MSE 5201, Advanced Fire Administration 1
Course Learning Outcomes for Unit I Upon completion of this unit, students should be able to:
1. Analyze the Multi-Agency Coordination Systems (MACS) that are employed during an emergency, including the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), and emergency information systems. 1.1 Explain the importance of a good working relationship with public officials, other agencies, and
the community. 1.2 Identify effective skills for developing a cooperative relationship with fire and emergency
management personnel, as well as other agencies and the community.
4. Discuss the interorganizational component to the field of emergency management. 4.1 Identify the style of leadership that would most benefit an emergency management leader.
Course/Unit Learning Outcomes
Unit I Lesson Chapter 1 Reading (NIMS textbook) Chapter 2 Reading (Fire and Emergency Services textbook) Unit I Case Study
1.2 Unit I Lesson Chapter 2 Reading (Fire and Emergency Services textbook) Unit I Case Study
4.1 Unit I Lesson Chapter 2 Reading (Fire and Emergency Services textbook) Unit I Case Study
Reading Assignment Fire and Emergency Services Administration: Management and Leadership Practices Chapter 2: Introduction to Administration National Incident Management System: Principles and Practice Chapter 1: Introduction to the National Incident Management System
Unit Lesson Introduction to the National Incident Management System (NIMS) At the end of this unit, you will understand the foundation and the concepts and principles of the National Incident Management System (NIMS). Also, you will evaluate the components of NIMS in relation to preparedness, communication and information management, resource management, and command management. Introduction to Administration What does it take to be a successful leader in emergency services or emergency management? Is it a person with broad-based qualities? Is it someone who is pragmatic? In the past decade, there has been a shift in leadership styles in both emergency service and emergency management, in which leaders are transitioning
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Combining Management and Leadership
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hierarchical style leadership into leadership styles that are more effective when dealing with disasters and organizations. Smeby (2014) suggests that effective administrations utilize management and leadership skills to complete their mission. The author goes on to suggest that many leaders excel in one or the other and may even be proficient in only one. He refers to these leadership attributes as management-oriented and leadership-oriented. Which leadership attribute is more successful in managing disasters? Are management- oriented leaders more effective? Are leadership-oriented leaders more effective? In emergency services and emergency management, you need to be able to change your leadership styles to meet the situation at hand. During a disaster, leaders need to be more management-oriented in order to be more effective during the prevention-mitigation and response phase. During the preparedness and recovery phases, leaders can be more leadership-oriented. However, depending on the circumstances, leaders many need to transition from one to the other at any given time. On the other hand, several authors have described a successful leader as one who influences, motivates, and focuses on ethical values and standards and the importance of the organization by ensuring that the standards are feasible, clear, and inspiring with followers having input in their development. To ensure this, a successful leader must:
1. influence change, 2. empower followers to have input, 3. determine objectives, value, merit or worth, 4. help followers improve the performance to make sure it is relevant and accurate, 5. help identify strengths and short-comings in organizations and make it defensible, 6. measure outcomes that are valued by followers, including decision-making power, 7. allow some immediate decisions or judgments to be made by followers, 8. change their own style based on the needs and requirements of the subordinate, 9. influence individuals or groups toward the achievement of goals (Brophy, 2010; Fitzpatrick, Sanders,
& Worthen, 2011; Northouse, 2007). Recently, many disaster response efforts have been labeled as being in disarray. In fact, after Hurricane Katrina, several news media outlets suggested that the national emergency management system was in disarray. Several affected communities suggested that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) was incapable of meeting their needs. Moreover, leaders began criticizing the response and recovery efforts after Hurricane Katrina. Some felt the plans that were in place did not fit the circumstances that were occurring. Some suggested it was the inability of multiple agencies to work together. When disasters arise in the future, it will be important to develop a plan that outlines exactly how various emergency agencies will work together using the incident management command system (Smeby, 2014). What attributes of leadership allow you to plan and be organized while at the same time be spontaneous to disasters? Which leadership style gives emergency managers authority during turbulent times of a disaster? No matter which leadership style a person utilizes in order to be effective, it must build relationships and maintain trust. Which style of leadership is best at maintaining and building relationships? Is it transformational, situational, servant, or some other type? Which style of leadership allows you to lead without authority? Which style is better suited for spontaneous responses during a disaster? Points to Ponder The fictitious Hurricane Columbia was a Category 2 storm in the Gulf. After many different forecast models about the storm, it had become unpredictable, and many communities began to believe it was not going to make landfall in their area. Hurricane Columbia then stalled for 3 days in the middle of the Gulf and started to backtrack, increasing doubt of the storm’s probability of making landfall. Many emergency service personnel and emergency management officials began to demobilize their operational centers in areas where the storm had previously been predicted to make landfall. The storm began to build strength and move in the opposite direction that the models had forecast. Although emergency personnel along the Gulf were aware of the storm and its unpredictability, many communities still had not prepared for the storm. After the storm’s change in direction, many communities realized the potential and started preparing just hours before Hurricane Columbia made landfall as a Category 4 storm. The storm barraged the coastline causing loss of life, property, and the basic necessities needed for communities to survive. Many in those communities and areas believed that the disaster was a result of human error caused by poor leadership and not maintaining a good working relationship with public officials, other agencies, and the community. They felt that there would have been fewer fatalities if those in emergency services and emergency management would have been prepared
