© 2004 International Disaster/Fire Training Institute Inc.


EM 270_5 Managing Through A Disaster

What You Get: 73 pages in 6 Units

See some Sample Test Questions

Course Objectives

Upon completing this course, the students will be able to:

  • Describe how their organizations and individual jobs relate to the total disaster effort.
  • Show courtesy when dealing with citizens.
  • Cope with angry and upset people.
  • Perform tasks that are not part of their regular work, as needed.
  • Assume increased responsibilities, as needed.
  • Form alliances with other organizations and agencies to get work done.
  • Plan for a drop in morale and productivity caused by stress and fatigue.
  • Deal with stress and fatigue in their subordinates, themselves, their families, and their co-workers.
  • Recognize and reward employees who have worked long hours.

Target Audience

The students for this course should be local government managers performing functions that bring their employees into contact with the public and whose organizations face greatly increased workloads as a result of disasters.

Note: Listed videos not included in course and not needed to complete the course.

Unit 1: Getting Ready for the Next One

This unit will introduce the students and the instructors. It will also provide an overview of the course objectives and agenda. Students will have an opportunity to describe some of their experiences with past disasters.

Unit 2: Forming Partnerships

This unit will review organizational structure and relationships between various Government agencies following a disaster. It will also overview the Incident Command System and the Federal Response Plan. Students will identify organizations they are likely to partner with following a disaster.

Unit 3: Communication: The Two-Way Street

This unit will review the importance of active listening and provide students with opportunities to practice their active listening skills. Students will practice asking probing questions to gather information from citizens. Students will also discuss the importance of observing nonverbal behaviors. Finally, students will look at strategies for dealing with the media following a disaster.

Unit 4: Making Referrals and Following Up

In this unit, students will identify appropriate referral locations and will address working with "hard-to-help" customers.

Unit 5: Dealing With Emotional People

In this unit, students will discuss strategies for working successfully with emotional people. Students will examine strategies for communicating effectively and identify a repertoire of responses to use when addressing an emotional person.

Unit 6: Taking Care of Your Employees and Yourself

This unit will review the typical physical and mental stress reactions that managers and their employees are likely to feel during a disaster (and emphasize that these reactions are normal). Students will then identify strategies to address stress issues in future disasters.


When people are under stress, they are more likely not to listen well and to jump to conclusions or suggestions based on incomplete information. True or False

“In other words . . .” “If I understand you, you think . . .” “So, you’re saying . . .” are examples of

a. Complaining
b. Vocalizing
c. Parroting
d. Confirming

Personal space may vary from

a. 1½ to 4 feet away for casual interactions.
b. inches to physical contact in heated arguments.
c. office size and decor.
d. the number of people present.

Copyright © 2004 International Disaster/Fire Training Institute, Inc.
All rights reserved.
Website www.all-hazards.com
Email director@all-hazards.com

Government publications used in this document have been electronically transcribed by
International Disaster/Fire Training Institute, Inc.
Sources used to develop these courses are public domain documents.