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Ten Percenters®: The Cops Who Really Make a Difference!

There are 1%ers, 5% ers, and there are 13% ers but in the law enforcement profession there are 10%ers. 10% ers are in every law enforcement agency and let us thank God that they are! 10% ers, for the purpose of this article, are those Cops (law enforcement officers) who truly make the streets safe for everyone else. 10%ers are the cops that the cops call when they need help. And I don’t mean SWAT, Narco or ERT since not all of them work like 10% ers.


If you are a law enforcement officer reading this article, you know exactly who I am talking about. It may be you or someone you work with but it is definitely not everyone. I would be either foolish, naïve or a liar to say that most cops took the job to ‘confront’ bad guys everyday and kept that zeal and work ethic throughout their careers. I may be a lot of things, but not naive. While I think many cops took the job to chase bad guys, enforce the laws and do the right thing, many others were just looking for the power, job security or just a job. I can tell you, I was not one of those. I always worked hard to be a 10% er and often got in trouble for doing it. That goes with the territory. I can live with the bumps, bruises, law-suits and lost pay but I couldn’t live with not working hard to protect and serve. I guess it’s like “…a coward dies a thousand deaths but a hero dies but one!”

As a 10%er, you knew all too well where the other 90% stood. There was that 40% that would do their jobs conscientiously but not go to the great lengths as the 10%ers. The 10% ers could always count on them for back-up and support even through danger and some gray areas as long as the 10% er was taking the heat when the S%#T hit the fan with the bosses. Then there was the 25% that would answer their calls, do the job but not go any further and use a variety of excuses like, “the job isn’t on the level”, “you can get jammed up for doing your job”, or “I’m not risking my pension for anyone”. And there is that 5% that is always looking to get ahead by studying for promotional tests, kissing ass and creating a façade of conscientiousness but it is only about them and their own selfish goals. Many of these become big bosses and don’t care who they step on during the ladder climb. They seldom will take the heat for serious decisions or something that could hurt their career. Of course, not all big bosses are like that. Some 10% ers and 40% ers make it to the top.


Last, but not least there is that 20 % who seemed to never be around when the S%#T hit the fan and never seem to get involved in anything but yet they worked the same job as you. They are always conspicuously missing when there is a ‘hot’ call or a call requiring an arrest or extensive paperwork. They often go out sick and if they get injured on a job, they are out for months. They seem to be looking for a medical or stress disability.

I think almost every cop starts out in his or her career to become a 10% er but gets lost along the way. They succumb to complacency and are hindered by their fellow cops making fun of them or they just can’t take the heat that goes along with being an aggressive cop, such as civilian complaints, bad bosses and other pressures. It is understandable, yet the 10% ers still rise to the occasion everyday in every agency. They face the same pressures, if not more because they are proactive, and continue to keep the bad guys afraid. This article for those cops, the 10 % ers! Keep it up! God Speed!!!

Lou Savelli is a retired Sergeant from the NYPD. He served 21 years working in proactive units and created NYPD’s first citywide gang unit called the CAGE (Citywide Anti Gang Enforcement). His unit was awarded the National gang Crime Research Center’s Award for The Most Effective Gang Unit in the US. Lou Savelli now operates the most sought-after ‘reality-based’ training company in the country – Homefront Protective Group. His company provides over 100 classes to law enforcement officers each year and most of them are FREE to attendees. He can be reached through the company’s website at Ten Percenters, tenpercenters,10%ers, 10%, Top 10 and associated logos are registered trademarks created and owned by Louis A. Savelli, Brooklyn, New York.

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