Uniform public are among the first to arrive at the scene of social disturbances, violent crimes and catastrophic events. They must make time-sensitive judgments on their personal and the public’s safety, sometimes in fraction of a second, without the benefit of conversation.
Mood influences perception of events. Like everyone, the uniform police officer’s brain is processing sensory information below conscious awareness. The brain draws on beliefs, mental models and prior emotions-laden memories to make immediate sense of the world.
Add another complexity to the uniform police officer’s job. They must control their emotions, even in trauma inducing situations, all while rational thought of the people they are engaging has been high-jacked by emotions. There aren’t many movie stereotype police out there…always rational hero’s. In high risk situations they face the a Perfect Storm…emotions dealing with emotions.
How well a uniform officer manages their emotions. How self-aware of and control their mood. How self-aware they are and working on their implicit biases, has profound implications on public safety, problem solving, and the information gathered (sensory and words) has implications on decisions by the courts at civil and criminal proceedings.
Most police services spend 75 – 80% of their budget on people. If one owns a manufacturing plant and this amount of capital is in equipment, would you be taking care of this equipment?
Selecting officers for their emotional intelligence (EI) qualities, helping them determine there strengths and weaknesses in six identified emotional styles, and implementing training on EI practice, serves not only communities well, but also the quality of life for the officer and their families.