Pride + Ownership: The Love for the Job

At FDIC on Monday, March 21, Lewisville (TX) Fire Department Chief Rick Lasky conducted this upfront and honest criticism about the need to reignite the love for the job on every level, from chief on down. Lasky examined the fire service’s proud history and tradition and reflected on the family values and brotherhood that make firefighting the best job in the world.

Topics included our mission, the firefighter, the company officer, the chief, our families, sweating the small stuff, the promotion, what September 11 did to us and for us, ceremonies, marketing, and making it all happen.

Lasky explained, “Pride and Ownership takes a hard, honest, look at what the fire service used to be like and what it should be like today.”

“Whether you’ve just started in this great profession or have 30 years on the job, doesn’t matter whether you’re paid or a volunteer, this class will either get you fired up about what we do or get you loving this profession all over again.”

Lasky began with a frank critique of leadership, which he feels is severely lacking in the fire service.

“We are killing firefighters due to the poor and lack of leadership in the firehouse.” Lasky then launched into several real-life examples of poor fireground and tactical decisions made by unreliable fire leaders.

Lasky also expounded on his own family, which included his firefighter father, and how they effected and influenced his own attitude toward the need for all fire services members to treat fellow members and customers as if they were a family member of their own. He then examined the marketing of the fire service’s mission statement and how it needs to be more carefully followed and honored as we welcome a new generation of firefighters. 

“Our core values are three words: Pride, Honor, Integrity.” Lasky continued, “Cleaning up a little old lady and putting her back to bed isn’t in your job description, but it doesn’t take much to be a great firefighter that takes care of people.”

“Got-to people become go-to officers, and then go-to chiefs.”

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