Eight Questions to Ask Yourself Before Becoming a Police Officer

Important points to consider...
(Courtesy photo)

Joining the ranks of law enforcement is something that happens regularly around the world still being special every time. But, if you're looking to do the same, do you know what makes a good police officer? In order to do the job properly, you need to be sure that you're really up for the task, and that you know everything you need to to make an informed decision on the matter. It takes more than just having the qualities of a police officer:  You have to know with little or no doubt that this is a career path that is right for you.

Why Do I Want to Be a Cop?

This is something that you're probably going to be asked at one point, so it's a great idea to go ahead as well as formulate your response. It's also a good way to really examine if this is the right career for you. You don't need to be an essay writer to churn out the reason why you have decided on this in the first place. That doesn't mean that you need a cookie-cutter answer, either. Really, dig into why you pursued this line of work. What caused that?​

Do I Have the Temperament for It?

It's not usually outright stated, but, to be a good police officer, you normally have to have a certain temperament. Being able to stay calm and collected while being confronted with antagonistic or uncooperative people is one of the hidden skills needed to be a police officer. One of the biggest worriers, in terms of behavior, is having an anger problem. Unchecked anger and a badge don't go well together. Determine whether or not you're ready before applying. If you're not, then you have the time to work on it.

What Skills Would I Need?

This is a great question, and you should certainly ask yourself. Unfortunately, the answer is far from straightforward. There are many skills that you'll need as an officer. Other than that, you'll probably have to learn on the fly, while things are going sideways. First aid skills are a must-have, and so are people skills. Knowing how to write basic reports is another good tool. On the force, you can't use a “write my paper” website or recall your college past when you have asked someone else to ‘write my essay for me.

What Education Do I Need?

That depends on a lot of things including the particular job you want, the location you're in (Arkansas, US and Ontario, CA have vastly different rules on this), and what your department is willing to provide. Looking online can help clear some of this up. You'll likely be taught a basic procedure either while getting your degree or as a rookie cop. Things such as how to write reports (don't worry, not an essay; Edubirdie CA writes your essay if you want), proper arrest procedure as well as many other topics will be included at some point or another.

What Are My End Goals?

Even if you want to join the force that doesn't mean that you want to be a standard patrol officer for the rest of your life. In fact, as you get older that might end up being the last thing that you want. Ask yourself if you're going into this wanting to grow into something a bit better such as a detective. You can also simply rise through the ranks. For some places, this can be the first step into a foray into politics, as well; sheriffs are usually elected and have law enforcement experience.

Am I Physically Fit?

Of course, everyone knows that being physically fit is a large part of the job. You'll likely be running after people who try to flee on foot or towards the scene of a crime. You might also be asked to scale fences or tangle with someone who is under the influence of drugs. All of these require you to be fit. The most pressing reason, however, is that you're going to need to get through the police academy and their fitness tests before standing a chance at becoming a cop.

How Strong is My integrity?

Cops are some of the people most likely to be offered a bribe. They're also in a position of power, making it easy to abuse that. Do you have the integrity to do your job without lording your power over others? If you have any doubts, reconsider your decision.

What About the Danger?

While it's true that being in law enforcement isn't anywhere close to the most dangerous profession, there is a danger that you'll face. For some that would leave behind a family (particularly children), it's a risk they aren't willing to take. If that doesn't describe you, and you can stand the heat, join up.

To sum up, asking these important questions before pinning on your badge is a big part of the decision-making process. By asking yourself, you'll better understand your own motivations. In other words, it makes you a much better police officer than those who didn't do the same.

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