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A day in the life of the Commissioner Sir Paul Stephenson
I like to get up early and think about the day ahead. I read the newspapers as I eat my breakfast. It's important to get a handle on the big issues of the day.
Three mornings a week I sit down with my senior colleagues - known as Management Board and discuss the issues that are affecting Londoners and the police. This might include knife crime and what we are doing to tackle it, or how we might ensure that more police officers are seen on your street. It may be that we are given feedback from the community about how we are doing. I expect all of my top team to make suggestions and ideas, and report to me about what is really going on.
With over 55,000 people in the Met there is a lot of tasking people with jobs so I rely on people to be clear about what needs to be done. In some ways this is like when your teacher tells you what work you are going to do each day. Some parts we enjoy and some parts are challenging but we need to make sure we do it all to the best of our ability.
Once the meeting is over I will read through documents that set out future work and plans, meet with people in government and on rare occasions I meet with people such as the Queen. But most of the time I am talking to the people in the Met about how we can be better at serving you, and keeping you safe.
Why I wanted to be a police officer
I did not always want to be a police officer but I am really glad that it was the path I chose. I think for most of us we change ideas as we grow up, one minute you may want to be a famous pop star and other times you want to go to the moon. That is normal and I am sure your plans will change as you get older.
A little known fact is that when I was younger I was actually an international swimmer - I loved powering through the water and feeling the joy of winning a race. It meant that I had to be disciplined, and sometimes I had to miss out on going out with my friends, but it was all worth it. Working hard for something and then being the best is a wonderful feeling.
Leading the biggest police force in the country
I did not join the police so that I could be Commissioner but I have to say that it is a pretty good job. I remember when I was an officer on the beat I used to walk the streets in my uniform and look out for anything that was not right. It could be someone picking on someone else, or an older person in need of my help.
We always read in the paper about the latest big crime, but the majority of police work on the street was talking to people about what was bothering them - and then doing something about it. I think that is how you can be the best police officer. Yes, we have special teams such as our dog unit and our helicopter pilots, but on the whole most of us should be on the street talking to you and finding out how we can help.