8 comments on “C’mon Boston, It’s Not About The Vest

  1. I’m with you Chief. I think this is a sad instance where some on the east coast demonstrate their lack of understanding about ICS.

  2. One of the most effective things a leader can do is delegate and remain “Teflon”. Wonder who taught me that? :)

  3. This isn’t only about a leader not taking Command, and resistance to change. This is about parochial politics, and mission to dismantle a fire department and a failure of a ‘leader’ to adapt to the system he was operating in.

    Do you have to stand in front of a building to ‘prove’ your leadership? No. do you have to learn and operate within the existing system as you slowly apply the winds of change. Yes.

    There is much more to this story than one article in a newspaper that has a long standing ax to grind against the Fire Department…..

    • Thanks for the response Dave. I figured there is likely more to the story. But, my comments about fire service leadership stand. The “outside chief” may have been too progressive in his approach. No way of knowing from the outside. But, the choice of words and approach taken in the article led me to the conclusions. I certainly hope it ends up being a learning opportunity for the remaining department leadership and a commitment to national safety standards and fireground procedures.

      • From guys I know, and I am not on BFD, it wasn’t a question of ‘too progressive’. It was more a question of not learning anything about the existing Department, before trying to ‘fix’ it.

        Maybe his style wasn’t to respond and take Command, but maybe responding and at least ‘waving the flag’ could have bridged the gap to where he wanted to go and where they were…

  4. I seriously think there is more to the story. And being a Marine, the leadership principle you stated is correct, but leadership principle number 8 is Make sound and timely decisions Rapidly estimate a situation and make a sound decision based on that estimation. There’s no room for reluctance to make a decision, revise it. Marines respect the leader who corrects mistakes immediately. In a infantry squad, platoon or company that is taking direct contact a Sqd leader, Plt Sgt or Cmdr, Company Cmdr does not sit by and let the Lance Corporal make the decisions, they allow them to carry out those orders given without supervision or minimal supervision at the team leader level. The USMC leadership traits have developed many great leaders but no where in these 11 principles does not making a decision come about, the fire service is not the Corps. Also, I question the motive of this article, how much research has been done on this material? Most major metro departments don’t play by “best” practices FDNY and Philly I know don’t use 5 inch supply line, Chicago is very aggressive as well as Boston, Philly’s packman on the truck enters by himself but is not alone in regards to other members being with in sight or sound which is taught in the IFSTA manual…….. The problem with the fire service is that people that have never been in these busy FIRE departments are generating the “best practices” which makes no sense. Most of these guys are wanna be’s compared to the guys truly putting fires out in these great fire departments! Show me a FDNY or Boston Captain and I will believe what they say compared from the Chief with CFO, EFO, and a Masters that hasn’t seen enough fire to wet his boot socks or was on a combi department and teaches a class that he has never practiced. The saying rings true those who can’t teach. The guys putting fires out aren’t generating bs practices.

  5. As with any management position, the most effective leaders lead by example, Furthermore it you are continuously questioning your answers to a challenging management decision, you don’t belong in management. Also, what happened to the pursuit of excellence with regard motivating and managing teams in a dire situation?

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