter regardless of your age, beliefs, color, or creed. You are a member of this great brotherhood/ sisterhood. I challenge you if you are an "old salt" pass on your knowledge to the probie and try to learn something from them. It just may keep you or them alive.