Leadership & Command Magazine Articles

  • 20 Tough Questions For the Fire Chief: Are You Prepared To Answer Them? Question 9

    These questions get to the heart of the fire department’s efficiency. Set aside for a moment that it is extremely difficult to predict when an emergency will occur. On-duty staffing serves, in some respects, as an insurance policy for businesses...

    Article • January 1st, 2013

  • What If the Fire Service Gets Out of EMS?

    Another fire chief and I were having a conversation about how much the fire service has an impact on EMS. He said that during a recent meeting with business leaders, he had mentioned that his fire department is one of the largest health providers in the...

    Article • January 1st, 2013

  • Speak Up: Restoring the Flame at USFA

    Next year marks the 40th anniversary of the landmark report, America Burning. A must-read for fire service officials, America Burning brought together many of the brightest minds in the fire service to develop a report that captured the seriousness of the...

    Article • December 1st, 2012

  • 20 Tough Questions For the Fire Chief: Are You Prepared To Answer Them? Question 8

    The quick answer to this question is a resounding “NO.” You don’t need to respond to all “911” calls in an emergency fashion. The operative word in this question is “all.” The success or failure of fire service emergency and...

    Article • December 1st, 2012

  • Command Post: Riding the Right-Front Seat: Sharing Your Knowledge

    Let me begin by making a simple, but direct comment: If you are going to lead people, you must be able to train people. Everybody in positions of leadership, regardless of rank, must be able to share their knowledge and experience with the people who have...

    Article • November 1st, 2012

  • Leadership Lessons: Know Your Crew, Part 4: How to Lead the "Amiables"

    In August, I started a five-part series about knowing your crew and the four different social styles on your team, based on the Merrill/Reid Social Style Model. If you haven’t read the first three columns, be sure to start there so this month’s column...

    Article • November 1st, 2012

  • The Fire Scene: New Officers: Don't Be Afraid to Change

    When firefighters are promoted to officer positions, there is often much discussion about how well they are going to perform, how they will treat their firefighters and in general how they are going to behave. Most firefighters work in the fire...

    Article • November 1st, 2012

  • 20 Tough Questions For the Fire Chief: Question 7

    Many of the installments of this series refer to the new challenges that have been placed upon the fire service and, more specifically, how to pay for those services. Many government agencies – federal, state and local – are critically examining their...

    Article • November 1st, 2012

  • Leadership Lessons: Know Your Crew, Part 3: How to Lead the "Drivers"

    In August, I started a five-part series about knowing your crew and the four different social styles on your team, based on the Merrill/Reid Social Style Model. If you haven’t read the first two columns, be sure to start there so this month’s column...

    Article • October 1st, 2012

  • Command Post: On the Road, Again

    Let me start by saying that my son-in-law recently told me about attending a Bob Dylan concert. We discussed the man’s music and the lyrics of a number of his songs. I spoke of one of my favorite lines from his work that tells us “The Times They Are...

    Article • October 1st, 2012

  • The Fire Scene: Nothing Showing

    Have you ever heard an officer say “nothing showing” on arriving at an alarm location? I often wonder what that means to the other firefighters responding to that location. Does it mean there is no condition to deal with? Does it mean you can slow...

    Article • October 1st, 2012

  • 20 Tough Questions For the Fire Chief: Are You Prepared To Answer Them? Question 6

    Response time and available staffing are the two most important factors that influence fire department success at emergency scenes.   There has been much debate in the fire service literature and among fire service managers and city administrators...

    Article • October 1st, 2012

  • FIREHOUSE INTERVIEW: FIRE CHIEF JOANNE HAYES-WHITE San Francisco, CA, Fire Department

    Firehouse: The San Francisco Fire Department (SFFD) is down about 300 firefighters. Is there a plan for the future to hire new firefighters and promote EMTs? Hayes-White: In the past few years, we have been unable to match retirements with new hires...

    Article • October 1st, 2012

  • Know Your Crew, Part 2: How to Lead the "Analyticals"

    Last month, I started a five-part series about knowing your crew and the four different social styles on your team. If you haven’t read that column, be sure to start there so this month’s column makes sense to you. (You can find the archived article...

    Article • September 30th, 2012

  • Riding the Right-Front Seat: Making Decisions

    One critical element in your preparation to be an effective incident commander comes from the world of management, where you must be able to weigh facts, evaluate circumstances and make effective decisions. This column provides the means for you to...

    Article • September 1st, 2012