27 days of managerial work in the police service
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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OriginalversjonPolice Practice and Research, 2018 October 9 10.1080/15614263.2018.1526682
The purpose of this study was to uncover the realities of managerial work in the Norwegian police service. Observation and interview of 27 police managers showed that managerial work emerged and unfolded through specific practices, which occurred within a shared organisational practice shaped by police culture, context and mission. Managers practiced in a variety of ways rather than according to a universal set of managerial practices. Individual police managers developed proficiency by carrying out day-to-day work duties. These managerial practices were dependent on dynamic actions and interactions and were subject to expectations and pressures. Police managers earned legitimacy primarily through being foremost among equals. The current findings supported studies suggesting that managers face complexity and uncertainty in their work as well as those that downplay what managers ought to do, focussing instead on what it is possible to achieve. The implication of these findings for practice is that individual police managers need to develop their own ways of tackling personal, strategic, relational and operational challenges.