There are no shortcuts.

“Slow down. Do it right the first time.” My parents had a sign with this quote hanging in their office for years. It was bright yellow with big black letters and frankly, not much of a decorative piece, but I loved it because it was a reflection of my parents’ commitment to their work. It wasn’t just a directive to their employees; but rather an acknowledgement on their part – that getting something done right the first time will certainly take longer, it’ll be harder, it may even cost more initially … But not if you compare the time, effort, and expense of having to do it over again later.

That sign served as a good reminder – and a necessary one – in a world where we are constantly bombarded by messaging that promotes shortcuts. They are everywhere. You can’t turn on your phone or the radio without an ad telling you how you can save time and effort by taking a shortcut – 5 minutes to rock hard abs! or Learn a language in 2 weeks! It is certainly tempting. How many times have we all thought there has to be a an easier, faster, or cheaper way to do something?

Don’t get me wrong – looking for efficiencies, saving time and money, of course that’s important – just not at the expense of effectiveness. If your goal is to just scratch through an item on your to-do list and move on to the next, then maybe a shortcut is worth the risk… but if it’s something that matters… think twice.  Shortcuts always have consequences. Pursuing a shortcut for a quick result is an acceptance up front that something is lost long-term. A shortcut is an exchange – inevitably trading opportunities, capacity-building, even effectiveness for short-term gains. Opting for a shortcut shortchanges yourself for short-term results.

In the world of public safety, there is no such thing as a shortcut. There are no shortcuts in crime reduction, building resiliency, or building trust. There are no short cuts in developing officers, leaders, or community partners. There certainly are no shortcuts in community policing. It takes a consistent, continuous commitment to putting in the effort and doing the work. You know this because you’re doing that work – every day, building relationships, addressing public safety challenges, and making our communities safer – not for a short-term gain, but for a lasting impact.

For more than 25 years, NCPI has shared this commitment to efficacy and it is reflected in everything we do, from curriculum development to training, program design, technology – all of our work.  Every day, NCPI opts not to take the shortcut. Instead, NCPI steadily and purposefully focuses on the long haul, taking every opportunity to grow, to develop – to be effective.
Over and over again, NCPI is making the same choice you’re making – to put in the work, to make the effort, to do it right the first time – because in public safety There are no shortcuts.