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For those of you who knew him, and those who didn’t get the chance, my father, Chuck Mayers, passed away a few weeks ago. Fortunately, I got to see him before he left us.  However, I realized upon seeing him, his condition was not one in which he’d have desired to remain in. The prognosis […]


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I’m retiring. I said it a while back and the day is upon me. It’s only one thing I am retiring from, the job I have worked at for three and a half decades, but in that time I have seen a lot. I will continue doing other things, but that’s not what I wanted […]

Compassionate Leadership

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I was reviewing an article on about compassionate leadership today. While I tend to resist what is “trendy” regarding leadership, the traits that author Margie Warrell shares as a best practice are really time-tested ones. Her article points out that mindful and compassionate leadership actually expands your own creativity, memory, and attention, and decreases stress. […]

Real World Leadership

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A zen saying goes roughly like this: “The use of the wheel is where all the spokes form to make the hole.” Another: “The most useful part of a bowl is the empty space within.”  As a leader, my role hasn’t been to necessarily build things, but to facilitate the best in the people I […]

Ending or Beginning?

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I was given an opportunity to retire after 35 years on the job and pursue some new challenges. “Retirement” is nebulous to me.  All that term means right now is closing this chapter and moving to the next. But the timing is such that I found myself questioning, “When do I really pull the trigger?” […]

Just Be Brave

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What is bravery? As a firefighter, we understand that our first act of bravery is accepting the authority and responsibility of the badge, and everything after that is just part of the job. We serve as role models to our community because our watchwords are “integrity”, “honor”, and “selflessness”. In these times where self-centeredness seems […]


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This year makes thirty-five that I have been a career firefighter and thirty-seven since I first walked into a firehouse as a member. That doesn’t take into account the years I spent growing up in the business, with my father, uncles, grandfather, etc. all serving in various roles and departments. I was asked the other […]


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As leaders, we face ethical challenges every day.  Ethical frameworks exist to provide some systematic approach to govern decisions.  While the study of ethics frames this question in “How should we live our lives?”, I want to examine right now the “What am I going to do?” question, especially as it relates to the individual in a company leadership […]

Get Over Yourself

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As a Jeep owner, you find yourself in a community of others who like the Jeep lifestyle.  However, I happened to go to a Land Rover website and found Jeep owners bashing the Land Rover owners. “Hate” doesn’t always come from fear, but it most certainly comes from a lack of understanding. I doubt the […]


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Just as things go badly in life, they go badly on emergency scenes. The problem is, people are geared to being optimistic- either hopefully so or blissfully so – and don’t anticipate bad things happening. Whether rolling through life with rose colored glasses on is our thing or not, I have a belief that if we […]


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By failing to understand our weaknesses, we permit their exploitation. Their exploitation by others isn’t what we have to worry about though- it is our own hubris that will be our downfall. We are all vulnerable to ruin and it is our ego that sets us up for failure. A rock is subject to the […]

Resource Management

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Engaging others is difficult sometimes. Engaging others requires time. But while time is a valuable resource to a leader, the relationships we develop are valuable resources in and of themselves. So we can pay on the front end or we can pay on the back end. Regrettably, I have found this out the hard way. I’m finding it out now, […]


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One of the things we probably don’t do in our lives is to take the opportunity to reset ourselves, especially after experiencing failure, or disappointment, or other setbacks. To an extent, we can all reinvent ourselves; we can look to improve by being kinder, by creating new experiences, by learning, or by just looking into […]

Excused Absence

Hi, and welcome back.  This summer has been an interesting one.  Lifetime achievements and catastrophic failures in arenas personal and professional led to an amazing amount of stress and an overall reluctance to even sit at the keyboard. The passage of some “me” time hasn’t done anything to totally eliminate the highs and lows, but at least […]

This Is A Hate Speech

Do you know what I hate? Hate.  When I was young, I may or may not have said I hated one of my siblings. I remember my mother telling me that “hate” is a really strong word. I may not like the offending sibling.  I may not even want to be around them for a […]

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