Leader

Collapse

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Help with oral board...

Collapse
This topic is closed.
X
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Help with oral board...

    I have an oral board coming up next week and need some help. I have a list of 30 questions typically asked in oral boards and I have answered them to the best of my ability. I will use these questions to study from, so I want them to be good.

    Some of them I didnt fill in because I need some help with them, so please feel free to add your opinion on the answer or anything about anything... thank you.

    Here they are:

    1. Tell us about yourself.


    Help on this one…

    2. Why do you want to be a firefighter? When did you decide on this career?

    After graduating high school, I started at our local Junior College. I initially was majoring in computer science but soon found that I wasn’t interested.
    At this time my mother was working as a physical therapy assistant. I often stopped by her work after school. On a few occasions she had firefighters as her patients. A few of them invited me to ride along at our local fire department.

    After a few ride alongs with them I decided to take a fire class in school, and it has been my passion since.

    3. What is the job of a firefighter? Are you qualified?


    The job of a firefighter is to respond to the community in there times of need. Whether it be picking up an elderly man who couldn’t get back up, or cutting someone out of a vehicle following an accident. Regardless of the circumstance, we are there when they call.

    Help answering the second part…

    4. What have you done to prepare for this position?

    I have taken many college fire science classes which deal with a majority of the jobs performed by firefighters. I have completed a 1 year internship with a local fire agency, in which I worked 24 hour shifts and took part in all aspects of the firefighter life in the firehouse.

    Finally, I have just recently become a volunteer firefighter with another local agency. This position I have help for 6 months.

    5. What are you bringing to the job?


    I feel that I bring a sense of enthusiasm for the job, as well as the drive to fulfill the needs of the community as a new member of a team.

    6. Why do you want to work for this city or agency?


    From the experience I have had over the past 3 years, I have experienced 2 completely different size departments and how they run. I feel that the Oakland Fire Department, will best suit ambitions to climb the ranks of the fire service, while giving me the training and experience I need to succeed.

    7. What do you know about this city or agency?

    Working on this one…

    8. What do you like to do? What are your hobbies?

    Outside of work, I love to play golf, hike, and work on my webdesign.

    9. What are your strengths? Weaknesses?

    My strengths would probably have to be the ability to get along with just about everyone. There have been few people in my life that I haven’t liked or haven’t liked me, and for those that I didn’t get along with, I was able to hold a professional relationship with them regardless.

    My main weakness would have to be being sometimes a bit lazy. Don’t get me wrong, if I’m working I will work as hard as the rest of them. The problem comes when there is nothing to do, like projects, or paperwork. I find myself easily placed behind a computer screen or working out, instead of seeking ‘work’ to do.

    10. What would your employer say about you?

    I feel that my employer would say that I am a hard worker with good people skills, and the drive to get the job done.

    11. What are the attributes of a firefighter? What is the most important one to you?


    I believe that a firefighter needs to be in shape because the position and responsibility in this job count on his ability to do what is asked at any time. I believe a firefighter should be mentally strong, to help deal with the mental stresses of the job, and to maintain a professional mindset in any situation.
    The most important one to me would be the mental health, because anyone can get in physical shape but it takes constant work on the part of the person to overcome everyday mental tests to make them selves mentally strong.

    How would you handle the following scenarios:


    12. Drinking or drugs on the job?

    Both are against the law no to mention they are both signs of depression and need to be taken seriously. I would take the time to talk to a coworker about it first before letting a superior know about the issue, but would most definitely involve someone who has the authority to take care of the situation.

    13. Stealing on the job?


    It is against the law to steal. If I see something stolen I will try to get it back with as little confrontation as possible, and if that isn’t possible I would involve a superior to mediate the situation.

    14. Conflict with another employee?

    This has happened to me in the workplace before. I took it as it came but never let it rise above the loud voice level. If the problem can’t be overcome and the situation is going to stay I would try to keep on a professional level with the individual as possible.

