Emerging Leaders Program

Emerging Leaders

ICLD 1.10 Moral Compass: Discussion Board

Instructor: Dr. Mitch
  1. Post a new discussion related to the topics covered in this module.  Your post needs to provide specific lessons learned with examples from this module helping you enhance your leadership capacity at work.
  2. After posting your discussion, review posts provided by other students in the class and reply to at least one of them. 


  • Throughout the Moral Compass Module, I learned the importance of the four corners: Peace, Justice, Equity, and Service. These values are crucial for maintaining credibility in any profession or leadership position.

    Peace ensures a harmonious and cooperative environment, while Justice promotes fairness and equality. Equity ensures everyone has an equal opportunity to succeed, and Service encourages individuals to give back to their community.

    Maintaining these values is crucial for leaders, as it helps build trust and respect among their followers. Without credibility, leaders will struggle to motivate and inspire those around them. Leaders must embody these values and lead by example, as credibility is vital to building strong relationships and achieving success.

    In conclusion, the Moral Compass Module has taught me the importance of the four corners and how they play a role in maintaining credibility. By embodying these values, leaders can create a positive and productive environment that encourages growth and success for all.

    • I agree with the importance of the four corners and your point, i found the book definition of moral courage something that is always assumed for officers but as we have seen on the news not always the case. “Bravery in the face of popular opposition” the book says basically when you run into the fire when everyone else is running away. It often goes unnoticed by the public and maybe by some high up leaders who have forgotten that everyday is that situation potentially and it that is the reason why the majority of Officers that i work with became Officers because they felt they had a positive moral compass and could also teach new officers the same.

  • The key takeaway from this module is the importance of credibility in leadership and how credibility is determined by perceptions of individual character and competence. Trust is the most important component of a credible leader. Regardless of one’s level of expertise, if they are not trusted they will not be considered a credible leader. Credible leaders must also possess knowledge and information to solve problems. Utilizing the components of the moral compass when making decisions will help keep credible leaders on the right path.

    • Thank you for sharing your insights on the key takeaway from the module. I agree with you. You have rightly pointed out that credibility and trust are the most critical components of a credible leader. Trust is necessary for even the most knowledgeable and competent leader to gain their followers’ support and respect. It is also essential for leaders to have a solid moral compass and use it to make decisions that align with their values and principles. This will help them stay on the right path and inspire others to follow their lead. Overall, your post provides an excellent summary of the key points covered in the module.

  • I think it is very true that an audience’s perception of your character will impact the believably of what you say. Having good character and integrity is vitally important in the public safety field to ensure we maintain our credibility among those we serve as well as those we work with in our agencies. It’s important to remember that regardless of our level of expertise or rank, without trust, we cannot be credible leaders.

    The four corners of the moral compass (peace, service, justice, and equity) are very good anchors to achieving and maintaining credibility. When you look at agencies who make the news under bad publicity, you can almost guarantee they have violated and done a major disservice to one of these 4 pillars. It’s vital to consistently maintain an agency whose values and mission lift these four aspects to the highest level of importance so you can maintain trust in the communities you serve. I think this is also very important to keep in mind when recruiting/hiring. Especially in times like the present where agencies are getting very few applicants for open positions, it’s very important not to drop hiring standards just to get someone in the door. A lot of times, lowering hiring standards means a potential of sacrificing one of these pillars in those who are less/non qualified applicants.

    • While the moral compass can guide a leader on a path to enhance public trust it also can help minimize issues within a department. I fully agree that this applies to hiring and recruiting. When an agency hires and retains a person who is obviously less than qualified it promotes disharmony within the agency. When other officers feel they are held to a higher standard than newer less qualified officers they will often times feel a sense of injustice. Officers are held to a higher standard than society and one officers poor character and judgment will reflect on the agency as a whole. The unqualified officer’s poor performance can result in consequences that affect the whole profession. When agencies hire and retain these people, those in charge of the process lose credibility.

  • As part of the public safety profession, I believe it is required of myself to maintain high level of professionalism. With that I mean a high standard of moral character and leadership. We are trusted on a daily basis to make a decision that is the best interest of safety for everyone. We are required to up hold the law and maintain the integrity of the department and of ourselves. I know at times we may make the wrong decision. We are human, but when it comes down to the final second we have to live by the decision and or choice we make. Not everything is black and white and can be followed to the letter. We need to adjust at times so that no one is compromised. It is a hard task and level of standards that we demand of ourselves. But like the instructor mentioned often it all boils down to trust. When I walk out that door each day my family trusts me that I will come home. Without the acts of god i make it certain that I will live up to that trust. This is also means that I will not act in anyway that would derail my intentions to be mistrusted. I want my team to live and act on the same standards because it makes the department as a whole better.

