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Able to evidence leadership impact in & beyond your team by Steve Cooper



We have teamed up with Steve Cooper Police Promotion coach to bring you free tools and resources to help with your Police Promotion prep, Steve Cooper is one of the leading police promotion coaches in the United Kingdom.

Thanks to Steve and his company Rank Success is able to offer Police Hour readers free promotion tools that other coaches would charge you for, thanks to our great relation with Steve we are able to offer you this advice, information and valuable police promotion information and advice absolutely free of charge for the Police Hour readers looking for Police Promotion.

The focus of this exclusive editorial feature written by Steve Cooper is the ‘7 Things interview boards also look for in promotion candidates’ is knowledge of the policing environment you aspire to lead in. As a reminder, here are the 7 key traits which police promotion boards inherently value:

  1. Good awareness and understanding of vision or mission
  2. Self-aware, understanding personal values and development areas
  3. Demonstrates awareness of the current policing context
  4. A response that goes beyond the theoretical
  5. Able to evidence leadership impact in & beyond your team
  6. Well-structured and considered responses
  7. Demonstrate strong leadership skills grounded in service delivery

Thing 5: Able to Evidence Leadership Impact Within and Beyond Your Team

“The price of anything is the amount of life you exchange for it.” – Henry David Thoreau

Being required to write or talk about oneself in a leadership context can be difficult. Those who can do it confidently and pro-actively and who prevail in a promotion selection process are usually those who focused beforehand on developing their ability to do this.

In simple terms, that’s it.

Enter the Dragon’s Den

“I am far more likely to invest if the founding entrepreneurs have already invested in themselves.” – Duncan Bannatyne

Dragons DenI recently coached an officer to change their perspective of the interview panel, while developing their confidence to verbalise sound responses. Initially, they thought of their impending promotion interview opportunity as a ‘Dragons Den’ experience. On this TV show, entrepreneurs enter the ‘den’ to seek investment in their business ideas. Before they do that and in order to exploit the opportunity fully, they will practice their ‘pitch’. Some clearly do it better than others, and it shows. Competence in delivering their pitch is often underpinned by weeks and days of practice beforehand to maximise potential.

In this respect, leadership expectations of Sergeants and Inspectors include leading people, leading change and managing performance. Unsurprisingly, a promotion board may ask a couple of questions about them!

The leadership impact of Sergeants is essentially focused around team effectiveness. As police forces and other organisations become ‘flatter’ in hierarchy, it is likely Sergeants will also be leading ‘beyond their authority’ as ways of working develop and change.

For leadership impact of Inspectors, expectations may stretch beyond and across force wide teams, specialist departments, partner agencies or wider afield. It may include developing and implementing plans to influence organisations.

Considered practice and effort helps get this across well in your promotion application or interview responses. A few ‘dry runs’ practising your pitch to ‘the dragons’ ahead of your opportunity will help influence and impress them! More importantly, it will boost your ability and with that, your confidence.

If that is something that sounds worthwhile and you’d like to make a meaningful start, here is one way to practice taming the dragons before you have to. Imagine this as the very first question you are asked on your promotion board:

Why you?
Image:, used with permission from Microsoft

Why should anyone be led by you?

An effective response to this could easily put clear blue sea between you and other candidates. But you are unlikely to deliver an effective response without laying the foundations for it today, because it’s a hard question to answer.

Did I mention that it was a hard question? It’s probably the hardest leadership question for anyone to answer. Leadership academics Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones wrote a book with the same title. They found whenever they asked that particular question over ten years of research, often to a room of executives, the result was a sudden stunned hush. It’s difficult because it’s introspective. In order to do it and yourself justice, you have to reach inside yourself for the response.

As a promotion candidate seeking to be appointed to a formal leadership position as a Sergeant or Inspector, you might agree that whilst it is a testing question, it is also a fair one. Practice in answering this can prepare you well for any other leadership-based questions at any level of leadership.

Reality check: Nothing you have read about above matters in the slightest, if you are not taking action right now.

“The most difficult thing is the decision to act, the rest is merely tenacity.” – Amelia Earhart

Taking action is the one thing that will move you closer to achieving any goal. You can choose to start right now.Building foundations

  • Treat it as a question in your promotion application.
  • Grab a pencil, get to work and start constructing a response.
  • Now imagine it as the only question in your promotion interview.
  • Consider and rehearse a verbal response.

