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When to Challenge your Leadership and When to Shut Up!

STL Joseph Garcia

Often we feel that we can challenge the leadership of a team because the program is not going the way we want it to go. Before you challenge any leadership you must ask yourself: Is this a battle worth fighting because in the final analysis you want to win the war.

Sometime your battle can divert the team’s focus. Sometimes your battle can cause rifts within the unit and thereby open a can of worms that cannot be closed.

Still, how do you know your program is on the right track? Well, it may not be up to you to make that determination.

You are member of a team. As a team member you are responsible to work it out using your CHAIN OF COMMAND. Mistake one is assuming your fellow team members are completely wrong. From their perspective, they may be right. Sometimes it just takes a little persuasion to convince someone instead of trying to blast home your point. If you go down that road, your leadership may very well close the door on you.

Be an operator and not a girl scout (no pun intended). Backbiting and underground alliances are NOT COOL regardless of who you are. Be open when you disagree. When you sow seeds of dissention you personally are part of the problem, and your actions will contribute to your team being brought down.

Want to make a point to your command, here are the steps you should take:

Step 1

Inform your command that you are working on a command program. You do not want to send a message that you are doing something behind your administration’s back.

Step 2

Collect all the facts. Be accurate.

Step 3

Team Presentation. Present it to the team first because they may have input that could enhance your plan. Plus, when you present the plan you can be sure the administration will ask if you’ve consulted with the rest of the team.

Step 4

Leadership Presentation. Make sure you cover all avenues (Liability, Tactics, Trends, Policies and Procedures, Cost, Pro and Cons, References, How this new idea can benefit the team, and how it can be used in other operational areas). Have extra copies prepared

Step 5

Application idea and demonstration. If possible set up a demonstration of the idea, product, or training.

Step 6

Follow up and make sure you have all your parties on your side.

This is a simple, systematic way to develop an idea and get team buy-in. Remember that the Ark wasn’t built in a day, nor was it built when there was a flood. It took a vision, a calling, time and attention to detail.

Don’t get discouraged! Stay with the fight and keep the objective in mind!

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