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  • JSaundersFF
    replied
    meh. I bombed. My hope is shredded right now. I was nervous despite the tape recorder practice, and they threw me for a loop with a math test which some of that stuff I havent seen since high school. I dunno. I answered the questions well but I didnt have the confidence I thought I would have. Looks like another year of heartache ...

    Leave a comment:


  • CaptBob
    replied
    JSaundersFF wrote:

    4. What have you done to prepare for this position?
    I have prepared mentally and physically for this career. I have spent so much energy and time coming to the conclusion that firefighting is what my lifes work will be. I considered many paths to obtaining this goal . Contimued education, volunteer firefighting , military service and other related occupations just to get a taste of my dream.

    When I had no doubt in my mind that firefighting was my passion I weighed 320 lbs. I knew that was not someting that was acceptable or practical in the fire service. I finally had my motivation to right my wrongs. In the course of the next 8 months I lost 75 lbs. I copleted my physical agilty test on october 20 exactly 8 months after I started my new lifestyle.
    I have conslutled with many resources to obtain the knolwedge necessary to jumpstarting my career in the fire service . I have prepared in every way that I can think of to pursue this dream.


    First I wouldn't bring up the weight. It's common for firefighters to put on weight during their career and this might cause doubt your weight will return plus.

    A better approach to this question is:

    Start with your education and keep it in chronological order. Then your experience in order. End with those things you can tie your name to. Things where you were part of a team, took something from inception to end or were part of a committee that established a procedure or skill.

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  • CaptBob
    replied
    Originally posted by ACfire1 View Post
    Capt Bob, on the question about "What you liked best about your last job? What you liked least?" I answered..

    Best- The teamwork atmosphere and the family feel, we worked hard together everyday.

    Least- There were one or two people at the job that liked to tell management every little thing that went on to try to move up in the company.

    Are those good? I know you have to tread lightly on what you say about previous jobs.
    Tread lightly. They can tell more about you by what you say about your previous job and employer than a lot of other things you say. Bad mouthing other employees is not your best move.

    Leave a comment:


  • ACfire1
    replied
    Capt Bob, on the question about "What you liked best about your last job? What you liked least?" I answered..

    Best- The teamwork atmosphere and the family feel, we worked hard together everyday.

    Least- There were one or two people at the job that liked to tell management every little thing that went on to try to move up in the company.

    Are those good? I know you have to tread lightly on what you say about previous jobs.

    Leave a comment:


  • CaptBob
    replied
    Most anytime. Leave a message if I don't pick up.

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  • JSaundersFF
    replied
    when is a good time for me to call you bob ?

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  • CaptBob
    replied
    Religion????

    Yes, I would love more input.

    OK, you wrote in your answer why you want to be a firefighter:

    On the spiritual level , I think a lot of people ask the question , "what is the meaning of life". I know I must have asked that question 1,000,000 times. I searched for the answer fruitlessly for a long long time . The answer was only revealed to me when I surrendered my life to God. In my quest to understands god will, I came to understand that the reason he put us here on this earth was to please him . The way that he asks we please him is to love him and uphold his values . His values are unconditional love and respect and patience towards others, to find peace in serving others. I prayed for a way to strengthen my bond with others and become a valuable part of others lives. I feel the way I can serve others is to become a dedicated firefighter,a dedicated community servant..

    Reply: If you’re a candidate you had better be praying because your competition is. I would suggest you not bring up religion as part of your answer because you never know who is sitting on the panel and how they would receive, intrepret and accept this answer. It could only take one panel member to give you a score that could keep you out of the process. Some panel members could think they wouldn’t want to put you in a station where you might drive everyone nuts talking about religion.

    I still wonder if you practiced these answers with a recorder before you posted them?

    Leave a comment:


  • CaptBob
    replied
    JSaundersFF e-mail me at [email protected] or call 888-238-3959.

    Leave a comment:


  • CaptBob
    replied
    Originally posted by JSaundersFF View Post
    I want to take your advice and remove my answers and discuss this with you via PM. I dont have an edit option though help !!!!!!!!!!

