Fundamental Excellence: Mentoring in Law Enforcement




Keyes, Jimmy

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Law Enforcement Management Institute of Texas (LEMIT)



Water the garden. Do not run with scissors. Buy low, sell high. Causal relationships have always been at the root of decisions, because using the examples given no one inherently desires waning plants, personal injury, or financial loss. It is wholly possible to learn these truths without receiving the exposition that accompanies instruction, but it is inefficient and detrimental to growth. In policing, causation directly affects the safety of a community, the quality of life for citizens, and the growth potential of the society. Mentoring within law enforcement agencies is therefore crucial, providing the most effective mechanism for the delivery of beneficial causal effects to everyone concerned. Formalized mentoring programs are teeming with positive results. Immediately, formalized mentoring creates functional accountability for a mentee, allowing for an inexperienced officer to employ a veteran application to their own autonomous decisions. The outcome of these decisions contributes to the high quality of life in a given community and continues to deliver enhanced safety and improve the level of service by fostering dual-role leadership between mentor and mentee. Capable leadership, cultivated by shared experiences and grown through merging different perspectives, provides sustainable and ongoing benefits both to the officers and their communities. The causal result of this is retention, further benefitting the community by reducing the rate of officer attrition and the cost associated with hiring and training new personnel. Law enforcement agencies should institute formalized mentoring within their organizations: It is time to water the garden.


Mentoring, Police--Personnel Management