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Leadership Insight
Leadership News
Speaker Insight
Have You Registered Yet?

2022 Leadership Development Symposium
January 10-12, 2022
Embassy Suites Hotel & Convention Center 
San Marcos, Texas

No Admission Fee for Texas Emergency Response Personnel.
$150 for out-of-state attendees.

Everyone Needs Leadership Skills

Each year the TEEX Leadership Development Symposium brings together some of the industry’s most influential speakers to address leadership and management challenges faced by today’s community leaders whether personal or professional. You will discover insights and tools that will empower continual growth as a leader and manager in all aspects of your life.

Register for the Symposium Today!

Registration Question? Contact:

Emily Peterson

Have another question?
See our FAQs - you might find the answer
Symposium Schedule

Symposium Schedule is now available!

Be sure to take a look at the exciting list of speakers & topics to start planning the sessions you want to attend!

Download the Schedule & Speaker List
Leadership Perspectives
My Thoughts on Leadership, Allen Richards

Allen Richards, ATP, FSCEO, CFE, MPS, MHS
First Officer America Eagle/Envoy
Fire Chief (Retired)
Sansom Park FD (TX)

Solving the Communication Conundrum

How many of us have conducted an After-Action Review (AAR) following an incident and found that the number one problem is communications? I participated in several AARs in the fire service and military and the list always starts the same. Too much talking, not enough information, garbled transmissions, stepping on each other, etc.; the list can go on and on. Is there a bona fide solution to moving this problem further down the list? I believe the answer is to improve Crew Resource Management (CRM) techniques with an emphasis on leadership.

The focal point of improving communication in the aviation industry is to allow the entire crew to have a stake in the outcome. Each person has a specific function when an emergency occurs. It is essential that the flight crew, each with separate responsibilities, clearly understand what is expected of them from takeoff to touchdown. Each phase must be coordinated by four people to ensure success of the flight; most instances, this is the first time flying as a crew. Pre-flight and safety briefings, along with discussions for out-of-the-ordinary situations, occur at the beginning of every sequence with all crew members highlighting experiences and asking pertinent questions for clarification. Analyzing aviation incidents can help your department develop a CRM program by studying the chain of events that caused both catastrophic and positive outcomes. This process can be of great benefit for the fire service.

We are all ‘fix-it’ minded emergency responders where we spend countless hours training and honing our craft to make sure we can solve any crisis. However, since we’ve all been ‘talking’ our entire lives, many fire service leaders feel they are ‘experts’ in communication. If this were the case, communications would not be a topic of discussion at every AAR. Development of listening skills is paramount to implementing a solid and effective CRM program and culture. Stephen R. Covey tells us that “Most people do not listen with the intent to understand; they listen with the intent to reply.” The ability to listen, comprehend, and respond appropriately takes a great deal of focus with the same intensity we put forth in all other areas of our training. On a busy fireground, leaders must decide which information is critical to the successful outcome of the incident and which information can be transmitted during a break in the action.

The takeaway from this leadership class will be a renewed interest in how to effectively communicate in all environments. Improving these critical skills will ensure emergency crews have the ability to operate in high-risk situations with continued success. Leaders must continue to seek information from their crews to fully integrate them into decisions and prepare them for higher level thought processes.

Leadership In The News
Real Leaders

Real Leaders Never Fake It
—Sabrina Horn, Smart Brief

When you start up, “fake it till you make it” is a real temptation. The way to succeed, says the conventional wisdom, is to assume a capability you don’t have. I can tell you that’s dead wrong. Faking it isn’t just risky. Eventually you’ll get found out, and you’ll face bigger problems. More important, it’s self-defeating.

Read more about Never Faking It

Know These Essentials For Successful Talent-Focused  Leadership
—Dr. Beverly Kay, Smart Brief

Successful talent-focused leaders select great people who fit well with the organization’s culture, mission, and values. They also ensure that people they select possess the leadership attributes, competencies, skills and personal traits needed to succeed in the position. Selecting the “right” person for the job, one who fits with the organization and the position, increases the likelihood they will stay longer.

Read about the three essentials for keeping your best people


Quote of The Month
Don Zimmer Quote
Thank You to our Sponsors!
Siddons Martin
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Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service (TEEX)
By placing safety and well-being above all and by focusing on prevention and response, TEEX has become a comprehensive training provider through more than 90 years of extension training. Working with other agencies and encouraging involvement has led to better fire safety and emergency response, cleaner drinking water, better roads and infrastructure, improved homeland security, safer workplaces, heightened public safety and security, and the evolution of cybersecurity. See more at: