Having both frequently trained and discussed defensive tactics with law enforcement officers, I have come to realize a few things about my own training that I have directly learned and adopted from these individuals, and aspects in which my approach is quite different than theirs.
The differences are simple, really. Firstly, unlike an officer, I am free to run away, or use a defensive technique and then do so. I don't have to arrest anybody, which means I don't have to subdue an attacker if I feel there is another option available like hoofing it or breaking an arm and then fleeing. In the same way, I would have far less need--or none at all-- for come-alongs or setting up specific cuffing techniques (this could mean a different ground technique if it did come to pinning an attacker, such as keeping the attacker on his back if need be). Nor would I have a weapon--or many pounds of gear/protective vest--to consider (to be used by or against me).
All this said, what I have learned can definately be applied to my own skill set. Especially in situations where I could confidently use less violence to de-escalate a situation, or even more mental aspects such as taking control of a situation and learning what does work and what doesn't work under pressure (hit my link on japanese jiu-jitsu for more on this). Most officers are also well-versed in saftey issues and knowing what to do when injury does occur.
But I'd say that one of the most valuable things about training/talking with law enforcement guys and gals on a regular basis is listening to the descriptions and characteristics of the mindset common to the criminal on the street. Although there are always exceptions, there are certian traits that repeat themselves and behavior that can picked up on. And police study these--closely. And many of these bits of information can go a long way when it comes to avoiding a situation before it takes place, or handling it successfully if it does happen.