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Serving from the top: police leadership for the 21st century

Martin, Helen, Rogers, Colin, Samuel, Anthony and Rowling, Martin 2017. Serving from the top: police leadership for the 21st century. International Journal of Emergency Services 6 (3) , pp. 209-219. 10.1108/IJES-04-2017-0023

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Abstract

Purpose The police service in England and Wales faces unprecedented challenges as it moves further into the 21st Century. Globalisation, increases and changes in types of crime, including cybercrime alongside perennial terrorist threats, coupled with budgetary constraints, mean that the way the police service has traditionally operated needs to change. In part, the police service sees the drive for professionalisation as assisting in providing an efficient and effective answer to the challenges ahead. Previous approaches to leadership styles, based upon hierarchy and rank, may not be the best approach for leaders in such a dynamic and professional organisation. This paper argues for a debate and a rethink regarding the leadership styles employed by the police in their current role in the context of the influx of new graduate officers. Design/methodology/approach This paper presents a discursive argument based upon servant leadership models that aspire to address the multi-faceted challenges faced by the police service. Findings Leaders in the police service may well consider servant leadership for its ability to release the potential and manage the aspirations of graduate officers. Servant leadership is also recognised for its potential in helping the police to better engage with important societal changes that will impact on its organisation and its structure in the future. Originality/value This article considers the problems faced in leading a professionalised police service and the suitability of a novel approach to leadership, that of the ‘Servant Leader’.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Acceptance
Status: Published
Schools: Business (Including Economics)
Publisher: Emerald
ISSN: 2047-0894
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 31 October 2017
Date of Acceptance: 28 September 2017
Last Modified: 22 Dec 2017 23:48
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/106089

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