Traits You Need to Become Successful in the Field of Criminal Justice

Society crumbles where there’s nobody to enforce the law, pursue criminals, and punish them for their illegal activities. A country’s anti-criminal masterminds let people seek justice against their oppressors while maintaining order in cities/towns. If you’re willing to give back to society and benefit communities with your services, pursue a career in criminal justice. You can save citizens from crimes, help victims of these felonies, and ensure that perpetrators go behind bars at all costs. The average salary in this field lies above $40,000, but – with enhanced experience – you can even hope to reach over $60,000 as well! So, let’s explain which qualities you must possess to become successful in the field of criminology.

Qualities That Help You Succeed in Criminal Justice

But why should you develop these traits for success in criminal justice? These capabilities will enable you to qualify for high-ranking positions after acquiring your degree. From a police officer to an FBI agent – there are several employment opportunities for you in the field. Students begin harnessing these traits and skills while they’re still studying criminology at a university. With a degree in criminology, a student can become a forensic accountant/psychologist, a crime scene investigator, or a corrections manager.

During an ongoing pandemic, universities offer online courses to help students pursue education without violating healthcare guidelines. Distance learning opportunities are available to many students in the world. They can access coursework digitally and continue studies on their terms. You can pursue a criminal justice degree online as well to prepare for cutting-edge careers in different institutions. Also, this degree will help you develop the capabilities compulsory for success in the field of criminal justice.

  1. Patience

Don’t forget that the field of criminal justice is deeply rooted in government regulations. So, agents sometimes have to wait patiently and engage in excessive paperwork. You may have to wait months before your client appears before a judge. We have probation officers who wait weeks to meet their clients and security managers who anticipate crimes to happen. It would help if you had the willpower to remain patient working for the government or find a career in the private sector where things move fast.

  1. Public Speaking

As a criminologist, you’ll frequently deal with people by communicating with them and listening to their stories. So, it would be best if you become an effective public speaker by working on your communication capabilities. Don’t disregard the fictional depiction of a police officer dispersing people or speaking to them about an incident. You can find yourself in many situations where you’ll address people as judges, officers, or teachers lecturing on criminal justice. Therefore, it would help if you boosted your speaking prowess.

  1. Critical Thinking

As a criminologist, you must assume a critical attitude while dealing with criminals and their attitudes and motivations. Academics are tasked with developing theories that explain what drives people to become criminals. As a field worker, you apply these theories practically to create profiles of suspects to help detectives catch that person. So, it would be best if you honed your critical-thinking qualities to become successful in this field. It’ll help you leverage all the available resources to solve the crime.

  1. Empathy

The field of criminal justice relies on people who join the workforce to help society. People in these jobs must be empathetic and understanding of others’ misfortunes. Don’t confuse empathy with the emotion called ‘sympathy.’ Sympathy seems akin to pity. In contrast, empathy means sharing someone’s perspective and being sensitive to their situation without embarrassing them. So, try to understand what and how people feel or think. Promote helpful behaviors and regulate your emotions as well.

  1. Leadership

Statistics from 2018 show that some 77% of organizations struggle to find effective leaders. Almost every institution in the world requires powerful managers who can lead a team and find solutions to complex problems. So, it’s essential to hone your leadership capabilities to serve as a role model for both subordinates and colleagues. A leader needs problem-solving skills and the ability to evaluate matters from different perspectives. Your confidence will inspire everyone around you!

  1. Courage

Courage doesn’t only help you face murky situations in this field and overcome challenges while seeking promotions. Courage hones your leadership capabilities as well. Many agents, officers, and security managers risk their lives to protect others solely because they’re courageous enough to do this job! That’s why it’s also essential to master your emotions, boost your self-esteem, and build your confidence. It’ll help you keep your wits when you’re the first guy to arrive at the crime scene.

  1. Physical Fitness

Investigating crimes and pursuing outlaws does require one to remain physically prepared. It would help if you remembered that a career in the field of criminal justice is physically demanding and nerve-wracking. It would be best to prepare yourself for instances where you need to jump, sprint, or climb to catch offenders unexpectedly. Many jobs related to this degree even require candidates to pass physical fitness tests officially. So, focus on cardiovascular health and don’t forget to exercise at least 30 minutes daily.

  1. Legal Know-How

In the end, you should increase your legal know-how and information related to your field. A recent report shows how 1,000+ suspects were apprehended in China for digital money laundering. So, it would be best if you remained alert about similar incidents happening all over the world. Don’t allow your ignorance to refrain you from catching criminals. As cybercrimes are on the rise during this ongoing pandemic, you must learn more about these online crimes. It’ll make you a better investigator!


Since the creation of Sherlock Holmes and Hercule Poirot, criminology has been a much-pursued passion among enthusiasts. Catching “bad guys” and solving crimes are activities that fascinate several students even today. But you can’t become successful in the field of criminal justice without having certain traits. These qualities make you an excellent criminal investigator, such as patience and integrity. You must be empathetic and willing to learn as well for brilliance in this career. Since these jobs are physically taxing, you must maintain your mental and physical health to enter the field of criminal justice. Also, leadership and technology skills ensure your chances at a speedy promotion after starting as a newbie.

Photo of author

William Woodall

Hi, My name is William Woodall, and I am a person who is determined to make the world a better place. I like to be around people and enjoy adventure and challenges.
Share on:

Leave a Comment