What Does It Take To Be a Crisis Negotiator?

Whether you are interested in a career in law enforcement or are simply curious about the innerworkings of this field, you may wish to learn more about the role of a crisis negotiator. These professionals work in high-risk situations and have the potential to deescalate situations and save numerous lives. Consider a few key facts about how crisis negotiation works and who plays a central part in navigating these events successfully.


There are many routes a person can take to become a crisis negotiator, but they all generally involve years of experience. Some of these specialists work for federal law enforcement agencies, while others begin their career as a police officer, rising to the rank of detective.


Various companies offer crisis negotiation products that help professionals safely handle dangerous situations. These may include speciality phones and even video systems. Crisis negotiators must be able to use this equipment, as well as their own personal protective gear, to manage crises.

Specialized Training

Crisis negotiators are also trained in certain techniques based on psychology and behavioral analysis. One such method involves establishing a level of connection and trust with the offender and providing him or her with potential resolutions to the situation.

Character Traits

While this high-stakes job certainly requires a great deal of preparation, there are also many innate qualities that would recommend a certain person for the job. For one, negotiators must be able to remain calm and composed in stressful situations. Additionally, it's important for these specialists to be able to demonstrate empathy even to those committing criminal acts. The ability to make quick decisions is also valuable.

Crisis negotiators fulfill an essential role within law enforcement agencies to neutralize dangerous circumstances and prevent loss of life. With the level of experience and training this position requires, it no doubt merits a great deal of respect.

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