Advanced Khaki I-Leadership Skills
Advanced Khaki is designed to take you beyond policy and procedure and introduce skills needed to be an effective Khaki.
We will talk about Leadership, Critical Thinking, Decision Making and ways to develop those skills to help you be an effective Khaki.
Khaki is a leadership role. To be an effective Khaki you also need to be a good leader.
Leadership involves providing vision, direction, coordination, and motivation toward achieving goals. These skills are necessary whether dealing with on shift volunteers, members of another core, core leads, Board members, participants, LE or other outside agencies.
Being a good Khaki or Leader is not about your needs, it is about the needs of Firefly, your rangers and your community.
- Inspire and motivate others
Create positive one-on-one and team relationships by being a great listener and connecting emotionally with your rangers.
- Display high integrity and honesty
As a Khaki and a Ranger you are a role model. Be honest and transparent, and have high integrity-do what you say you are going to do, walk the talk.
- Drive for results
Be a Khaki that your rangers, Core Leads and the Board can count on to get things done.
- Build relationships
Communicate with passion and energy about the Rangers, Firefly, your community, it’s values and volunteering. Communicate with your rangers often, check in with them. Talk to them when they wander by. Offer rewards and recognition; food, swag, a pat on the back, shout out etc.
- Develop others
Just as you are here to develop your skills, help your rangers develop theirs. They will be the Khakis and Leads of the future. Encourage your rangers to make contributions and stay clear of micromanaging.
Every call to Khaki needs a response. Some are routine and some are more challenging. In Khaki or other roles, perhaps ICS, you will need to take the time to think things through clearly and rationally.
The ability to think clearly and rationally is called Critical Thinking.
We use Critical Thinking because:
- It is purposeful and goal-oriented.
- It allows for informed decisions based on facts.
- It is based on principles of logic.
- It compensates for problems caused by human nature.
The Process of Critical Thinking
Ask yourself questions that will help you understand and analyse information.
Define the Big Picture
- What is the goal? What results do you want?
- Who does the situation effect?
- Do you have resources that may have more information or can help you?
Distinguish between Facts and Opinions
- Are you basing your opinion on facts? (Is the information subjective?)
- Are there influencing factors such as beliefs, biases, bad experiences or stress? (Are you remaining objective?)
- Is the situation escalating?
- Is there more information coming?
- Are there other influencing factors?
- Is there room for error?
- How much time do you have?
- Does the decision require specific knowledge?
Effective decision making is as important in a crisis situation as a non-crisis situation.
Effective decision making can:
- Avert tragedy.
- Help manage incidents.
- Build community trust and support.
- Help recover from an incident more quickly.
Each decision needs to be based on a comprehensive view of the situation. Khaki’s comprehensive view should include considerations such as:
- Common operating picture
- Ethical do’s and don’ts
- Group vs individual decisions
- Other factors that can impede decision making
Common Operating Picture
To achieve a Common Operating Picture you must have shared situational awareness across all parties involved.
Situational awareness involves being aware of what is happening in the vicinity, in order to understand how information, events, and one's own actions will impact goals and objectives. Situational awareness includes;
With a common operating picture, crisis decision making is supported by providing all appropriate parties the same critical information about the incident, including:
Ethical Do’s & Dont’s
As Khaki or in any other position of leadership it is important that your actions are ethical and impartial.
Tool for Ethical Evaluation
Decisions Should Withstand Scrutiny
Decisions Should Ensure Compliance
Decisions Should Show Leadership
Decisions Should Be Fair
Group vs Individual Decision Making
As Khaki you do not need to make every decision by yourself. You have options such as:
REMEMBER: The Core Leads are the people responsible for their cores not the Rangers! It is not our job to tell other people how to run their cores. It is our job to assist them, if/when they request it.
There are advantages to Group Decision Making:
Other Factors That Can Impede Decision Making
Crises by their nature are dynamic and fast-moving situations. However, making a decision without taking even limited time for analysis can have negative consequences.
Problems with Information:
Problems may include a lack of information, too much information, or inaccurate or conflicting information.
Losing the “Big Picture”:
Focusing on insignificant details or objectives may cause leaders to lose their ability to maintain an awareness of the evolving situation and their ability to make sound decisions.
Sleep deprivation and the resulting fatigue can lead to selective perception, where a person focuses on the most immediate physical setting or needs. A decision maker may miss important factors or ignore discrepancies as his or her ability to take in new information decreases. Fatigue is often combined with high or low blood sugar and overuse of caffeine, which can further impede effective decision making.
When key personnel have conflicting priorities, it can create uncertainty and cause delays in decision making and action planning.
Stress is a natural response to crisis situations that is heightened by many of the factors already described. Other sources of stress include:
Effects of Stress
Stress can be one of the biggest impediments to crisis decision making. Under stress, decision makers are more likely to: