No? ok, we need to fix that because this is IMPORTANT. Here’s a quick intro…
To be a good firefighter, you need to behave in a way which matches the Leadership Qualities (LQs) which are listed in the FRS Leadership Framework. This framework is really just a list of ‘how to behave’.
How it fits in with recruitment is that each applicant needs to be measured against something, almost like if you need your height to be measured, you might use a tape measure. If you are to have your behaviour evaluated, you need to be measured against a list of ‘top behaviours’. And everyone needs to be measured in the same way to make it fair. So that’s where the Leadership Framework comes in handy, so Fire Services know what they need to look for when they recruit Firefighter trainees.
MOST FRS recruitment campaigns will look how you behave at least once – through your interview, application form, a role-play, presentation, or online tests. YOU HAVE TO BE PREPARED (don’t worry, help is at hand- look in our store).
So, what should you do?
Firstly, read the Leadership Qualities here.
Yours is the ‘Leading Yourself’ column; how you will demonstrate leadership as you start out in your career will be about how you manage yourself, rather than how you lead others (which would come with any promotion you might go after in time).
Don’t worry, the Leadership qualities are a bit wordy! To make it a bit easier, here is a summary and how you, as a firefighter (or applicant) need to show them.
- This is about being fair, and not discriminating against people on the basis of things like their ethnicity, gender, sexuality or religion etc.
- You’ll contribute to the team positively, by listening to others and making them feel valued; recognising their contributions, not belittling, laughing at or being unkind.
- You need to understand how your behaviour and moods affect others, and manage yourself in a professional way so you don’t have a negative impact on others.
- You need to own up to mistakes and be prepared to learn from these, and have the same attitude to the mistakes other people make- not blaming.
- You need to have the confidence to challenge other people when you can see they are behaving badly, doing it in a constructive, non-aggressive way.
- You need to be helpful and supportive, recognising when other people are struggling practically or emotionally, and being prepared to ask for help if you are finding things hard.
- You are expected to behave in a way that represents the FRS positively, and encourage others to do the same. This covers all sorts of the behaviours covered throughout this list.
- You need to be conscientious, doing your best so your work meets a reliable standard.
- You need to be respectful of others, whether they have the same views as you or not, and if you do disagree, do it constructively, without shaming or creating conflict.
- You need to be prepared to learn new things, skills and ways of behaving in order to be what is expected of a firefighter.
- Your priority will be meeting the needs of the community, and all the people within it, keeping them safe and well.
- You will need to plan and be prepared so that you can meet all your duties.
- You need to be mindful of budgets, making savings where you can, being efficient with resources.
- You should be always on the look out for ways to improve things, and not be afraid to make suggestions to fix problems.
- You’ll make decisions based on the facts and factor in risks as well.
- You’ll work in a helpful, collaborative way with other people so they can trust you.
- You find out what people in the community need and adapt how you work to meet this.
- You need to know what the organisation is about i.e. what’s important and what it is trying to achieve. Obviously, these days it’s a lot more than putting fires out! Essentially, it’s about serving the whole community.
- You’ll be prepared to follow procedures and rules so you work safely.
- You’ll also be ok with speaking out if you see anything which puts yourself or others in danger.
- You’ll be comfortable sharing your ideas and listening the opinions of others especially if it means improving your Fire Service.
- You are motivated to improve how you do things so you are contributing to Fire Service goals.
- You stay up to date with what’s happening in the organisation so you’re aware of performance levels and changes.
- You’ll need to be trustworthy, keeping sensitive or private information to yourself.
Your next step is to download one of our e-books to help you learn how to demonstrate your leadership behaviours. It’s not hard once you get the hang of it, but there is a definite trick to making sure you come across well, and luckily, we have all the know-how you need.
A good place to start is with either the application or interview e-books. The great thing about these is, they will teach you how to be amazing in ANY interview, or ANY application form, even if you change your mind about applying to be a Firefighter. Good luck, and stay in touch about your plans and applications via our social media or email us here.