Essential Skills Needed to Become a Firefighter

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Essential Skills Needed to Become a Firefighter

Leadership Skills in Firefighting

Leadership skills are very important in firefighting. That is because without these skills the leaders of firefighting would not be an effective or motivational leader. These skills include a set of talents that should be in a firefighting leader. Such skills include effective communication, motivation, commitment, positivity, trustworthiness, creativity, feedback, responsibility and flexibility. All these skills are essential because if there is a firefighting leader without these skills, the process of firefighting would be very poor and negative. 

The true leader should be aware of these skills and should have an acceptable level of such skills. Such skills could be acquired through two main ways. The first way is the experience of the leader obtains through his career and years of work. This experience could not be obtained except through work. The second way is the training courses of leaders. Such courses shall make the leader study these skills academically and identify the scientific methods through which these skills could be obtained. There is another important thing in this regard which is the personal traits of the firefighter. These traits are innate thing in the character of the firefighting leader (Doyle, 2017).


Effective Communication:

The effective communication is the first skill that should be at the firefighting leader. Communication means the connection or the interaction that occurs between the members of one process. There should be an effective communication between the leader and his team. Without this communication, the firefighting leader shall not be able to deliver his orders. 

There should be a direct communication or face to face communication between the firefighting leader and the staff working with him. This direct or face to face communication is the most effective method of communication. If this kind of communication is not available for whatever reasons, there could be a communication between the firefighting leader and the firefighters, there could be a communication through other channels such as the telephone or the wireless radio. The orders of the firefighting leader could be achieved through delegating a person of the firefighters to be an interim leader executing the orders of the leader until he arrives (Shoebridge, 2013).


Motivation:

The second skill that should be existent in the firefighting leader is the motivation. The firefighters are the ones that scarify and dedicate their lives for others. If the firefighters are not motivated well, they would not do that with brave hearts because they shall not recognize the nobleness of the mission they are performing. 

The mission of the firefighting leader is to motivate his team through encouraging them to save the lives of others with good words that are showing the weakness of the women, children and the old in addition to the great work of saving lives and properties of others. In additions, the firefighting leader should be a self-motivated person in order to be able to transfer this motivational spirit to the firefighting team (Willing, 2017).


Commitment:

The third skill that should be at the firefighting individual is the commitment. Firefighting is not a simple or an easy job because it includes properties and lives of people. If the firefighting leader is not committed to care about lives and properties and to come to the place of the incident, he shall not succeed in his mission. The matter is very crucial and serious. 

Commitment means that the person shall perform all his obligations in the most suitable time for this. The commitment of the firefighting leader is attending to the place of the hazard as fast as he can and exert his utmost in order to save properties and lives of others.


Positivity:

The fourth skill that should be at the firefighting individual is the positivity. This positivity means taking an action when it is necessary to do so. Positivity means not to stand empty-handed. In firefighting leadership, the leader should be a very positive person in order to could pass all the obstacles in his difficult career. The first thing in which the firefighter should be positive is solving the problems of the firefighters and all the staff under him.

The job of firefighting needs the person to be relaxed and focused on the serious missions he is performing. This would not be achieved if the firefighter goes to his work with his problems not solved. Positivity is also when a firefighting leader receives a report of a hazard from any authority and he moves instantly in order to take actions for saving people and possessions (Dixon, 2014).


Trustworthiness:

The fifth skill that should be in a firefighting leader is the trustworthiness. This skill means that the firefighting leader should be dependable in all the situations. He should be a trustworthiness person through proving his skills, experience and good conduct. All these things would make people feel safe while the firefighting leader is performing his job. 

In additions, when the firefighters find that their leader having a good experience, good conduct and a high level of personal skills, they would trust him so much and feel with pride while they are working with this leader because they shall learn from him. To gain this trustworthiness, the firefighting leader should be aware of all the firefighting equipment. In the case that he does not know this equipment well or the method of their usage, he would lose this trustworthiness. He should also be updated with a knowledge about the latest equipment and the method of their usage. Through these principles, the firefighting leader would be a trusted person in all aspects (Rielage, 2017).


Creativity:

The sixth skill that should be at the firefighting leader is the creativity. Creativity means to find innovate ways or methods to solve problems. It means to think out of the normal or traditional thoughts. Creativity in firefighting is a very important skill. 

The importance of this skills backs to the need for innovative thoughts through which the firefighting leader could control the hazard. These thoughts could be like using the mind to evacuate people without any harms through a crane or a winch for example. In additions, there could also be creation and innovation in fighting fires such as preferring to use a certain kind of equipment rather than the other kind or allocating a certain number of firefighters to control the fire.


Advising through Feedbacks:

The seventh skill that should be at the firefighting leader is the ability to give advices and feedbacks. This ability is a key skill because without it the firefighters would not discover their mistakes, gain more experience and improve themselves. Of course, the firefighting leader should be the best person having leadership skills. However, not all firefighting leaders are amazing people because some of them are able to give feedbacks and consultation while others only get satisfied with giving orders and commands without teaching firefighters anything. 

If firefighters are working with a leader who does not give any feedbacks, they shall not advance in their career and they shall be in the same position with the same level of experience all the time. Feedbacks means there is a mistake that should be corrected or there is a good thing that should be encouraged. Therefore, the feedback could be either positive or negative (Rielage, 2014).


Responsibility:

The eighth skill that should be at the firefighting leader is the responsibility. The leader of the firefighters should be responsible for making decisions and bearing the responsibility of these decisions. That is to say, he should be responsible for each individual of the team working with him and he should make all the necessary actions to save the members of this team from any harm that could afflict them. 

Moreover, when a firefighting leader makes a certain decision regarding any hazard, he should be brave enough to face the consequences of this decision. Responsibility is not a simple thing especially in a profession like firefighting including lives, properties and possessions. The matter is very serious and requires a responsible leader to be in charge of it.


Flexibility:

The last skill that should be at the firefighting leader is the flexibility in making decisions. Flexibility means that there no thing consistent and everything could be changed according to the situation and the circumstances in order to achieve the hoped results and accomplish the interest. 

Flexibility is very essential in firefighting due to the need for changeable methods in fighting all kinds of fires. If the firefighting leader has found that the method of firefighting he is following is not effective, he should be flexible enough in order to change it and find a more suitable way (Willing, 2010).


Summary:

Finally, being a leader in a very dangerous and important profession like firefighting is the most difficult that for anyone to face. The firefighting leader is different from any other leader in any profession, because of the risks in this job. There are some essential skills, which should be at any firefighting leaders. These skills are such as effective communication, motivation, commitment, positivity, trustworthiness, creativity, feedback, responsibility and flexibility. Without these skills the firefighting leader could not be distinctive in his career and many losses could happen because of the low level of personal, professional and practical skills that the leader has.

 

Essential Skills Needed to Become a Firefighter

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