Stepping into the Role of Chief of Police: Guidance for New Leaders as They Find Their Way

“It is lonely at the top.”

This oft-quoted phrase does not truly sink in for the new department leader until he or she has arrived to serve in the position. The second phrase that rings in the ears of every chief soon thereafter is the reminder that “there is nowhere to go but out” once an individual has reached the pinnacle of his or her career. Both phrases include truths to be reckoned with by the department leader; however, a combination of experience and formal education provide the basics needed for survival as a new chief.