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FHZ Does “Sharing The Wealth” – First Due Blog Carnival

Until I met Chief Harry Diezel, who at the time was the Chief of the Virginia Beach Fire Department, I didn’t really have a vision of what my future in the fire service would be. He inspired me to be visionary and innovative, and to not be afraid of change.

The Weekly Weasel – Installation #1

Integrity is an important trait because it fills in the biggest blank in a personal relationship; it tells everyone that if presented with an ambiguous situation, you will do the right thing.

Conflict

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Conflict is inevitable. Conflict will come regardless of how much you try to avoid it. Because it is inevitable, as a leader, you need to know how to deal with it.

If They Can Do This, So Can We

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Why we can’t get a better understanding across our personal dividing lines, I don’t know. But instead of talking about what color helmets we wear and how many lights we have on our POVs, maybe we should be taking on issues like recruitment of good people, understanding why some communities require career personnel and some must do with volunteers, understanding that some of us choose to be career and some find that they can volunteer in their communities, and some can actually do both, and any number of subjects.

International Influence

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We have to seek to understand deeper before we can determine and judge. In the process, we might also gain more information on subject matter that we didn’t have the answers to before.

Daily Values vs. Emergency Ops Values

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Like it or not, organizational values define organizational culture. These values help guide you in times when hard decisions must be made under ambiguous situations. When organizations lack defined values, or personnel don’t understand them as the gospel truth, they don’t always reflect those values when challenged.

Tolerance

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There is a great deal of controversy on the internet at any given time, but the postings between people we should be working with are getting to the point where they are troubling. Heated rhetoric, personal attacks, and just out and out anger are more commonplace now then ever.

What Defines A Successful Outcome?

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We all define what completes a job, or any task, I should say, differently. What makes a task complete has to do with your work ethic, your education level, and the amount of feedback you receive from supervisory personnel.

Squirrel In The Middle of The Road

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Our job entails more than just responding to emergencies. It entails responding to community needs and assisting our neighbors. That assistance comes in many forms, but the agencies who get it will be survivors, and those who don’t, well, I think you can figure that out yourself. It’s not a matter of “if”, but “when”.

RESPECT

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I’m going to make this short and sweet: you will never be afforded the respect you think you deserve if you can’t clean up the mess you have made.

Mixing EMS and The Fire Service

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When I hear anyone suggest that the merger of fire and EMS is a mistake because “firefighters lack the skills to provide paramedic care”, I am highly insulted.

Character vs. Characters

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Has the bar gotten so low that we’re willing to bring in anyone, so long as they can fog a mirror? I know staffing is tight right now, but if the personnel on my team can’t be trusted to do the right thing when no one is looking, what reason should I have to trust them when the going gets tough?

I Am A Firefighter Because…

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I am a firefighter because I literally grew up in a firehouse. My grandfather was a firefighter’s firefighter. His nickname was “Smokey”. He was the Chief Fire Marshal in Montgomery County, PA up until his death in 1981. My uncles and my father all became firefighters as a result of his influence; not just firefighters but leaders in their field. I can’t think of anything else I’d rather be.

Get Everyone On Board

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If your small unit leaders aren’t on board with organizational vision, don’t count on the personnel they supervise joining in to resist them in carrying the desired vision out. It will be much easier on those troops if they can get along with their misdirected officer than if they embrace the change, so you can count on the message not getting through when it is most needed.

Focus on Success

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While God gives you talent, your mentor can teach you how to use it, but it is up to you to have the positive attitude to propel it forward. Focus on commitment and excellence by looking at what matters NOW.

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