    Consider upgrading from a guest to a member using the same ID. It might give you the other functions.

    Leave a comment:


  • JSaundersFF
    replied
    I want to take your advice and remove my answers and discuss this with you via PM. I dont have an edit option though help !!!!!!!!!!

    Leave a comment:


  • CaptBob
    replied
    Originally posted by JSaundersFF View Post
    I would hope no one else that may get an interview would use my answers. The unique thing is , its no secret that my dad was a firefighter to this department. He was one of them and is a good friend of all of the guys im interviewing with next week. Truthfully part of my inspiration was my dad and I want to be honest about it. Yes, I would love more input.
    All the more reason to not bring up your dad. If they already know why take the risk of offending just one rater that could affect your score enough to be out of the running? Get in on your own merit.

    Again, did you practice these answers with a recorder before you posted them?

    Leave a comment:


  • JSaundersFF
    replied
    Originally posted by CaptBob View Post
    Not really. You posted a lot to be digested. First JSaundersFF have you practiced your answers with a recorder? Secondly, you take a great risk that someone will hijack your answers and use them. How would you feel if you went to your next interview on the 3rd day of oral boards. As you're giving your answers the panel starts looking at each other. Problem could be that 3 other candidates have already used your answers and stories word for word and now the panel doesn't know who they belong too.

    This is the problem with the books with suggested answers and cadidates from college or academy programs. You would think the candidates would personalize their answers. Most don't. We could tell bythe second answer where the candidate got their answers. Do you think this affects their score?

    Absolutely!!!

    One major error you could be making on your script is saying you dad was a firefighter. It’s tricky. It’s a balancing act. It could hurt you. Too many candidates club the oral board over the head with a dad or other relative who is or has been a firefighter. The panel can interpret this as asking for more points.
    With my son Rob we used it this way: I’ve wanted to be a firefighter most of my life because members of my family have been firefighters. He never said who. If they wanted to know they would ask.

    Do you still want input on the rests of your answers?

    Captain Bob
    I would hope no one else that may get an interview would use my answers. The unique thing is , its no secret that my dad was a firefighter to this department. He was one of them and is a good friend of all of the guys im interviewing with next week. Truthfully part of my inspiration was my dad and I want to be honest about it. Yes, I would love more input.

    Leave a comment:


  • CaptBob
    replied
    Originally posted by JSaundersFF View Post
    My post got hijacked !!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Not really. You posted a lot to be digested. First JSaundersFF have you practiced your answers with a recorder? Secondly, you take a great risk that someone will hijack your answers and use them. How would you feel if you went to your next interview on the 3rd day of oral boards. As you're giving your answers the panel starts looking at each other. Problem could be that 3 other candidates have already used your answers and stories word for word and now the panel doesn't know who they belong too.

    This is the problem with the books with suggested answers and cadidates from college or academy programs. You would think the candidates would personalize their answers. Most don't. We could tell bythe second answer where the candidate got their answers. Do you think this affects their score?

    Absolutely!!!

    One major error you could be making on your script is saying you dad was a firefighter. It’s tricky. It’s a balancing act. It could hurt you. Too many candidates club the oral board over the head with a dad or other relative who is or has been a firefighter. The panel can interpret this as asking for more points.
    With my son Rob we used it this way: I’ve wanted to be a firefighter most of my life because members of my family have been firefighters. He never said who. If they wanted to know they would ask.

    Do you still want input on the rests of your answers?

    Captain Bob

    Leave a comment:


  • JSaundersFF
    replied
    My post got hijacked !!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Leave a comment:


  • CaptBob
    replied
    ACfire1 Your strengths are OK. Consider starting each one with a key word like loyalty, persistence, dependable, reliable. You only need to give a brief explanation for one of your strengths, not all three.

    You’re too serious about your weakness. They usually only ask for one weakness. You wrote:

    1. I always end up regretting things, such as should I have done this, or I wonder what would of happened if I did that instead?

