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DCG Articles
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Fair Leadership Matters

“Procedural justice” is a popular term today. This term generally means fairness and respect in processes that resolve disputes or allocate resources. Many use the term when discussing police-community relations, arguing that law enforcement officers must act in a procedurally just manner (showing professionalism and respect) when interacting with the public in order to have […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
Don’t Have a “Rubber Gun Squad”? Separation Agreements in Public Safety

For years, the New York City Police Department has reserved a place within the department that is widely known as the “rubber gun squad”. This “squad” is comprised of individual officers who cannot be put on the street to conduct normal police operations for a variety of reasons.  Many of the officers have been reinstated […]

Matt Dolan, Attorney Read More
4 Performance Evaluation Pitfalls Your Agency Should Avoid

Broken performance evaluation systems damage public safety agencies across the country in two ways. First, they inaccurately give positive documentation to officers that are later used to reverse important disciplinary decisions in court or in arbitration. Second, by selecting “meets expectations,” supervisors are denying performance merits to officers who have earned much greater recognition. More […]

Matt Dolan, Attorney Read More
Improving Case Clearance Rates in Criminal Investigations

While it is obviously best to prevent or deter crime before it occurs, this is not always possible. Despite the fact that modern policing tactics, such as problem-oriented policing and intelligence-led policing, have contributed to massive crime decreases since the 1990s, agencies still have to grapple with the challenge of solving crimes that cannot be […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
Citizen Complaints and Misconduct—The 3 Career Paths

Most research on citizen complaints and rule violations shows that allegations against police officers generally happen within the first five years of that officer’s career. If the officer is lucky enough to still have a job after these first five years, complaints and other career problems tend to subside for the rest of the officer’s […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
Public Perceptions of Police Profanity

The use of profanity when dealing with members of the public has been debated in law enforcement circles for years. Most law enforcement leaders argue the use of profanity with members of the public is unprofessional and should be avoided whenever possible. Other leaders disagree with this. They instead argue that officers often need to […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
The FTO Process—A Once-in-a-Career Opportunity

The probationary employment period presents public safety leaders with a unique opportunity to evaluate performance, identify “red flags” and take proactive measures to address misconduct. For most officers, the close supervision and continual feedback that they receive from their Field Training Officers (FTOs) during this period will not be replicated for the entirety of their […]

Matt Dolan, Attorney Read More
Verbal De-escalation Techniques: How They Actually Work

Our verbal de-escalation courses help public safety professionals deal with difficult and argumentative verbal interactions with citizens without risking their careers. At the heart of this is the Rhetorical Continuum—in other words, just like there are ranges of force, there are also various levels of rhetoric that you can use to overcome citizen resistance. Like […]

Chief Harry P. Dolan (ret.) Read More
“Gypsy Cops”: Does Your Agency Have a Policy?

The intense media spotlight placed on law enforcement in recent years has often been one-sided, unfair or even disingenuously slanted against the profession.  However, at least one area of scrutiny should be welcomed by law enforcement professionals: the nation-wide problem of agency hopping, problem-prone individuals known as “gypsy cops”. For years, law enforcement leaders have […]

Matt Dolan, Attorney Read More
Sexual Harassment Liability in Public Safety

The national media has placed a keen focus on the issue of sexual harassment in the workplace over the past several weeks.  Media and political figures are accused of sexual misconduct and, possibly even more importantly, a multitude of men and women in positions of power are found to have been aware of misconduct to […]

Matt Dolan, Attorney Read More
Not in Our House? Substance Abuse among Police and Firefighters

It is not something we like to think about, but the evidence reveals that many law enforcement officers and firefighters struggle with abuse of alcohol, illegal drugs, or prescription drugs. Public safety professionals experience unusually high levels of stress related to potential dangers to their physical safety and the effects of experiencing a multitude of […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
“Why?” Is Not Always a Form of Disrespect

“Why?” This is a one-word question that requests clarification, reasoning, or purpose of some thing or some request. Asking ‘why’ is a universally human concept. Aristotle pointed this out over 2,300 years ago when he said, “All human beings, by nature, desire to know.”1 It is also a truly American word. In the United States, […]

Chief Harry P. Dolan (ret.) Read More
How Dangerous Are Domestic Violence Calls to Officer Safety?

Domestic violence (DV) calls carry a reputation for being extremely dangerous for officers. Some academics and DV victim advocates, however, have challenged this reputation and have suggested that DV calls are rarely dangerous for officers. This research brief will examine the research on assaults on officers at DV calls. Specifically, it will examine the prevalence […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
Helping Domestic Violence Victims

Domestic violence (DV) calls pose a number of physical safety and legal liability risks for law enforcement officers. These calls involve crimes between people with complex relationship issues that can make investigating these crimes very difficult for officers. In fact, one study that surveyed patrol officers from 13 different municipal police departments in the Chicago […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
Dolan Consulting Training Members Of The Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department

Dolan Consulting trained members of the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department on verbal de-escalation from September 5-8, 2017. The Train The Trainer Course helps participants become teachers of verbal de-escalation techniques and gives them the tools they need to teach others how to defuse potentially volatile situations.

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Performance Evaluations—Are They Helping Us or Hurting Us?

Why are we conducting performance evaluations and how are they making the agency better? These are fundamental questions for agencies that require standardized performance evaluations. Without clearly answering these questions, supervisors are often put in the position of pursuing the “path of least resistance” when it comes to conducting performance evaluations. This path is understandably […]

Matt Dolan, Attorney Read More
Remember the People between the Dots

Criminologists have documented that as young law enforcement officers progress through their careers, there is a tendency to develop cynical views toward the general public. The public primarily calls the police when things have gone wrong and, therefore, officers are overexposed to negative events and to bad citizen behavior. As a result, officers can often […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
Estimating the Cost of a Problem Officer

Law enforcement is a high-liability profession. Lawsuits against law enforcement officers and agencies absorb an inordinate amount of personnel time and agency resources. Officers and supervisors have to be interviewed or deposed, attorney fees have to be paid, documents have to be gathered and copied, meetings are held with city officials, and insurance companies must […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
Community Policing is Not Soft on Crime: The Evidence

Dolan Consulting Group is committed to the principles of community-oriented policing. Unfortunately, we sometimes encounter push back from attendees in our courses that suggest community-oriented policing strategies are some form of a “hug-a-thug” philosophy that is soft on crime and criminals. We are often baffled when we encounter such views as we struggle to understand […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
The Patrol Officer’s Perspective on Rewards and Punishments

Decades of extensive research in psychology has revealed that people respond to rewards and punishments in the workplace.1 Law enforcement officers are no exception. We are generally motivated to engage in, or refrain from, specific behaviors because of the rewards and punishments associated with those behaviors. Private industry often links pay and other rewards to […]

Richard R. Johnson, Ph.D. Read More
Are You Exercising Your Social Media Rights? Dolan Consulting Group Read More
Don’t Lose the Agreeable People!

Psychological research has suggested that about 80% of the U.S. population is made up of agreeable people.1 Agreeable people are generally honest, seek to get along with others, are open to suggestions, and are compliant to most rules and authority. They can be young or old, rich or poor, male or female, and of any […]

Chief Harry P. Dolan Read More
VIDEO – Rollcall Wisdom – Why Do We Need to Say the Pledge?

Rollcall Wisdom – Why Do We Need to Say the Pledge?

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VIDEO – Rollcall Wisdom – People Talk

Rollcall Wisdom – People Talk

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VIDEO – Rollcall Wisdom – Knock It Off

Rollcall Wisdom – Knock It Off

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Developing Organizational Performance Leadership