What Keeps You Awake at Night: Risk, Leading Change, and Challenging Decisions

What Keeps You Awake at Night: Risk, Leading Change, and Challenging Decisions

← Back to Risk Management for Forensic Laboratories Webinar Series

This webinar originally occurred on July 26, 2022
Duration: 1 hour


In a recent conversation, the Colonel of the Missouri State Highway Patrol (MSHP) asked the presenter, the Director of the Crime Laboratory Division (CLD), “What keeps you up at night?” to which he responded, without hesitation, “The image of me sitting in front of a Senate panel answering the question ‘What did you know, and when did you know it.’” The fact is crime laboratories are exposed to risks each and every day, and it is the job of organizational leaders to balance the severity of a consequence versus the frequency of occurrence, know the laboratory’s risk exposure, and proactively mitigate that risk; and that is quite enough to keep you up at night.

Until recently, the MSHP CLD was a laboratory system comprised of eight laboratories. Several incidents occurred at one of these labs, and although each incident in and of itself was small, in combination and with increased frequency, the exposure to critical or catastrophic risk was increasing. Consequently, leadership made the bold decision to close the laboratory and consolidate to a seven-laboratory system.

In his seminal book “Leading Change” John Kotter outlines the eight steps to leading change. While the first step, “create a sense of urgency,” is crucial, step four, “communicate buy in,” is critical and pivotal. This webinar will discuss how risk exposure assessment, strategic planning, and management of change affected the decision to consolidate the MSHP CLD. Additionally, the presenter will address the stress and anxiety the consolidation caused and how it was addressed.

Detailed Learning Objectives

  1. Attendees will learn how to assess a crime laboratory's risk exposure.
  2. Attendees will understand how to lead change management and proactively mitigate risks.
  3. Attendees will understand the strategic planning that occurred to consolidate the Missouri State Highway Patrol Crime Laboratory Division.


  • Brian Hoey | Director, Missouri State Highway Patrol Crime Laboratory Division

Funding for this Forensic Technology Center of Excellence webinar has been provided by the National Institute of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.

The opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this webinar are those of the presenter(s) and do not necessarily reflect those of the U.S. Department of Justice.

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