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  • Yankee_1
    replied
    we have a daily roll call here. Do something small which could end up being big. Have everyone practice "slicing the pie", doing quick peeks or stacking up and going through the fatal funnel. take turns being the bad guy and see if and when they see the cop. Do a basic equipment check not to bust guys ba!!s but to drive home the importance of them checking it. We always go over previous shifts calls, officer saftey addresses, wanted people ect.

    Leave a comment:


  • Che
    replied
    Originally posted by ateamer View Post
    We are small - only 165 sworn but actually running about 140. Our patrol shifts only run eight to 10, so the sergeant is the watch commander. Minimim staffing is set per policy, but it's the sergeant's job to make sure enough people go out on his/her shift. It's that way at a great deal of departments.
    It has been a long time since I was with anyone that small and forgot how it is. Enjoy it, the grass is not always greener in the big city.

    Leave a comment:


  • PhilipCal
    replied
    My Agency does NOT conduct roll call(s). Troopers go into service directly from their driveway. Dispatch is tasked with insuring that Troopers have all pertinent information regarding BOLO's etc.

    The PCO (Dispatcher) also gives the Trooper his/her assigned area. In many instances this can consist of more than one county. This being the case, it's imperative that Supervisors trust the Officers under their supervision.

    Troopers are expected to work long hours absent direct supervision, (nights) although an "on -call" supervisor is available to assist them. Staffing at adequate levels is the responsibility of the line Supervisor, Corporal or Sergeant.

    Trust, upward and downward are at the basis of operations. Past that, I commend our OP (congratulations by the way) to the excellent advice offered by our colleagues. It doesn't get any better.

    Leave a comment:


  • sgt jon
    replied
    I am a two time Sergeant and can add the following to the already valuable input-

    • Take a long pause before you charge in with your new stripes ablaze. You earned the rank; now earn the trust and confidence of your officers. It takes time.

    • Remember that everyone knows what you did and did not do as a slick sleeve. While you are now the ranking officer – the past is NOT that long ago. Expect to get pushback on things you enforce when you yourself were not doing it a few weeks ago.

    • Depending on the department you may well be the bearer of bad news. Get accustomed to it and own it. Don’t be the guy who delivers the stink while maligning the boss in front of the “guys”.

    • Be attuned and responsive. Work on what’s important to the guys; what they want/need may well be different than you wanted/needed as a line officer.

    • Be fair, firm and consistent. You may lose friends and gain others.

    • Some off duty adjustment may be coming- depending on the dynamics and span of things you may need to buffer yourself a bit.

    • Don’t try to reinvent the wheel. Start with what works and what meets the true needs of the troops. Once you have that down pat you can start to be innovative and creative; but use your guys to build on this and ensure you give them the credit they deserve.

    • Depending on manpower it may be better to stay back from calls and let them do their thing. Nothing derails some calls faster than rank showing up on scene- to which folks gravitate to.

    • Pick up the slack and do the dirty work without saying a word about it.

    • The honeymoon phase will end at some point.

    • If you have responsibility for timekeeping, evaluations, boards, selections, discipline, etc- get smart fast. Talk to HR and the brass about the agencies policies and vision.

    I entered into the responsibility knowing that I learned more from bad bosses than from the good. I strove to be the boss I always wanted. Sometimes that was what my team wanted- sometimes not. Some of my greatest mistakes are the genesis for the above notes. Some or none may apply to you.

    Simply put- there is not book, course or manual that can make you a “good” Sergeant (or leader for that matter), only honest openness, time and dedication will make this journey a successful lone.

    Leave a comment:


  • ateamer
    replied
    Originally posted by Che View Post
    Obviously your POV is from an officer.

    Unless you are on a real small department, sergeants do not make staffing calls. That is the LT role and anything to do with payroll.
    We are small - only 165 sworn but actually running about 140. Our patrol shifts only run eight to 10, so the sergeant is the watch commander. Minimim staffing is set per policy, but it's the sergeant's job to make sure enough people go out on his/her shift. It's that way at a great deal of departments.

    Leave a comment:


  • Che
    replied
    Uniform inspections is an interesting topic.

