When I am the Chief of Wider Horizons Police Department

Subject: Law
Type: Admission Essay
Pages: 25
Word count: 6365
Topics: Police, Job, Law Enforcement, Leadership, Management, Work Ethic


Police leadership has a great responsibility of being at the helm of a system, which solves several problems in society. Various governmental agencies and institutions concerned with public affairs attest to the fact that policing has evolved to be the most visible segment in the system of criminal justice in any jurisdiction. Because the police chief is the figurehead of such an institution, more often than not, they have earned praise and borne the burden of criticism and ridicule in equal measure (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Besides the challenges of local nature, police administrators have to contend with global challenges, which demand that the administrators exercise sufficient degrees of innovative thought strategies, immense flexibility and adequate tendency to create and sustain effective working relationships with different stakeholders in the communities under their jurisdictions.

Additionally, revolutions in the justice system demand that modern day police operations occur in public realm replete with aspects of transparency and responsibly. So, responsibility, accessibility, and reliability are features which modern policing needs to embrace both in decision making and execution of actions. In regard to the different chapters in the book, Police Administration: Structures, Processes, and Behavior (8th Ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. ISBN-13: 9780135121030, 2012 by Swanson, C. R., Territo, L., and Taylor, R. W., this paper lays down fifteen different mini essays, each essay focusing on a single issue in each chapter. To accurately place the discussion into context, the research and discussion focusses on a utopia police department in America called Wider Horizons in which I am the Chief Executive Officer in charge of the police administration.

Primary Responsibility for Policing

Service and protection define the primary role for the basic understanding of policing in America. In every sphere of life and undertaking of American citizens, it is the role of policing institutions to help out citizens who find themselves in times and situations of crises so that they guarantee safety to both life and property (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). The roles of providing services and protection are not carried out through the application of roguery but in strict adherence to applicable laws of the land. The wide range of policing responsibility include but not limited to the following duties. Response to crises calls, crime investigation, guiding both human and vehicular traffic, making arrests, testifying in courts, and control of crowds in public functions are some of the primary roles and responsibilities.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “How would you organize your police department to effectively carry out the primary roles of policing?”

The Answer

Research on policing indicates that enhancement of a positive culture of a policing institution is a vital step toward effective provision of the primary roles of the police to the public. As the chief of the Wider Horizon police department, I would initiate and sustain proactive approach to institutionalize police-public participation in matters of governance of the society. There would be an emphasis on promoting village councils as inevitable links between the Wider Horizons Police officers and the community. Such village councils are helpful in fostering positive image through the development of trust between the police and the public (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Also, use of village councils ensures the reliability of information which flows between the police and the public when carrying out investigations into criminal incidents to apprehend criminals, and situations of crisis when there is a threat to life and property.

According to Goldsmith (2008), attitude is another aspect which influences effective cooperation between the police and members of the public and influences the extents to which the policing body is able to carry out the primary policing responsibility of service and protection. Attitude, which primarily means the psychological predisposition by individuals to evaluate other subjects in either positive or negative light, would hamper the ability of the Wider Horizons to deliver services and protection if such attitude occurs in an unfavorable light. Since opinion is central to the phenomenon of attitude, engaging community opinion leaders such as professionals, church leaders, and politicians in “realigning” public opinion of the police would be a positive step to take as the police chief of the Horizons Police Department.

Contemporary and Traditional Policing Problems

Policing has never been immune to the problems of the age. Because policing is concerned with services and protection of the public, traditional policing problems are much different from the problems of the contemporary times. Traditionally, the challenges of crime were relatively predictable well in advance and made the policing strategies more of a routine than in the present time. As Goldsmith (2008) observes, in response to such crimes, traditional models of policing focused on these stable categories of crimes, and on the more reactive approach to criminal apprehension. Modern times are characterized by fast-changing social and cultural climate, and in which the challenges to policing are in rapid evolution (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Also, the contemporary policing problems are more dependent on technological, social political and economic challenges of modern times. As such, there is a need for policing to understand the evolution of the problems of policing with respect to the societal factors which have equally evolved, and are highly interrelated. 

