Real Advice to Probies

I’ve been spending some time training the probie lately.  What a good time.  Where does that motivation go?  What should I teach him?  At what point does my “teaching” become “storytelling”? How long before he becomes the next whining lump on the couch?

My goal: Prevent him from becoming a couch creature, ever.

Here’s what I’m telling him;

  1. Until you prove yourself and/or you are off probation your priorities are as follows; get here early, check your personal gear, check/wash the truck, then house duties, finally you will be the last one to leave at the end of shift, sorry.
  2. Wear your equipment.  Let the “salty dogs” get caught with their pants down, they will have some excuse that makes it someone else’s fault that they weren’t ready, you have none.
  3. Stay away from the coffee table until you know the first and last names of everyone there, and then sit there quietly until invited into discussion.
  4. No naps, don’t park/wash your car in the firehouse, keep your butt in the radio room.
  5. When we do drills ask questions after the evolutions, not during.  Then ask for clarification if needed,we will get it done right during training.  Also, during training is when we have time for mistakes and redo’s, not during incidents.
  6. Listen to the war stories, but try to find the truth in them.  Try to figure out what was done incorrectly to end up in that situation.  Ask you officer if you have questions, don’t ask the storyteller.
  7. If someone doesn’t answer your questions adequately go to your officer or me.  I’ll have time for you; I’ll get you the best answer according to our SOP’s.
  8. You are going to hear a lot of different things from different people.  Don’t argue, just agree with them and do it their way for that day.  You will find your own methods, you just aren’t allowed to right now.
  9. Make your own opinion about other people and other companies.  And put that off as long as possible, worry about doing YOUR job correctly first.
  10. I know you want to learn tech rescue, we’ll get there.  Learn the pump and medical protocols first.  We will get to the rest later.
  11. These guys are not going to be around when you are 80 years old sitting in a rest home.  Hopefully your family will.  Be Safe, always remember your family when you are at work.
  12. Always have promotion in the back of your mind.  Find an officer to emulate.  Study, study, study there is a lot to this job and plenty of nationwide opportunities for knowledgeable and motivated personnel.

I’m not a mean guy and there are exceptions to everything, but I think if he follows this general outline he’ll be just fine.  Even if he does make some mistakes I think he’ll be better off then the probie on another group who asked the officer to move his car out of the firehouse so the probie could wash his own car.

Good luck all you new guys.  This is the greatest job.

Be Safe.

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

background image Blogger Img

Marques Bush

Firefighter Basics launched in February 2009 after Founder/Editor Marques Bush was looking for a way to express himself and share his experiences with brother and sister firefighters. Shortly after founding the site Marques spoke with several trusted friends and ask them to come on board and contribute also. Firefighter Basics is a dedicated group of firefighters who strive everyday to practice what they preach about Training, Safety, and Tradition.  We can be reached at firefighterbasics@gmail.com

FE Talk: Humpday Hangout

Comments
Ret. Capt.
The next big thing…or just another acronym?
I'm not sure how the Portsmouth, VA FD normally operates but that is an embarrassment. I am not understanding any part of why the hose team did not make entry while one other member broke out the window with an extension ladder to provide quick ventilation. From what is seen, and the conditions present, in…
2015-01-16 17:21:54
Met Fan
The next big thing…or just another acronym?
Actually it does not seem to raise the temperatures at the floor in most cases. Do you feel feel different after attack begins? Of course you do. Steam is produced when water hits the fire and you feel the humidity through your gear. This is going to happen regardless of whether the stream entered a…
2014-12-29 02:43:23
Ryan McGovern (Ladder Jack)
Ideology vs Philosophy: Are you Slicing or Dicing in the fire service trends
Marques, As I have been following this debate for the past few weeks, and looking for the best way to respond, I could find no "correct" way to join the conversation without maybe coming off as narrow-minded. The response you have here says exactly what I believe is the best way to approach the SLICER/…
2014-12-03 00:41:24
Fyrfyter19
The next big thing…or just another acronym?
Though hitting a fire from the outside lowers the temperature in the room, it raises it closer to the floor. I've been a firefighter for 14 years and work for an inner city department. You'd better be damn sure there are no victims in the structure anywhere near where those heated gasses are going to…
2014-11-24 17:54:49
LeRoy Burlingame
Ideology vs Philosophy: Are you Slicing or Dicing in the fire service trends
I found that firefighters do more calls than just structure fires, so with that I've established an acronym I use and teach others in my company. FIRE; First unit, Identify, Resources, Evaluate. It's simple and can't be used for any type of call. I know it won't ever catch like SLICERS but it works. First…
2014-11-20 20:22:06

Follow Firefighter Basics

FireEMS Blogs eNewsletter

Sign-up to receive our free monthly eNewsletter

LATEST FIREFIGHTER NEWS

HOT FORUM DISCUSSIONS

LATEST ON FIRE ENGINEERING

FEATURED DISCUSSIONS