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and developed a cooperative relationship with fire and emergency management personnel, instead of each organization trying to gain the spotlight over how well they were prepared. They also believed that their leaders only prepared for the short-term effects of the storm and not the long-term effects. Officials did not prepare for the lack of water, fuel, and other necessities needed after the storm. These shortages led to confusion and chaos among citizens, leaders, and organizations, each blaming the other. In the above scenario, were the problems experienced the fault of leadership for not developing a cooperative relationship with fire and emergency management personnel, as well as other agencies and the community? Successful leaders must be supremely flexible and willing to try a number of different things in building relationships with other agencies and individuals. This even applies to building relationships with organizations where leaders must find the right position along the relationship continuum in order to tap into their resources. Many believe networking is the key. However, it is not just networking. It is developing quality relationships that are broad-based by utilizing different styles of leadership to influence others. In the scenario, what would a leader need to do to begin collaborating with other organizations? Effective leaders must have diplomatic abilities to influence individuals from varying backgrounds to achieve the goals of response and recovery. In addition, these skills are required to build trust and collaboration with other agencies. However, building trust and collaboration with other agencies first has to begin with focusing on the individual then the organizational relationship will occur. Successful leaders have a sense of duty to serve individuals by empowering them while simultaneously supporting their needs. This style of leadership is referred to as bottom up or servant-style leadership. In this style of leadership, leaders support others in making sure they can accomplish their tasks and in doing so meet the goals of the organization. Even though trust plays a key role in the effectiveness of the servant leader, many leaders in emergency management find it difficult to give up the traditional hierarchical basis of command and control that may be engrained in them to foster trust. Once trust is built with individuals, then trust can be developed with other organizations, and consortiums can form to improve working relationships with organizations, public officials, and the community. As you assess ways to develop a good working relationship, there will require a learning process for each organization to learn about the strengths and skills of the other. Conclusion The responsibility for leadership is high and often not appreciated by others as seen during the aftermath of major disasters. Moreover, leaders must serve individual needs while at the same time prepare for many factors that may not be in their control, such as socioeconomic and geographical concerns that affect a response. Nonetheless, effective leaders must have diplomatic abilities to influence individuals to achieve the goals of preparedness, prevention-mitigation, response, and recovery.
References Brophy, J. R. (2010). Leadership essentials for emergency medical services. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett. Fitzpatrick, J. L., Sanders, J. R., & Worthen, B. R. (2011). Program evaluation: Alternative approaches and
practical guidelines (4th ed.). New York, NY: Pearson. Northouse, P. (2007). Leadership: Theory and practice (4th ed.). Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage. Smeby, L. C. (2014). Fire and emergency services administration: Management and leadership practices
(2nd ed.). Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.
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Suggested Reading To access the following resources, click the links below.
The following books on leadership are beneficial to get a grasp on leadership styles. If you have any questions, the librarians’ contact information can be found on the right side of the library page. Kraemer, H. M. (2011). From values to action: The four principles of values-based leadership. Hoboken, NJ:
Jossey-Bass. Retrieved from http://site.ebrary.com/lib/columbiasu/detail.action?docID=10457935&p00=from+values+action
Owen, J. (2011). Leadership rules: 50 timeless lessons for leaders. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley. Retrieved from
http://site.ebrary.com/lib/columbiasu/detail.action?docID=10515833&p00=leadership+rules This analysis describes the structure of the American emergency management system, it charts development of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and identifies conflicts arising from the creation of the Department of Homeland Security and the attempt to impose a command and control system on a very collaborative organizational culture in a very collaborative sociopolitical and legal context. Waugh, W. L., Jr, & Streib, G. (2006). Collaboration and leadership for effective emergency management.
Public Administration Review, 66, 131. Retrieved from http://search.proquest.com.libraryresources.columbiasouthern.edu/docview/197171710?accountid=3 3337
Learning Activities (Nongraded) Nongraded Learning Activities are provided to aid students in their course of study. You do not have to submit them. If you have questions, contact your instructor for further guidance and information. For this activity, you are asked to prepare a reflection paper. Reflect on the concepts you have learned during your readings. What do you understand completely? What did not quite make sense? The purpose of this activity is to provide you with the opportunity to reflect on the material you have read and to expand on it. If you are unclear about a concept, either review it in the textbook or ask your professor. Can you apply what you have learned to your career? How? This is not a summary. A reflection paper is an opportunity for you to express your thoughts about the material you are studying by writing about it. Reflection writing is a great way to study because it gives you a chance to process what you have learned and increases your ability to remember it. Use these guidelines as you reflect on the course material:
What are your thoughts about the main topics?
Why are these concepts important?
How do they apply to your career or future career?
Can you apply them to your professional life? How?