Are the police arresting their own progress?

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Are the police arresting their own progress?

Do exceptional leadership skills beat first hand experience when it comes to choosing the best person for the job?

This was the question posed to me by Sky News, following the story that the government wants to open up senior jobs in the police force to external and overseas candidates, while the police federation want to maintain the status quo so that only rank and file officers can reach the top. The proposed change would have opened up the playing field for New York’s former police chief who was reportedly interested in the top job at the Met.

Of course I am not going to argue that we don’t need highly experienced people in the force – but what a missed opportunity!

In this climate we need great leaders who can understand the issues quickly by listening to those on the front line. Ask the right questions, agree the direction and then let them get on with it. Being robust and adaptable in this climate of change is a key skill for all business leaders, and not one that is necessarily learnt by serving your time in one profession. This is not to suggest that all external applicants would be suitable for such a demanding role – but there must be many strong candidates from outside the force who are robust enough for the challenge.

The best leaders are those with transferable skills. People who have experienced tough times. People who have negotiated their way through complex and ambiguous situations, even if they are not exactly the same situations that the police face. In a fast changing world, a different and fresh perspective is essential.

At Impact Executives we know about the importance of exceptional leadership because our interim managers enter organisations with no positional power to wield. Only their personal influencing powers will effect change. Those that excel are highly adaptable with a full kit bag of skills to draw on, whatever the situation they face.

We are all working in times of unprecedented change. Managing that change effectively means accessing the widest pool of talent to ensure we select only the very best person for the job – whether they have worn a uniform or not.

About Impact Executives Ltd
Impact Executives is a leading interim management provider to organisations of every size in the UK and globally. Originally formed as a specialist practice within PA Consulting Group, over the past 25 years Impact Executives has helped over 2000 companies, including more than two-thirds of the FTSE 250 – find the very best executive interim management talent. Clients choose to work in partnership with Impact Executives because of our proven ability to offer clients immediate solutions to improve their organisation’s performance.

With offices covering the UK, continental Europe, Nordics, Asia Pacific and Australia, Impact Executives is part of the global services consultancy Harvey Nash Group plc, giving clients and interim managers the confidence that we have the resources, expertise and focus to deliver results – fast.

For further information on Impact Executives, please contact Steffany Young, Impact Executives, Tel: 0044 20 7314 2011 Email: