Police Sergeant

Train and direct a police squad.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$47,000 – $124,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Police Sergeants do?

As a Police Sergeant, you supervise. In charge of a team or patrol unit, you relay orders from the Police Lieutenant. You’re responsible for making sure that your subordinates’ actions in the field are in line with departmental regulations and adhere to the general orders as determined by the department and your Lieutenant.

Being a Police Sergeant is kind of like middle management: a little authority and responsibility over a small group of people, but still having to answer to somebody above you all the time. If you relish the chance to lead a small group in fighting crime and serving the public, then this could be the right job for you.

Every day, you coordinate with your team and direct their efforts in the field. Shift briefings, team meetings, and training sessions are all part of your regular duties. When a big event goes down in the field, such as a major crime or other police emergency, you’re one of the first on the scene.

It’s your call whether to go further up the chain or try to handle it yourself. Using good judgment in the field is critical to maximizing the effectiveness of your resources. As a good Police Sergeant, you know your team well, and focus on good teambuilding and organization.

Even though you’re a leader, you usually work fairly regular hours. You’re given a shift or division to lead, and you work it according to the departmental plan. When emergencies or large investigations happen, you put in all the overtime necessary to help handle it.

Police Sergeants work in offices and the field as conditions dictate. Being flexible and adapting quickly to changing conditions is a big part of being effective in this position.

Should I be a Police Sergeant?

You should have an associate's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Calm Under Pressure: You keep your cool when dealing with highly stressful situations.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.
  • Leader: You're good at taking charge, giving directions, and inspiring other people.

  • Also known as: Desk Sergeant, Detail Sergeant, Division Sergeant, Line Sergeant, Patrol Police Sergeant, Patrol Sergeant See More

    How to become a Police Sergeant

    Most Police Sergeants have an Associate's degree or higher. Chart?chd=s:9dxpaa&chl=no+college+%2834%25%29|certificate+%2816%25%29|associate%27s+%2827%25%29|bachelor%27s+%2823%25%29||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,34,34
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