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Experiential Learning Activities for Emergency Service Personnel

Learning to step up, whatever the emergency

People working in emergency services need to react fast and work together, often in crisis situations. On the front line, frequently changing teams mean that team members mean that flexibility, adaptability and communication skills are key. And behind the scenes, people in leadership roles need to be responsive and decisive.

According to research by global employment specialists Monster, some of the key skills and attributes required of staff working in police, fire and paramedic roles include the ability to react and respond decisively in a crisis, staying calm and reassuring frightened members of the public, and an ability to weigh up situations and take appropriate action.

But how can you train your people for potentially hundreds of unknown and complex situations? How do you replicate the fast-paced and unpredictable situations faced by first responders from fire, police and medical services?

MTa’s training kits are well-placed to help you replicate those challenging situations, but in a safe environment where there is plenty of time to reflect on, share, and learn from experience. Using versatile kits to carry out short activities, participants gain skills to work on problem-solving, team-building and the essential communication skills that will help them have more impactful engagements with both colleagues and the general public.

These hands-on training activities are perfect for use in assessment centres and similar recruitment and development activities. Working in teams, participants solve real-life problems, in real-time and then get an opportunity to reflect on what they’ve done and use what they’ve learned to again.

A Scottish police force successfully used MTa Select to help identify successful new recruits to join its front-line constabulary. This range of eight activities allows candidates to showcase their qualities while assessors observe a whole range of skills, attitudes, approaches and behaviours that they would probably miss in interviews.

“We have found the MTa Select an extremely effective tool in assisting us in identifying suitable candidates for the police service,” says Constable John Ritchie.  “It now forms an integral part of our Recruitment Assessment Centre – and has been well received by our own staff and candidates themselves”.

Medical and fire services have had similar success with MTa, with an Ambulance service and fire brigade in the English Midlands using MTa Select and MTa Team Kit to help with assessment centres and team development.

MTa’s learning approach is equally at home beyond the front-line, when it comes to developing decisive leadership in head office, or effective and responsive teams in back-office support roles. Leicestershire Police in central England has successfully used MTa kits to help hone leadership skills among emerging leaders as part of its management development programmes.

And a little further north, Cheshire police has used MTa Insights to help teams develop communication skills and self-awareness: learning how their behaviour is perceived, and flexing their leadership and influence styles.

Emergency services have also had success using MTa Coaching Skills to help team members give and respond to feedback, and to help leaders shift from instructional/directional leadership styles to coaching styles that focus on developing people.

Find out how you can bring your learning to life and invest in your team’s ability to respond to complex and evolving challenges with MTa Team Kit, which has 16 activities expertly designed to develop effective team-working and leadership.

“The strength of the team is each individual member; the strength of each member is the team.” – Phil Jackson

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