Criminal Justice Workplace Observation: Interpol
Working at Interpol is one of the most exciting opportunities that is mixed with various aspects of challenges, opportunities, multiculturalism, and risks and urge to produce tangible and reliable results. As a criminal agency, the organization has certain unique behaviors. The organizational behaviors have greatly influenced the employee’s approach to work as well as the socio-cultural issues that define formal and informal relationships. The agency employs systems approach in its mission by ensuring that the undertakings are geared towards achievement of the set objectives to the satisfaction of all the stakeholders and Interpol itself. As such, there is wide application of supportive model of Organization behavior where the leadership is determined to provide the needed resources and support to all the groups. From the top leadership, the organization has always benefited from the well crafted strategic plans and long term oriented tactical decisions. The middle level leadership on the other hand helps to coordinate the strategic and non strategic plans and act as link between the top management and the operational staff. This has ensured that the communication culture practiced is objectively seamless and feedback oriented. This however does not imply that every information or investigative reports lands in the hands of all the internal stakeholders. The organizational behavior requires that very sensitive information is selectively handled while the actors on the ground are given new tip offs in an investigation as well as the newly emerging details of a crime or a criminal. Similarly, the handlers of every piece of information are required to adhere to the voluntarily codes and ethics that call for accountability. Through the culture of accountability and self discipline as espoused in the codes of conduct, there has been positive impact on the work of the agency as incidences of leakages to the media; collusion and compromise have been very rare. According to Neild (2007), it is important that criminal justice agency should promote high level of transparency, decently treat employee, be accountable to the society being served and efficiently apply high level of professionalism. The management however should improve this situation by training the staff on how to handle sensitive information and also use one mode of public relations outlet so that conflicting information can be authenticated and verified.
The Interpol’s organization behavior model is also characterized by high level of social interactions and individualization. This has positively enhanced creativity at the organization and made both employees and Interpol to grow together. Through the interaction of the two concepts, the agency has taken into account need to respect the rights of the employees while at the same time encouraging collective approach to work so that the focus is on what is mutually beneficial. To ensure that the organization remains representative of the member’s states, there is use of such languages as English, French Arabic, and Spanish, while the values that are highly emphasized on include high level of accountability, team work, quality service, high level of integrity and emphasis on human rights (Interpol, 2010).
The organization behavior at Interpol is also characterized by high level of collaboration with different influential stakeholders. As such, Interpol employees do not pursue just the organization’s objectives but also handles crimes or investigations for member states and partners. There is however need to factor in national information policy in the process of investigation, for example in the application of laws that govern information science (Gorman, 2006). For example, the organization has worked closely with the UN and Rwandan government to trace the 1994 genocide’s masterminds. The same applies to tracking of Ramirez Mandujano, a Mexican criminal who was finally held (BBC, 2008). Also, Interpol mutually works with UNESCO to help tackle trafficking of cultural artifacts as well as technological misapplication to promote crime. In the collaborative behavior that is also characterized by ‘exchange of personnel on a temporary basis’, the organization climate requires that the information available is relevantly used, promptly shared, monitored and handled (UNESCO, 1999).
This has positively enhanced the employees’ expertise and ability to handle diverse forms of crimes. The collaborative approach to work behavior however may negatively lead to collusion and information leakages as well as multiplicity of reporting relationships. To deal with this, the management needs to subject all the collaboration, joint operations and investigations as well as joint employee trainings to its internal policies and work climate. This will enhance the good aspects of unity of command so that the spillovers of matrix structures are dealt with.
The other aspect Interpol’s organization behavior is inherent in its administrative control and structure. To set up the top organizational leadership, the organizational traditions and norms are followed. As such, the members states, which are political stakeholders each nominate a delegate to from the General assembly from regional representatives are elected. This culture has promoted universal acceptance of the organization as each of the region is represented in topic decision making organ. The hierarchical system of the agency is also characterized by existence of National Central Bureaus that work each member country in liaison with the local police. Evidently, Interpol’s structure allows for a proactive leadership approach that is accountable to the UN, members and the general society. To perpetuate the positive impact of the agency’s leadership there is need for deliberate measure to ensure equity, gender balance and competency of the top leaders. At the same time, the positive work climate that promotes cross cultural respect and multiracial organizational identity should be enhanced. This should be observed in all aspects of recruitment such as appointment of expert advisors.
BBC (2008). Ex-crime chief arrested in Mexico. Retrieved June 26, 2010, from
Interpol (2010). Recruitment. Retrieved June 26, 2010, from
HYPERLINK “http://www.interpol.int/Public/Icpo/Recruitment/default.asp” http://www.interpol.int/Public/Icpo/Recruitment/default.asp
Gorman, B. (2006). Biosecurity and Secrecy Policy: Problems,
Theory, and a Call for Executive Action. Journal of law and policy, Vol. 2:1 .
Neild, R. (2007), USAID program brief: anticorruption and
Police integrity security sector reform program. ARD, Inc, Burlington, USA.
UNESCO (1999). Relations with the international criminal police
Organization (Interpol) and draft cooperation agreement between UNESCO and that organization. Retrieved June 26, 2010, from