This is one good way to start laying solid foundations for your promotion success. A valuable tool you’ll need to hand is the promotion framework that you will be assessed against.

Structuring your evidence: An example (Inspector level)

Promotion to InspectorLets take the Policing Professional Framework (PPF) to look at one example of leadership impact at Sergeant to Inspector level. It was used successfully to achieve promotion to Inspector after the officer contacted me for some assistance. This example is from my downloadable guide 25+ examples of what works in promotion applications.

The PPF very helpfully divides the vast subject of police leadership into three ‘personal qualities’ (aka behaviours/competencies). Here’s the framework guidance:

Leading change: [Positive about change, adapting rapidly to changing circumstances and encouraging flexibility in others. Identifies and implements improvements to service delivery, engaging people in the change process and encouraging them to contribute ideas. Finds more cost-effective ways to do things, taking an innovative approach to solving problems and considers radical alternatives].

Leading people: [Inspires people to meet challenging goals, maintaining the momentum of change. Gives direction and states expectations clearly. Talk positively about policing creating enthusiasm and commitment. Motivates staff by giving genuine praise, highlighting success and recognising good performance. Gives honest and constructive feedback to help people understand their strengths and weaknesses. Invests time in developing people by coaching and mentoring them, providing developmental opportunities and encouraging staff to take on new responsibilities].

Managing performance: [Translates strategy into specific plans and actions, effectively managing competing priorities with available resources. Takes a planned and organised approach to achieving objectives, defining clear timescales and outcomes. Identifies opportunities to reduce costs and ensure maximum value for money is achieved. Demonstrates forward thinking, anticipating and dealing with issues before they occur. Delegates responsibilities appropriately and empowers others to make decisions. Monitor progress and holds people to account for delivery, highlighting good practice and effectively addressing under-performance].

Here is the question posed:

“Please provide an example of when your leadership has improved performance.”

And here’s the officer’s evidence:

“The Great Summer Breeze (GSB) Festival experienced a significant rise in public complaints concerning Anti Social Behaviour.

As bronze commander with a shared mission to ensure our force remains a safe place to live, work and visit, I took ownership. I talked personally to complainants and wider stakeholders. I reviewed incident reports with them to gain a better understanding of issues from their perspective. Strong views were expressed concerning criminal damage, urinating outside properties and walking through gardens. Aware that alleviating ASB in communities is a driver of public confidence, I invited affected parties to a public meeting. My aims were to reduce ASB, manage expectations and restore confidence. I addressed the group, providing information/inviting feedback. I listened. Ideas discussed included volunteering. I developed this into an action group. I secured additional local authority resources and worked with operations department to ensure police resources were targeted more effectively around demand. I developed and implemented a revised Community Policing Plan. I conducted media interviews raising awareness/reassuring the wider community. To manage the impact of changes for police/civilians, I communicated frequently, remaining accessible for contact/queries.

Police overtime savings of £4000 were realised through empowering local residents to conduct tasks, which four police officers/PCSOs had traditionally completed. This included running the community office, delivering crime prevention information and ‘community intelligence’ updates. This is now recognised good practice for GSB festival. There were no further complaints. The resident’s association praised police commitment and local confidence was successfully restored. ASB reduced by 40%.”


“There is nothing so terrible as activity without insight.”- Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

The request (“Please provide an example of when your leadership has improved performance”) offers a valuable opportunity for any well-prepared candidateto evidence their leadership impact in and beyond the team.

Whether you are required to submit a written application as part of your force promotion selection process or not, structuring your evidence in this way to layout or ‘tell the story’ can help ensure it is aligned to the framework guidance provided.

As a starting point, it is imperative to answer the question, which this example does. It’s a professional response at Inspector level, demonstrated by…

  • A clear indication of strategic awareness, which is important at Inspector level e.g. shared mission, drivers of public confidence.
  • The individual’s leadership impact clearly extends to influencing partners and the wider community.
  • The importance of communicating, listening and seeking feedback whilst implementing changes is acknowledged.
  • The evidence alludes specifically to the Inspector’s role e.g. developing, implementing and reviewing plans.
  • You can clearly see/hear how the officer’s aims and the wider outcomewere achieved from the action/s described – aligned to the guidance (competence).
  • There is a strong outcome with specific results. Performance is managed and improved.

