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First order of business: Top 10 things cops would do as chief

Overturning tattoo and facial hair policies would be an instant morale booster at no cost to the city

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Would overturning your department’s tattoo policy be the first thing you would do as chief?


By Police1 Staff

We asked our Facebook fans to sound off on what they would do as their first order of business if they were promoted to chief of their agency. Many had similar takes on issues such as community policing, uniform changes and connecting with the rank-and-file. Here are the top 10 answers that were echoed by many of our Facebook fans.

1. “Talk to my lowest-ranking employees and then move up from there. Chances are if you want to effectuate change that needs to happen or if your agency is already running smoothly, then the people at the bottom are most likely the ones responsible for that.” – Todd Gilbert

2. “Every member of my administration, myself included, must spend one shift a month taking patrol calls and take at least two nightshifts during the year.” – Raychel Quinn Hansen

3. “Alter schedules to break up cliques and establish new bonds with other officers.” – Lance Filip

4. “Change the uniform to cargo pants, FROG tops, outer tactical vests, and the option to wear a nylon duty belt and/or drop leg holster. This allows for modular set-ups and spreads out the load between your vest and belt.” – Andy Barron

5. “Appoint someone to be a point of contact for all things related to morale – a human suggestion box. All complaints and/or suggestions would be treated as 100% anonymous and would be responded to. Happy officers do more work, do it better, and that makes the boss look good!” – Les Greens

6. “Overturn the tattoo policy and facial hair policy. Instant morale booster and no cost to the city at all.” – Matthew Casey

7. “Start tearing down walls. Prevent disconnect between management and the rank and file.” – Roger L. Norris

8. “Take a walk in my highest-crime neighborhood, go door-to-door and ask my taxpayers what community policing means to them. Take a ride with every patrol officer for three weeks and ask them what community policing means to them. Put dispatch, records and support staff together for two weeks and ask the same thing. Take that data and find the middle ground with my command staff and introduce bi-weekly goals for community policing and crime reduction instead of reaction.” – Jay McCann

9. “I would create a roundtable with somebody from every shift/unit represented. Before I decided on a policy, SOP, uniform, or other changes that affect the people doing the work, I would get their input.” – Nxk Jxnxs

10. “A department is an aircraft carrier, not a speed boat. Make course corrections accordingly.” – Corey Roberts

NEXT: 25 ways policing has changed

This article, originally published on 03/20/2015, has been updated.

“The Question” section brings together user-generated articles from the Police1 Facebook page based on questions we pose to our followers, as well as some of the best content we find on Quora, a question-and-answer website created, edited and organized by its community of users who are often experts in their field. The site aggregates questions and answers for a range of topics, including public safety.

The views and opinions expressed in the questions and answers posted directly from Quora do not necessarily reflect those of P1.