The following post has been sent to ManyVoicesBlog in response to the link directly below.

Unleashing the social media beast

My response

The above article is one of the most ill thought throughand unprofessional blog posts I have read recently. It comes from a member of police staff, a manager and someone that has some responsibility for the manner in which communications between the police and community are conducted. The whole theme of this article is very “Corporate.” Well, what is “Corporate” to one leader may not be “Corporate” to another, and therefore the whole argument about a “Corporate” approach to the use of Social media is rather flawed.
What the article does is highlights the biggest problem in police leadership; middle managers, with their“Corporate” hats saying and doing what they think police leaders want to hear. And busy police leaders seem to love this type of article which doesn’t really say much in content but appeases senior managers. Everyone looks good in articles like this. The bosses pat themselves on the back and the manager, of course, gets a pat too. “Good job, good job. Tally ho.”
What is objectionable is yet to come. The Term“Organisational Terrorist.” For a senior manager to infer this label upon another colleague is not only despicable but it gives an organisation the ammunition to wrongly discipline good people just because their views may be outside the box of “Corporate” thinking. So much for diversity then if you are different. I know Equality assessments do not have to be carried out anymore, by David Cameron’s ruling, but this article highlights PRECISELY why assessments are important. No leader in policing or SM has thought to challenge this term yet we all know what terrorists are, but to think a manager believes some people they may work with may be “terrorists” is, well, I would rather not say. Make your own minds up.
In my service I have not met any “Organisational Terrorists.” And this is my concern with “Corporates.” This article highlights the sheer disparity and difference between management and workers, the divide, the rule and there is one rule for them and another harsher rule for workers. Several examples in world history tell us that people pursuing a right cause were not terrorists. Martin Luther King, Mahatma Gandhi et al were all viewed by“Corporates” of the time as threats, and that is all they were a threat to the vision and status quo of leaders at the time.  But this did not make them wrong.
In policing circles it must be made clear that no one must be viewed as an “Organisational Terrorist.” Yet we must all know many colleagues, serving officers, that are oppressed by managers who hide behind articles like this. By all means write policies and procedures but you cannot and should not seek to affect an officer/employees human rights to express the oath they took just because it does not fit the “Corporate” norm. And managers should use the word “Terrorist” with caution; but this word cannot be used towards colleagues. If I was a current senior police leader I would be strongly condemning the use of such terms towards my staff as unprofessional and unnecessary.