Sample Management Essays on Building a Guiding Coalition

A Fire Department is responsible for efficient responses to all-hazards emergencies. The department trains its personnel to extinguish dangerous fires threatening life, property, and the environment.  The complexity of modern, industrialized life implies that current fire departments require adequate resources and competent leadership to respond to different situations. Building and maintaining a fire department team require the input of every important stakeholder in the department. In this case, the city manager tasked me with facilitating the development of a comprehensive plan of building and maintaining a competent fire department team. The plan includes the identification relevant teams, leadership, and decision-making skills that can encourage the execution of vital programs, projects, policies and procedures in the city’s fire department.

The efficient size of the team

Firefighting is a critical service cities must provide to its citizens to protect lives and properties. The service is largely an issue of local city jurisdictions with centralized systems of management. In the United States, cities with population greater than 25,000 people should employ a higher number of professional firefighters (Steele, 2014). Alternatively, smaller cities should employ part-time firefighters and involve volunteers in related emergency responses. In this case, the efficient brigade will comprise of about 170 full-time personnel per 100,000 people (Steele, 2014). However, I will have a team of about people from all ranks within the fire brigades and unions to facilitate the development of pertinent programs, projects, policies and procedures. The team will enhance the firefighters’ ability to improve its firefighting service levels and protect the life of its citizens from dangerous emergencies.

The key stakeholders of the department represented in the team

The identified stakeholders will be responsible for the development of efficient programs, projects, policies and procedures to guide the department’s operations for the next years. For instance, I will incorporate the Head of the Fire Department (head f Emergency Marshal) in my team. The Marshal will provide relevant estimates of necessary systems and procedures that can enhance the department’s ability to control related fire risks. The Marshal will also help in interpreting related laws, codes, and ordinances guiding various emergency responses. Another important role of the personnel will include scheduling the team’s periodic inspection of the firefighting equipment and the control command centre. Through such activities, the team will be able to prepare a report to the city manage on the factors limiting the department’s ability to execute its mandates.

Other important personnel that I will incorporate in my committee will include about three team leaders from different fire brigades or battalions. Team leaders are responsible for conducting regular safety inspection and assessment of the fire department premises. They liaise with the Emergency Marshal to coordinate field operations such as fire outbreaks and other rescue missions. The team leaders will provide a report on the status or conditions of the equipment tools, appliances, and other relevant suppliers crucial in the brigades’ activities. Overall, the team leaders’ primary role is to ensure that their respective brigades have adequate resources such as firefighting equipment.

The next member of the team will be the head of the security team or crowd controller. The team member is responsible for clearing lanes of parked vehicles and obstructions that may prevent the movement of the emergency response vehicles. The crowd controller will provide status report on the conditions of the fire lanes and other important emergency areas. Correspondingly, the coordinators or emergency vehicles and first aid services will make important contributions to the team. For example, they will provide status report on the conditions of their vehicles and other related emergency response equipment. The team will rely on these stakeholders to analyze classified records, data, information, maps, and valuable emergency equipment. Notably, we will require such information to assess the fire department’s ability to conduct salvage operations and evacuate buildings among other important services.

The head of floor captains will also provide important report on their level of preparedness towards tackling different emergencies.  The captains ensure orderly evacuation of premises to prevent possible confusions, injuries, and panic typical during such situations. Incorporating the in my team will enable the fire department to identify specific programs, projects, policies and procedures that need changed get the right budget from the city administration. Besides, I will include selected members of the fire brigade teams directly involved in the field operations. For instance, the Fire Brigade Chief stationed at the Central Command will provide adequate information on department’s success rates during emergency responses. The staff is responsible for directing and supervising the actions of all team members in the department.

Another important member of the selected team will be the head of communication at the department. The individual will provide sufficient information on the status of the fire department’s sound alarms and telephone systems. These equipment or facilities are necessary in communicating the exact location of the fire or any other natural or manmade hazards to the firefighting brigades, medical teams, traffic or crowd controllers, and other search and rescue staff. Lastly, I will incorporate a representative of the firefighters’ union in the team. The individuals will present a report on the varied challenges such as harsh working conditions and low wages affecting the firefighters. Notably, based on such reports, the team will make recommendations to the city manager to consider higher budgetary allocations.

Forms of leadership and decision-making skills relating to these policies and standard operating guides

Decision-making skills are the cornerstone for efficient and competent leadership in a fire department. The department depends on the effective leadership to implement various operating guides and procedures. For instance, the fire department requires a participative leadership approach to coordinate various services (Maru, 2017). Under this form of leadership, the head of the organization should involve the firefighting brigades in decision-making processes. The personnel will feel valued and respect and this translates into dedicated and competent responses to emergencies.

Transformation leadership is also a critical component on management in a firefighting department. A transformational leader is capable of inspiring the creation of clear vision and mission guiding the operations of the organization. The leadership style encourages inclusive decision-making and can promote morale among the personnel. Additionally, transformational leaders in the fire department can inspire the personnel to accept various changes towards the implementation of various strategic goals and objectives. An important decision-making skill that these leaders may require includes the inherent ability to identify critical factors limiting the department’s ability to execute its field mandates. Under this skill, the leader should be analytical and interpretive to establish areas that require improvements through increased budgetary allocations by the city administration.

An effective leadership in the department should have the ability to anticipate field outcomes and make logical inferences for effective decision-making. Based on these skills, the leader can navigate various risks and uncertainties that can limit operations at the organization. Another important decision-making skill that effective leaders should have is the ability to identify ethical implications of various standard operating procedures (Maru, 2017). Lastly, logical reasoning and problem solving skills are other critical components of leadership in the firefighting department. Based on problem solving ability, the leader should practice active listening, creative thinking, forecasting, fact-finding, brainstorming, benchmarking, and coloration. Other important components of problem solving include efficient time management, process analysis, and clear guidelines for project implementation. Logical reasoning in decision-making also requires the leaders to be rational and sensible in their decisions. They should exercise emotional intelligence by focusing on self-regulations, empathy, and patience during different field operations.

Application of my leadership skills to the scenario

In this scenario, the communication officer issued an alert about a fire outbreak at a local grocery market. Accordingly, as the department Fire Chief Officer, I was responsible for commanding responses to the emergency incident. I demonstrated by transformational and collaborative leadership skills in this situation. For instance, I coordinated meaningful cooperation between the firefighters, crowd controllers, rescue officers, and other important stakeholders. I developed a systematic and deliberate approach to the incident to minimize damages. Based on my transformational leadership skills, I was able to streamline various administrative processes to ensure compliance with various field-operating procedures. Markedly, as an effective and collaborative leader, I involved the local police department in coordinating the emergency scene activities. Overall, I ensured that all the emergency equipments were in good operating conditions.


Maru, A. M. (2017). Interrogation of the Fire Service: A Leadership Factor. Lulu. com.

Steele, R. (2014). ISO 37120 standard on city indicators–how they help city leaders set tangible targets, including service quality and quality of life. Centre for Liveable Cites, Singapore [cited 26 October 2015]. Available from Internet: http://www. clc. gov. sg/documents/Lectures/2014/CLC-2014-R