The Question

As the Police Chief, “what would you do to counter the problems of contemporary policing at the Wider Horizons?”

The Answer

Application of innovative in modern policing is necessary for combating challenges of policing which characterize the face of crime in present times (Goldsmith, 2008). As the police chief, I would advocate for and ensure my police officers attend refresher courses which deal with emergent issues in crime and dealings with the public.  As such, it would be prudent to have officers working under my supervision to be well versed in technological aspects of social interactions. Keeping in pace with the technological dimensions crime assumes is a proactive approach, which would be a sure way to anticipate and apprehend criminals in modern times (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). For example, following through social media communication threads to suspect and prevent crime is a crucial ingredient for policing in contemporary times. Besides, diversification, flexibility, and application of community policing are examples of initiative I would implement to create a sustainable network of components of policing to arrest the escalating situation of fast-paced-environment contemporary crime (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).   To do away with the restrictive nodes and agents of crime control which have dogged the early policing, different policing functions which were greatly monopolized by different sub-units would be shared across the board by different Wider Horizons police sub-units. Consequently, different abilities, professionalism, expertise, and experience would provide a robust security system, capable of checking the runaway crime and social challenges of contemporary times.

Circumstances of Police and the Media Conflict

Researchers have continually established that conflicts between the police and media occur in instances of public disorder such as riots, demonstrations, and street protests. Such are tumultuous and tense environments in which police officers move in to whisk away such reporters. On the contrary, media reporters need to catch very clear photos of the incidents for professional and business purposes, thereby posing a conflict between the police and media professionals. According to Goldsmith (2008), there have been increased conflict between the police and media in crime scenes which require “securing” for purposes of evidence preservation, and in instances when some officers appear to have overstepped their mandate in handling suspects. In both instances, police officers move in to keep the media afar, and in some instances commandeer them to erase video footages which would serve as evidence to criminalize the police. According to Swanson, Territo, and Taylor (2012), only the Public Order Act of 1986 allows the police officers to arrest anyone including journalists who are likely to cause unnecessary distress, alarm or harassment in crime scenes.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you work to minimize or eliminate instances of police and media conflict in policing?”

The Answer

Research into the causes of conflict between the police and media in policing has revolved around the two issues of circumstances and intent, and how both interact with knowledge by both the media personalities and the police. As the police chief of the Wider Horizons, I would see to it that my officers are well versed in laws and regulations of operation in crime scenes. Regarding intent, I would ensure that all my officers are sufficiently informed on interrogating intent of journalists in taking footages as well as that of suspects. As Goldsmith (2008). explains, the question of intent does not become an integral element when carrying out an assessment to decide whether or not the behavior of a journalist causes unnecessary distress or alarm. For instance, I would ensure that my officers understand that the action of a journalist to take photographs of suspects when such suspects have made it clear that they would not want their pictures taken would readily amount to a violation of the intent and can easily cause embarrassment and distress. 

Regarding circumstances, there is need by officers belonging to Horizons Policing department to understand and advise journalists well in advance as to whether or not pictures and footages can be taken (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). For example, there are instances when the police need to conceal the identity of suspects and secured evidence so that the process of investigation is not put in jeopardy. So, as the police chief, my role to enhance cooperation and reduce conflict between police and media, I would emphasize on the laws guiding operations, which the police would be responsible for imparting into the journalists in both crime and crises scenes. Also, I would personally carry out follow up on how my police officers place cordons in crime and crises scenes to provide media with vantage positioning and educate my officers on the legal right of a journalist to take pictures and footages and absence of our moral responsibility to prevent them. Finally, my police officers would have to understand and appreciate the complementary role of media in the success of police work, hence need for positive working relationship.

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Administrative Science Principles, Concepts, and Ideas

As Goldsmith (2008) observes in his Washington Post, there is a prevailing policing attitude among the law enforcement officers which is in stark contrast to accepted administrative principles, concepts, and ideas. The attitude describes the finality with which police commands should be taken and implemented without questioning or seeking of clarification by the person to whom the command is issued. The insights which the author provides are indicative of the lack of clear understanding of the repercussions that a very strong show of militarized police in a community that it polices. As he explains, it is important that the American police cultivate the “servant” rather than the “warrior” mindset among its ranks so that it achieves more cooperation from the members of the public, and make its policing a success. 

