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Next-Gen Leadership: How police supervisors can apply the four pillars of emotional intelligence

Gain insights into how recognizing and managing your emotions can lead to more effective decision-making and crisis management

In the first of a 10-part series titled “Next-Gen Leadership: Solutions for Today’s Police Supervisors,” Gene Reid, Ph.D., a seasoned police veteran and founder of Reid Training Solutions, delves into the crucial concept of emotional intelligence.

With 15 years of experience in law enforcement, Gene shares his expertise and personal journey to illuminate how emotional intelligence can significantly enhance leadership effectiveness in high-pressure situations.

By dissecting a real-world scenario from his early days as a sergeant, Gene provides a practical framework for understanding and applying the four pillars of emotional intelligence in daily operations, aiming to equip today’s police supervisors with the tools needed for innovative leadership.

Key learning points

1. Understanding emotional intelligence: Learn what emotional intelligence is and its importance in law enforcement leadership.
2. The four pillars of emotional intelligence: Explore the concepts of self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management as foundational elements of EI.
3. Practical application of EI: Discover how to apply EI principles in real-world scenarios, using Gene’s experience in a vehicle pursuit situation as a guide.
4. The role of emotions in leadership: Gain insights into how recognizing and managing emotions can lead to more effective decision-making and crisis management.
5. Building and maintaining positive relationships: Understand how emotional intelligence is key to fostering positive relationships and a supportive team environment.

Questions for discussion

1. How does Gene Reid define emotional intelligence, and why is it particularly important for police supervisors?
2. Describe a situation where you or someone you know could have benefited from applying the four pillars of emotional intelligence. How might the outcome have been different?
3. Why is self-awareness the first step in developing emotional intelligence, according to Gene?
4. How can police supervisors apply the concept of social awareness in their day-to-day leadership roles?
5. Reflecting on Gene’s story, how does effective relationship management contribute to resolving high-pressure situations in law enforcement?

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Gene Reid is a police sergeant for the New Castle County (Del.) Police Department. Gene is currently assigned to the Professional Standards Unit and is highly active with the department’s officer wellness initiatives. Before being promoted, Gene was assigned to the Criminal Investigations Unit for over six years.

Gene holds a Ph.D. in criminal justice, with a specific focus on stress management and resilience. Gene also has an MS in education and a BS in public safety administration. Gene is an avid fitness enthusiast who trains Jiu-Jitsu and has completed numerous triathlons, including Ironman Maryland.

He is the founder of Reid Training Solutions and recently published “Police Leadership Redefined - The EQ Advantage: Transforming Law Enforcement with Emotional Intelligence.”