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  • Karpluk: Book Quotes to Help You Become Better

    By Les Karpluk - Wednesday July 23, 2014
    I’m a reader plain and simple. I like to read books so I can become a better father, husband, friend, leader and encourager. My personal collection of leadership books is quite frankly getting out of control, but I read them all, take notes, highlight...
  • Karpluk: Five Myths on Fire Service Leadership

    By Les Karpluk - Friday July 4, 2014
    The role of a leader is to set others up for success and today’s fire service leaders must do what they can to help others grow as leaders. There are many myths in fire service leadership and being familiar with the following myths will help today’s...
  • Karpluk: Reflecting on 32 Years in the Fire Service

    By Les Karpluk - Wednesday May 21, 2014
    On Feb. 28, I retired from the fire department. To be honest, I really had no idea how emotional the day would be. The last two months have been spent reflecting on my career and without a doubt I have been blessed to serve the citizens for 32 years and...
  • Karpluk: Leadership Styles for Your Fire Department

    By Les Karpluk - Monday February 24, 2014
    I like to read about leadership research and theories with the hope that I can learn something so I can become a better leader. I must confess that at times this leadership journey has its twists and turns and some days are just better than others. This...
  • Karpluk: Books to Add to Your Shelf, Open Your Mind

    By Les Karpluk - Sunday January 19, 2014
    I have recently received several inquiries about books that aspiring officers should read. I feel honored that a firefighter would seek me out to get my advice on leadership books, but the more I thought about this, the more I started to worry that I...
  • Karpluk: Old Words Create New Ways

    By Les Karpluk - Thursday December 26, 2013
    I purchased one of my favorite books in 1994; it’s a thin paperback titled, As a Man Thinketh written by British philosophical writer James Allen. It continues to change the lives of men and women who are open to the truths written by Allen since it...
  • Karpluk: Changes to the Fire Department's Culture

    By Les Karpluk - Monday December 9, 2013
    The fire service is known for its strong culture and like anything else in life, there is the good, the bad, and the ugly in a department’s culture. Every department has a strong sense of values, beliefs, and norms, and this forms the basis of its...
  • Karpluk: Ethics Lessons from Toronto Mayor Rob Ford

    By Les Karpluk - Saturday November 16, 2013
    I think it is fair to say that the fire service understands the importance of ethics and that it is a key ingredient in leadership. The Merriam Webster dictionary defines ethics as “rules of behavior based on ideas about what is morally good and...
  • Karpluk: Where Should Leaders Focus Their Efforts?

    By Les Karpluk - Thursday November 7, 2013
    Some in the fire service think that by achieving a position, rank or title they become a leader. It’s not a secret that leadership plays a key role in the fire service and for those that think they have arrived as a leader because they have the status...
  • Karpluk: When You Become Your Buddy's Boss

    By Les Karpluk - Thursday October 17, 2013
    One of my favorite cartoons by illustrator Paul Combs is his “Buddy to Boss” illustration. You know the one where the fire chief hands the leader brain to the newly promoted lieutenant, and the lieutenant puts his buddy brain into the wastebasket. I...