Growing Courage: The Leadership Challenge
||September 12, 2017
||8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
||Growing Courage: The Leadership Challenge
Oak Brook Police Department
||1200 Oak Brook Road
Oak Brook, Illinois 60523
||Click here to register.
I’ve got this stack of Fast Company hard copies that I’m slowly working through. Very slowly. I was in a 2014 issue, and a blurb by Stephanie Vozza caught my eye. She shared ways to make meetings better, faster, and more fun. Under “Faster,” she shared author Dick Axelrod’s idea of “asking participants to share what they need to do or say to be fully attentive.” Good stuff.
I used to work at a company with a similar practice. Before meetings and workshops, we’d ask what the “needs and expectations” were. This did two things. It allowed the group leader to understand where participants were mentally, and thereby engage with them more effectively. It also jumpstarted the engagement process by inviting participants to share something personal up front.
On Wednesday November 16,2016, I was fortunate to be working WINx 2016. A premier event featuring speakers from around the United States to provide thoughtful insight to influence the now and next generation of law enforcement leaders. At the event, I saw many influential leaders, the Director of Illinois State Police, local Chiefs, Deputy Chiefs and Commanders and others in supervisory positions in law enforcement. Many are acquaintances and a few are friends. All have some degree of influence in law enforcement at the local, state or national level.
In reflecting on my 28 years as a law enforcement officer it’s easy to focus on the ugly, messy, dangerous things that happened during my career—especially when so much is being debated about our profession on social media and in the main stream media. But for me and the legacy I want to leave behind, I need to focus on the positives and so do you.
Legacy is often thought of as what you leave behind when you die. But legacy is something you build every day of your career and your life.
Maybe that vein in your neck bulges just to hear the question.
You’re not alone. Gauntlets are being thrown against both words. Seth Stoughton calls the warrior mentality a “Problem.” Dave Smith calls a guardian mindset the position of “uninformed activists.”
The topic cuts to the core of identity as law enforcement officers. Who are you in uniform? Who are you when you take the uniform off? Who are you at the core?
It happens to the best of us. One day, we wake up (proverbially) and we realize our actions and our words are not necessarily in line. I am not talking about extreme hypocrisy or huge indiscretions here. I am talking about the subtle ways we might not be walking our talk. The big question is; if this happens to you, will you have the courage to take the necessary action to right the wrongs?
Perfection is a lofty standard. Many have tried and failed. They have failed for a number of reasons but most of all — for being human.
Humans are fallible. What differentiates humans from all other mammals is the ability to THINK. With thinking comes error. Expecting a person to absolutely correct 100% of the time is unreasonable.