Since 100% of your score in obtaining a firefighter badge is in the oral
board, what are you missing that's keeping you from gaining that badge?
November 1, 2008
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In This Issue
1. Quick Presentation Skills Tip
2. Entry Level Skills Tip
3. Robs Corner
4. Promotional Level Skills Tip
(Entry level should read this too)
5. New Badges
7. Resource Websites for Candidates
1. Quick Presentation Skills Tip
Using Humor in an Interview
Hey Capt Bob, I just wanted to
let you know that I had my Oral today in Portland, OR. (Its a Chiefs Oral, & its
the only oral one in the process) I have to tell you it was really very simple
in what they were looking for, and because of your program I was able to figure
out what nuggets to give them.. even when they didnt ask!!.... I had a hard time
telling my signature stories because of the format of the questions, but I think
I did really well. I even opened with a joke and they all laughed...!!! I hope
that helped!!! A lot of the candidates were talking before hand to each other
and honestly they may have tested before and I haven't but they sounded like
they had no idea as to not only what to expect, but also what the board was
looking for. I very smugly thought to myself how well prepared I was in
I’ll let you know when I hear if
I am moving forward!! Chris
Question #1: Tell Us About
Answer #1: I use to live in Washington State before moving to California, I
recently became married. When at home I enjoy spending time on the internet,
being with my family, collecting baseball cards and snow skiing. I taught my
self how to snow ski and the first time I went down the slopes my friends that
were with me decided to play a prank and pull my pants down as I began my
descent down. Well I was wearing pants that detach at the legs by snaps so I
wound up skiing with underwear and my jacket and it was a cold descent. I ended
up waiting about 10 minutes at the base of the mountain until one of my friend
finally made his descent with my pants in his hand. I was embarrassed and was
the laughing stock of the whole resort. Travis
Reply: Travis. Tell us about
your self is just an ice-breaker question that is not scored. A minute or
http://www.eatstress.com/opening.htm Don't try to be cute. It’s not worth
Using Humor in an Interview
Unless you’re a humorous person,
don’t plan on laying something funny on the panel. I’ve seen people that weren’t
funny to begin with try to include humor in a presentation. It bombed. How would
you feel in that situation if the room went dead silent and everyone just stared
at you? What if this humor was your opening statement?
This happened to Ted. He said it
threw off his timing and confidence and he really never recovered. If something
funny happens naturally during your interview or presentation, that’s a gift.
Don’t plan on it happening.
From Chris above: You are right
with the humor. It did flow naturally as im a comedic person but I will take
your advice in the future.. Thanks Chris
http://www.eatstress.com and learn how entry
level and promotional candidates are improving their interview scores up
to 15 points and nailing that badge!
Want Captain Bob to come speak to your group? See
Some of our products are now available with a payment plan. More Here:
2. Entry Level Skills Tip
very tough questions how would you guys
recently went through an interview and they asked some questions I felt very
are a rookie firefighter and you have no doubt in your mind that your lieut. is
sleeping with your captains wife. You know this because you live across the
street from your captain??? Very weird but that’s what they asked word for word.
Captain Bob’s Reply: These are scenario-based questions that can throw
candidates off their game as it did you. More on scenario-based questions here:
Notice how they state “you are a rookie firefighter” and the problem exists with
a captain, veteran firefighter or someone else of higher rank to throw you off
clue here “no doubt in your mind” Well; your mind can be like a dangerous
neighbor. Sometimes you shouldn’t go in alone. The oral board can be like
fantasyland. What you do in real life might be different, but not here.
There are 2 schools of thought here. The best answer is it’s none of your
business. If they ask more just be the broken record and state it’s none of your
business. If you lapse into action you could open a can of worms you might never
be able to close.
The second school of thought is to start investigating and then snitching. If
you’re bent on going in this direction first ask the question, “What are you
doing?” to the person on the panel who asked you the question like they’re the
officer involved. That answer would probably determine what you will do next.
Captain Rob’s reply: This question has to do with knowing the boundaries,
especially as a rookie firefighter. What people do in their off duty time is
their business. If it is not illegal, and you don’t even know for sure what is
really going on, I would keep my mouth shut.
My response would be, “I really don’t care what other people do in their off
time, let alone their bedrooms. But how do I know they are sleeping together,
are they doing it in the front yard? I have more important things to do while I
am on probation than worry about the sex lives of the people that have been on
the department for years.”
The last thing an oral board wants to hear is that you are going to come into
their department and “fix” things. In any question like this, I would include
something about not having time to worry about things that aren’t your business
as I will be spending all of my energies learning all I need the pass probation.
But that is a very strange question to ask. But I have talked to newly hired
people that have experience just that kind of thing, even been invited. There is
one very well know department in California that has a segment of swingers and
they will sometimes recruit from the new people. Talk about a difficult position
to be in.
