Communication is the systematic way of exchanging ideas and information involving two or more entities (Adair, 2009); in order to ensure that communication process is complete, the involved parties must actively participate and get involved in exchanging of such information. As such, effective communication is a two way process which involves sending of a message in the correct way which will facilitate and enable the intended recipient to understand the message as expected (Adair, 2009).
In this research paper, we shall discus and elaborate the importance of effective communication within the department of law enforcement and how it contributes positively to implementation of services within the community by officers in their line of duty; furthermore, we shall also look at the various recommendations that are essential in achieving effective communication by supervisors.
Why is effective communication important in law enforcement?
In this era of globalization, the need for better and sufficient communication has increased which demands the need for advanced communication skills. For this reasons, it is equally important to make the necessary changes in order to facilitate effective communicational within the law enforcement agencies. There are numerous reasons why supervisors should apply the concept of effective communication in the department of law enforcement as discussed below.
First, effective communication is basic since it is through such ways that sufficient information is acquired necessary for producing the desired result. Effective communication therefore ensures provision of adequate information that consequently facilitates the exchange of ideas for a given purpose (Miller and Miller, 2009).
Secondly, effective communication reduces ambiguity cases such as misinterpretation of the message and information as per the original intentions. This means that when effective communication occurs within such a department the message is acquired in the right and correct way by the recipients and therefore instance of misinterpretations are eliminated which will lead to achieving positive outcomes and accurate response (Adair, 2009).
Finally, effective communication creates a complete concept of authority and responsibility especially when the supervisor initiates communication to their sub-ordinates at the work place and it is through such ways where instructions are given.
Qualities of effective communication skills
For an effective communication to occur between the supervisors and their subordinate staff, especially within the law enforcement department it a basic concept that both entities involved should poses quality communication skills which we shall review as follows.
One of the most important concepts in communication is to posses those quality that will lead to effective communication; effective communication skills that leads to progressive and positive communication is having the ability to understand ones listeners at all times (Miller and Miller, 2009).
For instance, a police supervisor should try to at least know and understand their audiences which will always facilitate passing of messages in the appropriate way. Through such ways, the supervisor will obviously be able to communicate ideas and other necessary information to their staff in the correct way; it also helps in solving problems of interpersonal communication. Additionally, quality communication skills are those displayed when a supervisor is able to determine the best mode of communication for a particular topic.
This is essential so because a supervisor is a leader, as such a good leader is able to know the best way of communicating to the intended audience (Miller and Miller, 2009). In most cases, the best mode of communication is face to face communication because it is done in an open way that allows listeners the opportunity to give feedbacks based on the topic under discussion. Through such ways, the recipient will usually feel as being part of the communication through giving immediate responses necessary to solve issues in the accurate manner.
Examples of effective and non-effective communication
The following discussion will focus on factual examples at the work place where there are instances of effective and non-effective communication between the supervisors and the subordinates. In order to have a deeper understanding of these concept and effects that usually arises in each of the situations. First let us review a case of an effective communication.
A criminal activity has been reported in the town with at least two death cases having occurred during a night robbery in which a car was stolen. The town mayor reports the case to the central police station via a letter requesting for an investigation to this particular case. The police supervisor in charge takes the matter with all the serious and writes a memo for an urgent meeting with the subordinates and fellow officers in order to discuss the matter and chart the cause of action.
During the meeting, the supervisor indicates the importance to investigating the case immediately and he also plans a strategy to execute an operation successfully. During the meetings, the discussion is open in order to generate ideas that will facilitate the success of the operation. Due to the whole operation being well coordinated and properly schemed, three suspects are caught and the stolen car is recovered.
The case presented above is one that shows how effective communication is executed through the chain of commands until the objective of the mission is achieved for the betterment of the society. Throughout the reporting of the case to the planning and implementation stages for the operation strategy, we see how quality and effective communication takes place between the supervisor and the subordinates.
On the other hand the following discussion will review another case which will however elaborate a case of non-effective communication. A supervisor at the work place asks his secretary to write a memo to alert all officers about a meeting and place it at all the notice boards. The meeting which is scheduled on 3rd of June is however rescheduled to 1st June. The secretary makes the necessary changes and places new memos indicating the same.
However, on one of the notice boards she forgets to replace the old one with a new memo. One of the subordinates happens to see the earlier notice and for that reasons he fails to appear for the meeting due to lack of effective communication. The case above is one that indicates a factual case of non-effective communication which has a negative impact. This is as a result of what is referred as barrier to effective communication as discussed below.
Overcoming barriers to effective communication
Barrier to effective communication are those factors that hamper or interfere with the communication process causing breakdown of communication; such factors may include environmental factors, semantics factors, and personal attitude among others (Dynamicflight.com, 2007). It is essential that a supervisor try to overcome the barriers to effective communication in order to achieve positive results.
Among the common ways of overcoming such barriers is through using face to face communication; face to face communication is a good way since the response is immediate and therefore the supervisor is able to get the feedbacks which help to determine whether the audience is getting the message as intended.
Additionally, a supervisor can also create supportive relationship with his subordinate and this will help toward developing a mutual trust between the employees and the supervisors. Further more, it is also very important for a supervisor to repeat the communication on a regular basis in order to ensure that effective communication takes place at the right time (Dynamicflight.com, 2007).
Motivation at the work place
Motivation is a requirement for success almost in all areas; therefore, a supervisor should induce ways of motivating his junior officers at the work place in order to facilitate changes towards the right direction. A good supervisor is one who will sacrifice his time to develop a plan for achieving desired objectives; as such, a good plan will incorporate qualities that are appealing to the officers such as conducive environment and democratic ways of resolving problems and so on (Chevalier, 2007).
At all time, a supervisor should be able to understand his subordinate in order to determine which technique will be applicable in inducing motivation among his juniors. Thus, a good supervisor should have a basic understanding of the various motivational theories which will help him in indentifying diverse way to motivate and also learn the personality of the workmates which will also facilitate positive motivation (Miller and Miller, 2009).
The goal is to have all employees become self motivated in order to maximize output at individual level; therefore, the supervisor should work towards improving interpersonal relationship which will build cooperation and hence facilitate achieving departmental objectives (Chevalier, 2007).
Adair, J. (2009). Effective Communication: The Most Important Management Skill of All. LinkedIn: Pan Macmillan.
Chevalier, R. (2007). A manager’s guide to improving workplace performance. New York: AMACOM Div American Mgmt Ass Press.
Dynamicflight.com. (2007). Effective communication. Retrieved from
Miller, M. & Miller, L. (2009). Effective police supervision. Retrieved from