One of the questions he posed was who would I have selected to work with me had I become PCC in Thames Valley. This was not a new question to me as it had come up in the hustings earlier in the year. I answered that I would have wanted:
- A cracking good media person - a sort of my own personal Alistair Campbell - to liaise with the local news people.
- A highly skilled community engagement practitioner who would lead on building links with the diverse communities of Thames Valley
- A 'Director of Research' to promote and coordinate efforts to institute more evidence based practice in policing
- A visionary & big picture accountant who could read spreadsheets like Neo ended up reading the Matrix
- A superlative commissioner / procurer / contract negotiator with a PhD in 'Take no prisoners Nous' so that any contracts signed by me as PCC would be watertight and not end up in huge costs to the future public purse when the 'small print' kicks in
- A wizened & wise ex senior cop to advise me on the games that people might play and keep me grounded
- A seconded head of crime prevention and empowered citizenship to extend the work of the Office for Policing and Crime into focused community development
So if you were to become a PCC - who would you want on your team?
UPDATE: responding to various tweeting debates
Several people have been responding to this blog post on twitter and many of them seem, not unreasonably, concerned with how much this would all cost. Well (perhaps fortunately), I don't have to cost these posts as I won't be in a position to fund them but... I would say:
- Some of these posts could easily be part time and contracted in on an as and when basis
- Some of these posts already exist (e.g. the financial & crime prevention ones)
- Some of these posts would pay back their cost ten or more times over (commissioner one for starters - and the research one - wouldn't it be better to fund more policing that works?)
- Some of these posts are just simply essential of a PCC is to have a glimmer of a hope to stay connected to the people they are meant to be representing & leading (media, engagement & ex-copper ones)
- All of these posts are about value - not just cost (a thing which the so called 'Tax Payers' Alliance seem to consistently overlook)
- Finally - as I say above - this is about provoking a debate on what teams the PCC will need to recruit in order even to attempt to make the job worthwhile...
*The academic in question is Matthew Davies and he is happy to be contacted about his research.