Video: Firefighters in Fire Trucks Getting Ice Cream – Ben Martin
Martin explains the concept of “intoxicated leadership” and shares a story of a fire service instructor who once needed some extra help at a conference
In this installment of Firefighters in Fire Trucks Getting Ice Cream, we are talking with Ben Martin from Embrace the Resistance. Ben is a captain with a large metro department in Virginia as well as an international speaker on leadership.
I arrive to pick up Ben in a beautiful 1983 Mack CF-611, and we have Santa Clara County (California) Deputy Chief Steve Prziborowski riding along in the open jump seat to help with filming.
As we cruise the streets of Nashville, Tennessee, we discuss “intoxicated leadership” – the concept of making decisions while under the influence, not of alcohol but rather emotion, stress or anger. Ben’s background as a bartender and bouncer (prior to becoming a firefighter) gives him a unique perspective on how people react under stress. He underscored, “I would no sooner ask you to chug a bottle of Jack Daniel’s and then be in charge of a fire than I would expect you to come in to work really upset at your wife and then coach me on something.”
Ben also explains how to compare leadership and rank to a cheater bar on a Halligan.
Once we get to Elliston Place Soda Shop, Ben shares some of the other topics he is presenting out there on the circuit, how the Embrace the Resistance website came about, and how he started his own annual fire service conference in Virginia.
Part 2 includes a great discussion of mentorship and instructorship during the credits. This conversation was captured only with the audio.
Ben tells the story of a student who was not grasping some of the concepts on hose-handling during a hands-on training class at a conference. The students and the instructor both committed to getting the evolutions down. From this emerged a new instructor and a new leader in the fire service. Watch this month’s episode to find out who it was.