After my unsuccessful run for Congress, I finally got around to recording a new Police Dynamics training video. I based this one on a post by Dan Weigold on his blog Coach With Heart. I’ve been following Coach Weigold’s blog for a few years and we have sometimes “chatted” about principles of ethical leadership. And his recent post on Authentic Leadership is so consistent with the principles of Police Dynamics and the SHIELD Program teachings on Reflective Leadership that I asked him for permission to use it in this training session.

Coach Weigold identifies six components of authentic leadership (the components are his and the commentary mine)…

1. Compelling vision (does it inspire others, creating meaning) 

The ability to impart vision is a key leadership skill that is often overlooked. A carefully crafted vision and mission statement, founded on the core values of an organization, are essential for inspiring others and setting expectations. For those of you interested in building a culture of character within your agency, I suggest you take this vision-crafting process one step further by identifying 10 essential character qualities that you consider absolutely critical for success and include them in your policy or standards manual.

2. Employee input and participation (leaders need to listen)

I once asked my Chief of Staff, Barney Barnes, if we should get some input from our deputies before we initiated a particular operation. His response was, “Only if you want to know what’s really going on…!” Many leaders lose the ability to actively listen, or never developed it to start with. That’s why Dr. George Thompson, founder of Verbal Judo, was fond of saying that the opposite of talking is NOT “listening.” The opposite of talking is “waiting to interrupt…”

3. A trusting environment (vulnerable, authentic, genuine, transparent)

My faithful viewers have often heard me say that trust is the fuel that drives coactive relationships forward. This is fundamentally true with internal relationships as well as external ones. Trust flows from a foundation of integrity, which itself is a factor of both character and competence working in tandem. General Norman Schwarzkopf said, “Leadership is a potent combination of character and strategy. But if you have to be without one, be without the strategy…”

4. Ensure the values and standards are consistently applied and are known by everyone

I cannot overemphasize the importance of being the standard bearer within your organization. A leader bears the standard of excellence. Failure to clearly articulate, model, embrace, and enforce standards are all leadership failures.

5. People are held accountable for results (someone checks on the results)

Another quote from my Chief of Staff, Barney Barnes, that I have found to be true over and over again: “You get what you inspect, not what you expect.” He often reminded me that failure to discipline is another leadership failure. Find an older dictionary and look up the word discipline. Fundamentally it means training that molds, corrects, strengthens, and perfects moral character.

6. An environment of excellence

If you think about it, this is really the essence of leadership. It’s the ability to motivate others to higher and higher standards of excellence. Don’t confuse excellence with perfection. Excellence is the process and motivation to do something really well. Vince Lombardi said, “Perfection is not attainable, but if we chase perfection we can catch excellence.”

After asking Coach Weigold for permission to use portions of his post on authentic leadership, he asked me a very compelling question. He said, “What is the biggest ‘awareness’ challenge you face in training new police candidates?”

After giving it some thought, I responded that it was being aware of what we represent. Because we represent something much bigger than us–the law, the Constitution, the agency, the ideals of the police profession, and ultimately the people that we are sworn to serve. This is a profound shift in thinking that obliterates the ego in the process. And an officer’s ego is typically what gets him in trouble. Believing that you are representing yourself (your goals, agenda, ego…) is the first step towards a major ethical failure. This applies to leaders, too. Because when we lose sight of who and what we represent, it’s our own egos that get us in trouble as well. So I might add a 7th element to Coach Weigold’s list:

7. Mastering the Art of Representation by understanding you represent a set of higher authorities.

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Sheriff Ray Nash

Sheriff Ray Nash

What Law Enforcement and Community Leaders Are Saying About Police Dynamics

“A few years ago, we brought the Police Dynamics program to the Cincinnati Police Division and were most impressed with the quality of the training and richness of the program.”
Mike Daly
Character Council of Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky

"I have attended training conducted by the Police Dynamics Institute in the past and know Ray Nash both personally and professionally. They have my whole-hearted endorsement…"
Sheriff Larry Williams
Orangeburg, SC

"I cannot tell you how excited I am to see this website. I was introduced to your video on the Dynamics of Authority through my father who is a police chaplain for the FBI and local law enforcement agencies here in Las Cruces. I have taught and applied the Dynamics model to my students when I was a teacher, and now to my department as a fire fighter."
Nathan Carr
Las Cruces Fire Dept.

