Leadership in Corrections

Topics: Decision making, Prison, Leadership Pages: 6 (2127 words) Published: October 29, 2013
Introduction
Throughout time, places of employment, organizations, and businesses have come to change and evolve in order to better suit the needs of the agency. The decision to change is not only important to evolve and grow for the needs of the agency, but also for the needs of the people who are serving the agency. Regardless of the nature of the organization or business, there are many over-arching components that blanket all areas of agencies and their needs or desires to run efficiently. One of the most important components to any agency that’s desire is to be successful is to also be run accurately and efficiently in order to assure good decision making. We must focus on Leadership and the individual(s) who are directing and commanding the employees to complete their daily tasks and job requirements. These are the individuals that are typically making all the decisions in the agencies in which we work who hold an ample amount of power. When looking at a complex agency, such as a Correctional Facility, we need to examine what kind of Leaders we are hiring, the type of skills they possess, and what kind of qualifications and drive they have to see the agency through a multitude of obstacles, stress, and possible danger. Throughout their career in Corrections, they will be faced with making a lot of crucial decisions. Leaders are the most important and influential part of any workforce in terms of decision making; and the Corrections aspect of the legal system is no different. Literature Review

In the Corrections field at any Correctional facility it is important to have sound managers or leaders who are willing to take control of the facility, and feel confident not only taking control but also in making decisions that will shape that facility, building its reputation. Montgomery (2006): “The need for sound leadership in the management of prisons is evident after a cursory examination of recent court interventions, media and legislative scrutiny, and escalating budgets. Leadership is essential to good public service, because legislators often provide missions that are vague, if not conflicting, and may fail to provide the necessary resources to carry out the missions,” (p. 38). In a system that already has several budgetary cuts and other financial strains counting against them, it is important that their leadership be top-notch to carry out all agency goals and missions stated in the agencies mission statement and that the decisions can be made to do so properly. Not only is a competent leader important for the agenda of the facility itself, but also for the Correction’s Officers and other employees at the facility as well as the inmates as all the decisions made within the correctional facility not only impact the staff, but also the inmates who control the environment. The jail needs to run succinctly and unified in order to maintain order and cooperation with a level of mutual respect. According to Dilulio, “the quality of prison life depends far more on management practices than on any other single variable. If most prisons have failed, it is because they have been ill-managed, under managed, or not managed at all,” (p.1). It is important that we look at all the areas of the Correctional Facility that need to be operating smoothly, not just taking the employees and officers into consideration. Every decision that is made typically also impacts the inmates as well, who control the tone of the environment the staff and leaders work in.

Certain qualities and characteristics are key in selecting a candidate who is suitable for leading and making decisions in a Correctional Facility. Montgomery (2006): “Correctional leaders must also be highly observant and cognizant of the interests and desires of stakeholders external to the correctional environment, in other words, “seeing the big picture.” Today’s correctional leader must be acutely aware of both the internal and external environmental factors affecting...
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