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Company Officers: Are you a Manager or a Leader? Hint: I know the answer, and you should too!

Are you the kind of company officer that provides guidance, leadership and mentoring?
Do you barricade yourself in your room all day and night only to come out for calls, food and toilet time, and when your relief man comes in?

Are you taking the time to explain and teach the probies assigned to you and your house about the intricacies and nuances of the job at EVERY opportunity?
Are you quick to dismiss inquiries and curiosities, rush back to the barn so you can flop again, and completely ignore teachable moments for your crew (including the more senior members)?

Are you setting the tone of the crew and the firehouse in order to create a productive and inclusive work environment?
Are you phoning it in, dumping it on the senior man to do your job, then whining when things are screwed up?

Are you laying the groundwork for everyone to be able to perform not only their own jobs, but yours as well, so when your off that day, they know what to do, how to do it, and what the expected outcome is?
Are you overly reliant on the senior man, the other officer in the house, the overtime guy, or simply don’t give a crap 'cuz your not there today!

Do you take the time to understand the process and details of WHY we do certain things both in the firehouse and on the fireground in order to better train, manage, and lead your personnel?
Do you simply do what is necessary to keep everyone off your back, don’t ask your bosses questions, never get involved with the nuts and bolts of the department, and then turn around and brag on facebook and to whomever will swallow your discharge how your the smartest guy on the job and everyone else is a functional idiot?

As the officer, do you embrace your daily tasks in the firehouse and complete them diligently and thoroughly, take initiative to complete expected goals like hose change, ladder washing, window cleaning, waxing the apparatus, cutting grass or clearing the snow, reports and other administrative paperwork?
Do you employ every excuse in the book to your relief man to explain WHY you simply didn’t do your job the day before, and how much of a rush your in to leave the firehouse and dump your incomplete work on the next officer!


Are you the kind of officer that aspires to learn the job, everyone else’s job, and get formally educated, to be able to speak with confidence, authority, and from experience in order to be taken seriously and provide leadership, stability, dependability and mentoring?
Do you really believe that simply showing up for work, going to a few fires, having a couple Fire Academy class certs hanging on the wall, and wearing Fire Department identifiable clothing when your off duty makes you the greatest firefighter of your generation?

Are you the kind of company officer that when speaking of incidents you’ve been to, you talk about what you’ve learned, what was effective and what wasn’t, how decisions impacted safety, what could have been done differently to minimize risk, appreciate others input, and pass this knowledge on to others in your house that don’t necessary have this type of experience to draw from, or did not recognize what they were seeing?
Are you the braggart who amplifies, embellishes, adds to, and morphs stories into hero worship tales, speaks in the first person of things that did not happen and that you were not a part of, clearly delineates between those on-scene who are total idiots and those who are great firemen (of course yourself included), and then posts this fabricated fantasy on social media in an effort to reaffirm to your peeps that your the man!

When a member of your crew comes to you with an issue, such as a payroll problem, a uniform or safety gear issue, or other administrative issues that pop up in the firehouse, do you take it seriously and get to work on solving the problem with the same diligence and speed at which you would solve your own issues, then report back to the crew member what your doing and what will be done to fix this problem, and survey your crew for anybody else having this same issue that you could collectively solve together?
Are you just barebones managing the firehouse only to eat, sleep, watch tv, play x-box, be the facebook social butterfly, and then go work overtime and do it all over again, having the personal philosophy that they are a bunch of crybabies and I’m not here to babysit them!

Remember this: Managers manage things and situations: Leaders lead people!

More to come………………..

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