That’s that, then. After 18 months of COVID, where your attention has been on working a lot harder just to stand still, and with having to adjust working practices to that end, you are going to have a 0% pay rise. And you also know one thing for certain.
All the stuff that was delayed or put off during this whole shebang will now effectively become additional work that will have to be done on top of what is going to come, and all for an extra 0p an hour. You will have to work harder and the only way to profit will be to work bucketloads of overtime.
IF the C-suite (commercial jargon for NPCC-level ranks) can, or is willing to, allow that. Experience suggests that the Home Office will NOT want to up the funding. Assuming the Treasury would even let them. Despite BoJo’s announcement, today, that crime will be important (again?). And the local ratepayers – which include you – can only be stretched so far, monetarily.
And they’ll also change the rules (laws and practices that used to work but need tinkering with, e.g. Bail and PACE), which means you’ll have to re-learn what you knew, on courses that are twice as long as they need to be OR aren’t even held.
Right then. Given that your income won’t go up (even if your rates and taxes do), and you’re unlikely to be given the time to do what needs to be done, you have one choice left.
To TAKE BACK the time you’re wasting. Calm down. I know.
But I also know that some time is wasted. It is wasted accidentally. It is wasted accidentally because you haven’t been trained to maximise its use, properly. And you, like me, occasionally fall into the procrastination trap created by a need to have a few minutes away from ‘things’ with colleagues who are all to eager to have a few minutes away from their ‘things’ too, only for neither of you to remember to kick back in as quickly as reasonable possible.
BUT that goes both ways. You also waste time when, instead of chilling because you genuinely need to, you continue working and make the silly mistakes that result in the work needing to be done again. I’m pretty confident that a good percentage of assault allegations (assaults by police) could be prevented if those colleagues hadn’t been wound up by the stresses created by the demand placed upon them.
It’s a double-edged sword. It’s not about ‘just’ being productive in the sense that you ought to be on the go 100% of the time. Police Time Management is about doing the right thing, in the right way, for the right reasons and at the appropriate time. And if the right thing (etc.) is to stop, pause, break off and calm down, then that is productive. Whereas going from call to call in the vain hope that at the end of them all you’ll have time to make the notes you should have been making all along – ain’t.
We aren’t cranking widgets in a factory, an altogether automated process that requires no more thought than switching a machine on and off as targets are met. Our work requires thought – and therefore requires time to think, and while Joe Q Public might see your furrowed brow as inactivity, you know that thinking about your response to any incident or demand is the best way to deal with it properly the first time. And only that time, if appropriate. That way, you go home having earned a stress-free crust and your family doesn’t bear the brunt of your stress.
Wouldn’t it be great if you were taught this stuff on a training day?
Tell your L&D Section.