X-Box Live

That’s right!

From the X-Box to the Box Alarm: Motivating and Leading Today’s Firefighters” is back by popular demand at FDIC 2011. I hope to see you in Indianapolis March 22-26, 2011.  Look me up if you plan on attending and look for my presentation titled: “Understanding & Motivating Today’s Firefighters” modeled after my feature article: “From the X-Box to the Box Alarm.”

Some 300 first responders engaged in the discussion at FDIC last April and this year’s conversation promises to be refreshed with my ongoing observational research; new samples of recruitment, retention and leadership solutions and feedback from last year’s participants.

I’ll also be including fresh insight from some X-Box firefighters from Hyattsville Volunteers and FDLiveIn.com I recently spoke with about generational differences and what we can learn from and about them. Some of the information will be pre-recorded material and some of it will be provided by members of our “live studio audience.”

In case you’ve never caught my act, let me give you a little insight on my stand-up style: I don’t do presentations – I have conversations with first responders.

I’ve always said that I never learn as much as when I’m teaching. So here’s how it works:

I ask questions. You ask questions. I make you laugh. You make me laugh. Then I ask a lot more questions. We discuss the issues facing the fire service and we come up with solutions: together. And we have fun doing it. That’s pretty much how it goes. It’s a simple system, but it’s worked pretty well so far.

I bring passion, humor and insight to the discussion. You won’t be disappointed. Give me a try. You never know — We might all learn something.

But don’t take my word for it, here’s what last year’s participants had to say:

  • “I enjoyed the conversation and exchange of information.”
  • “Excellent program. Provided great insight on what I deal with on a daily basis.”
  • “Great program. I’m a recruiter for our fire department and I learned a lot!!! Great take-home lessons.”
  • “As a young person (21), it’s nice to see this kind of training to help further unify the firehouse.”
  • “Great motivational speaker. Tiger hit every objective with current and accurate information. Very well versed in the topic.”
  • “Fantastic presentation. Thoroughly engaging and unique insight.”
  • “Bring him back!”

I’m excited and I hope you are too. I arrive in Indy on Tuesday morning and don’t leave until late Saturday night. Look me up if you’re planning on being there. I’m sure we’ll have great stories to share.

Speaking of stories, I’ll be taping episodes of my Firefighter Storytellers Internet Radio Show on the FirefighterNetcast network throughout the week and I’m sure we’ll be out and about around the town enjoying the brotherhood of the fire service.

Drop me a line at [email protected] or send me a direct message on Twitter @Tiger15032. I’d love to connect.

Here’s a few places I already plan to be at:

  • Wednesday – March 23, 2011 – 5pm – Indy Metro FOOLS “Brotherhood Bash @FDIC” – Corner of Jackson St. & Meridian St.
    Featuring: Bagpipes and Drums, Acoustic Stew, The Don Stuck Band
  • Thursday – March 24, 2011 3:30-5:15pm: Presenting “Understanding and Motivating Today’s Firefighters” – Room 105-106
  • Thursday – March 24, 2011 7-11pm: “Stop Drop, Rock-n-Roll” at the Indiana Roof Ball Room to benefit the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation
  • Friday – March 25, 2011 – 2-3pm: “Meet the Authors” at the Fire-Rescue Magazine/FirefighterNation.com Booth #4244
  • Friday – March 25, 2011 – 4-6pm: Battle of the Bands at FDIC – Lucas Oil Stadium
  • Thursday – SaturdayFirefighterNetcast.com Booth – Adjacent to Booth #4244

Here’s the description and details of my classroom session from the FDIC catalog:  

Thursday, March 24, 2011
3:30 PM-5:15 PM – Room 105-106
Understanding and Motivating Today’s Firefighters
Deputy Fire Coordinator Tiger Schmittendorf, Erie County (NY) Department of Emergency Services

“From the X-Box to the Box Alarm” addresses the challenges of today’s fire service leaders in attracting and retaining the appropriate quantity and quality of firefighters they need to support the delivery of emergency services in their communities.

So, how do we motivate today’s recruits away from the X-Box long enough to answer the box alarm? This facilitated conversation builds consensus that the majority of the challenges we face are in the firehouse, not on the fire scene. Together we’ll learn to combat these challenges with solutions that are right in front of us.

Links to last year’s experiences:

If you like this site, I hope you’ll enjoy connecting with me at: 

Please don’t hesitate to contact me if I can ever be of assistance to you or your organization.

Stay safe. Train often.

See you in Indy.