If someone asks you what you need to help you get a firefighter badge, tell them
you want our Gold Package with the companion “It’s Your Turn in the Hot Seat” CD
Series!!! Check it out here!:
While You’re here get a 10 day test drive of
selected inside secrets how to get a badge. Learn more here:
Bottom line getting a badge is
all presentation skills!
http://www.eatstress.com/faq.htm for the FREE 101 Inside
Secrets How to Get a Badge!
Ask Captain Bob any questions
The secret Formula to get a badge here:
3. Robs Corner
Help getting to the next step..
I had a few questions I was wondering if someone could help me with, not sure
I'm in the right section for this post but we will see.
My department is going to be hiring about 5-6 full timers next year to replace
some guys leaving for retirement, my question is what are some things I can do
to make me a better candidate for one of the positions?
I've worked at this department as POC for 1 year this month; I have my 240 Fire,
and Just finished Medic School in June. I'm 23 now, going into my 2nd year as a
firefighter, and also working 2 other part time jobs at other departments to get
more experience. What can I do to make my resume stand out amongst all the other
candidates? Things I can get involved in? Programs I can work on at the
firehouse? Any info would be of great help. Thanks ahead of time! Doug
Rob’s Reply: While building your resume up is a good thing, it is more important
that you have made a good impression in the department, with the things you are
already doing. Some don’t understand that every time you do a drill, go to a
fire, or just help around the station you are being evaluated by the full time
guys and the chiefs. Being punctual, calling when plans change, being the one
who makes every drill night, etc, count for a lot.
I would talk to the captains you work for and see what they would suggest.
Showing them that you are serious and want to do what it takes can put you in
even a more positive light in their eyes. Also you can learn more of what that
particular department feels is important. I could tell you what would work for
mine, but I am in another part of the country, in a department with a different
culture than yours. No two are the same. Everyone can give you advice of what
they would do for their departments, but talking to people at your own may be a
better way to go. Also try talking to the last person they hired. That would be
the last person that did it right.
Where ever you might be stuck in the hiring process from the written or video
testing, physical agility CPAT, oral interview, psych interview, background,
polygraph, or medical, you can find new powerful information on Captain Rob’s
new web site here:
CAPTAIN ROB (Thank you)
For more on entry level coaching visit
=================================== 4. Promotional Level Skills Tip
Film at 11:00
One event at a recent
promotional test was to hold a press conference. However, the press conference
event was not announced until a few moments before it was to happen. The "Known"
event was to write a proposal to the city council where you were attempting to
sell the council to fund a department item or project. Instructions were given
in the assessment center invitation to have this proposal with you when
reporting to the assessment center. Once you had your proposal reviewed by the
panel, the press conference was announced and all sorts of "players" appeared,
complete with TV cameras, bright lights, the audience and other press corps
members. The intent of the exercise was to attempt to draw you away from the
proposal by asking other questions not related.
How would you do in this
It’s been awhile since I last
talked to you as I have been patiently waiting for our new station to be built.
We are one of the few departments in the State of New Hampshire that are
actually expanding and hiring. I wanted to take the time to thank you for your
program. I tested for Lt. back at the end of April. For the first time in my
career on any exam I finished #1 on the Lieutenants exam. I scored #1 on all
facets of the exam with the exception of #2 on the written. Our new station
will be officially open with wheels rolling on November 1. I was offered the
job of Lt. yesterday and proudly accepted. I could not have made it this far
without the help of your program. It truly opened my eyes to a new perspective
which I am sure benefited me. I have been passing on the information and have
two other friends who have used this for exams, both finished first, one on a
Captains exam and one on a Lt. exam, and I am sure my one friend who tested
first on the Lt. exam will concur with my thoughts as he was recently promoted
as well. Again I wanted to Thank You. I WILL be referring your website and
material to others in the fire service in NH as well as Massachusetts and
Maine. I hope this note of thanks finds you doing well. FINALLY I have the
Your friend in NH, Lt. Chris
City of Dover Fire & Rescue,
Wait! While you're here Captain Bob wants to give
you a 10 day FREE test drive of selected inside
secrets how to get a promotional badge. Learn more here:
For more on our promotional
5. New Badges
Dear Captain Bob,
I want to thank you for putting together the program that got my dream fire job
with my dream Department--the Denver Fire Department.
A little background here......I have been working for a smaller, suburban
Department for 7 years. I am 31 and wanted to get hired with Denver before I got
too much older. I was worried that maybe I had too much experience, that I was
too old, that I had been out of the testing game long enough to maybe not have
that "edge" anymore. I bought your program and book "Becoming a Firefighter" and
it is the only firefighter preparation book out there that is worth its' weight
in gold. It helped me every step of the way, from the psych test, to the
polygraph, to the many interviews, and more. As each step of the process rolled
by and I used the steps recommended in the book, I began pulling away from the
competition one by one. Bob, I got the call 2 days ago to start the academy in a
month, out of 1100 candidates I made it into the first class of 24.