    I live in one city and work in another city. My wife's bicycle was stolen so the officer who came to take the report does not work with me. Anyways, his one pant leg is longer the other and then I realize he had hem his pants with a stapler.

    Leave a comment:


  • Che
    replied
    Originally posted by ateamer View Post
    I am not a sergeant.

    Keep roll call short and sweet. Let your guys get out to their beats and go to work ASAP.

    No uniform inspections. If someone's uniform is a mess, correct him one-on-one.

    Follow policy to the letter. ...

    Maintain at least minimum staffing. Don't go out shorthanded because it's a Saturday, ...
    Obviously your POV is from an officer.

    Unless you are on a real small department, sergeants do not make staffing calls. That is the LT role and anything to do with payroll.

    Leave a comment:


  • ateamer
    replied
    I am not a sergeant.

    Keep roll call short and sweet. Let your guys get out to their beats and go to work ASAP.

    No uniform inspections. If someone's uniform is a mess, correct him one-on-one.

    Follow policy to the letter. If you don't, you are telling your guys that they don't have to either, and that there are no consequences for doing whatever they want.

    Never tell someone to do what you won't do yourself.

    Make roll call training relevant. Focus on tactics, case law that directly affects patrol and such.

    If one of your guys is a slug or a whiny bitch, find out why. He may be having problems at home and is in need of assistance of some type. But if he's just a useless load on blue welfare, force him to start working.

    Come up with fun ways to crush crime. See who can recover the most stolen cars or who can clear out the most open warrants in his beat. Make sure they know how to use the rcords management system to know the crime trends.

    Maintain at least minimum staffing. Don't go out shorthanded because it's a Saturday, two people called in sick and no one answered the text message to come in. Order someone in. Having proper coverage is more important than someone being butthurt about having to work.

    Have fun. Highlight the odd and ridiculous calls they go to, praise them for good work, get them together for barbecues on days off and for choir practice at the end of the week.
    Last edited by ateamer; 12-01-2013, 03:04 PM.

    Leave a comment:


  • stormz5192
    replied
    Use each officer for their strengths. Listen to what they say and observe what they do. Always make sure they are taken care of and back them when they're right. Praise in public, discipline in private. If they screw up, find a way to make it right.

    Leave a comment:


  • Che
    replied
    Originally posted by Delta_V View Post
    IMO, roll call training isn't something that needs to be done on a daily basis. At least around here, getting the officers out of roll call and onto the streets as quickly as possible is the most important thing. We only conduct roll call twice a week ...
    I disagree. Roll call training, occassional inspection, pep talk, "atta boys/gals", reprimands when needed, etc. As a rookie supervisor I had a officer come to work, drunk. He was terminated.

    One thing I tell new supervisors; Do not try to be like SGT Rock, SGT Smith or SGT Jones. It is 'your' assignment and you do it the way you want to. Remember no sergeant is perfect, just be your best and honest. All your people will not like you, that is just the way it is.

    Leave a comment:


  • lpstopper
    replied
    Originally posted by L-1 View Post
    To me, the job wasn’t to supervise alone. It was also to take care of my personnel.

    I used to sit down a lot with my shift and just talk to them. In doing so I tried to learn what was going on, what operational headaches they were facing, what the hotspots were on patrol, who were the biggest troublemakers they encountered on a routine basis, what things could be changed that would make their jobs more efficient, or easier, or put them at less risk, equipment issues, etc. I would ask what needed to be kept, what needed to be fixed and what needed to be tossed out.

    If there were things that needed to be changed, I would try to meet that need. Sometimes things couldn’t be changed and I would make sure the watch understood why that was, so they could better operate within the system. If they wanted the impractical, sometimes I would assign a couple of them to research the issue and find a way to do it within the law, department policy and the budget. Better they should discover on their own that what they wanted was illegal, out of policy or not within the budget, than me be the bad guy and tell them straight out. Besides, it gave them a chance to grow by learning more about the department and how things are done.

    I told my guys not to lie on reports of make chicken sh*t arrests. If you can’t arrest someone legitimately, let them go. If they are really a bad guy, they will screw up tomorrow or next week and someone else will arrest them.