    15. Irate citizen?

    In this situation, given the circumstance of the situation, I would try to use my well mannered disposition to calm them and remediate the situation, but at the same time I would not allow them to overcome me with attitude. I would use my tone of voice and body language to show them that I am not afraid but try to keep it at a low level confrontation, and if this is not possible I would involve law enforcement.

    16. An employee crisis at an emergency?

    Help answering this one…

    17. Sexual harassment?

    Sexual harassment should not be an issue in the workplace from either sex not matter how comfortable you are with a person. If an issue arises I expect it to be taken to the person directly and between the parties involved it can be taken care of but if not a supervisor should be used.

    18. Racial situation?

    Racial problems should not be tolerated and most definitely not brought to the job. These problems should be handled just like any of the previous.

    19. Conflicting orders at an emergency?

    If I am given and order by my Capitan and then an opposing order from the chief, I would take steps to make sure the Capitan who gave me the order has been notified of the change.

    20. An order that could place you in great danger or be morally wrong?

    This is a very vague question… help.

    21. What do you say when you don't know an answer to a question?

    I don’t know, could you please explain, or ask for clarification of the question to make it easier to understand.

    22. Are you on any other hiring lists? What would you do if another city called you?

    I am not currently on any other hiring lists at the moment… don’t know the rest help!

    23. When can you start if we offered you the job?
    Immediately.


    24. How far do you want to go in the fire service? Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

    I would like to go as far as possible. If that means an administrative position I would take it.

    In 5 years I see myself being… help.

    25. What are the quality traits of a firefighter? Which one is the most important to you?


    I believe that a firefighter needs to be someone who can do his duty under extreme pressures, both on the job and in the home. The firefighter should be brave but at the same time no so brave that he looses his grasp on reality. But one of the most important attributes to me that a firefighter should have would be a sense of humor. Nothing helps stress more then being able to laugh and be happy no matter the situation.

    26. Have you ever been in an emergency situation? Tell us what you did.

    I was in a situation where my girlfriend collapsed and for a moment became unresponsive in the middle of a store. When this happened I surprised myself by staying calm and fell back on my EMT training and took the proper steps and took care of her. After I revived her, I almost collapsed myself when I full thought of what had just happened.

    27. What word would best describe you in a positive way? A negative way?

    The positive word would be jovial. The negative would be comfortable. The reason I say this, is because, based on my friendly nature, I am often able to get very comfortable with people before they get to the same level.

    Although it has never been a major problem, there is a good chance that it could be in the future.

    28. How do you handle conflict?

    The last major conflict I had was with my step father. It was basically us butting heads as I got older and more strong willed. It basically ended in me moving out, and living on my own for a year. During that time we allowed things to smooth over and I eventually moved back in and we have never been better. This to me means that I have good sense to let things get worked out instead of dwell on them and let them fester. Forgive and forget.

    29. Why would we select you over the other candidates?

    Help please… there are too many thoughts.

    30. Do you have anything to add?

    What is the best thing to add if anything?
    "You don't know what a real family is until you spend a day at the firehouse"

    Visit my "fire stories blog" here.


  • #2
    Hey man,
    It appears to me that you have a good grip on most of what you're asking.
    I feel that maybe you should look at www.eatstress.com, I know this site has helped me with some of those very same questions. Also, I am interested on where you downloaded your Irish Malt. Cross? And if there is any way you could send along the site to me? Thanks man............ AB
    Fight Fire Aggressively,But Provide for SAFTEY First!!!!!!

    Comment


    • #3
      You have certainly done your homework by taking the questions and putting your thoughts down in words. This example of preparation will help you immensely in the interview process. More importantly, someone who approaches a goal in the way you have will do well in the fire service. Many people would view your preparation as extreme. I would view your preparation as, in-depth.

      Most people I interview are thinking about the question for the very first time in an interview. I can assure you that they are at a HUGE disadvantage.

      Virtually all of the questions you have posted are covered in my book, "Smoke Your Firefighter Interview".

      While I agree with some of your answers, I feel some are off base.

      I have cut and pasted a couple of questions for you.