The structure used is ‘Problem > Action > Result‘ (PAR). It’s one way to structure evidence for your promotion application and/or your interview responses. It’s the structure this officer preferred to use, but you can find other structure options in my digital promotion interview guide.

Problem, Action, Result

It’s important to remember the actual content and context of the example can be any situation. This could include examples from neighbourhood policing, response, organisational change or critical incidents. The important thing is not to ramble but adhere closely to the framework guidance for top marks.

Tip: Once your evidence is drafted in this way, it can be verbalised and practised as a potential interview response.

No Guarantees

“I have no magic formula. The only way I know to win is through hard work”. – Don Shula

All of this is essentially about skills that can be developed. However, many candidates run out of time because they kick into action only when a promotion process opens. Cue panic mode! Others may simply need a bit of help pulling together the structure, polishing the final product or developing potential interview responses.

Police officers are effective at recognising evidence in investigations. It’s what they are trained to do. Unfortunately, when it comes to recognising evidencefrom operational experiences to support a promotion bid, this ability diminishes. It’s not what they are trained to do.

“There is nothing more deceptive than an obvious fact.” – Arthur Conan Doyle


Coaching is one option to quickly raise your awareness and help bring relevant evidence into focus building a case for promoting you.

Alternatively, working in slower time to collate your best supporting examples and to understand your force promotion framework will assist with ‘blending in’ links with the role you aspire to. You can then consider your drafts against your force mission, vision and values. Any refinements or polish required to help you stand out can always be added from there.

This process can take months of work. So it’s not surprising that candidates like Rich, aiming for Inspector rank, like to accelerate things with a bit of help. Here’s a snippet from his last email to me:

“I managed to score 20/20 at local assessment, they knocked one mark off at moderation resulting in 19/20. Your guides obviously helped me shape my examples into exactly what they were looking for.”

I remind officers that there is no ‘magic formula’ or guarantee for success in writing a promotion application or preparing ahead of an interview board. It’s hard work, but if you need support, there are some tried and tested ways to start marshalling what you have to offer and to work smarter.


“I went to a book store and asked the saleswoman, ‘Where’s the self-help section?’ She said if she told me, it would defeat the purpose.” – Steven Wright

It’s not only Sergeant and Inspector candidates who experience uncertainty when attempting to translate or align their experience to meet the criteria for promotion

Hopscotch through police promotion

Hop: When he first decided to attend a Rank Success Promotion Masterclass,Jon was a Sergeant looking to make the hop to Inspector.

Skip: He did so first time. The skip to Chief Inspector followed shortly afterwards.

Jump: Jon invested in his development again prior to successfully making the next jump to Superintendent. Here are a few words from Jon about how he chose to prepare beforehand:

“I found [the Inspector example guide] really useful to see how evidence should be structured against the PPF and provide a detailed and evidenced written response to the behaviours… also to structure my interview examples and how best to create a clear vision for what I would demonstrate and achieve in the next rank.

I particularly liked the way the guide laid out the different word count examples for example 250, 300 and 500 words and how to answer force specific questions around personal statements of what I would bring to the rank.

The guide helped me broaden my thinking and awareness for the higher rank of Superintendent. I feel it would be equally of use to those applying for Chief Inspector and Superintendent, because I have yet to see anything which gives candidates this clear advice and guidance in order to best structure their evidence to be successful in a police promotion process.”

Solid Commitment

Read more about Jon and others who successfully evidenced their leadership impact beyond their teams. All of them have two things in common. A solid personal commitment to prepare thoroughly, backed up with MASSIVE determined action.

Why not start evidencing YOUR leadership impact NOW?



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Policing & Tweeting the rise and fall



Policing & Tweeting in recent months has been subjected to lots of debate, There are four types of policing and tweeting accounts.

  1. The Corporate accounts with the big followings and the blue ticks
  2. The individual officers who have worked hard to build up accounts up by engaging with the public
  3. The anonymous officers behind the smoke screens, without these we’d not see every coin of policing.
  4. The divisional accounts and team accounts.

