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What RCMP Executives Could Learn From A Horse!

Apr 11

As those of you who have followed the saga that is my “dance” with the RCMP may know, in 2012 I was “cut” from the team by Mr. Paulson (and his “E” Division “lackies”). I was immediately picked up by a much more discerning and professional “outfit”, and had my playing career extended. Since that time I have held the post as the entire Psychology Department at a Canadian Armed Forces Health Services Hospital on Vancouver Island. I recently undertook, completed and wrote up A Comparative Study of the Efficacy of Equine Facilitated Learning (EFL) with Canadian Forces Service Members.

You may be wondering what I mean when I suggest that RCMP “leaders” could learn much from a horse? Well, a horse’s ability to scan the environment for signs of incongruence (danger) would be a good place for them to begin. When it comes to reading a human, horses carefully contrast what they see on the surface with what they sense beneath. If they discover a difference between what we present on the surface and what we hide beneath, they are unlikely to cooperate. They will regard us as dangerous and flee in fear. To horses and to humans as well, authenticity and integrity in leadership are more important than words and actions. Herein lies the reason behind a person” looking” very leader-like, but failing at every turn to motivate and encourage those who he attempts to lead (are you listening “Brutal Bobby”?).

Horses prefer to be lead; but will only accept a capable and trustworthy leader. They will reject the herd-mate who assumes the role of master and attempts to dominate. In contrast, they will be drawn to the herd-mate who exhibits the three principles necessary for survival: trust, communication, and respect. The ancient Asian philosopher Lao Tzu is credited with saying “……to lead the people, walk behind them”. Horses live in groups (herds) and each group has its’ leader (often a mare). The lead horse directs the group and keeps them safe. She does this in a non-verbal, non-aggressive manner, most often by observing and directing from behind. Could you imagine the present Commissioner of the RCMP (or any of his executive across the country) “leading from behind”? To “lead from behind” the leader must have a clear vision of where he/she is going, and the ability to communicate it to those who are led. Imagine a farmer behind a team of powerful plow horses. The farmer is behind them, yet leading them. How is this accomplished? The leader, from behind, must have the cooperation of those who are led, built on an unshakeable foundation of trust, respect, and understanding. In allowing those who are led to go ahead, the leader encourages confidence, autonomy, and creativity.

Moreover, if RCMP Executives at both Divisional and National levels, were open to the experience of “leading from behind”, they might discover a remarkable opportunity to become better communicators by developing integrity and authenticity (who’s laughing?); by remaining confident in the face of uncertainty (stop that giggling!!); and how to motivate and encourage those they lead (I’m serious, enough already with the “cat calls”!).

“The paradox of ego, is that first you must acknowledge you have one, to know it doesn’t exist”

Dr Mike Webster
Reg’d Psych. (#0655)

P.S. ( A G’day to “Brutal Bobby”.) G’day Mate…….I’ll bet you can’t wait! (To get “down under”, that is) Neither can many of the RCMP membership, wait for you to leave. Look mate, as I never hear from you I’m beginning to lose hope of ever getting this World Championship Tag Team or even the “singles chain match” angle, off the ground. In my last conversation with you (and I know you’re reading this “chatter”……… and you wouldn’t believe who keeps me informed!), I mentioned a great little worker “Sky Low Low”. This gave me an idea!! Maybe you’d be more comfortable in the “square circle” with a little person? Usually the angle in one of these kinds of match ups (and they most often occur in tag teams or “battle royals”) is for the bigger guy to play the role of a “mean ol’ bully” with the little guy. Now I figure after the way you’ve conducted yourself with the General Membership, this shouldn’t be much of a stretch for you. Leave this with me and I’ll poke around and see who’s available? We might end up with one of the “girls”……would you be adverse to that? Or is that going a wee bit too far with the bully angle?
Anyhoooo, nice talkin’ to ya’ again. Always remember, “no worries mate, she’ll be right” in the end… long as you end it! Oh shit!!!!!……..what’s “the John Dory”……have I got you and the NSIS lads thinking I’m a “few stubbies short of a six pack”? All I ask is that you give my offer a “Captain Cook” before you go “walk about”. I’m still waitin’………..???

“Iron Mike”

P.P.S. Wadda’ ya’ think “B.B.”………is blue my colour?

  1. Stu permalink

    Hey Sideshow Bob. The Fed. Liberals want you answer some questions. What about it? Gonna hide behind Uncle Harper until you scurry off to Australia? Or you gonna put your money where that tough-talking mouth of yours is?
    C’mon you jelly-fish of a man. No one’s asking you to go on patrol (like a real cop). Just, for once in your life, man-up.

  2. Buck permalink

    RCMP, Executives, Horse’s, Behinds? I believe the good Dr. has nailed what the Core Incompetency of the organization is.

    It’s being eroded by a bunch of horses asses.

  3. Anonymous permalink

    Paulson is the worst commissioner yet. He makes Zack the sack look like a saint. He must suck on a lemon before he gets his photo taken.

  4. thewolfinsheeps permalink

    RCMP officers do not understand this concept, they all actually believe they are the best of us, or else they wouldn’t have been commissioned, right??. They are so concerned about getting ahead that they have all compromised their principles for their pocket books. They actually think everything is ok, and that they are in fact leaders. The sad thing is it’s un-fixable. To get rid of the leadership mind set that exists now you would have to get rid of ALL white shirts who came through the Koolaid process, revamp OCP, and start over. They all bought in to get in, and from what I continue to see even at the detachment level they refuse to wake up. They just don’t get it and/or are too arrogant to admit what the believe in is seriously flawed.

    • That’s precisely it. In the force, “those that can’t lead.” They’re the ones who generally weren’t very good at actual police work. So they went with their “strengths.” They’ve infested the higher ranks and are now so insulated and surrounded by fellow-slugs, they reinforce their distorted self-image. After the Jarvis’ Global report on Moncton Paulson actually used Sarah Palin’s, “gotcha reporting” excuse. That’s how weak they are. Channeling an American, wash-out politician who thinks a reporter set her up by asking her,”what magazines do you read?” Between the MPPA and a new government, maybe we’ll finally see the upper-ranks get kicked to the door.

      • The Old NCO permalink

        From the Commissioner down to the most junior Inspector they are a virus to the RCMP. The whole Commissioned Officer Program needs to be removed as it is a sick culture that is destroying the organization. They would never Commission anyone that speaks his or her mind or has the grit to do what real every day front line Police Officers do. Their strongest asset is narcism and to achieve self centred goals like promotions and bonuses. They have no sense of dedication towards the force or it’s working members. Their priority is centred around what is in it for me. Remember the character Frank Burns from Mash? He could be the poster boy for the Commissioned Ranks of the RCMP.


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