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COMPSTAT: Organizational Change and Stress Management COMPSTAT: Organizational Change and Stress Management Introduction There have been a lot of changes in the police department as a result of the implementation of COMPSTAT…
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Download file to see previous pages WIlis, Stephen D Mastrofski, David Weisburd, and Rosann Greenspan is analyzed. Introduction of COMPSTAT in Lowell As Willis, Mastrofski and Weisburd (2003) point out, department heads conducted regular meetings with their district heads and discussed crime trends. Also, their responses to crimes were collected and future strategies were developed. Thus, it allowed the systematic use of hard data and heightened accountability to reduce crime in society. (Worcester Regional Research Bureau, 2003). However, its implementation in Lowell was not free from errors and hence, after the initial success, the program failed. The program was introduced in Lowell by Superintendent Davis. As a part of the program, there were a number of changes in Lowell. First of all, it divided the entire Lowell into three sectors and each sector captain was solely responsible for the crimes within the area under his control, and the sector captain remained accountable to the top brass. Willis, Mastrofski, Weisburd and Greenspan (2003) note that according to the plan suggested by the superintendent, the sector captain from one of the three sectors had to submit his report in every biweekly meeting. The biweekly meeting usually contained twenty to thirty members including the superintendent, the top brass of the police department and some invited guests, sergeants and patrol officers. The captain who had to submit the report explained all the details of his area and, had to answer questions and suggestions from the meeting members. Any perceived defect in the strategies he adopted was met with criticism from the superintendent and other members in the meeting. So, instead of improving communication and cooperation, such meetings became ‘pressure cookers’ for the sector captains. In addition, as the COMPSTAT did not suggest any formal way for them to communicate the issues with the officers below them, they found it almost impossible to achieve what the top brass suggested. Behn (2008) reports that COMPSTAT brought autocratic power, orders, close observation, and negative reinforcement in the police force instead of the perceived decentralization of power. The Resistance from Employees Admittedly, COMPSTAT did not come into existence without any resistance. The changes were not acceptable to most of the officers. The first effect of the change was that the middle layer officers, that is, the sector captains, stopped divulging important details to the COMPSTAT as they find it dangerous to their own individual careers. First of all, if they revealed any shortcoming or lack of efficiency from their part, it was met with stiff criticism from the top brass. Secondly, there evolved rivalry among sectors as the improvement in one sector means criticism for the remaining sectors in the COMPSTAT meetings. Barkan and Bryjak (2011) reflect that middle layer officers resisted this move through deficient exchange of information. The second point of resistance came from the rank-and-file as they found themselves out of the decision-making process. Though it was claimed that the decision-making power goes to the lower end of the system, what happened in practice was quite the opposite. Only the top brass possessed the power to take decisions, and the ones taken by middle order were highly criticized if went wrong. Thus, the rank-and-file category found it unimportant to cooperate with the innovative system and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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