We’ll make our views a little clear when it comes to Tweeting and Policing, We don’t usually comment on the politics of things, But we feel we need to make the public aware that accounts are being shut down daily.

Corporate tweeting builds the foundations, But Officers turn them into homes and welcome us in. 

Corporate tweeting is also a good start for policing and tweeting, it allows the forces media teams to send out one clear message, Launch appeals and reduce the prospect of fake news, they can speak directly to followers but lack that human to human contact.

The individual officer accounts, are loved by many and show members of the public the human side of policing they enable communities to break down the barriers that the corporate accounts offer, on a scale that cannot be achieved anywhere else.

The Anonymous accounts, Well we know these accounts are well respected but don’t want to be publically named they can say the things the individual officer accounts would not really get away with and expose some of the more trending policing topics across social media while offering great support and context for the thin blue line. We have a lot to learn from these accounts and often a lot to fear.

The Divisional accounts are not a new thing, many have been going for years, but mainly set up by officers who did not want to put their name to the social media accounts, cops who wanted to tweet but from the screen of the divisional team or unit. There are many fantastic divisional and team accounts engaging in such a brilliant way but these are manned by as little as one or two people.

Personally, Police Hour is looking for positive social media, social media that shines a good light on the great communities the police officers work in and the great work that the officers are doing. After all, not everyone is bad, We don’t want to see the negative tweets we want to celebrate policing and work together in a light that is supportive of the thin blue line.

The Rise 

In 2006, Policing Professional Standards teams would hunt out officers, they’d arrest them and discipline them they’d be forced to remove the account and we are talking about accounts with over 35K followers, for those that remember Das Beard.

This happened because simply the police had no idea about the power of Twitter and how good it could be as a force for good.

Then one day Twitter was a thing, Twitter within policing meant something, the corporate accounts began piling on to Twitter launching and opening their own Twitter Accounts.

Tweeting and Policing was suddenly something that worked, and all of a sudden hundreds of officers were encouraged to open accounts, Tweeting was trendy and we think that was down to the hard work of the Police Twitter Awards team.

The Fall

At some point towards the end of 2017, the powers that be within Policing believed that knocking off one account at a time would go unnoticed, The official standpoint would be ‘We are not banning officers from Twitter, We are changing the way we tweet’ so, in a nutshell, they are forcing policy in the faces of policing and tweeting accounts and saying they must stop tweeting on their personal accounts which have in some cases earned followings of up to 30K people to be switched to a shared account with no followers so they can start again and build everything up from nothing for the good of the ‘corprate teams’

It sounds more professional doesn’t it, of course, it does in fact if you are a bit of a pen pusher the idea is fantastic. Let’s crush thousands of established twitter accounts and force the officers to simply switch to ours that does not yet work,

Honestly, if you think these officers are going to want to keep tweeting after being banned from using their own accounts you’d really need to think again.

The truth is the public love the individual officer accounts, they’ve done such a fantastic job at engaging the public and providing the online world has no barriers when it comes to human to human contact, without the corporate side of things.

We all know these anonymous and named accounts pose no risk to policing and tweeting and are actually the accounts that restore and maintain the public faith in policing, these are the people we support, laugh with and cry with along the way.

Policing voices are being silenced under new social media policy

Somewhere in policing someone hates social media and does not like the way in which it is increasing confidence within policing and breaking barriers because policing voices are being silenced and shut down.

Policing and Twitter has enabled police officers to communicate with their communities like never before, increasing engagement, building bridges and ensuring members of the community can see highlights of what is happening within their local community, adding a personality to the local policing team and simply making people smile.

They enable members of the public to see that our police officers are just like us and that they are actually human with a sense of humour, But Professional Standards and force policy are putting a stop and attempting to kill the strong policing tweeting community they are silencing a large number of accounts.

Many Police Inspectors, Police Officers and Special Constables are finding they are being called into the offices with senior management teams and being forced to hand over the passwords of their accounts, or shut down their twitter policing accounts.

