Develop a Philosophy and Understanding of Crime Fighting and Problem Solving That Considers Complexities of Policing

In my last two posts Thinking Leaders, Leading Thinking People is the Adaptive Leaders Focus and Leadership and Developing Your People Are Two Important Cogs in the Cycle of a Successful Organization we discussed the importance of adaptability and the type of culture necessary to develop and implement officers who can think on their feet and solve complex problems.

The aspects that make this type of leadership more effective in policing organizations include: The wholly effectiveness in analyzing new developments on the street (sizing up situations) and in determining its focus of effort. The philosophy and understanding of crime fighting and problem solving, where the infinite diversity of conflict and crime, make chaos and uncertainty inevitable and unavoidable. And most importantly a command system which favors consequently decentralization of command  (something policing has been talking about for 40 years) using/exploiting individual creativity of subordinates, the ability of low-level initiative and police/problem solving skills based on a high standard of training and tactics, which fosters the effective exploitation of tactical and operational situations. This type of culture is known as Mission Command and is built on mutual trust. My good friend Don Vandergriff  says:

"Mission Command is not a method of control; it is a cultural philosophy that demands the highest in professionalism and trust. Leaders for Mission Command are rigorously selected, highly competent leaders with the Strength of Character to stand by their decisions regardless of the career consequences. The leaders that succeed under a culture of Mission Command seek; even take joy in responsibility and making decisions."

To continually improve policing and develop fair, impartial and just outcomes in communities, the basics begin with problem solving requiring strength of character to make hard decisions under difficult circumstances and likely when no one is watching. All other development must be in context with evolving this foundational ability. This strategy and command culture fits perfectly into the community and problem oriented policing philosophies, police department actively seeks to continually improve upon.

Now you must ask yourself do we have the right culture, to develop officers who understand autonomy and initiative?  Your answer determines your organizations direction.

Stay Oriented!