Give YOURSELF a Positive Ticket!

Positive TicketAs with many, if not most, of the examples I’ll be giving you, this one is focused on the power of positive reinforcement of others. So I will continue to stress the importance of using the same principles on YOURSELF…

For years, a detachment of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) Richmond, Canada used the strategies of most other law enforcement bureaucracies – with similar results. Their reoffending rates ran at around 60% with spiraling rates of youth crime. A forward-thinking new superintendent, Ward Clapham, did something amazing when he challenged the core assumptions of the system itself. He asked: “Could we design a system that encouraged people to not commit crime in the first place?”

They decided to test an approach that was to try to catch youth doing the right things and give them a Positive Ticket. The ticket rewarded the kids with various things from free entry to the movies or to a local youth center and more. The officers starting giving out an average of 40,000 tickets positive tickets per year – three times the number of negative tickets over the same period. According to research, the Losada Line states that 2.9% is the minimum ratio of positive to negatives that has to exist for a team to flourish. On higher-performing teams (and marriages for that matter) the ratio jumps to 5:1. But did that hold true in policing?

According to Clapham, youth re-offensives were reduced from 60% to 8%. Overall crime was reduced by 40%. Youth crime was cut in half. And it cost one-tenth of the traditional judicial system – incredible!

So what about YOU? Do you want to be a high performer? Can you afford to wait for external positive reinforcement? Let whatever comes from the outside be gravy and make sure you are giving YOURSELF a 5:1 ratio of positive to negative reinforcement.

Spread the word!  ~Debra

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