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you implement your understanding of administrative science principles, concepts, and ideas?”

The Answer

According to Goldsmith (2008), there are nine cardinal principles and concepts which should guide policing institutions such as the Wider Horizons police department. As the Police Chief of the Wider Horizons Policing Department, I would ensure that my department constantly seeks and preserves favor of the public through impartial service to the law, and total independence of policy which guide policing in the jurisdiction, rather than pander to public opinion; realization that the two aspects of use of force and cooperation with the public are inversely proportional to application, and that security, respect and approval of the willing cooperation by the members of the public (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  Also, I would inculcate in my officers the knowledge that the power of the police is only secure and guaranteed if the public approves of and have respect for it; application of force is only necessary for instances where warning, advice, and persuasion have irreparably failed. 

Finally, it would be a practice in Wider Horizons Police Department that the police officers operate with strict adherence to the police role in criminal apprehension, which is executive rather than judicial, so that there are no incidences of power usurping by one organ of State; and that the police officers under my supervision make it their working mantra that “police efficiency and success is achieved by absence of disorder and crime in the Wider Horizons jurisdiction” (Peak, Gaines,  and Glensor,  2010).  The above are the basic administration principles, concepts, and ideas which I would ingrain into the Wider Horizons policing fabric, and pass down the junior members of the policing in the department.

Early and Contemporary Administrative Practices in Law Enforcement

Administrative practices in law enforcement imply the mechanisms and approaches which police administrators use to manage and facilitate policing in various jurisdictions. Traditionally, police administration practices was highly structured and the channels of communication were largely unidirectional (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).   In the approach, lower cadre officers only take commands and execute without necessarily engaging senior officers who issue such commands. However, modern management practice is highly interactive and involve different stakeholders before decisions are reached and executed. However, the aspects of administration such a planning, directing, and controlling among others are management practices which apply across the board.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you incorporate aspects of both early and contemporary administrative in law enforcement?”

The Answer

As Swanson, Territo, and Taylor (2012) discuss, administrative practices could have either traditional or contemporary perspective but are largely applicable in modern times in equal measure. As the Police Chief, I would engage various departmental heads to implement the administrative functions of planning, directing, and controlling. For instance, all the departmental heads will be part of the planning process to have the policing execute its mandate of service and protection. My policing administration system would help in advancing community policing since it focusses on a cooperative approach.

Comparison and Contrast in the Application of Theories and Concepts to Police Problems

Theories that are applicable to police administration have been increasingly derived from the wide fields of organization theory, public police management, and business management processes (Smithson, 2008). Topics on police administration and training programs have equally evolved over the years, sometimes as solutions to emerging practices in police administration, and also in response to modern concepts arising from research and literature. Consequently, some approaches have been put in place that differs basically in the emphasis they apply to theories of police administration. 

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you incorporate and apply theories and concepts of administration on policing?”

The Answer

The high concern about efficiency and efficacy greatly advanced the roles of policy analysis, program evaluation, and other analytical aspects of police administration (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  Of great concern has been the “Measuring What Matters” program and its attention on the specifying, and measurement of that which is most important policing unit deliverables. 

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Applications of Management Theories and Administrative Principles

Both the management theories and administrative principles in policing have evolved over time. From the classical approach to policing administration as any other institution, the initial point evolution focused on aspects of control, structure, and administration (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Human relations approach to management which encompasses the aspects of focus on individual officer needs and inspired leadership. As Goldsmith,(2008) explains, both the aspects are important factors toward the improvement of performance by police officers. Most recently, researchers have established it is essential that institutions enhance policing efficacy through horning of the strategies and tactics of relating with the external environment. In a manner that points to departure from the relatively older management theory of human relations approach, the most recent theoretical management practice bases on strategic management and institutional approach. Swanson, Territo, and Taylor (2012) Espouse that integration of both approaches is of the great essence so that policing institutions leverage weaknesses of one approach with strengths of another.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you apply management theories and administrative principles to policing at the Wider Horizons?”

