1. #1
    Captain Bob Smith
    Firehouse.com Guest

    Default Sample Oral Board Questions

    Thirty-Plus Basic Oral

    Board Questions

    I believe there are only about 30 oral board questions. Plus or minus a
    couple. But these 30 can be disguised into hundreds of different

    Here is a simple way to break a disguised question down. Dissect the
    question down to its simplest term, one word, of what the question is
    really about. Once you have removed the disguise, you can place it in one
    of the 30 plus oral board questions you already have answers for. This is
    one of the simple tools we have
    to uncomplicate the oral board process.

    Here is the list of the "Thirty Plus Oral Board Questions":

    Thirty-Plus Basic Oral

    Board Questions

    1. Tell us about yourself.

    2. Why do you want to be a firefighter? When did you decide on this

    3. What is the job of a firefighter? Are you qualified?

    4. What have you done to prepare for this position?

    5. What are you bringing to the job?

    6. Why do you want to work for this city or agency?

    7. What do you know about his city or agency?

    8. What do you like to do? What are your hobbies?

    9. What are your strengths? Weaknesses?

    10. What would your employer say about you?

    11. What are the attributes of a firefighter? What is the most important
    one to you?

    How Would You Handle the Following Scenarios?

    12. Drinking or drugs on the job? 13. Stealing on the job? 14. Conflict with
    another employee?

    15. Irate citizen? 16. An employee crisis at an emergency? 17. Sexual

    18. Racial situation? 19. Conflicting orders at an emergency? 20. An order
    that could place you in great danger or be morally wrong?

    21. What do you say when you don't know an answer to a question?

    22. Are you on any other hiring lists? What would you do if another city
    called you?

    23. When can you start if we offered you the job?

    24. How far do you want to go in the fire service? Where do you see
    yourself in 5 years?

    25. What are the quality traits of a firefighter? Which one is the most
    important to you?

    26. Have you ever been in an emergency situation? Tell us what you did?

    27. What word would best describes you in a positive way? A negative

    28. How do you handle conflict?

    29. Why would we select you over the other candidates?

    30. Do you have anything to add?

    In reference to the above, several candidates have called me about the
    following question: You're a firefighter and the guys in the station want to
    you to participate with them to play a joke on the female firefighter. What
    do you do?

    Many candidates have said, "Well these kinds of jokes are part of being a
    firefighter, or we are a family; it's expected, or depending how bad the
    joke is, or I've played jokes on others before, etc."

    Let's go back to the original formula on this page. Dissect the question
    down to its simplest form to one or two words. What is the core purpose of
    this question? Take off the disguise and you will have one of the questions
    from the 30 plus oral board list above.

    Have you got it?

    It's . . . . SEXUAL HARASSMENT!

    Many of the candidates screamed out loud when they finally figured out
    the real purpose of the question. Too many gave a poor answer.

    Now what's your answer?

    This is a simple tool to uncomplicate the process. There are only about 30
    oral board questions. They can be disguised in hundreds of different ways.
    It's your job to take off the disguise and find the real question and have a
    "Nugget" answer to satisfy the oral board, get your best score on the
    answer and cause the
    board to go onto the next question.

    This "Nugget" tool is one of several that can separate you from number 40
    and below on a list to between 1 and 10 where you get a shot at the
    badge. You'll know the difference when the call comes in to go to the
    Chief's oral. It can happen quicker than you can imagine.

    There are only 30 questions. What are your answers? Take the question
    apart, know the real purpose of the question and deliver your "Nugget"
    answer. Next question please.

    Nothing counts ''til you have the badge. Nothing!

    In reference to the above I received this question:

    I'm not trying to be cheeky, this is a serious reply. Would the Board ever
    ask the question in reverse? Meaning would they ask a female candidate if
    they would participate in a joke on a male candidate? If yes, would they be
    looking for the candidate to reply no, that it would be sexual harassment?
    Would it be appropriate for either gender to say they would participate,
    distinguishing that only if the joke would not be of a nature that may be
    sexual harassment? This issue is very important in my city, because they
    are on the verge of hiring the first female firefighter. Not only do male
    candidates want to make it understood that they are able to work with
    females in this environment, likewise I would not want to appear as if I
    was concerned about this type of scenario or uncomfortable and
    oversensitive about the cajoling that goes on.