      Tell us about yourself
      My name is Paul Lepore.
      My family and I live in Dana Point, California. My wife, Marian and I have
      been married for 12 years and have two daughters, Ashley and Samantha. I
      grew up in Huntington Beach and spent the majority of my life in northern
      Orange County before moving south 3 years ago.
      I enjoy sport fishing. My wife and I own a boat on which we spend a lot of
      time fishing and exploring the waters around Catalina Island. My love of fishing
      has taken me on some extensive travels through Baja, California. I have even
      written a book about my passion, called “Sport Fishing in Baja.”
      In addition to the outdoors, I also like playing racquetball and basketball
      and enjoy riding my bicycle.
      I currently work as an electrician. Two years ago I set myself a goal to
      become a firefighter. Since then I have pursued an education in fire science
      and have learned all I can about becoming a good firefighter.

      Notice that I have not said a word about my education, experience or training. This question is designed to learn about YOU. This is the one time during the interview that we will do this. It is a mistake to miss the opportunity to tell us about YOURSELF.

      If you do miss this opportunity you are now counting on the fact that you have a thicker resume than all of the rest. It's not about having more qualifications than the next guy, rather it's about presenting yourself as someone we want to have as a member of your crew.

      Here's a situational question for you.

      You are a rookie firefighter who is
      assigned to vacuuming the dormitory.
      As you are performing your duties, you
      notice a bottle of alcohol under the
      engineer’s bed. You know that alcohol
      is strictly forbidden on fire department
      premises.
      What would you do and why?

      Answer:
      The first thing I would do is gather
      the facts. Since alcohol on the
      premises is such a violation of our
      policy, my first thought would be that
      this is some kind of test.
      I would approach the engineer and
      ask him about the bottle under his bed.
      Keeping in mind that there are three
      different shifts that use the bed, I would keep an open mind since the bottle
      may have been left by one of the members on the other shift.
      My response would be dictated by the engineer’s reactions. If he tells me
      he knows nothing about the bottle, I would take it to the captain myself. I would
      expect the captain to launch his own investigation. At this point, I would feel
      that I have handled the situation to the best of my ability.
      If the engineer is evasive or tells me to mind my own business, I will make
      it clear that the captain needs to be made aware of the bottle of alcohol under
      his bed. This would be uncomfortable for me, but I would not be willing to let it
      pass without taking the proper action. My objective would be to let the engineer
      know the value of bringing this violation to the captain’s attention.
      I know it will make the engineer look better in the eyes of the captain if he
      comes forward with the information on his own. If he is unwilling to come
      forward, I have no alternative but to tell the captain myself. Lastly, doing so will
      make it much easier on my relationships with my fellow firefighters.

      The engineer says he is sorry and tells you that he will take the bottle out
      to his truck.
      What would you do and why?

      I would once again explain to the engineer that the captain needs to be
      informed. The issue of having a bottle of alcohol is such a violation of the
      policies and procedures that I would be unwilling to jeopardize my job or
      compromise the fire department by remaining silent. I would make another
      attempt to try to convince him to go to the captain. If he were unwilling to do
      so, I would tell the captain myself.

      The engineer tells you that he had a small drink this morning and he is
      sorry he made a mistake. He reminds you that he has known you for a long
      time, even before you came on the fire department. He has helped you get
      through your first two probationary exams.
      What would you do and why?


      I would thank him for his help thus far in my career. I would then redirect
      him to the issue at hand. It has now become apparent that he has been drinking
      on duty. This is even more serious than just having a bottle of alcohol on the
      premises. The captain must be notified immediately and the company must be
      put out of service. There is no way I would allow this engineer to drive.
      The engineer says that he is not feeling well.

      His solution is to tell the
      captain that he wants to go home sick.
      What would you do and why?


      This would not be an acceptable solution. I would tell him that I am not
      willing to go along with his plan or be a party to a cover up. In addition to his
      drinking on duty, he is would be making matters worse by getting into his car
      and driving home. There is just no way I would allow that to happen.
      The engineer agrees to go to the captain but says that the captain is in a meeting
      with the battalion chief. He wants to wait until he is finished with his meeting.
      How would this affect your actions?
      I would tell him that this was important enough to interrupt the meeting
      immediately. If he is more comfortable with me accompanying him, I will do so.
      I would make sure this issue was taken care of immediately.

