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Are You Lieutenant Material?

Are You Lieutenant Material?

Bill Reilly

There is a natural order to the world and there is a natural order to oral board preparation. With rare exceptions, we advance in police positions one step at a time. This series of articles (the first one was “The Sergeant’s Oral Board: Preparing to be #1”) represents the progression of responsibilities that each law enforcement position holds and the corresponding complexities of preparing for an oral board for the next rank. So, if it has been a while since you were successful at your sergeant’s oral board, and you are now preparing for an upcoming lieutenant’s oral board, you may wish to review the Sergeant’s Oral Board article as a foundational reference.

The lieutenant’s rank is generally the first step where manager responsibilities have been added to the job description. As an officer, deputy, or trooper you conquered the challenges of getting the job done; as a sergeant you are responsible for assuring the quality of the work performed by the frontline officers; as a lieutenant you will be facing the business challenges of law enforcement. The term middle-manager is often assigned to lieutenants. It is intended to reflect that some management responsibilities are expected, such as increased delegating, planning, and organizing; while recognizing that higher level management responsibilities, such as policy implementation and budget decision making are being retained at the command staff/manager level. The logic is simple, develop and demonstrate your competencies at a gradual rate, and if you are successful, you should be well-positioned to move even further up the ladder.

To keep us all on the same page it is important to recognize that agencies may differ in how they define ranks. Some agencies skip the sergeant rank and have lieutenants serve as the first-line supervisor; other agencies skip the lieutenant rank and have sergeants reporting to captains; and quite likely many other variations exist. For purposes of this article, the agency structure envisioned is one where officers represent the frontline, sergeants are first line supervisors, and lieutenants are middle-managers who report to captains (managers). So while the rank label may differ for your agency, this strategy is aimed at the sworn middle manager.

Middle Manager Issues >>>


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    almost 4 years ago

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    DALLASCRANE

    almost 4 years ago

    19380 Comments

    Excellent. Part accounting, good written and verbal skills. Ability to take charge of many diverse types of subordinates.and much more.

  • Thinker_max50

    darsavmo

    about 4 years ago

    11358 Comments

    I agree with NILt1999 as the Lt being the most difficult position in COC.

    Lt's normally still go out in the street and even respond to calls when not in the station doing paper work and getting their butts’ chewed by the upper Brass. They need to have the respect of their Sergeants and Officers to succeed as well as the respect of upper COC so as to be able to defend and protect their Officers and Sergeants when the need arises.

    Lt's need to be able to see the big picture and also be able to effectively communicate that picture as needed to obtain the Officers and Sergeants confidence and support so as to get the job done within the restraints and time frames imposed.

    Pleasing both ends of the COC is not an easy task and the Lt's serve as the center balancing point for that continually swaying seesaw board with the street officers on one end and the brass on the other, and don’t forget the detectives on the sides…

  • Tlusa_max50

    rsmith6322

    almost 5 years ago

    1088 Comments

    Ditto jakesdad. I was a corporal once and that was enough. Target designators (stripes and collar brass) look great to some, but In my expereince they quickly forget how to be cops. Now that ain't everyone, just my experiences so hold your fire guys.

  • 035__2__max50

    Tony_Stark

    almost 5 years ago

    30 Comments

    I give this article two thumbs up! It is direct and on point.

  • Photo_user_blank_big

    Anonymous

    almost 5 years ago

    NILt1999,
    You nailed it... Exactly.

  • Academyrun_014_max50

    pdyer

    almost 5 years ago

    354 Comments

    Thanks for the information, it is nice to have a refresher and a clearer understanding of oral board expectations.

  • God_guns_and_guts_max50

    NILt1999

    almost 5 years ago

    380 Comments

    The Lieutenant position is the most difficult one in the chain of command, because you have to supervise, produce, and manage not only to the satisfaction of your administrators - but to your subordinates as well. Having retired as a Lieutenant - I can attest to those facts.

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    SWIRTHS

    almost 5 years ago

    222 Comments

    Nope not for me. it's that whole budget decision thingy- I wouldn't want that task.

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    beachboys

    almost 5 years ago

    366 Comments

    Maybe in the near future, that's if I decide to stay in Law Enforcement.

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    gatorman

    almost 5 years ago

    82 Comments

    I LIKE TO THINK THAT I AM

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    manualcoleman23

    almost 5 years ago

    2 Comments

    yes i am

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    Anonymous

    almost 5 years ago

    not today

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