    I also told them if they screw up to come to me first and don’t lie. It’s better if they handle it head on than someone makes a complaint and the department finds out about it later. Surprisingly, I didn’t have much of a problem in this area. I had a tight enough shift that if someone started to get even slightly out of line, the entire watch climbed all over them and straightened them out before it became serious enough to warrant supervisory review.

    If an officer didn’t know something I didn’t make him feel stupid, I taught it to him. If I wasn’t around, the others taught him. Again, it was a tight watch.

    There were times when I would sit the watch down and walk them through things. For example, one shift we talked about what would happen if they had an officer involved shooting. I went through each step of the process and explained what would happen and why. This way they knew the procedure ahead of time, understood why it was being done and wouldn’t think they were getting the shaft if it ever happened to them.

    We would debrief after serious incidents. Fortunately I had a tight team and egos did not get in the way. If someone stepped on it during the incident they fessed up and rather than suffer from their mistakes, we all learned and profited from them and moved on.

    I tried not to micromanage, but made it a point to show up on all backup calls, all felonies in progress or anything where my officers were at risk so the officers knew I was concerned about their welfare.

    I also told my team that I was not above making mistakes. If they saw me doing something they thought was wrong, I expected them to quietly take me aside and say something to me. I said I would be upset with them if they failed to do so. However, if after expressing their concerns I tell them we still going to do it my way, then we are going to do it my way.

    Back in the academy they told us a leadership story about Mahatma Gandhi, a skinny little guy dressed in nothing more than an adult diaper, who years ago lead tens of thousands of people to kick the British out of India. It was said that one day he was leading thousands of people on a protest march when the press asked him to step out of the march for “just a few quick questions.” The questions were endless and as the marches kept going by, Gandhi was getting visibly uncomfortable. Finally he ended the interview saying, “I’m terribly sorry but those are my people, I am their leader and I must hurry if I want to catch up with them.”

    The point of the story is that as a leader, you channel your group’s energy, stay ahead of them and point that energy in the direction you want it to go. If, rather than just supervise you have good team building skills and can lead, you should be able to make your shift do anything.

    Lastly, I operated under a philosophy that drove my superiors nuts. I firmly believe that no set of rules can be written so thoroughly as to anticipate every possible contingency. Consequently, there will be rare occasions when it becomes necessary to deviate from the rules, regulations or department policy. Don’t be so rigid that you have a stick up you’re a** as a supervisor. Don’t be afraid to deviate from the rules if the circumstances warrant it, but when that happens, be prepared to stand up and defend your actions.
    Sounds like a C.O. Id want to work for.

    Leave a comment:


  • LeeRoy
    replied
    If somebody messes something up make them put on team training on that topic.

    I have a number of training power point presentations i have put together on various le topics. For example every june i put on fireworks enforcement training. I have dui update, dope stuff, etc.

    Debrief operations. Lead discussion on how you'll handle next time.

    Leave a comment:


  • vdfnco
    replied
    Humor. At some point watch something funny. My guys had one supervisor who always showed officers getting murdered or killed. This destroyed their motivation. If you can teach and make them laugh you are winning. Find out what types of **** they are passionate about and let them train the shift.

    Leave a comment:


  • L-1
    replied
    Now you went and got me started.............

    To me, the job wasn’t to supervise alone. It was also to take care of my personnel.

    I used to sit down a lot with my shift and just talk to them. In doing so I tried to learn what was going on, what operational headaches they were facing, what the hotspots were on patrol, who were the biggest troublemakers they encountered on a routine basis, what things could be changed that would make their jobs more efficient, or easier, or put them at less risk, equipment issues, etc. I would ask what needed to be kept, what needed to be fixed and what needed to be tossed out.

    If there were things that needed to be changed, I would try to meet that need. Sometimes things couldn’t be changed and I would make sure the watch understood why that was, so they could better operate within the system. If they wanted the impractical, sometimes I would assign a couple of them to research the issue and find a way to do it within the law, department policy and the budget. Better they should discover on their own that what they wanted was illegal, out of policy or not within the budget, than me be the bad guy and tell them straight out. Besides, it gave them a chance to grow by learning more about the department and how things are done.