    "Captain Bob's" reply:
    Subject: Sexual Harassment

    Sexual harassment questions are the most dangerous of oral board areas.
    It's a can of worms you don't want to open. If you do, you will never be
    able to close the can. You need to keep your answers short and simple
    here. Otherwise, you will tank yourself big time. It has nothing to do with
    which gender, it's how it's interpreted by the person that is offended.

    Fantasy land:

    The oral interview is like fantasy land. It is not like the real world. Your
    answers in the oral board might not be what you would do in real life.
    Don't fall into the trap. The board understands the rules, you can't fool
    them. If you try, the
    board will crank up the music and let you dance your fool head off. Don't
    try to intellectualize and bring heavy logic to this process. If you do,
    someone, who understands the rules in fantasy land better will get the
    badge. So, please follow
    the yellow brick road rules in fantasy land and don't look behind the

    You don't think so? Well, my Son's captain was on an oral board for five
    days. One candidate got top scores. When they were finished and
    completing their comments and scores this candidate said, "I'm sure glad
    that's over. They said yea, O.K.. He said because their coming. They look
    up and said who's coming. He said the Martian's are coming. They
    chuckled. He got mad. Turns out this guy was a genuine kook. But he did
    so well in the oral because he lived in fantasy land and new the rules.
    Don't ever forget this! It's a true story!

    So in this fantasy land environment, sexual harassment is not tolerated. If
    you try to draw a line at cajoling, where does it stop? At sarcastic
    comments, physical contact? You will open a can of worms trying to make
    everyone happy. You could express how an easy going person you are, but
    sexual harassment is not tolerated. Again that is determined by the person
    who is offended. Male or female. It's the LAW! There are personnel rules to
    protect you.

    Understand that if the oral board fires up a question that sounds like
    drinking on the job, it's going to be about drinking on the job. If it's a
    question that sounds like taking drugs on the job, it's going to be about
    taking drugs on the job; It's not going to be aspirin. If the question sounds
    like it's about stealing on the job, it's going to be about stealing on the job.
    If they fire up a question that sounds like sexual harassment, that's what
    it's going to be about, or they wouldn't bring it up.

    If they fire up these questions, take off the disguise ask questions to verify
    what you suspect and then take action in fantasy land. Don't be like so
    many candidates by starting a soap opera.


    You go in the locker room and see a fellow firefighter drinking something
    that looks like alcohol. What do you do? The clone, soap opera answer
    would be: I would try to get him into the day room, play cards and try to
    smell his breath; or I would have him go home sick, or have another
    firefighter come into relieve him. These are all soap opera answers. Don't
    go on this journey. They are insulting to the oral board. You will loose
    valuable points here. We are intelligent beings on the other side of the
    table. Give us credit for that. Don't start a soap opera.

    Ask a question that would verify your suspicions and give a direct answer;
    not a soap opera.

    Nothing counts ''til you have the badge. Nothing!

    Ask "Captain Bob" Questions

    Fire "Captain Bob"

    "Captain Bob" Conquer Fire Department Oral Boards and Promotional tests. Phone 888-238-3959 Web site: http://www.eatstress.com

  2. #2
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Yes Bob your right about the sexual harassment.So what are the right answers to the other questions????
    Thanks for taking the time to post this page.

  3. #3
    Firehouse.com Guest


    Yes Bob your right about the sexual harassment.So what are the right answers to the other questions????
    Thanks for taking the time to post this page.


  4. #4
    MembersZone Subscriber

    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Mount Pearl


    Thanks, this is a great help to me.

    So essentially you are saying that more then likely every department will only ask "variations" of these same 30 questions? They may be worded different but when you strip them down they are much the same, keep it simple, and give the answer the oral board wants to hear, am I following you correctly?

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