Leadership Environment

Page Last Modified / Reviewed: 
Mar 2022


Leadership is the act of influencing people to achieve a result. The leadership environment is made up of critical elements that a successful leader must consider in planning for effective action. Those critical elements are:

You –

The leader, who is ultimately responsible for all action and results.

Your People –

Those who you are responsible for.

Situation –

Comprised of the many unique variables that influence a leader’s decision such as objectives, conditions, resources available, organizational influences, and others affected by the action.

Consequences –

The short- and long-term effects of your actions.

Leaders constantly assess the elements of the leadership environment and adapt accordingly. Successful leaders understand the interplay of these variables and demonstrate flexibility in selecting appropriate leadership tools and techniques as situations change.

Discussion Points:

  • Each mission has a different level of risk. Discuss how the four leadership environment elements affect perceived risk in a changing environment.
  • Each situation is unique and changes over time. Discuss what changes you might predict in your environment today.
  • Discuss what leadership tools might be appropriate for those predicted changes today.


Additional Resources

Incident Management Situation Report (IMSR)
10 Standard Firefighting Orders, PMS 110 
18 Watch Out Situations, PMS 118
10 & 18 Poster, PMS 110-18
NWCG Incident Response Pocket Guide (IRPG), PMS 461
RT-130, Wildland Fire Safety Training Annual Refresher (WFSTAR)
Interagency Standards for Fire and Fire Aviation Operations (Red Book)
Wildland Fire Lessons Learned Center


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