welcome to the leadership in police organizationSSM program 


The Leadership in Police OrganizationsSM (LPO) training program is based on a behavioral science approach to leading people groups, change, and organizations, and was piloted with great success in 2005. The original course material was developed and taught for many years at the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. Through years of research and development, the curriculum was specifically tailored to meet the challenges and needs of the law enforcement community. Since 2005, the IACP has worked with over 400 local, state, and federal agencies of all sizes to take the LPO program to 38 states and abroad. Eighty percent of the departments pursue our Faculty Development Workshop (FDW) to develop their own instructional cadre. IACP then provides this faculty with mentoring, standardized instructional materials, and support to enable them to sustain the program with internal resources. Elements of the training have also been used in promotional processes and in-service training.

The distinguishing feature of the LPO program is a focus on the systematic development of leaders at all levels of an organization - the concept of “every officer a leader.” In the 21st century, police organizations can no longer rely on an individual or small group of leaders. To develop leaders, law enforcement executives must create a culture in their organizations that is supportive of dispersed leadership. This means establishing expectations that all officers will take leadership initiatives at their levels of responsibility. Besides teaching people how to lead individuals, the LPO program coach's people on how to lead groups, organizations, and efforts toward change. For any organization or enterprise, group dynamics can be the difference between success and failure. LPO program attendees study these dynamics to become adept at making groups cohesive and better able to reach organizational goals. This knowledge, acquired by participants about themselves and others, has enhanced relationships both on and off the job, resulting in a profound, life-changing impact for many course graduates.

The three-week LPO program, typically taught one week a month over three months, emphasizes applied learning; is very interactive; and utilizes small group case studies, videos, role playing, and class exercises to reinforce learning. Students are taught leader strategies for use in dealing with practical work place challenges. The course teaches participants the behavioral science theories to better understand how to lead individuals, groups, change, and organizations. Participants are challenged to use the theories and strategies taught to increase the motivation, satisfaction, and performance within their organization and to support organizational change. This effort is highlighted during graduation by presenting group projects created by the students in which teams identify actual organization topics in which they would like to see change. Groups then use applied learning to propose a calculated solution to these areas. When held accountable by the host agencies, the IACP has observed student projects change organizational culture, enhance officer safety, provide annual budget savings, and create new laws.

As previously mentioned, IACP also offers a ten-day FDW, or train-the-trainer, for those departments wishing to develop their own instructors for continuation of the program at the local level. At the conclusion of the FDW, participants are given all teaching materials required to run the programs locally and are mentored to set up the program with IACP’s assistance. Additionally, IACP also offers a customized one-week LPO Executive Seminar for field training officers, command staff, and the specific needs of the department.

To view a list of our IACP-Certified LPO  Instructors, please click here



Contact Us


To obtain more information about bringing the LPO program to your department, please contact the IACP's Training and Professional Services Division at 703-836-6767 or email LPOTeam@theiacp.org.

Please follow us and participate in LPO on social media by visiting our Facebook page and by using #IACPLPO on Twitter!


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