Why do you want to be a police officer?

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Police officers are responsible for protecting and serving their communities, as well as assisting persons in need and combating crime. During a police officer interview, the interviewer will ask a series of questions to better understand your motivation for joining the force.

In this post, we’ll go over how to respond to the popular interview question for police hopefuls, “Why do you want to be a cop?”

Why do employers ask, “Why do you want to be a police officer?”

A prospective employer may inquire as to why you want to be a police officer to uncover why you want to pursue such a hard career. As a police officer, you must deal with difficult situations daily. Though this profession can be incredibly gratifying, there are some risks involved. To be a good and dependable police officer, you must be motivated and enthusiastic.

Police agencies want to make sure that their officers are dedicated to their roles as guardians and that they are joining the force for the correct reasons. They are searching for people that are ethical and wish to make their communities safer places to live. A good police officer truly wants to help people and minimize crime, thus an interviewer may ask you this question to ensure you are committed to these objectives.

How do you respond to the question, “Why do you want to be a police officer?”

It is critical to demonstrate to police departments that you are prepared for the responsibilities of a police officer. You can demonstrate your qualifications by preparing for your interview and thinking of answers to popular interview questions.

To effectively answer why you want to be a police officer in an interview, follow these steps:

1. Conduct research beforehand.

Before your interview, do some research on the police department to which you are applying. Learn about the region they serve and protect, as well as how the community perceives police officers. It is critical to understand the crime rate in this town as well as the most prevalent issues.

Next, go over the job description and determine which duties are routinely required for this role. For example, you may be required to do extensive traffic control, narcotics raids, and crowd control, as well as monitor high-crime neighborhoods. Knowing all of this information can help you tailor your response to this specific police station.

2. Consider your intentions.

Now that you’re acquainted with the area you’ll be serving, consider what you can do to make this community a better place to live. Consider the following questions:

  • What is the most satisfying aspect of becoming a cop?
  • What drew you to this profession?
  • What is the most difficult aspect of your job?
  • What piques your interest in criminal justice?

After you’ve answered these questions, think about your main reasons for becoming a police officer. You can give several reasons why you want this job in your response. Make sure your response demonstrates that you are an ethical person who cares about public safety. People generally pursue this job for the following reasons:

  • to save lives
  • Making neighborhoods safer
  • to assist others in making better life decisions
  • should try new things every day to foster police officer camaraderie

3. Discuss your relevant talents.

Police departments are looking for personnel with specific qualifications. Discuss some of your skills and qualities that make you a qualified candidate in your response. Here are some crucial police officer skills to add to your response:

  • Bravery
  • Communication
  • Confidence
  • Conflict-resolution
  • Deep knowledge of the law
  • Reasoning and logic
  • Problem-solving
  • Working under harsh circumstances
  • Quick-thinking

4. Explain what you want to do in your new position.

Explain what you would strive to accomplish as a police officer in your response. This shows the interviewer that you are a motivated and ambitious candidate for the post. Show the interviewer that you want to create genuine, good changes in your community and that you have a strategy in place, and deliver an answer that displays your dedication to public safety.

Here are a few examples of things you could do on the job to demonstrate your good intentions as a police officer:

  • Lower crime rates in the neighborhood
  • Assist people in developing trust and respect for the police.
  • Treat people from all walks of life fairly.
  • Work to improve people’s understanding of the law.
  • Provide people with a sense of safety and security.
  • Children and teenagers who are in problems should be mentored.
  • Assist ex-offenders in becoming productive members of society.

Example responses to the question “Why do you want to be a police officer?”

This interview question allows you to demonstrate your enthusiasm for being a police officer. Here are some samples of good responses to help you plan your own:

Example 1: Assist in lowering crime rates in the community.

“When applying to this area, I quickly discovered the high crime rate. Having grown up in a high-crime area myself, I understand the emotional distress that people in these communities experience. As a police officer, I would be able to use my authority to make people feel safe where they live. I want to participate in criminal rehabilitation programs to help people turn their lives around and become active members of society once again.”

Example 2: Establish a relationship with the community.

“I want to be a police officer to help restore the relationship between the police and the community. I have always viewed the police as people who want to help others, which is extremely important to me. While living in this community, I have noticed that the public could respect and trust the police more. As an officer, I plan to make an effort to rebuild this important relationship.”

Example 3: Assist those in need.

“When I was five years old, I was in a bad car accident. I was confused and scared until a police officer picked me up. They assured me that everything was okay and made me feel safe and comfortable. Due to the quick response of their team, my mother also made it out of the crash alive. Ever since then, I have wanted to give back and help others in dangerous situations.

Athina Iliadis is a Human Resources Professional with over 25 years’ experience in corporate environments working for companies such as Pearson, LexisNexis, Hershey, and Reckitt. In her current role as a consultant working with clients around the world, she coaches managers and employees on HR issues, supports leaders in their business, produces content about careers, interviews, and job opportunities. She is fluent in English, French and Greek, and she holds a BBA with a major in HR from Université du Québec à Montréal. Find her on LinkedIn and at athinailiadis.com

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