Well 2012 is here and we had a recent customer just email us an interview question that was not in our Fire Officer Interview guide.  Here is his email:


Thanks for the assistance working through those interview questions.  I interviewed today for Captain and wanted to follow up with you.  The Chief, 2 Bat.  chiefs, 2 deputy chiefs, and our training chief were all present for my interview.  I was nervous sitting outside waiting to be called in.  Once they called me I hid my nerves, walked in with a purpose, and got started.  The first 5 questions were directly from your guide.  I was smiling inside as I answered.  The 6th question was about my weaknesses.  They asked “What steps have you taken in the last year to shore up your weaknesses as a firefighter?”  They asked a few more questions but they were all very similar to the ones in your guide.  Just wanted to say thanks and hope you can add this question to your guide.  I really feel good and should hear the results any day.

This is a great fire captain / fire lieutenant interview question.  Admitting you have a weakness is not a bad thing.  The important thing is to do it correctly, and show how you work to improve it.  Now if you go in and tell the panel your weakness is getting along with other firefighters . . . well that would be bad.  The key is to provide a weakness that does not present you in a poor light, but also shows your dedication to being the best you can be.  One example might be:

“I have always felt my biggest weakness is experience at very large scale incidents.  These incidents are rare in our department and I try to learn as much as I can when they do occur.  I attend the post incident analysis and study any after action reports that are published.  In the last year I have attended several workshops that studied large scale events, I have also taken my NIMS 300 class, and plan on taking NIMS 400 the next time it is offered.  My goal is to prepare myself as much as possible for those rare large scale events.

This answer is good because almost every firefighter lacks experience on very large scale incidents.  They just don’t happen every day.  It also demonstrates your ability to accurately evaluate yourself and take the necessary steps to further your education.  For more fire officer interview questions be sure to check out our guide.

Fire Officer Interview Questions