.org!!!

It’s official.  We are on wordpress.org platform now.  I’m still building the site, but I anticipate having it up and running by this weekend.  Change your bookmarks to managingfires.com  I’m excited.

Big news coming your way for the first post on managingfires.com  BIG BIG BIG news!  Let’s just say that you will get a $250 value for free!  No strings, no preasure to buy anything.  Nothing but free content that you would normally have to pay for.  (and travel)

Stay tuned.  Make sure to subscribe on iTunes so that you don’t miss the free content that is coming your way.

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Love this. Trust!

I love this quote.  It’s so true that if your staff doesn’t trust you, they will have a very difficult time following you.  Check out what Chief Ford says about trust and communication.

Culture Change. It’s Hard!!!

Check out the newest podcast on iTunes. Managing Fires Radio is live today! We talk about culture change and how to make it happen in your organization.

Do you need to shock your workplace to continue its forward progress?

Listen Here to find out how to effect culture change in your organization.

Tweet me and let me know what you think.

Podcast!!! It’s alive!!!

That’s right folks.  I’m a couple days late but it’s real.  Forgive my tardiness but I didn’t realize Apple had to review the podcast before letting out for the world to have.  So here it is.  Download and subscribe.

I’ll take all of the feedback you can muster.  Really, I can take even the harshest words.  Let me know what you think.

Tweet me to let me know.

What is a Fire Officer?

Often times, we confuse someone in charge with someone who is a leader.  Now, I get it!  Shouldn’t the person in charge, lead us?  Sure they should.  They should inspire us to accomplish a task, work together, create, teach us to inspire others, look out for one another, etc.  But being in charge, does not make one a leader.

I have worked for several people who where in a position of authority but were not leaders.  In the fire service, to be “in-charge” you must be a fire officer.  Normally, it takes someone years to develop the skills, experience, and education to be a fire officer.  You go to work, try to learn from your boss, learn jobs skills, attend classes, go to seminars, etc.  Then one day, you take an exam and BOOM!  Guess who’s a fire officer.  YOU!

So the next day, you walk back in to work and you no longer are the follower. YOU  are the leader.  WOW!  What a big change.  Now it is your responsibility to teach, mentor, inspire, and lead your staff.  Do you know how?  Sure, you paid your dues and went through hell to get the position, but do you know what you are doing?  Are you prepared to lead.  I mean… REALLY LEAD!

Scary thought.  I know.  I was there.  But let’s examine what a leader is.  The Bing.com dictionary defines a leader as: somebody whom people follow: somebody who guides or directs others.

The key word is Guides.  It is difficult to be a leader for those who don’t follow.  I’ve seen it.  Ask any of your friends if they know someone who is in a leadership roll but has no followers.  Maybe it’s you.  Have no fear.  You can correct this and become a great leader.  –Side story.  I was a fire officer for a small fire department in the South East US.  I hadn’t been there long and didn’t know one of the officers that worked under me.  So one day I responded to a fire where the other fire officer was in charge.  I arrived, took stock of what was going on and couldn’t believe my eyes.  All of the firefighters were running around and doing their own thing.  In the fire service, we call this free lancing.  This is NO BUENO!  If you are on the roof of a burning building, and no one knows you are there, how will they find you if something goes wrong?  Free lancing kills firemen.  So after the fire, I asked a couple of the guys why there was so much free lancing.  The answer is a common one.  “No one respects the guy in charge.”- end of story.

So how do you gain respect?  It’s simple.  Here is a list:

Do what you say you are going to do.

If you promise to get something done, especially if it will benefit your staff, do it!

Mentor your staff.

Often times, you can connect on a personal level with your staff if you will simply take interest and mentor them.

Provide the tools your staff need, to be successful.

No one likes to be given a task and then not have the tools to complete it.  Remember that tools also means knowledge.  This will allow your staff to be successful and feel as if they are pleasing you.

Always tell the truth.  Even when it is difficult.

Your staff will respect you when you make the difficult decisions.  I know it difficult to do this when the news isn’t great.  But they want to be treated with respect, and this means telling them the hard stuff.

Be prepared.

I talked about this in a recent post.  Make sure that you are always prepared.  A simple plan will work.  Remember, your plan doesn’t have to be detailed.  It just has to have a method for dealing with the unknown (surprise.)  You are the person that everyone will turn to.  Make sure you aren’t standing there with no map to the finish line.

 

Overall, without respect, your staff will run all over you.  You need to have vision.  You can do this by following the steps outlined above.

Make sure to subscribe to Managing Fires.  Check us out on Facebook.  Or Tweet me to let me know what’s on your mind.

What’s Next?

So, it’s a the first day of the workweek and you are all back in action.  I also, am back in action.  I’m made a goal of writing 2 chapters for the eBook this week.  *fingers crossed*  I have so many ideas in my head and on paper.  I just need to organize them all.  Every time I think about the book, more ideas pop up.

But hear is my biggest idea.  I want everyone to use the comment section below to make requests.  So essentially, I want you to write the table of contents, and I will go do the interviews, research, and writing.  The overall topic is growth as a leader.

Also, I want this to be a huge collaboration.  So, like us on Facebook.  Subscribe to the blog.  Click here to tweet this!

This is going to be awesome.  Oh!  More great news.  Our first Podcast will be posted on Friday.  I can’t wait.  Details to follow.

I am beyond motivated about everything that is going on.  Join me.  Motivation is contagious!