Arresting Communication: Essential Interaction Skills for Law Enforcement, by Jim Glennon, Vila, IL: LifeLine Training & National L, 2010. 192 pages. Reviewed by:
Arresting Communication: Essential Interaction Skills for Law Enforcement
The book Arresting Communication: Essential Interaction Skills for Law Enforcement by Jim Glennon is a realistic, dynamic, and vital piece of literature. It tackles one of the most important skills in life that police officers or those in private security practice require to excel in their job area: communication. The author has a vast experience in knowledge and practice of law enforcement, which gives him credibility and moral authority to write on this subject. He finished his career as a commander, having held positions as commander of the Investigations Unit, sergeant, detective, and officer (Policeone, n.d.). His academic prowess is evidenced by his Masters Degree in Law Enforcement, while he also has an undergraduate degree in Psychology (Policeone, n.d.). Glennon has been honored in certain occasions, including winning a prestigious Kremi Leadership Award. He currently works as an instructor for various courses for private industry and law enforcement and specializes in teaching Leadership and Communication courses (Policeone, n.d.). His 192-page book was published in 2010 by LifeLine Training & Calibre Press on 474 Wrightwood Ave. Glennon’s experience in police activities has influenced his life knowledge and skills to bring changes in this sector while he notes that communication is the most important aspect in the relationship of the police and civilians. Glennon believes that the art and science of communication is the most important skill required in criminal justice profession, and his main purpose for writing the book is to further the understanding of people on the massive impact of communication on human interaction. Moreover, it is as an important part of success, and this reviews proves the fulfillment of this purpose.
Jim Glennon uses convincing introduction to explain the essence of this subject. First, he quotes Einstein by saying, “Growth in intellect should start at birth and only end at death” (Glennon, 2010). This statement proves that his main intent as a leader is to use his experience and a key role in the growth and development of police officers as well as those in careers communication has to play a significant role. Glennon uses a case study of interaction between a patrol officer and an unstable ex-military man when both verbal and non-verbal communication come into play. The story demonstrates how communication tactics, skills, and strategies become the most important aspect of any encounter. Introduction is considered the foundation of any book, and depending on how well the content is presented, a reader may be captivated to continue reading or discouraged from reading the rest of the book (Rampola, 2010). Using a real-life case scenario enables the readers to relate with the storyline, thereby predicting possible knowledge gains that can be derived from the story.
Glennon (2010) approaches the subject with surety by providing his personal account in the preamble and within the chapters to validate his claims and illustrate keynote issues. He does not tackle opposing viewpoints, but he neither suppresses contrary evidence. Instead, he focuses entirely on his perspectives and uses quotes from other authors to support his points. For instance, he gives the five goals he used as a cop over the three decades and 12 years of work as an Academy Instructor. These goal include such aspects as communication is the key, one should learn to gain victory on the street, one should not give them any ammo, one must understand the human-animal and pass the Academy through probation to demonstrate qualification for the work. In the process, he also makes a series of admissions and disclaimers as well as a narration of his family and career life in a way that validates his authority as a writer in this field by providing real proof of this claims. Another way, through which his personal testimony has enabled him to achieve his purpose in writing is the discussion of profane reality. The title of the book itself arouses curiosity among readers. It depicts his findings, which have accumulated over the years of teaching classes, that become important tips for police officers. For example, he shows that profane words matter and affect perception (Glennon, 2010). Therefore, his personal accounts throughout the book is a convincing strategy, a way of achieving balance of contents by removing monotony of theoretical information to real life relatable examples.
Glennon (2010) uses rhetoric questions to introduce his readers into a world of critical thinking over practices, explains how personality contributes in communication, and then provides the answers. For instance, in Chapter Two, he raises several questions about identity such as “Are you effective communicator? What skills do most people lack? And why are you here” just to mention a few (Glennon, 2010). This strategy engages readers’ imagination and pushes them into participative reading. By raising questions and discussing the issues surrounding them, the book becomes a powerful tool for educating police officers and civilians on the relationship with the police. The communication tips Glennon provides transcend the application in police sector and become relevant in other careers (Rahr & Rice, 2015). This is exemplified in major points highlighted in the book, for example, one should pay attention to the person who also pays attention to one, and human animal constantly communicates. Glennon (2010) also enhances critical thinking over his points by using common quotes at the beginning of every chapter such as “Speech mirrors a person soul, as a man speaks so is he” in Chapter Four (Glennon, 2010). This style enables Glennon to earn trust from his readers, thereby elevating his book as vital communication handbook.
The main theme of the book is communication, and Glennon utilizes the use of funny cartoons to entertain the readers and illustrate his subject matter. Every chapter has a cartoon featuring a police officer as the main character. Apart from the illustrative features in the book to make it entertaining, these cartoons paint a visual picture in the minds of the readers, thus creating a long-lasting memory of the book content. Thus, Glennon’s choice of expressions strengthens his coverage of the book’s thesis and makes the book easily understandable.
The author failed a bit in the use of research evidence and theories, especially in communication. So far, the content largely applies to the police officers in both private and public service but lacks relevant information for those in academia. The way Glennon (2010) justifies his inability to write professionally does not resonate with the readers seeking academic information on the communication in police force. Instead of only using his experience to illustrate keynote points, Glennon should have integrated various communication theories and models. Thus, the writing style lacks professionalism; hence, it is not holistic enough to be used as a training handbook for the workers in the sectors other than police.
In conclusion, this review analyzes how Glennon has adequately and consistently developed his thesis and managed to achieve the main purpose for writing this book. Indisputably, it should be read by all those involved in the security sector such as the police and military personnel. It is a powerful information tool that can teach the art of communication. The book draws its strength from its relevance in the contemporary culture, considering the recent surge in police violence against civilians. It is a comprehensive handbook for the training of police officers. However, its greatest weakness lies in lack of research and theoretical evidence that make it seem like mere opinions of the author. Despite this weak link, the book is informative and entertaining to read.
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