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How to Improve the Discipline Level In Your Department?

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  • TRUCK61
    replied
    instead of discapline problem it sounds more like a morale problem. Why is the morale low? Is it due to lack of or poor leadership. Without strong leadership, not management, a department has no direction and without direction there's no movement and so on. Working for a department that has no leadership is the hardest and most frustrating thing to have to deal with. JMO

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  • tree68
    replied
    Originally posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    It starts at the top.

    If captains and Lts are not held to the set standards by the Chief officers, it's unlikely they are going to hold the personnel under them to those standards.

    It's really that simple.

    True that, but...

    The greatest leader in the world is nothing without loyal followers.

    Which is the heart of our problem.

    In far too many small fire departments, the choice of the chief comes down not even to a popularity contest (that's bad enough) but to who will accept the job. All too often that person doesn't have the full faith and loyalty of the rest of the deparment.

    The person who does have the full faith and loyalty of the department doesn't want the responsibility of being an officer, but enjoys the adulation and authority of being an "opinion leader."

    Before anyone jumps on the "qualifications" bandwagon, very often the elected chief has all of those qualifications. In typical small organization dynamics, he actually becomes something of a pariah, made so by those who are too lazy to raise themselves to the same level...

    This happens in career departments, too. Just ask any department that's had a fire chief hired from the outside, over the objections of the rank and file, who feel it should be someone from within. And doubly so if said outside chief brings "new" ideas. Of course, they know who's signing their paychecks, so they play along, but...

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  • penman
    replied
    Originally posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    You're right.

    In many places it takes an event to make folks realize that they have an issue, and in some cases, that event can involve a fatality or significant injury.

    In other cases it may involve the department being publicly embarassed by the actions of a member or members, or a failure to perform during an emergency response.
    Especially with YouTube videos which show lack of PPE, freelancing, training etc before you even return to the firehouse.
    Ed

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  • LaFireEducator
    replied
    Originally posted by penman View Post
    Unfortunately it really is that simple which makes it so hard to change. Nothing happens until someone gets seriously hurt or worst and then the lawsuits start coming. Money seems to wake people up and things start to change.
    Ed
    You're right.

    In many places it takes an event to make folks realize that they have an issue, and in some cases, that event can involve a fatality or significant injury.

    In other cases it may involve the department being publicly embarassed by the actions of a member or members, or a failure to perform during an emergency response.

    Leave a comment:


  • penman
    replied
    Originally posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    It starts at the top.

    If captains and Lts are not held to the set standards by the Chief officers, it's unlikely they are going to hold the personnel under them to those standards.

    It's really that simple.
    Unfortunately it really is that simple which makes it so hard to change. Nothing happens until someone gets seriously hurt or worst and then the lawsuits start coming. Money seems to wake people up and things start to change.
    Ed

    Leave a comment:


  • FiremanLyman
    replied
    Leadership issue. Company officer level.

    LA hit it on the head.

    Originally posted by LaFireEducator View Post
    It starts at the top.

    If captains and Lts are not held to the set standards by the Chief officers, it's unlikely they are going to hold the personnel under them to those standards.

    It's really that simple.

    Leave a comment:


  • LaFireEducator
    replied
    It starts at the top.

    If captains and Lts are not held to the set standards by the Chief officers, it's unlikely they are going to hold the personnel under them to those standards.

    It's really that simple.

    Leave a comment:


  • ogomez
    replied
    Accountability

    As much as I love this profession and the men and women who put their lives on the line, I feel that one thing that is lacking is accountability. Now, this statement does not mean everyone or every department. I just find it funny that new hires are held to rigorous standards of training, discipline and fitness but then are we held to the same standards? An example in our department: we had about 4-6 guys that decided to grow out their hair despite the grooming standards, now we have even more stringent standards and they all bitched and moaned. Fitness is another, the job can get to demand levels of a professional athletes yet alot of guys do not maintain their fitness levels. There are standards and expectations that have to be met... its your job. Now there can be unreasonable expectations from management but if it is what are job requires and it is reasonable then buckle down and get it done. Training is a key component to being proficient, why is this so hard?

    I think that either the discipline comes from the chief down or if not you can start by example on a personal level and try to get ideas out: maybe start with individual company training. Even if it is you and a crew member chalk talking a fire or how would you...

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  • FWDbuff
    replied
    1. Standard Operating Procedures for both administrative and operational purposes: Establish SOP's for emergency scene operations as well as in-station purposes (training requirements, yearly qualifications, etc.)

    2. Standard Discipline Procedures/Guidelines for those who fail to follow the SOP's: Unform across the board. Everyone from the Chief to the newest member is expected to adhere to all rules and regulations of the organization and face the music if they do not.

    3. Unified Chain of Command: Junior FF's report to Senior FF's. Senior FF's report to Lieutenants. Loos report to Captains. Captains report to *** Chiefs. *** Chiefs report to the Dep. The Dep reports to the Boss. Any infraction or violation of the UCC is punishible as specified in the Discipline Guidelines.

    Leave a comment:


  • How to Improve the Discipline Level In Your Department?

    Lack of discipline seems to be a major problem at my department on and off the fire ground. We have problems with freelancing, lack of command presence during emergencies, any department training is written off as a waste of time, there is little interest in any extra training, there is a lack of respect for officers, and we fight every form of change that is thrown at us. I think all of these situations could be improved if not completely solved if the members of the department were more disciplined, what do you think?

    My question is what can be done to improve a departments level of discipline?
    Also what can be done as a firefighter to improve discipline from the bottom up?

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