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Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program


Session 1 – January 24-25, 2018

Session 2 – February 21-22, 2018

Session 3 – March 21-22, 2018

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General Information

The Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program (FSLEP) is a unique professional development program designed to enhance the leadership skills of fire and rescue service executives. The goal of FSLEP is specifically to prepare leaders for the opportunities and challenges they face today and in the future. The Fire and Rescue Training Institute and the Harry S. Truman School of Public Affairs at the University of Missouri-Columbia in cooperation with the Missouri Association of Fire Chiefs and Missouri Association of Fire Protection Districts jointly sponsor the Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program.

The course of study provides participants with the skills and knowledge they will need to lead their organizations into the future. The Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program consists of three two-day sessions offered at intervals throughout the year. The three sessions focus on building critical leadership skills: understanding and working with people, communicating effectively, managing conflict, developing effective leadership teams, leading change, thinking and acting strategically, budgeting and financial management, and understanding and managing public organizations.


The Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program will be conducted on the University of Missouri campus at:

1110 S College Avenue, Room 113
Columbia, Missouri.



Program Fee - To Be Announced

Lodging Package


Take advantage of the lodging package arranged by MU FRTI at the Holiday Inn Executive Center, located at 2200 I-70 Drive SW, Columbia, Missouri. The Executive Center is Columbia’s premiere hotel, featuring complementary wireless internet, an indoor pool and whirlpool, an exercise room, a lounge, and the Sports Zone Restaurant and Grill.

Rates To Be Announced


Session 1 – January 24-25, 2018

Understanding and Working with People

In every organization, effective leadership requires understanding and working with people, including employees, elected officials, citizens, and other stakeholders. Session 1 of the Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program will emphasize a practical understanding of human behavior. As a result of this session, participants will have a better understanding of what makes humans "tick" and how to work more effectively with diverse individuals.


Understanding Individual Behavior

Human behavior is complex and often baffling, even to other humans. This section of the program introduces some general principles of human behavior and provides participants with tools for understanding themselves and others.


Motivating People

Effort is one of the key factors in performance, but individuals vary in the effort they give to work and other tasks. Why are some people more or less motivated than others? How can leaders motivate better performance from employees? How can leaders bring out the best in people—and themselves? This session provides practical answers to these questions.


Dealing with Difficult People

Every fire and rescue service executive deals with difficult people/public officials, employees, and citizens that may behave in ways that present challenges to organizational leaders. Participants in this session will learn how to deal with difficult people in their organizational lives.


Managing Conflict

Conflict can be found in all organizations—at every level and in every unit. Unless conflict is dealt with effectively and managed for the benefit of the organization and its goals, it can have very dysfunctional effects. Tools and methods for managing conflict are presented in this session.


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Session 2 – February 21-22, 2018

Developing Leadership Skills

Session II of the Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program focuses on the leadership skills needed in today's challenging and rapidly changing political, economic, social, and technological environment. Participants will not only develop usable skills, but also gain experience in applying them to realistic problems and issues.






Understanding the Challenge of Leadership

While participants in FSLEP have diverse leadership responsibilities, most have not examined their assumptions about leadership or the way in which they lead. This session provides an introduction to key concepts of leadership practice, allows participants to evaluate their own leadership style, and sets the context for individualized leadership enhancement and development.


Ethics and Leadership

According to numerous studies, the American people are hungry for ethical leadership. What constitutes ethical behavior in the public arena? How can public officials make "tough" choices? What are our obligations to other officials, citizens, and ourselves?


Building an Effective Leadership Team

Effective organizations require team efforts. One of the key challenges of leadership is building effective teams that work together to achieve common goals. This session addresses questions related to teams and teamwork: What constitutes an effective team? What conditions promote successful teamwork? What are the best strategies for improving team performance?


Communicating Effectively

Communicating with others is an essential part of leadership. Participants will learn how to overcome the barriers to effective communication, to get their message out and make themselves understood, and to listen more effectively. They will also learn how to communicate more effectively with public officials, citizens, and members of the media.


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Session 3 – March 21-22, 2018

Managing Challenges of the Future

Organizations and their leaders face unprecedented challenges and new opportunities as they seek to improve performance and meet the expectations of stakeholders. Session III of the Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program provides the knowledge and skills fire and rescue service executives will need to shape the future of their organizations.


Understanding and Managing Change

Most leaders worry about change and what it will mean to their organizations. In this session, we examine the phenomenon of change and the tools leaders can use to understand and manage change. Topics covered include: the nature and dynamics of change, the opportunity and threat of change, overcoming resistance to change, and facilitating organizational transformation.


Thinking and Acting Strategically

Strategic thought and action is a critical element of effective leadership. Leaders not only need to understand the strategic situation facing their organization, but must also have a clear vision of where the organization should be headed, and how it can get there. Achieving strategic success requires systematic tools and methods. In this session, participants will be introduced to strategic management approaches they can put to use in their organizations.


Budgeting and Financial Management

For all public organizations, the budget process is central to organizational planning and management. In this session, participants gain an understanding of the politics of budgeting as well as the fundamentals budget planning and development and financial management.


Information Technology and Decision Support

The growth of information technology—from computers and the Internet to geographic information systems—provides new tools for leaders and policy makers. Keeping up with and making good use of these cutting-edge tools are key to meeting the challenges of the future.


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Intended Audience

The Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program is specifically designed for current fire and rescue service executives as well as managers identified by their departments as having high potential for leadership roles in the future. FSLEP is well suited for individuals serving every type of community—from the smallest town to larger cities. Enrollment in the Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program is an opportunity to learn more about the contemporary challenges of leadership and to gain highly useful skills directly applicable to current and future responsibilities.


The Fire Service Leadership Enhancement Program is designed for reflective practitioners. Instruction will be highly interactive, utilizing realistic case studies, experiential exercises, and up-to-date readings and materials. Assignments will provide opportunities for reinforcement of learning and application back in your department. The faculty will include both faculty and practitioners chosen for their expertise and experience in leadership training and knowledge of fire and rescue service issues. Participants who complete all three sessions (fulfilling all requirements) will be awarded a Certificate of Leadership Enhancement from the University of Missouri. Continuing Education Units will be available for interested participants.


Sponsored by the Missouri Association of Fire Chiefs, Missouri Association of Fire Protection Districts, Harry S. Truman School of Public Affairs and the Fire and Rescue Training Institute.

Published by the University of Missouri Extension, Fire and Rescue Training Institute, 1110 S College Ave, Rm 232, Columbia, MO, 65211, Email, Phone: 573-882-4735
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