NTOA Forums Operational Leadership SWAT Command Decision-Making And Leadership I: SWAT Personnel Recruitment Should SWAT Teams try to reach the younger generations and get them interested in SWAT?

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    • #4491
      Anonymous
      Inactive
    • #6355
      mmWayne Griffin
      Participant

      SWAT Teams should most definitely reach out to the younger generation and try to get them interested in SWAT or raise their interest level in SWAT. Like I said in an earlier discussion board, the younger generation is a great source of information. The are extremely tech savvy, and routinely think outside the box. We would be doing ourselves a disservice if we do not reach out to the younger generation and use that asset to our advantage. They can learn from use and vice versa.

    • #6475
      mmDrew Leblanc
      Participant

      Being a young officer in my career, I believe, I was developed to be on SWAT. I think people saw something in me that would make me a good operator. SO with that being said, I believe the younger we can grab a hold of the younger generation the better off we will be in years to come as SWAT leadership. Also, it will allow us to figure out those who are not SWAT material and focus them on something that they will be more successful at.

    • #6488
      Jeffrey Brown
      Participant

      I have had my head wrapped around this question since I opened this forum. I came into this profession with the intention of becoming a SWAT operator from the beginning. There was no other path I considered. I am making an effort to change my thinking, but I am having a difficult time of it. I didn’t need to be convinced to self motivated, it just happened. If we do not have self motivated, highly dedicated candidates, we may not have self motivated, highly dedicated operators. I believe we should seek out the best candidates for the job, then choose from the best of them for SWAT. As a way to reach out we should expose the officers to training provided by the teams cadre at every opportunity. We will make them better officers, while at the same time evaluating who will make future candidate for the team.

    • #7468
      mmJacob Taylor
      Participant

      I believe younger officers have a lot to offer, but there has to be some experience to go along with it. We have a 3-year policy for any specialized unit on the department. This allows for 2 things to happen. The officer gains some knowledge and experience of how to be a police officer and it gives the team leaders a decent amount of time to evaluate their performance. During the selection process, we can hopefully narrow down the best person for the job and make a selection with the overall information. Long term I believe if you can reach someone (quality officer) at a younger stage in their career, you can extend their potential and longevity on the department with great skills and leadership training.

    • #7725
      Anthony Kies
      Participant

      I have been involved in the SWAT game for the last 15 years. A struggle that seems to happen for our agency is getting the younger generations involved with many aspects of the police department. The SWAT portion seems to be that much harder. We have taken the task on and try to include as many new officers as we can when training to give them an idea of what we do. I do think we should try to reach younger generations because if we fail to do this then we won’t be leaving our communities with much for the future.

    • #7743
      mmChris Eklund
      Participant

      I think there are potential candidates that are easily recognized by operators on the team. There are members of the younger generations who exhibit traits that can lead someone to believe that person would make a good fit in the SWAT world.

    • #7838
      Max Yakovlev
      Participant

      I think that we have a responsibility to reach out and to potential candidates for our teams. Our goal should be to recruit and keep the best of the best that the agency has. New/younger officers also are very good with technology which will help and improve our teams.

    • #8064
      Adam Bradford
      Participant

      SWAT teams should reach all generations, definitely the younger generation. The younger Officers have different perspectives, are easy to mold (for the most part), and are typically hungry. They want to be challenged and want to excel. They may offer technical support, dealing with technology that some of the older guys/girls may not offer.

    • #8318
      Jon Thompson
      Participant

      Yes. I hesitate to “recruit” people, as that has backfired on me in the past but we should definitely teach our tactics and procedures to younger officers. It may spark an interest in trying out for the team or it may simply give a younger officer more tools in his toolbox…either way, it’s a win-win situation.

    • #8338
      Jesse Laintz
      Participant

      Not only should we, but we also have to. There is a succession in all business areas and this includes SWAT. If we do not include the next generation and the generation after that we will no longer have a team. Succession planning is an important leadership practice for all levels, commanders, team leaders, and even for the new probationary member. To ensure the future of the team we have to plan for it and this includes getting the younger generation interested in SWAT. If a team does not include the younger generations that team will seize to exist.

    • #8467
      mmShawn Wilson
      Participant

      Yes. Does it make sense for a bunch of 45-55 year old Team members not to include the younger generation of 25-35 year old operators. I would ask why wouldn’t we. It would be negligent to alienate the younger generation due to EGO or arrogance and the old Team will eventually just die out due to a failure to reach the younger generation.

    • #8487
      Thomas Carroll
      Participant

      Yes. Recruitment and retention are an enduring task. We cannot afford to limit ourselves to a specific pool of candidates. In these challenging times many officers may not be willing to do anything more than they must. This will further limit the pool. Engage and recruit the younger generation and hopefully you can mentor them into an operator with longevity to sustain the team in the future.

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