      If you wand more sample questions my website has 85 of the most commonly asked fire department questions.


      Paul Lepore
      Battalion Chief
      www.aspiringfirefighters.com
      Last edited by BCLepore; 07-14-2006, 10:16 AM.
      Paul Lepore
      Battalion Chief
      www.aspiringfirefighters.com

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks! You have both helped me a ton! Im so nervous! haha I hope I will do well.

        Thanks again.
        "You don't know what a real family is until you spend a day at the firehouse"

        Visit my "fire stories blog" here.

        Comment


        • #5
          You will do great! A lot of people aren't willing to put their answers to paper, and then put them out there for the whole world to see and ask for feedback. Keep working hard and practicing and you will be miles ahead of most the candidates.

          Comment


          • #6
            Oakland?

            I suspect you're headed for an Oakland oral?

            The best thing you can do between now and your oral board is to continue to practice with a tape recorder to hear what the panel will hear out of your mouth.

            1. Tell us about yourself.

            Help on this one…

            If Oakland, they probably won't use this one. If so, it's only an ice breaker that is generaly not scored.

            The dilemma is shall I have a short or long answer for the typical opening question "Tell us a little about yourself". Remember "a little". This is just an ice breaker question to get you comfortable in the chair. A one minute or less answer about you and your hobbies is all that is needed here. They don't need your name (they already have it) and NEVER tell them your age (they don't have that and never will until you're hired). A "Nugget" here: If they look baffled after your short answer, ask if they want more. They usually won't.

            Most candidates make a big error on this question by dumping the whole load on why they want to be a firefighter, what they have done to prepare, why this city and on and on. That's not what this question is about. It's only to get you comfortable in the chair. Then, when the panel starts asking why they want to be a firefighter, what have they done to prepare and the other standard 30 possible oral board questions that you have used above from our web site, they have to reiterate what they have already said. They lose valuable time and points here.

            I would reconsider using your answer number 28:

            28. How do you handle conflict?

            The last major conflict I had was with my step father. It was basically us butting heads as I got older and more strong willed. It basically ended in me moving out, and living on my own for a year. During that time we allowed things to smooth over and I eventually moved back in and we have never been better. This to me means that I have good sense to let things get worked out instead of dwell on them and let them fester. Forgive and forget.

            Ask yourself as a panel member if you would put someone in a living inviournment of a firehouse who had this answer that moved out and took a year to put the pieces back together.

            Good luck.
            _____________________________________________

            "Nothing counts 'til you have the badge . . . Nothing!"

            More Tips on getting hired and promoted by Firehouse Contributing Author Fire “Captain Bob” Articles here:
            http://www.firehouse.com/contact/10544410/bob-smith


            Fire "Captain Bob"

            www.eatstress.com

            Comment


            • #7
              I have conducted interviews as recently as last week. Let me assure you that you are graded on EVERYTHING.

              Tell us about yourself.

              It's only an ice breaker that is generaly not scored.

              This is completely false

              You are graded on everything. Telling a candidate that they are not graded on a question is poor advice. Before they have even sat down in the chair they have been graded on:

              Hand shake
              Eye contact
              Their attire
              Their physical condition
              Their interpersonal communication
              The small talk from the “holding” room to the interview room

              The dilemma is shall I have a short or long answer for the typical opening question "Tell us a little about yourself". Remember "a little". This is just an ice breaker question to get you comfortable in the chair. A one minute or less answer about you and your hobbies is all that is needed here.

              Completely disagree


              They don't need your name (they already have it)

              Absolutely incorrect. I cannot pronounce many people’s names. Even if I can you should say your name so at the end of the day when we are reviewing candidates there is a better chance I will have name recognition. Trust me when I tell you that everyone looks and sounds the same after hearing a few candidates.

              and NEVER tell them your age (they don't have that and never will until you're hired).

              I agree with this ONLY if you are young or old. If you are between the ages of 25 – 35, I want to hear your age.

