Thread: Motivation

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    Question Motivation

    We have a little problem in our Explorer Post and I am asking for your advice. I am currently an advisor in our post, but only about a year ago, I was an explorer myself. My post is literally not doing anything. We are carrying about 14 people on our roster, but we can usually get only about 3 or 4 to show up to meetings or drills. Those that do show up, sit in the meetings like they're zombies, they just sit there and dont talk. It really seems like they dont care about what goes on. What kind of things would you reccomend that the advisors try to do to (1) get more people to show up to things and, (2) get the explorers to actively participate and manage their post?

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    Get rid of them if they don't want to put the time in.

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    Do they come to calls and participate there and it's just meetings that bring about the math-class type Zombie state. Or are they all bumps on a log that do nothing ever?
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    do what i did to a few of mine who did that... tell them to show up and meet a minimum training standard and the ones who don't meet it, kick em out. it will work for the ones who really want to be there

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    Quote Originally Posted by ffhall3
    do what i did to a few of mine who did that... tell them to show up and meet a minimum training standard and the ones who don't meet it, kick em out. it will work for the ones who really want to be there
    But what if one of them said "I know about b****S like you. You don't know anything. Make up any test you want and I'll bet you a $1000 I'll do better than you. I was raised in the fire dept. B!^@h." How would you motivate that person?

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    Motivate that kid by kicking their *** off the post, make some examples of people. Call each explorer tell them they need to start showing up for meetings or you'll give them the boot. And that kid who thinks they know everything, you need to tell him what the fire service is really like, if he's thinkin about goin full time, he'll never get a job with that attitude, and if he did get hired I doubt he'd last, no other firefighters would put up with that s***.

    Also maybe try to do more hands on stuff, learn by doing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Golzy12
    Motivate that kid by kicking their *** off the post
    I think thats a great answer. Any punk who would shoot his mouth off like that to any firefighter has no business being in a firehouse. I'd love to have him at our house and hear him say those things in person. Then again, someone like that wouldn't last 2 minutes with us before we sent him to the corner to suck his thumb so he probably wouldn't have time to tell us about all his brilliant ideas. What do you think ffhall3?

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    He couldn't handle the 3/4's.

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    Haha. Lovely.

    The unmotivated usless ones that we've had come through my dept's post in the past usually disappear on their own without us having to escort them out.
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Thumbs up

    Thanks. I think I'm going to try and have a strict talk with them at our next meeting. I just need my other advisors to back me with this. I'm not really much older than some of these explorers, so they might not listen to me as much as they would to other advisors. Thanks again!

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    Quote Originally Posted by DFD510
    Thanks. I think I'm going to try and have a strict talk with them at our next meeting. I just need my other advisors to back me with this. I'm not really much older than some of these explorers, so they might not listen to me as much as they would to other advisors. Thanks again!
    I dont think age will be to big of an issue, there are captain who are older then some of the firefighters, but the firefighter still follow orders.

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    Default Former Junior Fire Capt. Henneman

    its sounds to me that you need to make guidelines that they have to attend so many pumper practices,meetings,other functions or they will recieve a 30 day suspension or probationary period.You have to be the leader and try to make things interesting because if you dont then you will get less and less attendance each year and why dont you try recruiting, this may make they guys that have been around for awhile see the new guys havein fun, might make them jealous/realize they can do the same if they just participate i hope this will help you and if u have any other questions let me know.

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    1. Set a standard. Let everyone know what is expected of them. Be specific. Establish the consequences of not meeting the standard.
    2. Enforce the standard.

    Personally, I'd rather have one or two members who follow the rules and do what's expected than 10 or 20 who just taking up space.

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    Default Motivating Junior Firefighters

    Give em goals!
    For example: I show them how to fill the tanker from a hydrant. They each get to practice it a few times. A week or two later, they take a written test on the training. They get a month to practice, then they have practicles over the training. They seem to like doing this, its more challenging. Then I go to the our dept. meeting and brag about how great they did on their tests and practicles (they really like that.)

    Give em points!
    Probably the best thing we have ever tried is “Project Points”
    Cadets earn points for attending cadet and dept. meetings, trainings and fundraisers. They carrying with them a book for me to write their points in.
    They can trade those points for cool prizes. At the end of the year the top 3 cadets who earn the most points get cash or gift certificates (all donated.) One year we took every cadet who earned over 150 points to the local go-cart track for a day of fun. Believe it or not this idea has worked great! Cadets started showing up to more dept. functions to get points, in return they started interacting with the firefighters more and then started becoming more involved at meetings and trainings. Our cadets also do an honor system candy box at the station to raise money (they average $15-$35 a week profit.) When a cadet puts in extra effort during a training, I give them Candy Box gift certificates.
    Project points was originally developed to motivate cadets to raise their grades at school. Good grades equaled lots of points. A note from a teacher stating they they had done extra credit, or put in an extra effort, equalled lots of points. The local school has been a big supporter of our program and has gone out of their way to give us helping hand. A science teacher gave cadets extra credit for teaching the students about fire extinguishers, a history teacher gave cadets extra credit for writting reports on Fire history.
    I give bonus points for essays. I have had some cadets write some really great essays about the history of the multise cross, star of life, St, Florian, fire hydrants, wildland fire etc.

    I do draw the line when cadets don't partcipate. If they can't show up to a meeting or training, they are required to call ahead of time and let me know. Depending on the excuse, I usually call the parents to varify. If they get 3 unexcused absences in 6 months, they are removed from the program, and can not reapply for 6 months.
    For other disciplinary actions, I take away gear or radio (which means no going on fire runs.) Or even better, I take away points! Iv'e seen tears when I took away points.

    Contact your local school, see what the teachers suggest. They have millions of tricks for motivation!

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