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Empathy and Firefighters with Graeme Thom and Stephen Lee

Updated: Jan 19, 2022

Empathy First Empathy Training

The Empathy Podcast E16

Show Notes/Timestamps

On this episode of The Empathy Podcast we discuss empathy and firefighters. We are delighted to have retired firefighter and now professional speaker Graeme Thom and current firefighter Steven Lee share with us their experience and knowledge. Some of the discussions on this episode include mental health of firefighters, empathy skills needed in a firefighter and what firefighters can do to mentally support themselves and their peers. We hope you enjoy this episode of The Empathy Podcast as the guys offer fascinating insights into the role empathy plays and how important mental health is in the fire service.

0 – 1.01 – Introduction to the show.

1.02 – 1.40 – Leanne welcomes her speakers.

1.41 – 5.54 – How the guys became firefighters.

5.55 – 8.14 – Favourite things about being a firefighter.

8.15 – 10.24 – Skills can be brought to the fire service.

10.25 – 12.15 – International deployments.

12.16 – 14.05 – Building relationships in a team.

14.06 – 16.01 – Trust amongst the fire service team.

16.02 – 18.56 – Difficulties or stress of the job & Empathy amongst firefighters.

18.59 – 25.02 – Dealing with the media.

25.03 – 27.19 – Procedures to help with mental health in the fire service.

27.20 – 29.20 – Graham discusses stigmas surrounding mental health in the past.

29.21 – 31.19 – Retired firefighters support.

31.20 – 32.55 – Benefits of being mentally healthy.

32.56 – 33.58 – Peer support.

33.59 – 37.55 - Discussion of family concerns & support for families.

38.44 – 39.52 – How firefighters take care of their own mental health.

39.53 – 43.15 – How the drinking culture has changed.

43.30 – 49.34 – Promoting a positive public image of the fire service.

49.35 – 52.02 – Advice for new firefighters concerning emotional aspects.

52.04 – 54.15 – Leanne discusses empathy training and emotional awareness.

54.16 – 57.56 – How empathy skills help in an emergency.

57.57 – 1.00.17 – Employing your technical and humanity skills.

1.01.15 – 1.08.45 – Promotion and acknowledgements.

53.21 – 55.08 – Taking time to Self-reflect.

55.11 – 57.26 – Acknowledgements and promotion.

57.33 – 59.02 – Leanne reflects on the podcast and end credits.


About Graeme

Graeme Thom is the founder and Executive Director of ‘GT & Associates’, an agency providing professional speaking and consultancy services to a range of established and emerging organisations. As a Professional Speaker, Master of Ceremonies, Facilitator and Mentor he remains passionate about the need for individuals and organisations to embrace and implement ‘life long learning’ and that, ‘there is a need to share knowledge in order to create wisdom’ in all organisations.

About Stephen

Stephen joined the Fire Service in 2007 at the age of 29. Prior to the Fire Service he had been working at Channel Seven as a News Cameraman. Stephen has spent the majority of his Fire Service Career at the Roma Street Fire Station in Brisbane’s CBD. During his career he has also been deployed around the State for Swift Water Rescue as well as being involved with Urban Search & Rescue for the Christchurch Earthquake.

Hi! I'm Leanne Butterworth, Empathy Speaker and Educator, University Lecturer and Mental Health Advocate.

Empathy First is a Brisbane-based social enterprise offering Empathy workshops, online courses and individual Empathy coaching to help you build connection and strengthen your relationships for personal and professional success.

Contact me today and let's talk about how you can put Empathy First.

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