The Answer

As the police chief, I would carry out the integration of different management approaches in my administration of the Wider Horizons Police Department. As such, the elements of classical approach such as of structure and management including management functions, functional components, and organization principles would be helpful in streamlining operations in the police department. When all the aspects are incorporated, delegation of authority, chain of command and unity of command will enhance “compactness” of the department when supported with aspects careful planning, controlling and directing (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).   Since the approach is effective in assigning responsibility for actions, it would be necessary for application at a time when there is much of social and human rights awareness in the societies which the Wider Horizons policing department serves.

In full understanding that administration of police institution is a people-management affair, it would be important not to overlook the significance of the human relations approach in the administration of the department. To this end, the aspects of morale, focus on unit dynamics, motivation and communication will help the department of policing by enhancing commitment and problem-solving avenues for better result achievement (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).   In my integration approach, I would finally incorporate the elements of strategic management. Putting in place sufficient resources in terms of the adequate number of personnel and materials would help in attaining objectives and tasks of policing within the jurisdiction of Wider Horizons police department.

Challenges of being a Law Enforcement Manager

Policing, in general, has a wide range of challenges from various quarters and aspects of the operation in the process of providing services and protection. Law enforcement managers have a greater burden to bear regarding the challenges which different jurisdictions since they serve as the overall heads of such institutions. One of the greatest challenges to law enforcement management is the twin problem of diversity and uncertainty. Rapid and uncontrolled movement of populations, terrorism and deeply entrenched social problems are the elements of diversity and uncertainty in policing (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  All the three elements are both jointly and separately responsible for security threats which occur outside the traditional paradigms (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  Also, crimes with political and social dimensions in specific durations pose serious challenges to law enforcement managers since because of the persistent, uncertainty and fluidity which characterize the crimes.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you enhance understanding and provision of solutions to challenges of being a Law Enforcement Manager?”

The Answer

A wide range of scholarly publication has laid emphases on uncertainty in policing management as a fact of life. Being at the management level, it is pertinent that I would understand and appreciate uncertainty as a pervasive force which affects and shapes any kind of decision-making, and in virtually all institutions and positions entrusted with decision making (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). In other disciplines such as environmental sciences, management makes decisions by making use of modeling and simulation in which there are degrees to which uncertainty can be measured and remedy proffered in time. However, in the case of policing, as the law enforcement manager at the Wider Horizons, and with regard to the concerns of terrorism, rapid movement of populations and deeply entrenched social problems, I would apply an integrated analysis approach to understand and respond to such challenges.

The first component of the integrated approach would involve the “known unknowns” where I appreciate and know there is a challenge despite the lack of clarity with regard to the boundaries of the challenge (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). The second component in my analysis the “unknown knowns” where I focus on unrecorded problems of whom I have tacit knowledge. Finally, I would focus on the meta-ignorance in which I have no knowledge of any aspect of the problem (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Risk assessment on both moral and ethical grounds and preoccupation with subjective judgments would inform the risk and crime analysis process in the policing jurisdiction under my management. Although the moral assessments which are subjectively-based have been widely criticized as being founded on unjustified distrust of foreigners, pre-emption, precaution, and prevention, emphasis on suspicion and the possibility of worst case scenarios would be a necessary approach to adopt by the law enforcement manager.

Identification and Investigation of Critical Areas of Management Problems

Still with regard to uncertainty, critical areas of management problems in policing lie in the decision to apply the two aspects of “low” policing and “high” policing in response to possibility and actual occurrence of crimes and risks to both life and property. Both aspects are subjects of concern in the modern era policing, in which there is a need for careful study of the contours of the scenes of anticipated or actual crime, some of the threats which they pose and the various effective ways to respond to the threats. As Peak, Gaines, and Glensor (2010) espouses, “high” policing is widely associated with police officers who employ covert intelligence gathering techniques. The approach is aimed at circumventing such anticipated threats. On the other hand, overt strategies are the mechanisms and processes which public police carry out in an overt manner to disrupt opportunities of crime (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). In both approaches to apprehend crime, management problems have arisen due to challenges and policies of identifying offenders from ordinary citizens. Such is the challenge of management policy because of the increased fluidity with which various individuals can switch between the two categories. So, matters of civil and social rights protection policies and structured have increasingly remained at the behest of police officers’ reasonableness in the judgment of responses provided by suspects.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you identify and investigate the critical areas of management problems to facilitate effective management approach in Wider Horizons policing?”

