It is such an exciting time in America. I know there are many disturbing events that have occurred and will likely continue but never has there been a better time for law enforcement leaders to stand up and be heard. Police executives have always had the ability to shape our profession. Strong leadership will be necessary to create, align and infuse a culture that embodies trust and fair and impartial policing.
There are so many communities across America that want to be connected to our organizations and want to understand the work we do. I am fortunate that I work in a community that challenges how we do business and supports our efforts to make positive change.
I am convinced if we work as hard to build relationships and lower the veil on our profession as we do fighting crime, we will be seen as organizations trying to accomplish the very thing many of our citizens want; a safe community. There are many ways to make communities safe but they all require open and honest conversations about impact and outcomes.
Leaders must be confident and capable of artcilating mission, vision, values through the daily work and interactions of staff with the public. They must be more than words on a paper. The culture of an agency is driven from the top down. This requires us to look at policies, procedures and practices to determine if our systems are more restrictive than prescriptive. We also must look at our job descriptions and the roles and responsibilities of the people who do the work to ensure our people understand what is expected of them. It also requires us to look at our performance management and evaluation systems. How we assign people, promote people and hire people, should be based upon our mission, vision and values. The numbers don’t matter if we do not have the trust of the people we serve.