“Treat others as you would like to be treated.”
Most of us have heard of the above saying. It holds very true with the leadership skills of an officer.
For as long as we have been able to process social skills, we’ve been building our personalities, our consciousness and our ways. We developed this throughout our adolescence; from our teenage years, and into our young adult world. Even as adults, we develop and modify these elements on a daily basis.
But what steers the factors that make us, “us”?
Our interactions with families, friends, schooling, work and our own personal experiences all contribute to making us who we are. These help build our personalities. It also helps to develop our leadership skills and abilities.
Leaders: Born and Made
Leadership skills can be both innate, meaning we are born with them and they come to us naturally, as well as learned, such as through the social outlets we just discussed.
The innate leadership skills for some officers are much stronger than other officers, thus naturally making them the better leader.
Do you remember an officer you worked with, or know in some fashion, who just knew the right way to manage their personnel, administrative issues, and conduct the fireground like a fine orchestra?
This officer most likely is or was a natural-born leader. In addition, they most likely furthered themselves by attending leadership training and had positive leadership role models during their early years of development into the adult world.
For some officers though, it may take a bit more to learn to become a leader because their innate, built-in ability isn’t as finely tuned as others.
There is nothing wrong with that. For those who have a good foundation, they can build on it with experience and training.
What becomes a problem is when the officer does not formulate their leadership criteria in the proper fashion.
What happens then?
In the end we have poor ineffective leaders. In another article, I share a few personality traits that an officer can develop to be a more effective leader.
Image Courtesy of Aaron Bellmyer
Next: Fire Officers Need To Be Good Listeners? (When published)