The Answer

In response to the above challenges both “low” and “high” policing, and the challenges of management, the solution lies in the development of policy to empower the police more in scenes of crime and crises. To eliminate the instances of the members of the public blurring the boundaries of criminals and ordinary citizens, I would agitate for more empowerment of the police officers to carry out both surveillance and detention without the convictions and charges being mandatory elements of the police work (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Also, the security officers have limited powers with regard to suspect interrogation, patrolling areas suspected to be sites of crime. Again, it is essential that there are policies to enable police to exclude members of the public from target sites including the members of media to some extent. Another policy aspect which I would intensively campaign for ids the inclusion of private-public policing arrangement (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Such an arrangement brings together the different entities which carry out policing services, without necessarily laying emphasis on the superiority and hierarchy concerns.

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How Authority and Power are Separate, but Entwined, Concepts

Authority and power are concepts which area applied variedly in policing by all the jurisdictions. According to Peak, Gaines, and Glensor, (2010), authority refers to influence a police officer which is closely attached with the position which such an officer holds in the administrative stratum of a police department. On the other hand, power refers to the developed or “donated” ability of a police officer in a certain rank to effect orders and actions which are implemented by either other officers or themselves (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Regarding how both authority and power are “handled” it is evident that there are separate dimensions in the sense that authority could be a matter of simple totem without abilities to influence actions and decisions in policing, while power has the ability to influence such decisions and actions. As such, it is possible that senior police officers can donate responsibility with either authority or power, or both, or without both. Both power and authority are intricately related and applied with respect to the notion of legitimacy (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). In every police action, it is important to establish the legitimacy of authority and power which such police officers exercise. Aside from legitimate power and authority which are practiced because of position which an officer holds, or which are delegated; it is essential that a community delegates such authority and power so that police activity are not alienated and disowned by certain sections of the community.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you separate between authority and power, while understanding the entwined nature of the two concepts in policing?”

The Answer

To facilitate cooperation and endorsement of the community which Wider Horizons police department serves, I would intensively engage the community to create an understanding of the need for police and associated important roles in ensuring social progress in every sphere. In full understanding that lack of community sanction of the police work, the operations are highly hampered through such effects as bungled investigative processes, I would implement community policing initiatives (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Community policing is effective in having such societies “own” the policing process and “sanction” police processes for enhanced success of police to provide services and protection. Authority and power is also a matter of concern for internal policing arrangement in the department with respect to legitimacy and acceptability. To this end, I would initiate the mechanisms which guide assumption of power and authority and the circumstances under which such delegations occur. As such, carefully established procedures of power and authority assumption and delegation would improve internal police cooperation and unity of purpose.

To Articulate Informed Opinion about Police Managers and Police Officers

Police officers interact with community residents in many ways and very frequently. Some of the ways in which such interactions occur include attending of security meetings in the community, response to distress calls and guiding highway traffics and management of crowds. The approach which police officers adopt in their interactions with the public create lasting impressions, which the community, members proceed to share with friends and relatives. As Smithson (2008) explains, personal experience which community residents have with the police are as significant as the interactions which such people have with their neighborhood, and would inevitably influence their quality of life. Also, he notes that community members who have a high sense of security in their environment also hold the police to a higher position regardless of age and race (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Similarly, it is important to note that even the individuals in the community who have never interacted with the police have a perception of the police, however, vicarious such perceptions are shaped. Evidently, there is a gap in communication between the police and members of the public, which facilitate inclusion of negative perception about performance effectiveness. 

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you articulate informed about police managers and police officers?”

