Course Description

Serving as a chief of police is one of the most honorable professions in law enforcement, but it can also be one of the most challenging for the men and women who first accept the role. In addition to leading their local agencies, new chiefs must also build trust and navigate relationships with local political leaders, city staff, prominent constituents, and more. In this two-hour webinar, retired Chief Harry P. Dolan will teach you what new chiefs need to know about leading from the front.

  • What does it take to get a job as a police chief- Do I have the right stuff and is it really for me?
  • What is it truly like being a police chief: Would most of them do it again?
  • Does it hurt to apply if you don’t get the job: Will the folks back home still like me?
  • What is the interview and background process actually like?
  • Is there a difference between working for a city manager or mayor?
  • Once hired, what to do and not do in the first year- The power of experience & mentorship
  • How to keep the job- If I can’t keep the job, how to depart with style
  • Keys to survival: As either an inside or outside chief
  • Lessons learned from chiefs who have succeeded and failed- “Welcome to the Arena”
  • Chief Dolan’s keys to success- It’s lonely at the top, but the view is great!
  • How to navigate external and internal politics and ethical dilemmas
  • How to retire healthy- know when it’s time to leave


CEO, Dolan Consulting Group

| Chief Harry Dolan (Ret.)

Harry P. Dolan is a 32-year police veteran who served as a Chief of Police since 1987. As one of the nation's most experienced police chiefs, he brings 25 years of public safety executive experience to Dolan Consulting Group. He retired in October 2012 as Chief of Police of the Raleigh (N.C.) Police Department, an agency comprised of nearly 900 employees in America's 42nd largest city.

Chief Dolan began his law enforcement career in 1980 as a deputy sheriff in Asheville, North Carolina and served there until early 1982, when he joined the Raleigh Police Department, where he served as a patrol officer. In 1987, he was appointed Chief of Police for the N.C. Department of Human Resources Police Department, located in Black Mountain. He served as Chief of Police in Lumberton, N.C. from 1992 until 1998, when he became Chief of Police of the Grand Rapids, Michigan Police Department. He served in that capacity for nearly ten years before becoming Chief of the Raleigh Police Department in September 2007. As Chief, he raised the bar at every organization and left each in a better position to both achieve and sustain success.

Harry Dolan has lectured throughout the United States and has trained thousands of public safety professionals in the fields of Leadership & Management, Communications Skills, and Community Policing. Past participants have consistently described Chief Dolan's presentations as career changing, characterized by his sense of humor and unique ability to maintain participants' interest throughout his training sessions. Chief Dolan's demonstrated ability to connect with his clientele and deliver insightful instruction all with uncompromising principles will be of tremendous value in the private sector.

Chief Dolan's unbridled passion to achieve service-excellence is a driving force behind Dolan Consulting Group. He is a graduate of Western Carolina University and holds a Master's Degree in Organizational Leadership and Management from the University of North Carolina at Pembroke.

Course curriculum

  • 1

    Before You Start

    • Consent Questions

    • Download Course Materials

  • 2


    • The New Police Chief: Toolkit for Success | Hour 1

    • The New Police Chief: Toolkit for Success | Hour 2