Author Archives: Michael "Mick" Mayers

Playing With Sharp Objects

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Recently I was dwelling on an inventory of stupid and dangerous things I have done in the past. Since the list was way too long to go on about, I began to wonder why I did those things.  While some of them were from my youth (like jumping off a roof with an umbrella), and […]

The Thanks of a Nation

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Maybe it’s the observation that many of the politicians who are quick to take credit for the nation’s preparedness are slow to ever visit a fire station, or maybe it’s my expectation that instead of having to beg for the table scraps that our law enforcement brethren leave for us, we might also get a seat at the main table, but I just don’t see the fire service gaining the amount of respect that we deserve for the sacrifices we make.

An Atmosphere of Trust

Trust is a pretty interesting concept of its own. As a leader, you have to earn the trust of the troops. And as I pointed out, twenty years of being their buddy can go right out the window if you hose them on one thing.

The Fixers

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What is our mission in the fire service? How can we go on in our lives without a suitable title for what it is we do?

You

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“The most common ego identifications have to do with possessions, the work you do, social status and recognition, knowledge and education, physical appearance, special abilities, relationships, person and family history, belief systems, and often also political, nationalistic, racial, religious, and other collective identifications. None of these is you.”

Being On The Top

While reading the ongoing saga in PG County last week, Dave Statter’s interview with Jerry Engle brought forth a quote that honestly, made me cringe: “When you are the best fireman in the county and you come from Kentland, I mean, yeah, everyone’s going to try to knock you off the pedestal.” Although I have […]

Use of Faith-Based NGOs As Disaster Response Partners

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For some of the new readers here, not only is Firehouse Zen about enlightened leadership, it is about management issues and creative solutions to ongoing problems in the emergency service industry.  If you are a long-time reader, you may recall our discussions in the past regarding disaster response and credentialing, and in an effort to […]

Distance Separates Us

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Distance separates us.  Of course it does, you are probably thinking.  That’s not that much of a revelation.  But distance separates us all the more so because by being distant, or more so, by not being alike, it also indicates a schism between you and I.  The fire and emergency services are united in our […]

Engagement

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I was going through back issues of T+D Magazine and came upon an article by Paula Ketter, “What’s The Big Deal (About Employee Engagement)” .  In it, Ketter states: “Engagement is all about creating a culture where people do not feel misused, overused, underused, or abused”.  That’s a pretty tall order for the cultures of […]

Declarative, Imperative, Interrogative and Exclamatory

I was helping my oldest daughter with her English homework and we were having a discussion of the four kinds of sentences: declarative, imperative, interrogative and exclamatory.  In light of all of the rhetoric lately on a few items, (you know, the Chester Flag Incident, the DCFEMS Live Burn Incident, etc.- and it is just […]

Qualities of a Leader

Fire Critic this morning posted on top ten desired qualities of officers.   It links a lot of the ideas I have put forth to you in regard to leading and you should check it out and expound on it.  Enjoy.

Balance In Power

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Right now there is an interesting discussion on Dave Statter’s blog, STATter911 (in the comments) on orders given by a commissioner to remove a flag sticker from a locker.  Despite the conversation outlining the age-old struggle between being too harsh and too lenient, the underlying issue is one of conflict: the escalation of events to […]

Congratulations!

Well, it appears that Dave and Chris have pulled off another amazing venture.  I just spent the better part of an hour (with work waiting patiently on my desk) checking out the new FireEMSBlogs.com site with direct links to some of my favorite bloggers, as well as a few I have wanted to check out but […]

Eating Our Young

It’s not going to require much reading to see why the fire service can’t get enough of it’s collective s*** together to provide a united front on anything.  Check it out at Dave Statter’s blog at STAT911.  You can skip the video (for my purposes) and go straight to the comments.  There’s enough anger and […]

Science Is Your Friend

While taking Honora to school a few days ago, Bob Edwards was speaking on NPR Radio with Chris Mooney and Sheril Kirshenbaum, the authors of the book, “Unscientific America”.  While the book apparently discusses “scientific illiteracy”, some of the commentary seemed applicable to what we currently endure in the fire service; clinging to tradition for […]

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