“One of the greatest seminars I have ever attended in the 33 years I’ve been a Deputy.”
Walter Bolinger
Marion County Sheriff’s Office, IN

"I was so impressed by the (Police Dynamics) program that I purchased your video tape series. All Grand County Sheriff’s Employees subsequently viewed the tapes, and I have also mandated that all new Sheriff’s Employees watch it as well."
Glen Trainor
Grand County Sheriff’s Office

"It is with much enthusiasm that I encourage senior law enforcement executives to make attending the Police Dynamics seminar a key training priority for your agency."
DeWayne Beggs
Cleveland County, OK
former 2nd VP - National Sheriff's Association

"I am convinced of the benefits of the Police Dynamics program."
Jerry Martin
Delores County, CO
former Pres - County Sheriff's of Colorado

"Honestly, I’ve not been more impressed with a police training that I’ve attended in the last 20 years..."
Tom McClain
Chief of Police
Willard, MO

"I am a firm believer that Police Dynamics and Character First! equip the men and women that work for the Oklahoma Sheriff’s Office to do their job and do it better."
John Whetsel
Oklahoma County, OK

"If you believe that good character is an essential element in policing, you will want to send your key staff to Police Dynamics."
David Williams
Tarrant County, TX

"In the three years prior to our character initiative, we had 42 labor and employee grievances, and seven different lawsuits. In the three years since we put the character initiative in place, we have had two grievances and no lawsuits from employees. I think that, in and of itself, is significant."
Rodney Ray
City Manager
Owasso, OK

"This course was one of the best training sessions that I’ve been through. This concept will benefit me and the staff in my division."
Police Dynamics participant

[We have] more awareness of the preventative benefits of a character initiative as opposed to the typical reactive approach to situations. There is a sense of excitement by organization leaders as they begin to see a change in their culture. Bob Powell
Character Council
Fort Collins, CO

"[The Police Dynamics training] brings us closer together, more like a family … it reminds us of why we’re out there and what it’s about.”
Captain John Decker
Dorchester County Sheriff's Office, SC

"This class gave me the vocabulary that I have been looking for to praise and motivate my employees."
Police Dynamics participant

"We’ve built a much better relationship with each other. We’ve seen a decrease in complaints. We’ve become a family instead of a place to work."
Sheriff Howie Godwin
Highlands County, FL

“This shows us a new approach to recognize employees’ character traits - and to acknowledge them for those good traits versus, 'You did an excellent job…' It’s some fresh ideas in an area that we probably all need to change."
Major P.D. Taylor
Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office

"The Police Dynamics training that Ray Nash brought teaches the things that are at the core of being a good police officer – being trustworthy, being of good character…"
Sgt. Julie Shearer
Cincinnati Police Div.

“In the Police Dynamics training seminar, the officers are able to set a standard in their own lives of the kind of character they want to see in their community."
Chaplain Carl Nelson
Colorado Springs Police Department

"Character is the solution to the real problem in our community of crime. Character supplies the answer."
Hon. F.A. Schad
Former Judge
Burleson, TX

“I want you to know that my international and national career was very much influenced by your lessons and knowing you was of paramount importance for my job and career. Many Romanian police officers are grateful to you and to Character training."
Teofil Parasca
Assistant Superintendent
Arad County Police

"I would like to work more toward management by principles instead of rules – with an emphasis on character and guiding principles."
Chief Lynn Williams
Chickasha, OK

“We need to return to our basic character traits that made this country great. Ray Nash has the program to do it."
Police Dynamics participant

"This shows us a new approach to recognize those employees’ character traits and to recognize and acknowledge them for those good traits versus, “You did an excellent job…” It’s some fresh ideas in an area that we probably all need to change."
Major P.D. Taylor
Oklahoma County Sheriff's Office

"In the three years prior to our character initiative, we had 42 labor and employee grievances, and seven different lawsuits. In the three years since we put the character initiative in place, we have had two grievances and no lawsuits from employees. I think that, in and of itself, is significant."
Rodney Ray
City Manager
Owasso, OK

"Absolutely fantastic! It reminded me of why I wanted to be a peace officer."
Police Dynamics participant

"the finest value-added training anywhere."
Sheriff David Williams
Tarrant County, TX

"We continue to benefit from your teaching and hire with a strong emphasis on character."
Chief Tom McClain
Willard, MO

"Once again, I feel absolutely indebted to you for the program you have developed and your desire to change the world through the building of better law enforcement officers."
Glen P. Trainor
Grand County, CO

"Sheriff Ray Nash is an internationally recognized speaker that you and your staff will learn powerful principles from, while enjoying the lesson."
DeWayne Beggs
Cleveland County, OK

"Very comprehensive, a great resource manual for the future. The seminar was dynamic in every way. What a great resource for people throughout their day-to-day routines.”
Doug Carter
Indiana State Police