This is so huge. I had tested for this Department and a few other big city
Departments before with dismal results, making the lists but getting nowhere
close to where I needed to be to get a badge. I am proud to be a firefighter,
but it was killing me having my dream Department right next door, seemingly out
of reach. Captain Bob, your program bridged the gap and got me the job that I
almost never thought was possible!! Thank you for doing what you do, I truly
would not be where I am without your program.
Please feel free to add my name to your list of testimonials. If you have any
questions please drop me a line or call. Thanks again!!!!!!
We have not met in person, but I did purchase your
program (when I started testing). I took bits and pieces of your advice and
combined them with my own and voila! I start LAFD's drill tower in Dec. JK
Thanks Captain Bob! I finally
made it. After many tests and interviews, I finally got your program and I am
now a FF/medic with the Mdwakanton Fire Department (pronounced Med-a-wak-a-ton)
which is just south of the Twin Cities. I just wanted to say thanks and to all
the other candidates, just be patient, work hard, get the education and get the
gold package and it will happen. It did for me!!
Life can be one hell of a ride
so hang on and enjoy!
More badges here:
To see how candidates have improved their position in
gaining a badge
Check out the current "Bonus Nugget" oral board tip
Subject: Darwin 2008 awards
I hope this will
give you a laugh or two in during this
crazy month. So without further ado here are the 2008
A 49-year-old San Francisco stockbroker, who
'totally zoned when he ran,' accidentally, jogged
off a 100-foot high cliff on his daily run.
(I wish all brokers and insurance company exs would do
While at the beach, Daniel Jones, 21, dug an 8 foot hole
for protection from the wind and had been sitting in a beach
chair at the bottom when it collapsed, burying him beneath
5 feet of sand. People on the beach used their hands and
shovels trying to get him out but could not reach him. It
took rescue workers using heavy equipment almost an hour to
free him. Jones was pronounced dead at a hospital.
Santiago Alvarado, 24, was killed as he fell through the
ceiling of a bicycle shop he was burglarizing. Death was
caused when the long flashlight he had placed in his mouth
to keep his hands free rammed into the base of his skull as
he hit the floor.
Sylvester Briddell, Jr., 26, was killed as he won a bet
with friends who said he would not put a revolver loaded
with four bullets into his mouth and pull the trigger.
After stepping around a marked police patrol car parked
at the front door, a man walked into H&J Leather &
Firearms intent on robbing the store.
The shop was full of customers and a uniformed officer
was standing at the counter. Upon seeing the officer, the
would-be robber announced a hold-up, and fired a few wild
shots from a target pistol. The officer and a clerk promptly
returned fire, and several customers also drew their guns
and fired. The robber was pronounced dead at the scene by
Crime scene investigators located 47 expended cartridge
cases in the shop. The subsequent autopsy revealed 23
gunshot wounds. Ballistics identified rounds from 7
different weapons. No one else was hurt.
Paul Stiller, 47, and his wife Bonnie were bored just
driving around at 2 A.M. so they lit a quarter stick of
dynamite to toss out the window to see what would happen.
Apparently they failed to notice the window was closed.
Kerry Bingham had been drinking with several friends when
one of them said they knew a person who had bungee-jumped
from a local bridge in the middle of traffic. The
conversation grew more heated and at least 10 men trooped
along the walkway of the bridge at 4:30 AM. Upon arrival at
the midpoint of the bridge they discovered that no one had
brought a bungee rope.
Bingham, who had continued drinking, volunteered and
pointed out that a coil of lineman's cable, lay near by.
They secured one end around Bingham's leg and then tied
the other to the bridge. His fall lasted 40 feet before the
cable tightened and tore his foot off at the ankle. He
miraculously survived his fall into the icy water and was
rescued by two nearby fishermen. Bingham's foot was
AND THE WINNER IS...
Zookeeper Friedrich Riesfeldt ( , ) fed his constipated
elephant 22 doses of animal laxative and more than a bushel
of berries, figs and prunes before the plugged-up pachyderm
finally got relief.
Investigators say ill-fated Friedrich, 46, was attempting
to give the ailing elephant an olive oil enema when the
relieved beast unloaded. The sheer force of the
elephant's unexpected defecation knocked Mr. Riesfeldt
to the ground where he struck his head on a rock as the
elephant continued to evacuate 200 pounds of dung on top of
It seems to be just one of those freak accidents that
proves. 'Sh-- happens'.
THEY WALK AMOUNG US....
IT ALWAYS SEEMS IMPORTANT TO THANK THESE PEOPLE FOR
REMOVING THEMSELVES FROM THE GENE POOL.
7. Resource Websites for Candidates:
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