Are your expectations clear as mud?

In Public Safety Communications, training takes many forms; classroom, one on one, individual effort, etc. If you asked your front line employees, how would they rate the clarity of the expectations that you have set? expectations

F-Standard Operating Guidelines are in place but they haven’t been updated since the Clinton Administration. You can’t tell if that is the letter A or B due to the dust on the binder.

D-Guidelines are in place and partially updated, but never reviewed unless your communications center hits the news. No training is in place to review guidelines periodically.

C-Guidelines are reviewed, and discussed, but updates mainly include changes that are absolutely necessary without an overview of the entire process. Guidelines are handed out to be seen only in an “out of the norm” incident.

B-Guidelines are usable but other documents hold important information on call processes or dispatching procedures. Training is provided for guidelines if requested by the employee.

A-Guidelines are a living, breathing document, updated frequently, reviewed constantly, improved and clarified. All personnel are trained on guidelines as they are updated and allowed to question new procedures to adequately understand the information.

Does your agency need to define your expectations more clearly?


Disclaimer: The content of this blog and any opinions, observations, or ideas are mine and not associated in any way with my employer, The Reedy Creek Improvement District.


The Perks of Being a Wallflower

perksNo, not the book, or even the recent movie adaptation………….though on a side note, you should really read the book and watch the movie, they are well worth your time, but have you considered how much a wallflower observes and absorbs in relation to those who are always engaged and active?

Ok, so I lied, lets talk about the award-winning book and critically acclaimed movie for a moment.

Charlie (though that is not his real name) is the voice of the story, the only viewpoint you see throughout. He is writing letters anonymously (hence not his real name) to an unknown person, giving updates and critiques of life as he knows it. Charlie has a group of friends that help him along his way, most notably Patrick (previously known as nobody) and Sam, the girl that he is head over heels in love with. Charlie is a quiet type, watching and wondering while the world is passing him by. He takes in every morsel and tries to analyze the meaning of it all. In the end of course he realizes that life is for living, but was his “wallflower” status really all that bad?

Flip the coin and jump into training. What do you do every day when you are training someone?

I know that I usually spend time trying to transfer information and skills through discussion and practice, but there is always a time when I step back and do nothing but observe. I observe how the trainee is using the resources available, how they are applying the skills that we have just covered, and how they are interacting with co-workers. I analyze what needs improvement and reinforcement and what expectations have been met. I compile all of that information; much like Charlie did in his letters; into a Daily Report and map out a direction for the next day, week, or month.

I am a Wallflower

I am also an opinionated, assertive, and confident worry wart, but it all starts and ends with the Wallflower part of me.

If I don’t watch, I don’t learn. If I don’t learn, I can’t help anyone else learn. If I can’t help anyone else learn, what am I doing here?

Disclaimer: The content of this blog and any opinions, observations, or ideas are mine and not associated in any way with my employer, The Reedy Creek Improvement District.