Showing posts from January, 2016

Harmony: Resisting Standardization & Embracing Diversity

My first half-dozen years as a police trainer were spent standardizing techniques and protocols. The second half-dozen has been spent trying to break upthose standards that I had established! It took a few years, but I've learned to not onlytolerate diversity, adaptability, and creativity...I've come toappreciateand embrace it.
Standards, in and of themselves, are not evil. They bring us comfort. They give us predictability. They provide us a norm. They show us what is expected. They demonstrate repeatability and efficiency.Sounds pretty good, right?
This is ideal for a factory assembly line, or a fast food restaurant, or a computer program, or a big box retailer...where the strategy is exacting replication, lightning-fast response, low pricing, and mass production. But in policing, as in many of your industries, standardization can easily be taken a too far. 
That brings us to the dark side of standards.
Standards are rigid and inflexible. They have low tolerances for deviation. …