1. #1
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    Default Chiefs inverview

    I got the letter, and have a chiefs interview with a large department in about a week in a half. Other then work, I've cut off all contact with the outside world and am trying to study up on the department and prepare for the interview. However, Im a little nervous since I never did a ride along with the department before the first interview. The department is about six hours away, so although it would be tough, its not impossible to get one in before the chiefs. Should I make sure to get one in before my chiefs interview? Will it look really bad if I don't? Also, navy blue or black suit? Any other advice would really be appreciated.

    Thank you,

    Miramar

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    I can't really help regarding the ride along but from my research with going through the process, navy blue or gray is the preferred suit color. Black is too formal and is reserved for funerals, weddings...etc.

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    First, just wear a suit, it really doesn't matter the color too much, but just look neat and professional.

    Ride alongs are not needed and don't worry about getting one in. Also, some depts may not even allow them, so don't even worry that you didn't get one in. It may help you get an idea of what the dept does, but the interview is more concerned about you and why you want to be a FF, why you want to work for them and what you have done to prepare yourself. Be ready for a situational type of question, a diversity type of question, and again know why you want the job. (something more than i don't want to sit in an office type of response....many on such a panel may work in an office)

    If you really felt compelled to learn more about the dept, you could always stop at a station house for a visit, ask some questions and so forth. You could probably get as much info that way as you could on a ride along. To be honest though I have gone through many firefighting processes and never once did lack of doing a ride along came into play. It was mostly why I wanted to be a FF and why I wanted to work there etc.

    Best thing is to work on you speaking skills, rehearse such questions and try to watch the "ahhs" and "umms". If this is your first interview with a chief panel, don't sweat it, view it as another step, but learn from the process. What you see is pretty familiar on other interviews.
    Last edited by jccrabby3084; 03-21-2009 at 12:12 AM.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    From my experiences ride alongs are crucial, they show your interested in that specific department and you want to know how they operate on a daily basis. Every department does things a little differently. You need to find out whats expectected of the rookies and how they just generally do things. If you can squeeze one in I would do it. On top of that you can get in the heads of the people that are in and learn. You'll be alot more confident afterwards. Wear Navy suite yeallow tie impossible to go wrong with that.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FootballFire View Post
    From my experiences ride alongs are crucial, they show your interested in that specific department and you want to know how they operate on a daily basis. Every department does things a little differently. You need to find out whats expectected of the rookies and how they just generally do things. If you can squeeze one in I would do it. On top of that you can get in the heads of the people that are in and learn. You'll be alot more confident afterwards. Wear Navy suite yeallow tie impossible to go wrong with that.

    Looking at your posts it appears you are not even on the job yet to really say how crucial ride alongs are. You are on the LA thread where you are still in the process for the job. So if you are not even hired, then how can you say how crucial doing a ride along is? I'm on the job and have been for several years now and have been through many job processes before that time, the questions I posted have been common throughout most depts and really doing a ride along will not make your chances any better getting the job.

    Every dept does do things differently, but that is also why they train new people to the way that dept operates. It is not up to a candidate looking to get hired to understand how that particular dept does roof ops, etc, they will learn how if they do get hired. During an interview process though, the panel wants to know why you want to be a FF, how you would contribute to their dept, how you answer some questions and how you stand out. Doing a ride along isn't going to make or break you.




    OP, you are six hours away and I'll stand by my original post. Throughout my time applying for jobs I have made the hiring list numerous times for many depts throughout my state and even out of state. I have been offered three FT jobs before taking a position with my current dept and had four offers with other depts after I took a job. The one thing in common with all of them I turned down is that I NEVER did a ride along with any of them. I only did a ride along with my current dept because I started out here as an Explorer and also field experience for my paramedic certification. Doing a ride along is NOT going to be a determing factor in getting a job, there is no reason to go out of your way and drive 6 hours to do a ride along for a large dept.

    From an inside point of view we have ride alongs on my dept for paramedic and an occasional Explorer. There have been some who did get hired, but never once was our input or perspective on any ride along ever asked by someone on an interview panel. Some do state they are on the list, we give the token "good luck" and answer some questions, but we are not going to name drop or have the candidate name drop. They get the job on their own merit, one ride along is NOT going to make or break you getting a job, so don't even worry that you don't do one before the interview.
    Last edited by jccrabby3084; 03-22-2009 at 01:22 AM.
    The thoughts and opinions posted here are mine and mine alone and do not reflect the thoughts and or views of city or dept affiliation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by miramar View Post
    Also, navy blue or black suit? Any other advice would really be appreciated. Thank you, Miramar
    Black is a little too formal, more for dances, funerals and being a star in the movie Men in Black.

    If black is all you have, wear it.

    Dress for Success

    What Do I wear to a Job Interview?

    The strongest non-verbal statement you can make in the oral board is what you wear. It is time to step up and make the investment. Wear the suit.

    Men: Do wear a wool suit in dark blue or gray. Pinstripes are fine, but avoid brown, black, or high fashion brightly colored suits. Sport coats or blazers are out, so is polyester. Tie should be in a solid color such as navy, red, maroon, or yellow stripe, or paisley print. Wear a white or off white, or pale blue long sleeved shirt in cotton or a cotton blend. Starch it no matter what the instructions say. No patterned shirts!

    Don't: wear casual or novelty watches, too much jewelry, monograms, religious, political, or fraternity affiliation accessories. Beards are out; mustaches are a gray area. When in doubt, shave it off.
    _____________________________________________

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