1. #1
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    Default Promotional exam

    My department is testing for lieutenants and part of the testing process all candidates will need to complete "Profile XT" through a company called Willow Creek Consultants, Inc. and that the results will be used in establishing an accurate “profile” of the ideal Lieutenant. Has anyone ever done one of these? Any insight will help.

  2. #2
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    Default

    There is a lot of information out there (not necessarily on fire websites) regarding pyschological/traits/chararcteristics/pyschometric testing for personnel. There is about 2500 different psychometric tests available for use by employers. The problem with most of them is they are not constructed for the specific application (in this case, fire lieutenants).

    I don’t have a problem regarding tests that may identify positive traits of firefighters as long as a couple of things happen first. One, the department needs to be involved with the construction of the test. I don’t want some academic goober deciding what traits we are looking for in a entry level firefighter or a promotional position. I need to work with the consultant, but I need input into the design of the test. Second, the consultant needs to be someone who specializes in Industrial/Organizational testing. I do not want someone who does family counseling or some other type of counseling deciding what traits I need for a fire company officer..

    Many departments use an off-the-shelf test that is not suited for what they are looking for. The MMP test, probably the most widely used test in personnel applications, was designed in the 1930’s to test abnormal psychology in prisoners. Now while we could debate whether that may be realistic for firefighters (a joke), I don’t want to use the MMP for my department.

    These tests can be used to look for positive traits (ability to follow orders, ability to make decisions with limited info, ability to work as a team) and to look for negative traits (doesn’t follow directions, cowboy mentality who will freelance, will stay on industrial forever, can’t handle stress, can’t work in a team setting).

    Psychometric testing has value, but you (your department) needs to spend some money to do it right. If you try to go with “low bid” you will likely end up with an instrument that is off the shelf, will not do what you want and may even not detect some negative traits. In other words, you may be worse afterword than if you had not used any test at all.

    I can't email you (it's turned off in your profile) but send me a message if you want to talk more about this. My department doesn't use any psychometric tests but I have done some research into them. I am not a salesman!
    Last edited by bomberodevil; 07-31-2009 at 11:39 AM.

  3. #3
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    Thumbs up Thank you Bombero

    Excellent post Bomberodevil. Finally an informative post on topic about something that matters. I believe this was the intent of these forums at some point.

    Does your FD use some other documented methodology to profile candidates? We've found that test scores, alone, experience alone, or *****-kissing alone don't necessarily mean the candidate can do the job. We've even had some that met all the above qualities that couldn't implement command in the field well.

  4. #4
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    Default Chiefs interview for promotion

    First of all thanks, for the advice and input, I've taken the test now and found your input to be extremely helpful. The Fire Chief has announced that he'll be conducting final chiefs’ interviews prior to promoting. Any input, advice or suggestions will be extremely appreciated.

    Thanks,
    Alex

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