From buddy to Boss

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In "From buddy to Boss: Effective fire service leadership" by Chase Sargent contributes a great deal in the field of management and effective leadership. The book explores leadership whereby Chase Sargent relates it to his experience in fire service. In a wider dimension, he gives insight on how to embrace and survive in politics. In addition, he hints to us on how to deal with extreme workforce and still retain your behavior of the trade. Generally, the book revolves around the issues of individual credibility. He explains it as a high-valued attribute that is tested by ones deeds rather than the words of the mouth. He has employed stories in order to cultivate on the members requirement to do some things in a certain way. He has also emphasized on the quickest ways through which one can lose trust while enforcing rules on the basis of ones personal feelings. He concludes it by giving the leadership by example, taking the lead by doing rather than saying as preliminary to ones success in leadership. The main styles employed are conversational and easy to read style with illustrations in order to bring out the main theme of the book.

What matters in leadership is not what one says but what one does and still retains his and/or her credibility. In "From Buddy to Boss", Sargent has used his own personal experience to explain leadership in management. As he appears, he is just a division chief aged 26; a veteran of the Virginia Beach fire Department. He takes the reader on his life story in the Job right from the first day in his job. This style has brought reality and life in his story thus one is able to read and identify with him.

He has clearly outlined some traits that are to be followed for one to succeed as a leader. Along with these, he has outlined freely on his experiences and the lessons learnt as he climbed up the ladder of leadership. The final chapter of the book reflects on the reasons behind failure in leadership along with what to achieve excellent leadership. It is important to know yourself and the people you serve. One should be in a position as a manager to translate from being a buddy to become a boss.

In his book, Sargent uses illustrations and imageries to bring out the points. For instance, "If you are a boss you ought to put the right people in the bus and the right people in the right seats making sure that the bad ones are off the bus". This statement makes one to imagine such a scenario and this style has effectively made his points clear. Rules in a business must precede relationships for good results to be realized. The book has also covered the aspect of knowing yourself and the people you are dealing with. It involves things like what motivates, excites, demotivates and/or in general what drives them. With this in mind, you are in a position to work with them together to put up a plan that makes good use of their talents. If one doesn't have good knowledge of his own person, he/she cannot be able to lead others. The book has also reflected on the issue of understanding the environment in which one is exercising his leadership. It is quite important to balance your deeds as a leader and seek help from the others (Sargent 35).

In line with this, a leader should be in a position to recognize the needs of others and the very environment in which he can work comfortably. From a leadership perspective, a smart boss will structure the employees' environment to meet the needs of others. As a leader, understanding yourself allows you to understand others. In order to strengthen your team as a leader, Sargent suggest the use of styles and tendencies. Along with these, he brings out the aspect of Cain and Abel in the workplace whereby Cain will be envious of a faithful and hardworking Abel out to give the best. In this instance, the writer has effectively employed the style of similes in order to bring out a characteristic behavior in workplace (Sargent 47).

The book further explores the aspect of a leader to make sure that he remains a manager not by prevention but by management. The issues to deal with the universal rules for survival have been discussed at length in this book. It involves the vision as the essence of leadership and the aspect of failing to listen to others as a leader. Middle management is an important tenet for survival. It is further said that not what one says that matters but how it is said. In addition, a leader has to adapt an undivided attention in order to survive. In his book, Sargent brings out the style of using questions and illustrations in order to bring forth a point (Sargent 53).

A great leader must adapt to the aspect of beginning with "who" rather than "what" in order to adapt to a changing world. You should have the right people in your organization in order to succeed; people who will not join you because of where you are going but because of who else is in the organization. If one has the right people he will certainly get the right results hence success. In consistence with this, once a leader discovers the right direction but with the wrong people, the leader cannot effect the planned direction effectively and successfully. Chase Sargent adds that great vision but void of the right people is irrelevant and stresses that success is getting the right people. This is well related to his job in fire fighting; he asserts that it is all about dealing with people, rescuing people and it involves people working as a team. As a leader, in dealing with people, Sargent has highlighted three pillars, of which we are filtered; that in whatever is done should of benefit to the customer, organization and the involved people whether as an individual or a team. In narrating his story and experience as a fire fighter, he makes the theme of his story to be well understood by the reader. This has also proved effective in that, he has engaged the reader in the story which makes it more interesting.

He emphasizes that a real leader should be a talent scout; he should be in a position to effectively identify as well as apply the individual talents for the good of the team. In one of the quotes in the book, Sargent poses that it is wrong to underestimate the power of dedicated people who are willing to do the necessary in order to succeed. He points out that failing to surround yourself with great people and/or rather failure to remove those who are unable to function in your organization is complete failure as a boss and thus you remain a buddy rather that a boss. Sargent also reflects on the issue of understanding how others are made. He points out that, one must learn as a leader how others are made; difference is not wrong but it's just different (Sargent 34). In conjunction with this, he states that understanding what ticks in others is prerequisite for a successful leadership (Sargent 39).The book has also covered the ABCs of leadership in that a leader must trust his and/or her subordinates, keep his cool, encourage risk, be an expert inviting dissent, developing the vision along with the aspect of simplicity (Sargent 77).

In His book, Sargent introduces us to an organizational foundation for leadership. He points out that it is essential for one to understand the governance process of the organization in order to apply his leadership skills effectively. In consistent with this, he gives a time management model that a leader should adhere to in order to succeed. The mission, vision and core values of an organization must be well defined to a leader since his leadership is aimed at achieving them. To effectively achieve the mission and vision of an organization, leaders are to effectively communicate it to the members of the organization. This is because what brings to life the mission and vision of the organization is the action of its members. Sargent demonstrates this attribute by putting across the mission of the Virginia Beach fire Department; Use of illustration, an effective tool of communication to the readers. For a customer service organization partnering with communities, members, citizens with the aim of ensuring safety at any time, well planned strategies should be employed to act effectively on mitigations and responses. The author displays events and occurrences in illustrations to help the readers see through his lens of understanding thus meeting of minds (Sargent 11).

Leadership as covered in this book involves the organizational leadership along with individual leadership. Organizational leadership cannot be attained without the individual leadership. For successful leadership, some characteristics are important; a leader should care for the job, understand people, expect the best, learn to tackle risks and above all should have a technical competence. Besides, a leader should observe humanity in his leadership. In dealings with the people, other people in the organization should be given the first priority before plans are executed and should learn to keep in touch with them. It calls for a leader to maintain a technical competence with a credible understanding and enforcing policy. Many issues arise in the work place and this calls for a leader to with them deal effectively. Thus a leader should be emotionally stable (Sargent 199).

Some sensitive issues include equal employment opportunity rule and diversity; they should be adhered to and fully embraced. Along the same line of thought, a leader should know how to deal with anger and violence once it arises in the work place. The process of making decisions should be carefully handled along with high premier being placed on the accountability and responsibility. The right steps to take when leadership fails are highlighted. The author of this book appears in many ways to have successfully achieved his purpose given the writing styles employed. A balance is maintained given that he has tackled the positives when leadership is successful and the negatives when leadership fails. The author is not biased because as much as he poses the good side of leadership, he believes that sometimes leadership can fail and goes ahead to give some solutions that can apply. In the 21st Century, such understanding is crucial for successful leadership. The author's work thus contributes to the modern leadership models that serve the purpose in the global and international business environment.


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