Department Success as Simple as 4 Rs

Buckman, John
August 2005
Fire Chief;Aug2005, Vol. 49 Issue 8, p24
Trade Publication
The article discusses issues related to the success of fire departments. It has been noted that a basic approach to membership will lead to success and long-term growth of a department. One can think of it in terms of the four Rs, relationships, retention, results and recognition. Relationships always drive results. When an authentic, emotional bond is forged between a member and his or her department, it creates a strong tie for retention. Retention is the most critical driver of a fire department staffed by volunteers, paid-on-call or part-time personnel. Results are all that really matter. Innovative thinking, solid presentations, overall teamwork and new ideas are all important ingredients for success. Recognition leaves a lasting imprint with people. It's good common sense to recognize and reward faithful and loyal members who contribute to the department's overall success and have the potential to offer much more in terms of future growth.


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