Friday, January 22, 2010

Pet peeves

People that don't do their job.

People that don't stand up to supervisors when given orders that directly contradict doing the right thing. Especially if doing the right thing would only take 5 more minutes (and you're already out of service anyways).


The Dispatcher and Her Officer said...

Agree!!! Oh I have a long list of pet peeves! Like - If your supposed to be answering phones... then DO!


Anonymous said...

This is one I had to respond to. After 28 years on the job, the last 13 as Captain, Battalion Chief and Assistant Chief. If you or anyone else "stands up to" me at the scene of an emergency or in front of the public, you will get the shift off without pay and I will go to the Chief and try to get you two weeks off with out pay. "Stand up to" me at the station in front of the crew, you will get the shift off and a formal write up that will stay in your file for three years. The supervisor tells you what the right thing is to do, we dont decide by vote. That is the reason your superiors have chosen him/her to be your supervisor. Your statement shows you dont yet understand the chain of command and the role and responsibility of a supervisor.

Firelady said...

Anonymous, granted, I didn't give the full details of the scenario. Let me correct that a little.

There was a mechanical failure on the engine and it had to be removed from service with an unknown repair date. The crew on duty left equipment and appliances on that truck when stripping it, "because the captain said so".

I may not be the sharpest tool in the shed, but I've always known not to question any bugles on the scene of a call. If I'm not comfortable with the way something was done, I wait till we're back in the station and ask them privately to explain why things were done they way they were. The only exemption to this is, and should be, if a decision is made regarding patient care that I am not comfortable with. As a trained EMT-I, I have a legal obligation to voice my opinion if it is in the better interest of patient care. Even then, I will still try to be descreet about it, and have the medic explain why they think doing "xxxxxxx" is all that's needed.

The Dispatcher and Her Officer said...

Oh wow.. Firelady I never even thought of Anonymouses comment standing up in front of people!! That just spells insubordinate to me. I figured you were meaning in private and respectful. Which is what I know we practice in our center. and reading your blog and posts you place on mine - You sound like you do the same!

Firelady said...

Yeah, it was something that happened at the station level on a different shift. My gripe was that they didn't stand up to their own captain. Every bit of equipment should come off the first-line unit if it's out of service.

My complaint was obviously misunderstood by anonymous and I've no idea why he felt the need to come off so hostile and accuse me of not understanding my chain of command. I'm not sure if he even saw the part about doin the right thing taking 5 minutes and being out of service already, or if he just chose to ignore that part.

The Dispatcher and Her Officer said...

I've read you way to much to know that you respectfully follow the rules.. and do whats right!

I'm gonna say his supervisory position had got to be a difficult thing in these days.

Keep up the awesome work.. Wish I could dispatch for ya.

Firelady said...

I can only imagine the silly messages that would fly back and forth on the computers.

I used to chat with some of our dispatchers and calltakers when they used their numbers to log in. Some were a trip and I can only hope I made them laugh as much as they made me laugh. Our current system makes sending messages difficult at best. Kick me an emal some day and I'd love to chat with ya to compare systems or just shoot the breze.

Anonymous said...

This is the reason communication is an art. You said one thing and I read another. But and quoting "the Captain said so". Whos butt was going to be in my ringer if something happened to the equipment on the out of service rig? The Captain's not the crew. And if the Captain said "well the crew thought we ought to do xyz" his bugles would have been in my hand going to the next in line. The reason officers are given the authority to issue orders and they must be followed is when life and death orders are given, usually there is no time to discuss opinions. Yes that happens rarely but it is the reason we drive great big fire trucks to every call. No one commenting yet has admitted to being a supervisor. When you get to that position (and we need more female officers) and work the other side of the fence you will understand where I am coming from. Everyone must have a clear understanding of the chain and the importance of following orders. I will be the first to state that just about every task in the fire service can be accomplished by various methods. Even paitent care or safety is an opinion, hopfully training will give us the same opinion, but many times it will not. But bottom line it is the first line officer who has to make those choices, not the crew focus group. Again you said one thing, the supervisor in me heard another. If you want to list an email and I will contact you from my personal email and we can discuss more. And yes my bugles did weigh heavy and I retired after 28 years.

Firelady said...

I'd be more than happy to continue discussing this by email with you, and, with 28 years on, I'm sure you could teach me some things if you're willing to.

My email is listed under my "about me" tab... GA_Firelady [at] yahoo [dot] com