Wednesday, June 29, 2011

What Matters Most to You?

Being in wildland fire since 1984, I've seen my fair share of firefighters go through significant life changes: marriages, divorces, birth of children, death, retirement, etc. Unfortunately, I've witnessed those firefighters who put their job before all else at the sake of all else.

Commitment to the job is commendable, but at what cost? This blog post is not meant to judge but to applaud those firefighters that have come up through the leadership program and are showing a new sense of balance amoung work, family, and community. These are the leaders who take a moment of personal reflection to clear their minds and focus on what matters most in order to be a better leader.

As we begin to see more and more firefighters reach mandatory retirement age, I ponder how many fire leaders are ready for the next stage of life--that beyond the fire service. Do you find your purpose in wildland fire or beyond the fireline? Are you mentoring others to take the reins up after your retirement? What matters most to you?

John Baldoni writes about planning for life beyond work in his HBR blog post titled "Make Time for What Matters Before It's Too Late."

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