The Answer

Establishing of various ways in which the police can engage the public directly in fora is one of the effective ways to enhance informed public opinion of the police (Smithson, 2008). As the police chief at the Wider Horizons police department, I would address the concern by establishing various avenues where police would address the issues both individual and organization performance with the public in open fora. There are aspects such as intelligence-led policing and community policing are not sufficiently understood by members of the public (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  In the public fora, I would require that civic educators are adequately prepared to work with the police to teach the public on the meaning and mode of operations which such emergent dimensions in policing involve. Also, I would enhance strategy in the manner police officers handle aspects of communication with respect to incidences of internal misconduct, so that the policing department preserve public confidence in the service (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). For example, if there are crises of relations among the different ranks, I would establish systems of internal conflict resolutions without necessarily exposing it to the members of the public.  Concerning such a matter of public interest, it would be a policy that public inquiry into the incident is carried out in a speedy and transparent manner, through a separate independent commission. 

Analysis of the structure and organization of a police agency and distinguishing between the different police functions such as leadership, recruitment, and career advancement

Aspects of management, operation, and communication in policing are greatly influenced by the structure and organization of police agency. Also, the concerns for recruitment, leadership and career advancement play a significant role in influencing the success of a policing agency (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  Because of the complexity which defines modern day policing, the organization’s placement, leadership structures and avenues for career advancement need to be elaborately defined.  Policing institutions need to have different departments dealing with different aspects of policing such as operations, management, and communication (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  At the helm of policing unit, all the sub-divisions need to converge their efforts to advance a robust approach which can provide services and protection to public and property with immense efficacy. At the base of the hierarchy, support staff to the policing unit have been vital in the provision of ancillary services that enable senior and middle staff cadres to go about their work with efficiency.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you analyze the structure and organization of a police agency and distinguish between the different police functions such as leadership, recruitment, and career advancement?”

The Answer

Research establishes that structure and complexity of a policing department, like any other organization, depends on the number of the police officers and the functions which they undertake (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  Wider Horizons police department is fairly elaborate with regard to the number of police officers and the different aspects of operations.  In the department, I would establish that there is a need for operations, investigations, communications, and management as the major departments. Because the jurisdiction under Wider Horizons covers more than 70,000 citizens, each of the major departments have sub-divisions to enhance efficiency. Accordingly, I would organize operations of the Wider Horizons police department to carry out regularly six-month performance appraisal in which I would objectively establish areas of weakness and institute changes and effect promotions.  

As such, career advancement would highly depend on performance appraisal results and levels of experience (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  In service courses and seminars will be opportunities that I would encourage and facilitate the members of the department to attend for career advancement. Such in-service training helps the members of my policing department to keep abreast with new challenges and policing strategies applicable to combat crime in fast-paced contemporary societies (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).   Besides being a department on its own, management department would act as the topmost department since as the Chief of police, I belong to the department, and need to oversee the entire management of the policing jurisdiction.

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The elements that make up the communication process and its problems

The work of police in communication is enormously complex. Complexity in police communication arises because they deal with members of the public who are quick to judge but do not adequately understand the work of the police beyond what they probably observe in television sets. Besides, there is the concern for public expectation in police communication and response (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).   For example, some members of the public anticipate the embers of policing to immediately respond to their 911 distress call regardless of the factors of environmental inconveniences and nature of incidents. Contrarily some members of the public do not expect much from the police help when such police services are forthcoming for the simple reason that they consider police presence as an intrusion. Such is the “self-sufficient” members of the society who feel they are in positions to defend themselves, while others do not simply rust the presence of police due to negative public opinion. As Peak, Gaines, and Glensor, (2010, p.326) observes, despite such difficulties, “… the police must reach out to every member of the community if they expect to be successful in helping create and sustain a sense of safety”. 

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you organize the elements which make up communication process to minimize or eliminate communication problems?”

The Answer

Because communication with members of society involve a wide range of expectations and feelings, I would aspire to institute an effective and thoughtful communication process. The process will anchor heavily in strategy development. According to Smithson (2008), the effective communication strategy development encompasses, tackling a certain crime category, planning for major events, and creating or modifying local ordinances to determining officer training, handling investigations, and identifying ways to address repeat offenders, police executives have considerable experience with operating in a strategic framework”. Specifically, communication with various stakeholders involved in policing is of great essence, and does not necessarily require a written down communication plan. 

