leadership

Standards Can Harm Decision Making Under Stress

I am a big advocate of departments having standardized procedures to guide operations as tools to help develop and maintain situational awareness. I don’t really care if you call them Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) or Standard Operating Guidelines (SOGs). The important thing is you have a set of commonly understood Standards that guide performance. Standards …

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Situational Readiness of the Personal Variety

This contribution comes to Situational Awareness Matters by way of a great LinkedIn connection I made recently with Tim Greene, CEO of EMS Options LLC. I found out about Tim and his mission while surfing his bio on LinkedIn. (Yes, I am among the few who actually read about the people I get connected with …

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Ten Explanations for Unsafe Actions and a Bad Outcome

  I recently had a situational awareness conversation with a firefighter who shared the details of an incident that made him both proud and disappointed. His company officer decided to do an exterior attack at a residential dwelling fire because the conditions had deteriorated to the point where an interior attack would not be warranted. …

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The Art of Speaking Up

Recently I received a phone call from a fire captain in Colorado. He wanted to discuss some training ideas I inspired during my recent Training for Failure program his department hosted. One of the topics we addressed was teaching firefighters how to speak up when they have concerns. Teaching how to do this is especially …

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Tacit Knowledge

As you traverse through life, you are constantly gathering and assessing information. This is accomplished though sensory input (seeing, hearing, feeling, tasting and smelling). The senses are always on, always capturing data. Sometimes you are aware of the data being captured and sometimes you’re not. Sometimes you’re able to readily recall stored data and sometimes …

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Safeguards – It’s a fair question

I had the opportunity recently to talk with a very progressive fire chief about situational awareness. I really enjoy my conversations with him because I always learn something. He was telling me that his department just hired 17 new paid-on-call members. He shared with me that during the hiring process he visits the home of …

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Seven Situational Awareness Thieves

Recently I had a video clip shared with me of a residential dwelling fire. The video captures a flashover event. It was reported to me that firefighters were operating inside the structure when it occurred. As I watched the video progress, it was apparent interior conditions were getting worse, the color of the smoke was …

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Positive Reinforcement of Undesirable Behavior

In this article I am taking on a topic often discussed in my leadership programs more often than in my situational awareness programs – motivation. I’m not going to get in to depth on the topic of motivation as it takes me a solid four hours in a classroom session to demystify the topic and …

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