This weekend I took an Advanced Auto Extrication course for the fire department. Although I’ve been doing auto ex for 13 years, it’s a skill that must continually be updated as car technology changes. The way we cut apart cars today is not the same as we did it when I started.
Working As A Team
I’m an Acting Captain in my department. Because of that, for our final scenario, my team asked if I would be Incident Commander. It would be my job to create a strategy, lead the team, oversee the evolution, and make sure that the patients were removed from the vehicle quickly and safely.
We discussed our plan for about 10 minutes. I talked with the team about what I thought we should do. I listened to their input. Individuals were assigned tasks. A plan was put in place.
When our instructors told us to go, everyone stepped into action. I stayed back, continually doing a 360 walk-around of the crash site. I coached my team, I encouraged my team, I offered instruction where it was necessary. While they focused on their individual tasks, I focused on the big picture.
At the 15 minute mark, we had our evolution complete. We were 5 minutes ahead of the benchmark set by the instructors. They told me we finished too fast. They meant it in a good way. But they wanted to throw down another challenge to try and trip us up.
We listened to the twist and together, we immediately formulated a plan to get the job done. It took us a little over 6 minutes to complete the challenge, approximately 3 minutes ahead of the second benchmark time.
Having The Right Team
My team exceeded expectation. They worked together. They communicated effectively. They anticipated each others moves.
Our success was a collective effort. If one person didn’t do their job, it would have created a chain reaction that would have affected each following step.
As we debriefed following the evolution the instructor congratulated me on a job well done, but I knew that my success as an Incident Commander was because of the great team I was leading. Credit goes to them.
Who Do You Surround Yourself With?
There’s a general rule in business and life that you’ll never rise beyond the level of the 5 people who you are most influenced by.
If you surround yourself with underachievers, you’ll likely underachieve. If your friends all make $30,000/year, that’s likely how much you’ll make. On the flip side, if you surround yourself with successful people, you’re more likely to succeed.
Consider your voice over career. Who do you surround yourself with? Who do you listen to? Who do you take advice from? People who are booking $5 jobs or people who are booking $500 jobs? People who do it as a hobby? Or people who do it as a career?
Look at your influences. Reflect on who you’re surrounding yourself with. Then decide where you want to be and if those are the people who will help get you there.