Communicating the Strategic Plan Proposed by Team “A” for the City of Kelsey
By: Danielle Gagne-Rodriguez
With every strategic plan, there will always be challenges for different sections of an organization and the Kelsey Police department has its fair share of issues it needs to improve on. The issues of response time, communication, and even visibility are all issues that are unique to any department. I find that the long term goal of enforcing ethics and excellence from the officers is an administrative issue at its roots.
The Administration Issue and why it is a concern to the public
In the current state of agencies being put under a microscope by the public, having officers that are ethically and morally sound is something that administration is forced to deal with. Accountability is a vital part of American policing and both individual officer and law enforcement agencies need to be held accountable for their actions. The standards and qualifications that the administration sets helps to form and mold the agency as a whole because if will attract the individuals that fit the mold. This is a huge concern for the public because with proper standards and measurements, an agency is already set up to fail. The public invests its time and trust into a police department when they give police officers the authority to make arrests, use force, and keep the peace within their community. Without the right people for the job, none of these objectives will be accomplished, leaving the public unprotected and more than likely victimized by the very people who are supposed to protect them.
The possible impact of the strategic plan on internal and external stakeholders
The idea and layout of this particular strategic plan is very simple and yet holds large weight on it. The Kelsey Police Department is already a functioning agency so it has experience in many of the areas pinpointed in the strategic report and, for the most part, should not be a surprise to external or internal stakeholders. The difference is that each of the stakeholders may have two very different reactions to the strategic plan’s outline.
For example, police officers are considered internal stakeholders and this plan is a review of their work. Police officers are public servants and do what they do not for the money or plans to get rich, but because they love what they do not what they are paid. Suggesting that the actions they are taking now, regardless of how valent or dedicated, are being questioned may insult and/or bring down the morale of the officers. It could actually be damaging to tell officers that, despite any hard work or effort, what they are doing is not good enough. It is a fine balancing act to convey the message that the strategic plan is a tool for improve their current actions, not discrediting them.
In the term of external stakeholders, the public is the biggest external stakeholder that a police agency can have. Without their support and cooperation, an agency’s missions and goals will never be achieved. With the implementation of this strategic plan, external stakeholders are given a chance to understand exactly what it is they expect of the police department. The goals and ideas of the public are clearly laid and explained in how they will be achieved. This gives the stakeholder a feeling of accomplishment and satisfaction in being heard.
The ways in which stakeholders affect the strategic plan
Both the external and internal stakeholders have a huge effect on this strategic plan. Although separate in their views and opinions of what needs to be accomplished, each side can affect how well this strategic plan will be implemented or destroyed. Officers, for example, may not be able to fully embrace the ideas of strengthening community relations; many police officers feel that the public needs to be on a need to know basis and by involving them in police work, there is only going to be failure and drama. These types of attitudes will stop a strategic plan from ever beginning or succeeding. A stakeholder, whether internal or external, needs to be supportive of a strategic plan or at least open to changes and improvements without immediately dismissing it. Without cooperation, there is no chance of a strategic plan even being implemented in the City of Kelsey.
Methods for communicating the strategic plan to stakeholders
There are several ways that this plan can be communicated to all stakeholders; both formal and informal. Formally, the City of Kelsey could hold meetings, conference calls, and distribute newsletters/emails/posters throughout the community. Although more informative, formal ways of communicating are either reserved for upper echelon or only reach a selected part of the populous. What may be more comfortable for most of the populous would be informally communicating it with them; events such as lunch meetings with local officers, sporting events, or even simple conversations with the public, where different officers meet face to face with the public, will tend to bring a stronger and clearer message.
Possible outcomes of the strategic plan
The strategic plan for the City of Kelsey Police Department is a comprehensive roadmap for the police department. It is expected that this plan must be periodically assessed and even modified if occasion called for it. The plan should be flexible enough to endure the changes that will be experienced by both the department and the community over the allotted period of time. For the internal issues that come up over the time of this plan, the administration of the Kelsey Police Department have to be committed to insuring that the workplace environment remains a place of teamwork, pride, and accomplishment for the community it serves. This plan envisions a good department rising up and becoming a great department; with the support of the community, along with the dedication of the officers who serve, the objectives and goals of the plan are obtainable.