Whether you are facing your first assessment or have failed one in the past, one of your top questions is likely to be, ‘what are they looking for?’
With the FRS you are luckier than you might think; you do have plenty of guidance about what you need to achieve- the assessments shouldn’t be a complete shot in the dark. The answers you are looking for are right there in black and white- in the PQA framework. But the question remains – how do you make sense of it?
You wouldn’t be alone if you are finding it a struggle to work out what it all means. After all, the PQA framework covers a lot of concepts.
The good news is, it is just a list of examples of how you might demonstrate a particular skill (or PQA). It’s not a prescriptive list of everything you HAVE TO do. That’s why it’s such a mistake for people to think they have to memorise the framework. It isn’t what’s needed at all!
For example, to demonstrate ‘Openness to Change,’ the framework suggests a Firefighter would need to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the need for progress within the Fire and Rescue service
- Accept change both within the Fire and Rescue Service and in their own role and adapts effectively
- Be aware of the impact of changes to the Fire and Rescue Service on their role
- Identify ways of supporting change and take action where possible
This might seem a bit difficult to get a handle on, a bit theoretical. It can put you off. But if you break it down, all it is actually saying is, ‘show you can be flexible about change and that you will do what you can to support this for the good of the organisation’. There are loads of ways you might be able to show this, and each individual will do so in their own unique way.
So if what is in the PQA framework doesn’t really sound like you, don’t worry, it doesn’t have to. You just have to work out what it is you DO actually do, and focus on that.