As the police chief at the Wider Horizons police department, I would actively engage the media as the primary vehicle to convey information to and engage the public. The implications that police officers would be primarily involved in dealing with episodes of crimes and crises. Such an approach will help in avoiding wastage of valuable time of operations in back-and-forth arguments with the members of the public, which results in hampering operations to protect life and property (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  However, I will have to institute a dedicated communications department, with clear structures and responsibilities, within the Wider Horizons which handle both internal and correspondences such as an inquiry from media and other state institutions.

How the police culture and agency size affect supervision and management

Police culture and size of the agency are important factors, which affect supervision and management success of the policing institution. Difficulties in the supervision of police officers have been glaring in the instances of crises when the police officers and their managers fail to grasp the gravity of situations and show the necessary care and concern (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Police chiefs are responsible for institution and building of organization culture which supports appreciation of dissent of opinion. As such policing department culture which sets out popular work culture but does not live up to such cultures can only contribute to the demoralization of junior staff. Such disgruntled staff waits for the times of crises to “payback” for the perceived betrayal and lack of respect for their concerns (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012). Also, agency size can be incredibly big that work organization becomes difficult due to effects of duplication of responsibility, problems of the chain of command and structural disorganization of police operations.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “what organization culture and size would you work to improve so that supervision and management of the policing institution are facilitated?”

The Answer

Variously scholarly publications itemize some of the most creative and sustainable ways to have effective management and supervision in policing. Integrity is the first factor which has been greatly proposed as a powerful culture toward enhancing ease of supervision and management (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  Transparency and truthfulness in every aspect of action and communication are what I would insist on and practice personally. So that I win trust and cooperation of junior police staff, I would avoid actions which would taint and diminish my reputation, as well as my ability to exercise supervision and control of the Wider Horizons policing department. 

Also, the policing responsibilities require that the Wider Horizons department implement the cultures of decisiveness and stress management. Aside from the incidences which require police response, political and media pressure add to the high stressful situations which police officers operate in. So, I would enhance training and practice of stress management since “those unable to function well under stress under stress do not provide the best of their efforts in their response” (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012, p.102).  Also, I will carry out extensive departmentalization of the policing institution and assignment of responsibility and roles, to avoid conflicts associated with bloated institutions.

The consequences of police deviant behavior

Police deviant behavior implies gross misconduct by the police with regard to time and service delivery both in and outside of the policing department. Misconduct and deviant behavior by the police can easily contribute to loss of confidence in the policing service by the community (Smithson, 2008). Some of the common examples of deviant police officer behavior include lack of respect to the rules of operations which involve members of the public, failure to respect and execute commands issued by senior members in the rank, and practices such as corruption which taint the integrity of the policing institution.

The Question

As the Police Chief, “how would you identify instances of police deviant behavior and avoid them in policing at the Wider Horizons?”

The Answer

Gauging the extents of misconduct by the police officers and possible impact on the image of the policing force, and operations of the policing are the initial step towards assessing and curbing future occurrences. As Swanson, Territo and Taylor (2012) observe, junior police officers can take part in making statements to the public with regard to the occurrence of misconduct. However, when the spate of incidents recur within a short time span, it requires that as the Chief of Police, I take charge and make a statement and promise an inquiry into the incidents. As the chief of police, I would ensure that there is strict adherence to the rules of operation and respect for different ranks. Failure to live by such rules would attract the application of existing regulations (Swanson, Territo and Taylor, 2012).  If such matters involve the public interest, I would ensure that the public is adequately informed of the stages of inquiry and steps taken in accordance with the law.

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  1. Goldsmith, A. (2008). The governance of terror: Precautionary logic and counterterrorist law Reform after September 11. Law & Policy, 30(2), 141-167.
  2. Peak, K., Gaines, L.K., & Glensor, R.W. (2010). Police Supervision and Management(3rd Ed.).Boston, MA: Prentice Hall.
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