Recognizing that the work of a police officer can be stressful, especially work with sensitive crimes (e.g., cybercrime, child pornography, drug cases, etc.), some police departments are investing in an “occupational debrief assessment” as a proactive measure to making sure their employees are coping adequately with the stressors they confront as part of their daily work.
Organization Development Consultants can assist your police or fire department in conducting occupational debrief assessments.
When is it time for an Occupational Debrief Assessment?
- Complaints by other employees.
- Becoming argumentative, short or erratic.
- Frequently calling in sick.
- Becoming critical of other employees.
- Withdrawing from teammates and job related duties.
Why Is It Different?
The basic goal is to encourage adaptive coping mechanisms and self-development strategies so as to encourage an officer to continue to make positive contributions as he/she carries out his/her work, recognizing that this process represents an investment that the department is making in the psychological wellness of the employees who undertake the process.
An occupational debrief assessment, on the hand, is analogous to the “annual physical” that is often undertaken to assess physical health. Sometimes officers are exposed to traumatic issues while on the job (e.g., duty-related shootings). In instances like these, a “critical incidents” assessment is suggested. In other instances, officers are having a difficult time meeting their duty-related assignments because of ongoing or chronic psychological or emotional issues. In these instances, a fitness-for-duty assessment is suggested.
Why Is It Important?
Ultimately, the Occupational Debrief Assessment is a tangible representation of the commitment that the department has to its most precious resources—the officers it employs. Consistent with operating as an “employer of choice,” the occupational debrief assessment says a great deal about the implicit contract the department forges with its employees, along the lines of, “We care about you . . . we want you to be at your best . . . and we will support you in your efforts on behalf of our department and the constituents we serve!”
Download our Occupational Debrief Assessment Information Sheet
For more information regarding how to incorporate an Occupational Debrief Assessment program email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 262-827-1901.