    2. I put a lot of self criticism on myself. If I score a "B" on any kind of Firefighter or Fire Service test, I will come down hard on myself and be down about it for sometimes a day or two. I add a lot of stress to myself when I do this.

    3. I take things personally sometimes. I don't mean around the station or with my fellow Firefighters, I mean on a call, and a patient or victim becomes verbally or physically abusive, I take that to heart and get down myself because I always get a feeling maybe it wasn't because I did my job well enough?

    Reply: These almost make you look anal. Is this who we want to stick in a firehouse to drive everyone else nuts?

    Here’s another question I just received on Weakness:

    In regards to strengths and weaknesses. I feel my weakness is I kick my self when I do something wrong, I’m really hard on my self if I make a mistake. I have a good signature story to go along with this. Is this a good weakness to use or should I keep it simple and use spelling (I’m terrible at spelling)? Louis

    Reply: Oh, yea that's the guy we want to put in a station who's always kicking himself when something goes wrong. Keep it simple with spelling.

    From Louis: Sounds good, I will keep it simple and go with spelling as my weakness. Thank you.

    Here’s more that might help:

    Strengths and Weaknesses

    I was going over some questions for interviews, and I was hoping someone could help me with an answer. What are good answers for the question; what are your strengths and weaknesses? What are some bad answers? — John

    Reply: Let’s start with what your answers are first.

    O.K. If asked those questions I would probably respond with something like; My strengths are education, willingness to start from the bottom, my diverse background in fields other than fire fighting, and the fact that I have experience but am very adaptable to my current surroundings. My weaknesses are occasional tunnel vision, excitability, and no full-time experience. There are probably a thousand faults but you get the point. Where do I go from here? John

    First understand that if we start giving answers, everyone would clone them and they would lose their value. I encourage candidates do use their own answers, reflecting their personal life experience.

    This question can be asked in many ways, i.e.: What attributes do you think a firefighter should possess, or what qualities, what strengths etc. I think you can come up with better strengths. Education, starting at the bottom and a diverse background are not really strengths. They are what you’ve done to prepare for the position. Areas relating to loyalty, honesty, and being dependable etc. are strengths.

    When you’re deciding a weakness, use something that might have been a weakness, but you have already done something to correct it i.e., you had a problem speaking in front of groups. You have improved this situation by taking a public speaking class or joining Toastmasters.

    Since firefighters are in a living environment, we would not be looking for someone with occasional tunnel vision and excitability. No full-time experience is not a good choice for a weakness either.

    Got a call from a candidate. He lives in Washington now and his oral was in 4 days. He got his Firefighter1 from an academy in Southern California. He said it hasn’t helped much trying to get a job. He has now been a medic for 8 months with no luck in testing. In the most pathetic monotone voice he said this is the department he really wants to work for and (with absolutely no enthusiasm) he will be one of the 15 hired.

    He asked if he could run one of his answers on what a negative is for him that his firefighter buddies and other friends helped him work out. Sure, shoot. Joel said a negative for me is my past. Even though I got a DUI and some other minor stuff, that’s not who I really am.

    I couldn’t believe my ears. Uh, Joel that answer would only open a can of worms. Don’t use it.

    Joel said, OK how about this one. Another negative for me is my paramedic skills. This job will help me improve them. Again, I couldn’t believe my ears. Yep, that’s the guy we want to hire, the one with the poor medic skills. Can’t use this one either.

    As already mentioned, everyone becomes an expert when they get hired. The answers Joel worked out with some firefighters and friends were definitely not helping but hurting him. The bigger problem is he didn’t even have a clue. This was just one answer. How bad were the others?

    I would like to say this was an isolated incident. We encounter these bad answers on a regular basis. It is especially painful in an actual oral board where we see the candidates die a slow death one question after another. Then the candidates wonder why they don’t get hired. This is an area where we try to keep candidates from stepping on the land mines.

    After a little probing, we did find a negative Joel could use that he was working on to improve.

    Leave a comment:

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