Effective Communication in the Midst of Stress


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Public safety professionals are commissioned with the duty to serve in the midst of chaos and crisis. Even the most seemingly benign events can escalate and turn deadly.

On any given day, officers face resistance — both verbal and physical — and must make split-second crisis decisions, take command of a situation and later, justify their reasoning and their actions.

There are real dangers, and they are growing — within law enforcement, corrections and EMS.

And, because of the incredible pressure that comes with the job, tempers boil over, egos get in the way and even the “good guys” just don’t get along. Agencies can’t work together. Higher-ups abuse their power. Even within the department, there’s hostility within the ranks.

Under these conditions, justice cannot be served.

Having the strategies to handle crisis situations, escalatory conditions and potentially violent dangers helps save lives, further careers and, finally, enables officers to serve the public with honor and bring the peace and order that’s so desperately needed.

There are three things necessary to thrive within a conflict-driven profession: 1) Communications tactics that de-escalate tempers and situations, 2) Department-wide procedures that standardize a high level of service (and make complaints virtually disappear), and 3) defensibility after the fact.

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