Supervisors: How to lead and support employees in your care.

I believe those of us who are called to be police officers must serve the public from the heart. If you are blessed with a servant’s heart you will place the needs of our citizens, first and foremost with patience, fairness, and with response to their concerns.

Supervisors must continue to practice a positive attitude when managing their employees who they are responsible for. As a sergeant, you must place the needs of your people first. In other words, the best sergeants always serve their people first.

Supervisors must spend time in each rank to learn how to manage through experience.  The way to gain the trust of your people is through:

  • Patience.
  • Fairness.
  • Respect.
  • Trust and listening to your ability to do their jobs.
  • Be available to them when they have questions.
  • Encourage them when they need your support to grow in their job responsibilities.
  • Most importantly, show them kindness, put your ego away and don’t be concerned with who gets the credit for the success.

During my thirty-nine career with the department, I have retained a few management articles that have helped me. The following example is listed for your reference and to provide you to grow your management skills.

Want a great workplace? Respect your employees.

By L. M. Sixes

Houston Chronicle

Nov. 10, 2010.

In the two decades I’ve been writing about jobs, I’ve seen some great workplaces. Those are companies where the excitement is palpable, creativity is encouraged, and employees look forward to tomorrow. I’ve also seen some really bad workplaces where office doors stay closed and everyone looks miserable. Last week at a dinner honoring the top workplaces in a survey sponsored by the Chronicle, I spoke about five ways managers can create great places to work.

  1. Respect your employees enough to tell them where they stand. Employees – from custodians to the C suite- want to know.
  2. Be kind, it’s so simple but a kind word here and there is really appreciated.
  3. Give employees a challenge. Nothing creates boredom faster than a company culture that discourages innovation.
  4. Train your front-line supervisors. You might look at the organizational chart and figure all those folks at the top are really important. But chances are it’s the front-line supervisors who are the most critical players in your organization.  When employees think about whom they work for, they don’t think about the CEO or the board of directors. They think about their supervisor. And nothing sours a job faster than a bad boss. A good front-line supervisor can motivate employees to do a good job; a bad one can cause employees to just show up to work every day and go through the motions. Teach your supervisors how to gain the respect of the employees they’re leading, how to establish expectations and, if they’ve been promoted from the shop floor as many front-line managers are, how to navigate their new relationship with their former peers.
  5. Remember employees have a life outside the offices. That means not scheduling meetings at 6p.m. As working parents are trying to run out the door to pick kids from daycare. Good bosses know that most employees will more than make up for the privilege of a flexible schedule. So, there you have it: A genuine interest in others, giving employees the responsibility and power to get their job done and giving them respect go a long way to employee satisfaction.

A final word of career advice. If throughout your career you have accomplished all of your career goals, have climbed the ranks and received accolades, commendations, and honors, however, if you have not looked back throughout your career and challenged others to reach out and accomplish their goals then you have not completed your responsibilities as a supervisor.

Submit your employees for a commendation on a job well done.  Give them the credit for all their work. If you fail to do these things, you may have overlooked your most important accomplishment which is the growth and success of your people.