In a time of police cuts, POLICE HOUR believes this is the real reason that officers are having their voices taken away, they simply do not want the public to see the real picture. The once highly supported accounts who have been fully approved via the internal forces processes are now in certain forces being shut down.

Despite this officers are even being forced to lock down their own accounts or close them completely, controlling the way officers are using social media.

Very few forces actually get the benefit of social media 

Some police officers out there who tweet are very lucky and find themselves supported by their police force, because these forces have truly grasped technology with the right guidelines in place to encourage tweeting in the right way.

It’s all about learning what you can and can’t say on social media and when it all goes wrong it’s simply a mistake, a simple tweet and these should be supported by senior officers in forces.

Many forces do support these because when they get it right the power of Twitter can be amazing and engage communities and people across the world like never before in creative ways and in ways the public can relate too.

How can a police officer become a police tweeter?

Police Staff and Police Officers can apply to run their own Twitter account, but they must follow forces internal policy and submit a business needs request in order to run an official account, and they must then face the senior management team and a decision will then be made by the chief constable based on the reasoning for wanting to open a policing twitter account. It’s not an easy road.

Connecting all the cogs. 

Why fix something if it’s not broken. There is a need for the corporate divisional accounts, but why not let the officers still keep their private accounts tweeting they way they tweet and then achieve the vision of the new divisional accounts all the cogs need to keep working otherwise the wheel is going to fall off.

The good work of these tweeting accounts need to continue and we need to ensure we get behind and continue to support the very quickly disappearing popular accounts going daily.

Tweeting on an individual level also has a weight of personal responsibility attached that can only be limited to that named officer which would be limited to a few comments about the force whereas tweeting on corporate account risks the reputation of the force rather than just the name officer.

Do let us know your views on Tweeting and Police by dropping @PoliceHour a tweet.



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Police Hour has hit over 2 million readers a week every week for over six months



Police Hour has grown from a small startup to something that really means something. We’d just really like to take a moment to thank you and let you know what has been happening behind the screens on the amazing journey you’ve supported us down.

Back in May we secretly established office space in Hartlepool and spent more time focusing on Police Hour, and since may our weekly readers have never dropped below 2.2 million unique readers, That is all thanks to you for staying with us or joining us.

We’ve been building our servers and increasing the speed in which you can access our site, we silently launched a new look website and focused on technology and working closely with Facebook, Twitter & Google to establish some connections and contacts. Along the way, we have met some fantastic people who offered us some great advice.

Our aim back in 2014 was to provide balanced non-sensationalised policing news that was reported in a positive way for Police Officers nearly four years later we have outgrown our original aim, with many members of the community who support our front line police officers jumping in a supporting us.

We don’t share fake news and we ensure we do not publish in a way to encourage shares, clicks or clickbait and ensure we still provide a voice for front-line police officers, but due to our expanding demand and rapid growth have gone beyond these areas to offer content for those of you out there who are not police officers.

Over the past 12 months, We’ve been to many award ceremonies and even spoken at conferences about Police Hour something we did not think would ever happen.

The support we also get from the policing community is also amazing and we cannot thank all of these individual officers enough not only for the hard and challenging job they are doing but the warmth in the way they have welcomed police hour in to their hearts, We see the real side of policing the side that many do not get to see and we can promise you they are working non stop around the clock to make a difference for you and not for their own gain.

Supporting the thin blue line 

In the last six months alone we have together raised 20K for the families and officers injuries in major incidents in the line of duty, We have all stood up together shoulder to shoulder and supported these families, offering them some fantastic support.

This money has helped police officers get home and paid for rehabilitation to get them back to work, we are ever so proud of this and can only thank our readers for digging deep and supporting the thin blue line.

Keeping content free

As many news outlets within the policing world look to charge monthly and yearly subscriptions we’ll simply be keeping our content free and won’t be charging you or restricting our content, Although a lot of time and money is spent behind the scenes bringing our news to your screens we believe content should be free and you should not be faced with a paywall.

We’ll be ensuring that Police Hour will remain free, and it always will be.

What we are offering Police Officers. 

We’re really getting behind and supporting those of you out there who want to become police officers, and for the first time Police Hour will be offering all of you out there who aspire to become police officers free content and tools that we believe will help you pass the police recruitment process and stand you in good stead for the future.

