Posted on October 19, 2012 by Tiger Schmittendorf
What you should and can ask an applicant about their criminal history is a smokey issue. What you can legally do with the information you receive can obscur your visibility even more.
As happens pretty frequently, I had a fire chief call recently to ask for some advice on what has become a bit of an arresting matter in his volunteer fire department.
It appears that a prospective candidate for membership was being honest when they checked off the little box on their fire department application that asks whether or not they’ve been convicted of a felony or misdemeanor offense. Essentially, they were being honest about being dishonest — now that’s what I call irony.
What to do? Deny the application. Case closed. Simple as that. Right? (more…)
Filed under: ALL, Bad News, Public Relations, Recruitment & Retention, Tactics | Tagged: candidate, clearinghouse, county, firefighter, prospective member guide, Public Relations, recruitment, tiger schmittendorf, volunteer ems, volunteer firefighter | Leave a Comment »
Posted on December 7, 2011 by Tiger Schmittendorf
According to this report released at NVFC.org, there were 44,000 fewer volunteer firefighters in 2010 compared to 2009, a reduction of 5.4 percent, according to the U.S. Fire Department Profile Through 2010, an annual report that was recently issued by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). The loss of volunteers is primarily coming in communities with populations of 2,500 or fewer, which were protected by 377,550 firefighters in 2010 compared with 408,550 in 2009, a drop of approximately 7.6 percent.
[Read the balance of the article here.]
Without reading the entire study, one could wonder whether or not those numbers are a bad thing or just a truer reflection of the real number of volunteers directly involved in firefighting, not just total number of active and inactive members of volunteer fire departments. If you read on in the NVFC article you’ll learn that while the total numbers are going down, the average age of those left behind is going up. That’s a real issue we need to address immediately and constantly. (more…)
Filed under: ALL, Bad News, News, Recruitment & Retention | Tagged: candidate, clearinghouse, firefighter, recruitment, retention, SAFER, tiger schmittendorf, toolkit, volunteer firefighter, WWW.FDLIVEIN.COM | Leave a Comment »
Posted on November 13, 2011 by Tiger Schmittendorf
This article was originally published November 29, 2009 at www.TigerSchmittendorf.com. Rather than keep creating new posts on this subject, I intend to re-publish this post as opportunity presents itself to learn from best — and not exactly our best — practices in motivating members of the public to join our ranks.
11/13/11 – In this week’s installment of “Is this our best approach?” we look at a news clip covering the recruitment and retention challenges of the Fremont County Volunteer Fire Service in Kinnear, Wyoming. The piece starts out with good intentions as a firefighter describes why he volunteers and how he and the community mutually benefit. Unfortunately, like so many other videos and news articles on the subject, this video wraps up with another firefighter or officer outlining all the reasons people aren’t volunteering today.
Filed under: ALL, Bad News, Public Relations, Recruitment & Retention | Tagged: Public Relations, recruitment, retention, tiger schmittendorf | 1 Comment »
Posted on October 31, 2011 by Tiger Schmittendorf
Check out Burlington Township (NJ) Volunteer Fire Department's new pub ed banners
There’s been plenty to tweet about lately regarding recruitment and retention in the fire service. Some of the info shared is good news and some is bad news, regardless, it all contains lessons we can learn from. Sometimes there’s so much activity and so much being shared, that it’s tough for even someone as “connected” as I am to keep up with.
With many fire prevention activities wrapping up for the month of October, many fire departments took advantage of the added exposure to share and maximize their volunteering, public education and public relations opportunities; including the Burlington Township Volunteer Fire Department which the FireRECRUITER has been working with for the past six months. The featured photo shows off the new banners they’ve created for their successful pub ed efforts — which are smartly and directly linked to their recruitment efforts.
Some of my Tweets are original finds I stumble upon while others are retweets of others’ discoveries. Nonttheless, in case you missed them, here are some of the highlights of recent tweets with plenty of examples of what does and doesn’t work in in recruiting, motivating, leading, training and retaining today’s firefighters. Follow the links for great reads, resources, tips and tricks. (more…)
Filed under: ALL, Bad News, News, Public Relations, Recruitment & Retention, Tactics | Tagged: clearinghouse, Fire Critic, FireCritic.com, firefighter, junior firefighter, recruitment, retention, tiger schmittendorf, volunteer firefighter, WWW.FDLIVEIN.COM | 2 Comments »
Posted on May 24, 2010 by Tiger Schmittendorf
A Texas city is threatening to stop collecting donations that pay for critical equipment like this hydraulic-lift stretcher.
I typically reserve my commentary type articles for my flagship site but I think it’s appropriate to divest from that practice for the purpose of this post.
The following article tells of a small city that is threatening to stop collecting a voluntary public donation that has brought thousands and thousands of dollars in mission-critical equipment to their combination (paid/volunteer) fire department.
Apparently, the threat is in response to a dwindling number of volunteer firefighters in their department, between 5 and 10, as the article points out. Without a lot of volunteers, they apparently don’t feel it’s appropriate to collect a donation on behalf of the volunteer side of their fire department. This situation seems to be causing quite a riff in the department. (more…)
Filed under: ALL, Bad News, Grants, News, Public Relations, Recruitment & Retention, Tactics | Tagged: clearinghouse, donations, firefighter, grant, Grants, Public Relations, recruitment, retention, tiger schmittendorf, volunteer, volunteer ems, volunteer fire, volunteer firefighter | Leave a Comment »
Posted on March 9, 2010 by Tiger Schmittendorf
The fire service has a long-standing reputation as pillars of the community; the social epicenter of the community and as a vocation that citizens trust the most.
However, reckless and inappropriate conduct by a small minority of the nation’s fire service is eroding the high moral ground occupied by firefighters says a White Paper sponsored by the Cumberland Valley Volunteer Firemen’s Association, (CVVFA). (more…)
Filed under: ALL, Bad News, News, Public Relations, Recruitment & Retention, Youth Programs | Tagged: brotherhood, explorer, exploring, fire explorer, firefighter, junior firefighter, recruitment, retention, tiger schmittendorf, toolkit, tradition, volunteer, volunteer ems, volunteer fire, volunteer firefighter | Leave a Comment »
Posted on January 2, 2010 by Tiger Schmittendorf
I stumbled across a guide to becoming a volunteer firefighter while reviewing a list of web resources from FireCritic.com and found it to be very interesting.
First, inasmuch as the guide was created for potential volunteer candidates, I thought it interesting that the site FireLink.com was connected to Monster.com — the familiar job search engine. That’s not to say that it’s a bad thing, I just found it to be somewhat interesting.
Next, I found it interesting that the author, or at least, co-author of the 10-Step program was a two-year veteran of the volunteer fire service. While I appreciate his fresh insight, I also felt his perspective was somewhat limited as outlined in my next point of interest. (more…)
Filed under: ALL, Bad News, News, Public Relations, Recruitment & Retention, Tactics, Uncategorized | Tagged: candidate, clearinghouse, Fire Critic, FireCritic.com, firefighter, FireLink.com, monster.com, prospective member guide, Public Relations, recruitment, tiger schmittendorf, toolkit, volunteer, volunteer fire, volunteer firefighter | Leave a Comment »