The Number One Problem in Getting Hired If your dream has always been to become a firefighter, most likely you understand that there is a process that happens to earn the badge. Chances are you have researched or talked with others about the firefighter hiring process in general. There are applications to fill out and requirements to meet. You know this. Part of this process means that there is an ORAL BOARD interview in your future. It is unavoidable. And, truthfully, this is where most firefighter candidates get hung up. Here is how it goes. You walk to the mailbox. [...]
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So far Bob Smith has created 56 blog entries.
Physical Agility: Technique, Momentum, and Grip Firefighter candidates don't realize that it's not just strength that is required in physical agility. If you are having problems in the physical, there are steps you can take to prepare. Before I go any further, I want to be clear that the NUGGETS here are technique, momentum, and grip. You do not want any surprises during the Physical Agility. I encourage firefighter candidates to take advantage of any college or academy program teaching the techniques used for pulling hoses, throwing a ladder, dragging a dummy (not you), etc. Many fire departments offer practice [...]
Eliminated on Your PBQ – Where’s the Threshold? Here is a very real situation. You took an online Preliminary Background Questionnaire (PBQ). When you tried to continue, it flashed PERMANENT DISQUALIFICATION! You wonder what the heck happened? Let’s be clear. The Preliminary Background Questionnaire is designed to eliminate candidates early in the hiring process before they spend lots of time and money on those who they would refuse later. You would be surprised at the percentages of candidates disqualified. If you have been disqualified, you may have answered correctly, or incorrectly, yes to a question that led to an automatic [...]
Five NUGGETS for A Successful Firefighter Job Interview After 40 years in Fire Service and much of that on the line, I know a thing or two about earning your badge. I know that nothing else matters to you than becoming a firefighter. Most likely, you have wanted to become a firefighter for as long as you can remember. I understand that being a firefighter is in your blood. Afterall, it is a rare breed that runs toward danger to help another. You are that breed. I talk about NUGGETS quite often. Let me tell you what I mean. Nuggets are [...]
NO! You Are Not Ready! Read my lips – or these words. No matter what you think or no matter how much you have been down this road before, you must accept one cold fact. You are not ready for the firefighter testing process that is required of all firefighter candidates. How do I know? Trust me. After 40 plus years in Fire Service and working with firefighter candidates to help them get the badge, I know a thing or two. Yes, I know your story. I have heard it before. I understand that you have been traveling all over [...]
It’s a small world Ever feel like you are living in a fishbowl – or under a microscope? Here is the story of Tom. He is going in for his oral interview in Berkeley, Calif. He has an education, loads of experience, and he's ready to knock 'em dead. Tom is ready! They asked him to tell them about a stressful situation he'd been in at work and how he handled it. Well, Tom had been on a C.D.F. hele-attack hotshot crew. He tells them about a particular grass fire. Tom felt the captains on the scene were messing everything [...]
Who Are You Sending to the Oral Board? I can't think of anything more disappointing than to spend lots of time, money, and effort to get your oral board presentation memorized, only to find out that you sound just like the person who interviewed before you. From an interviewer's perspective, there is nothing worse than sitting in a room and listening to person after person come in, sit down, and repeat the same thing the person before them said. In places where the aspiring firefighter candidates went to the same academy, volunteered in the same department, and prepared together, this [...]
Goals and Why We Need Them? Goals – we all have them. We need them. They keep us moving forward and on track with what matters. Goals relate to family, work, education, and just about everything in our life. Ask yourself this – What is your goal? Is it a degree? Is it a firefighter's badge? Once you know what you want, how do you make it happen? Let's say your goal is to become a firefighter. After all, it is all you have dreamt about since you were a kid. People forget how hard it is to become a [...]
Many of our candidates are going for their Oral Boards. For some, this is their first oral. And some scored high enough to get a background packet. This puts applicants in the hiring process. At first, their buddies with far more credentials didn't believe them. Then, they were angry because it wasn't them going forward. Here are some thoughts. A candidate wrote to me and told me he had passed his first oral ever and had received his background packet. He couldn't believe it. He managed to make it happen with only three weeks to prepare after receiving our eatstress.com [...]
I had a candidate tell me he went to an interview wearing a tie, suspenders and no jacket. I asked him, "Who did you think you are Larry King?" I a One Step at a Time I get a sinking feeling and my heart goes out to those who call and ask, what they can do after being eliminated. This is even after getting a conditional job offer. My question is why didn’t you call me before you went on to the next step? Often, the answer is that they felt things were going well. They did not think they needed [...]