We will start releasing further details about this in March when we hope everything will be ready to go.

Police Promotion

We’ve established some fantastic networking opportunities that enable us to support the front line in terms of police promotion, we now have a Steve Cooper on hand to offer you free promotion content that we believe will invest in your future or the way you think and approach things.

Developing digital content

Police Hour has invested thousands of pounds in technology that will enable us to release professionally produced video content, although we cannot say much about this at the moment we have been out and about filming in Hartlepool and other areas of Teesside.

News and content 

We believe that our news and content should remain fresh and remain supportive of the thin blue line, we believe it is so important to continue sharing missing people appeals of many which never reach the local media or national media.

We believe we should only produce content that we believe you will read, that we believe will add value.

We want to share news and write news that matters to you and your community. There is many more things happening behind the scenes that we can’t tell you about just yet but we do look forward in sharing them.

Simply to you and our 2.2 Million readers we’d simply love to say thank you from the bottom of our hearts.



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Announcing exclusive partnership with Rank Success and offering you our readers free police promotion material to get you passed



Police Rank Structure UK

We are delighted to announce an exclusive partnership with Steve Cooper of Rank Success further showing our support to the thin blue line and offering you content that will invest in you and your skills. 

This one is just for those with aspirations to be Police Sergeant or Police Inspectors, We will offer you exclusive content that will be released each month throughout 2018.

This content will be FREE and released via our website, this content could be just what you need to get that police promotion, The content we will be offering will be enough to get you passed if you put the right preparation and revision in.

This content is a first of it’s kind of the ‘expensive’ world of police promotion and will be ideal content for aspiring promotion candidates!

In the exclusive partnership, Police Hour has teamed up with coach and mentor Steve Cooper of Rank Success to offer you FREE top tips that could get you passed the police recruitment process aiming for the rank of Sergeant or Inspector.

Why are we announcing this partnership?

For a while now Police Hour has interested in offering our readers who aspire to police promotion some free content that could just get them passed that process, We know that despite not many of our readers will want police promotion at the moment or be interested in this kind of content but we want to be able to offer our readers who do want more and do aspire to be the best they can be to be some free content that we believe here at Police Hour will help them achieve that new role of Sergeant or Inspector.

So we have been watching Steve’s approach and we think it is quite a ‘niche’ area of coaching and mentoring. On his testimonials page, you can see a growing body of successful officers describing in their own words how valuable this kind of support is.

We also believe we should be supporting independent businesses out there within the policing world just like ourselves.

Did you say FREE Stuff?

Yes, you heard that right, The content Steve will be providing Police Hour would usually be a paid service and we have managed to secure that content free for you which will be released over a number of blogs within 2018.

To get you started Steve already has a FREE 50-page guide ‘7 Things Promotion Boards look for‘ to get you started before we start uploading content to police hour that we believe will go a long way in getting you ready for the police promotion process.

You may not know that Steve already provides lots of FREE information via downloadable digital guides. This includes a FREE 50-page guide: ‘7 Things Promotion Boards Also look for’, which has already received feedback from successfully promoted officers who read it before their promotion board.  We’re pretty impressed and really looking forward in the New Year to sharing some promotion tips, insights and case studies, so watch this space.

By releasing this content we are hoping to seek your views and begin informed debates around the topic of promotion an area which can get a bit lively so we are told

Steve told us: “Confidentiality is a basic principle of coaching. It’s something highly valued by my clients. I find it supports honest conversations to help individuals in becoming more promotable”.

With a growing community of police officers and wider policing family connecting with Police Hour on social media, we aim to be the most trusted news organisation offering exclusive content.”

Trevor Sherwood Editor of Police Hour “This has never been done before as far as we are aware and we are purely providing this content to our readers who are struggling with the process, who need a little bit of help kick-start the process for them and gain an insight of the basic things that could prevent promotion that you’d never consider”

“Within 2017 we have worked with Steve already on a number of blogs, in 2018 we are really going to turn things up a notch and offer you our readers the best chance at Police Promotion without having to pay a penny”.

To get ahead of the game before we start releasing content on Police Hour we’d recommend downloading Steve’s 50-page guide which like the content we will be releasing on Police Hour will be FREE of charge.



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