    • I agree that not every decision or act in life is black and white. I think that’s why these pillars and core values are so important. When you make your decisions with this moral compass in mind, it is easier to do the better or best thing out of your options. All we are asked to do is to be the best version of ourselves every day and serve with equity, integrity, and honesty. When we show up as our best selves, with the intention on serving others rather than ourselves, it is easier to make better decisions. At times we will make mistakes, and that is where honesty and courage come in. It’s important to own up to mistakes so we can learn from them and move on.

  • Individuals who are typically involved with law enforcement agencies tend to have a higher moral compass and strong values. Individuals who chose a career path in any type of law enforcement agency have to be able to determine what is right and wrong, have to have strong morals to do the right thing when no one is watching and be able to make a decision without allowing their own biases to get in the way. The ten core values of the moral compass provide a good understanding of why an individual may act a specific way, how it may affect others on the team as well as the agency as a whole. As a supervisor it is important to recognize the areas where I am excelling in as well as the areas where I need to improve upon. It is also a great guide to identify where members are currently at to understand what makes them tick. Having this information provides different areas of training as well has understanding how to pair member up to accomplish tasks (Snyder, 2017).
    Snyder, L. (2017). Moral Compass. 1.10, Week # 4. National Command and Staff College. Retrieved from https://cloud.scorm.com/content/courses

  • Doing what is right and believing which is right can affect the outlook people have on you. But it’s best to do what is truthfully right. If you know you messed up, own up to it. Always do the right thing for the right reasons, not just to look “good” but because you know its the right thing to do.

    • Once an individual is caught not being truthful or being dishonest, they will never be able to be trusted again. In law enforcement it is very important to have trust, especially amongst collogues; they have to be able to lean on each other in time of need and trust that their are going to have their back in a “hot” call.

      • I think you hit the target about the trust part of a law enforcement officer. When an officer derails and can no longer be trusted they now become a cancer to the unit. It takes many good officers to do help bring the reputation back to the standards to which we all swore on to uphold. Whenever one person swings to the other side that trust within the community is broken and it is so hard to repair. I have always tried to make sure my team stays straight and makes decisions that they can live with and that the department can support because they did what was right and moral.

  • I feel I would be remiss if I didn’t, at the VERY least, comment on how this entire block of training was a combination of Webster’s definitions of certain key terms and a long list of clichés used in an effort to reinforce those definitions. However, the book had it’s moments of key wisdom! “Although it is not always easy, credible leaders must always do the right thing for the right reason, even if it is in direct conflict with a personal preference.” When the public believes us to be credible, our job will be so much easier. I have stuck with this core tenant for as long as I have been in this career. Sometimes, doing what is right and doing what is lawful does not always coincide. I am thankful, thus, we have the option with certain misdemeanors to explain away the criminal behavior.

    • You are absolutely correct, as leaders sometimes doing the right thing conflicts with our personal beliefs, however, we must ensure that we are always doing the right thing. The moment the public doesn’t believe 1 agency member isn’t credible it affects the entire credibility of the agency and law enforcement as a whole. We have to do everything we can do to prevent that from happening and if it does the agency must get in front of it and be transparent and try to restore credibility as soon as possible. Without the communities trust it makes the agency’s job so much harder.

  • Part of the essay portion of this module asks us to think about the negative affects of the Moral Compass on public safety professionals, which had not occurred to me – I had just considered it in a positive light. Since we are all human, and will at times fall short and fail, I suppose that the pressures of meeting the Moral Compass’ standards could be viewed as unattainable or unrealistic, and bring negative connotations of guilt, shame, regret, and poor self-worth.

    However, in those situations when we fail, the cornerstones of the Moral Compass can be beacons that help to guide us back toward redemption, recovery, and restoration. Although turning the negatives of our failures into positive learning experiences is easier said than done, turning our attention toward the principles of the Moral Compass can help us, even during our dark days.

    • I think too we should hone in on the importance of failing, and hopefully failing upwards. Failure breeds wisdom. If we take those moments of failures and (in the hopes we aren’t scolded and written up into oblivion) harness what we learn, applying those lessons going forward, we become all the stronger for it. I can’t count on my hands (or toes included) the amount of times I have royally ****ed up in this career. But I have made the effort to learn from each and every mistake and applied everything I’ve learned in the hopes of not making that mistake again.

      • Agreed. We all fail sometimes, and it’s all about how you come back from failure. Learning is key so you don’t keep making the same mistake over again.

  • I am a Washington Association of Sheriffs and Police Chiefs (WASPAC) evaluator and am testing the system.

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