This is a post for you to voice your concerns and ideas on what the “perfect” company officer is or should be. Always a hot topic, I believe that the company officer drives the department. Sure, the upper brass can make things difficult or better, but the company officer is with his crew every shift, out on the streets really making a difference, or not.
In today’s fire service we are a jack of all trades. Firefighter, rescue technician, fire prevention advocate, plumber, electrician, odor sniffer and so on. But, some of the most important aspects of that position are forgotten or just not cared about.
Our company officers have the ability to greatly influence the direction of the firefighters and the organization. If you have an officer that is positive, trains frequently and is engaged in the job, his people will likely follow suit.
However, if your officer dislikes training, PR, and getting out of the recliner, his people will likely follow suit. They have a great deal of influence. I have personally seen the trainsition a firefighter made going from a positive officer and crew to a captain that just doesn’t give shit.
What are the attributes of your ideal company officer?
Tell us about some great experiences and not so great experiences?
What words of wisdom have been passed on to you that have really “stuck” in regards to the company officer position?
In my mind it boils down to this; if an officer is not willing to or does not continaually improve himself as an individual and leader and firefighter, he will never be able to improve his crew. He just wont have the respect and credibility to facilitate that improvement. If it isn’t important to him, it wont be important to the crew.
Train hard and lead effectively.