              A "Nugget" here: If they look baffled after your short answer, ask if they want more. They usually won't.

              Don’t have any idea what this means.

              Paul Lepore
              Battalion Chief
              www.aspiringfirefighters.com
              Paul Lepore
              Battalion Chief
              www.aspiringfirefighters.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Rated or scored?

                The tell us about yourself question is usually an ice breaker question to get you comfortable in the chair and generally there is not a box to score it on the rating sheet.

                Had one candidate who started answering tell us about yourself and 14 minutes later we were somewhere in Montana. This was a 20-minute interview.

                Keep in mind that in a 20-minute interview you will have about 5-6 questions and answers.

                Another candidate proceeded to give this fast, rapid fire, long endless answer. It was like he was trying to cram everything in he could think of down to fine details. Just when you though he was coming in for a landing, he touched down and took flight again. You could see the glaze coming over the panel members as he continued. A great first impression?

                Few evaluators want to hear these long, endless, salvo drop answers. They can start to work against you to the point of overkill, making you sound anal. Oh, yea this is the guy we want to stick in a station and drive everyone else crazy.

                If you go endless in your answers, you might get cut off before you got to deliver some of your best stuff.
                _____________________________________________

                "Nothing counts 'til you have the badge . . . Nothing!"

                More Tips on getting hired and promoted by Firehouse Contributing Author Fire “Captain Bob” Articles here:
                http://www.firehouse.com/contact/10544410/bob-smith


                Fire "Captain Bob"

                www.eatstress.com

                Comment


                • #9
                  Oral Questions

                  Justin,
                  I thought I would pass along to you my story, I too had trouble with my oral board questions. I had all the right pieces, but the puzzle wouldn't come together for me. I had all the certs, FFI&II, HAZ-MAT Ops, Inspector, Paramedic, ECT. ECT. ECT.
                  I always finished in the top but never recieved the BIG NOD, I couldn't figure out why. Then a buddy of mine told me about Capt BOB and his program. I am here to tell you, I learned in one hour just how many missing pieces I really had, and how very far I had to go. The help and guidance I recieved on Oral Board Questions led me toward the Badge.
                  (Fast Forward 1 yr.)
                  I decided to apply at my Dream Department,although throughly satisfied with my current position, I felt this is the right moment to get that Ultimate Badge.
                  Again I contacted Capt. Bob, and after some personal consultation,and advice with lateral transfer issues, I went through the process again.
                  After The written,physical,and initial oral boards I again finished #1 on the list, and after the Chiefs' Interview I recieved a conditional offer. I then
                  went on to do the Polygraph,Dr.s' physical, and final Drug Test. Low and Behold I got the BIG NOD, and got fitted, and as before Capt Bob was there with me every step of the way.I start on July,31st. There is no doubt that without this program, and seeing what I needed on the Oral Board, I wouldn't have gotten the chance. Best of luck to you.......... Allen
                  Fight Fire Aggressively,But Provide for SAFTEY First!!!!!!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    No one test is the same

                    I have read alot of info that people have given you. Remember its all good stuff. Take little bits and pieces from all of it and craft your own personal answers. They will hear alot of the same answers over and over and over again. So make sure you add a personal story in each answer. You want to stand out. Make sure you always smile and before your interview sit down with people who you trust who will be brutally honest with you and actually give yourself a real mock oral interview. There is no better advice I have gotten from a guy who helped me than that. I actually paid a guy to run me through some oral interviews and some would say I wasted my money but I got hired so it was all worth it. He told me and I believe him that most guys are either afraid to hear themselves speak or don't think they need to work on it. And then they get in the interview and TANK IT. CaptBOB is right record yourself as much as you can and listen to it and critique it as if it were an assignment at school. Good luck, I have a ton of notes myself if you need anymore questions to practice on. But remember everyone will have there "expert advice". Be yourself but be prepared, you can never be too prepared in this job.

                    Comment

                    300x600 Ad Unit (In-View)

                    Collapse

                    Upper 300x250

                    Collapse

                    Taboola

                    Collapse

                    Leader

                    Collapse
                    Working...
                    X