    I told my guys not to lie on reports of make chicken sh*t arrests. If you can’t arrest someone legitimately, let them go. If they are really a bad guy, they will screw up tomorrow or next week and someone else will arrest them.

    I also told them if they screw up to come to me first and don’t lie. It’s better if they handle it head on than someone makes a complaint and the department finds out about it later. Surprisingly, I didn’t have much of a problem in this area. I had a tight enough shift that if someone started to get even slightly out of line, the entire watch climbed all over them and straightened them out before it became serious enough to warrant supervisory review.

    If an officer didn’t know something I didn’t make him feel stupid, I taught it to him. If I wasn’t around, the others taught him. Again, it was a tight watch.

    There were times when I would sit the watch down and walk them through things. For example, one shift we talked about what would happen if they had an officer involved shooting. I went through each step of the process and explained what would happen and why. This way they knew the procedure ahead of time, understood why it was being done and wouldn’t think they were getting the shaft if it ever happened to them.

    We would debrief after serious incidents. Fortunately I had a tight team and egos did not get in the way. If someone stepped on it during the incident they fessed up and rather than suffer from their mistakes, we all learned and profited from them and moved on.

    I tried not to micromanage, but made it a point to show up on all backup calls, all felonies in progress or anything where my officers were at risk so the officers knew I was concerned about their welfare.

    I also told my team that I was not above making mistakes. If they saw me doing something they thought was wrong, I expected them to quietly take me aside and say something to me. I said I would be upset with them if they failed to do so. However, if after expressing their concerns I tell them we still going to do it my way, then we are going to do it my way.

    Back in the academy they told us a leadership story about Mahatma Gandhi, a skinny little guy dressed in nothing more than an adult diaper, who years ago lead tens of thousands of people to kick the British out of India. It was said that one day he was leading thousands of people on a protest march when the press asked him to step out of the march for “just a few quick questions.” The questions were endless and as the marches kept going by, Gandhi was getting visibly uncomfortable. Finally he ended the interview saying, “I’m terribly sorry but those are my people, I am their leader and I must hurry if I want to catch up with them.”

    The point of the story is that as a leader, you channel your group’s energy, stay ahead of them and point that energy in the direction you want it to go. If, rather than just supervise you have good team building skills and can lead, you should be able to make your shift do anything.

    Lastly, I operated under a philosophy that drove my superiors nuts. I firmly believe that no set of rules can be written so thoroughly as to anticipate every possible contingency. Consequently, there will be rare occasions when it becomes necessary to deviate from the rules, regulations or department policy. Don’t be so rigid that you have a stick up you’re a** as a supervisor. Don’t be afraid to deviate from the rules if the circumstances warrant it, but when that happens, be prepared to stand up and defend your actions.

    Leave a comment:


  • Bravo64
    replied
    When I got promoted, I sat down and tried to remember things that I liked and didn't like about former supervisors. One of the things that officers don't like is being micromanaged or not trusted. I had a sergeant who would have everyone stand at attention and conduct uniform inspections (complete with hats which nobody ever wears) at least weekly. He would walk up and down the line like a drill sergeant pointing out the most miniscule things and writing people up for them. In addition to that, he would frequently show up on routine calls and take charge, telling us exactly what to do even though we already knew. There were times when we would hand in traffic citations and he would ask to see our copy of the citation so he could read our notes. If he didn't think that the notes were detailed enough, he would chastize us even though we were the ones who would have to testify to the violation in court and the notes are for our personal reference. He basically didn't trust his officers and wanted everyone to know that he was in charge. There are some officers who do need to be closely supervised, but I've found that most do not. Let your people do their jobs and only insert yourself into their decisions when you are asked, policy requires it, or you think they have trouble making the right decision

    Great advice, thank you! I too, believe in letting your officer's do their jobs and only intervene if asked or they are screwing something up. Definitely not a fan of micromanagement. Thanks again!

    Leave a comment:

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