Now, here me out. If you’re managing security projects it’s only a matter of time before you’ll have to deal and work with security personnel, bodyguards, and drivers that are not part of your team or company. Dealing with unknown personnel can be very problematic due to their potential lack of professionalism and egos.
Now, someone may think, and an alarming number of people do, since John X is not networking from the company’s Y social media account but from his own, there is nothing wrong and no harm done. WRONG. Anyone who works for you and has his work title/position linked to your company, represent your brand and is responsible for your reputation and can also be a liability for you and considered as the weak link of your company or someone who’s online activities are such that your competitors can use it against you. A bad security operative working for you shows the public how low your standards may or may not be and degrade the standards you appear to have when hiring people and how, apparently, you do not care about ethical considerations and personality traits.
What most people don’t realize is that most civilian, non-government close protection jobs are unarmed due to the legal restrictions on firearms in most countries. Part of your threat assessment for any assignment needs to take into account laws on the use of force and weapons in the locations you are going to be working in. Being caught with an illegal weapon, especially a firearm, will get you thrown in jail very quickly, no matter how important you think you are!
But of course, the students who flood off to colleges and universities in their late teens and twenties are rarely bedevilled by such thoughts! So why, when it comes to learning later in life, to undertaking vocational-related training and – of course – distance-learning, do we find it so difficult to succeed?
Describe your professional journey?
I played on the Georgia State Patrols basketball league then joined the reserve sheriffs, I then did freelance security with 2 Georgia state troopers that started a company. I took a hiatus and actually became a barber while still doing security work on the side. While cutting hair I ran into someone who gave me a window of opportunity which led me to land a 6 figure contract. My company SS consulting specialized in threat assessments and advances but I didn’t just limit myself to that. I would land other contracts doing different types of security. The reality is, it’s who you know vs what you know.
In the context of close protection work, the use of firearms is often an all or nothing proposition. In most cases, you are either armed, or you’re not! There is a whole host of things that play into that, be it where you are, your level of certification, or the demands the client puts on you. All of that aside, I wanted to take some time and dig into the finer things, often overlooked when we talk about “strapping up.” Ammunition!
Organised physical exercise can be traced far back to ancient Greek times, where it was viewed that it should be both an integral part of an individual’s responsibility and civic duty to maintain health.
Over 2020 cyber security and technology have only soared in terms of profile and importance, with talk about threats to remote working from technology, difficulties, and some dramatic outages. Logistics, enabled largely by technology, have been essential to keep things moving and give people support and normality.
Throughout my nine years of experience in the Executive Protection (EP) industry, I’d like to think that I’ve achieved many significant accomplishments.
Having traveled to over 30 countries, building executive protection and estate teams, embarking on 10 major worldwide tours and transitioning from field agent to Director of Security. Despite my successes, I’ve still felt like a student at best, but now finally considering myself a Specialist. Naively, many young protectors are eager to consider themselves “specialists” without undergoing the proper mentorship and gaining the practical experience needed to hold this title.
It is believed that this is the safest method of carry because when the handgun is drawn from the holster, it points in a straight line directly at the target. The cross-draw is where the gun is on the opposite side of the body to the dominant hand, so you have to reach across the body to draw the handgun.
Designed by an audiologist, earHero’s speakers are so tiny they will never block your ear canal giving you the ability to literally talk on a separate phone without removing the earHero tactical earpiece from either ear.
You can literally hear whisper level sounds from yards away, while identifying the sounds’ precise location. The earHero tactical headsets have wires so thin and clear, they are virtually undetectable, and the design is so comfortable, you’ll barely know the earpiece is there.
Being an instructor for Tony Scotti’s Vehicle Dynamics Institute has forwarded the opportunity to observe how a large section of professionals interact and function from different niches of the industry. Military, transnational EP teams, US based teams, Federal LEO’s or with civilians this theme shows through. Even in the larger training arena the change can be seen as more of the schools are starting to focus on classes or blocks of instruction such as client management and behavioral analysis. The discussion forms are flooded with conversations relating to how to work in a team dynamic. It doesn’t matter if its a 28 day school or a three day school, they will be touching on and teaching these topics.
In the past, I viewed Executive Protection (EP) as persons who provided corporate level protection. This was the guy who only walked with the CEO, politician, or other important corporate executives and dignitaries. With my limited understanding, I didn’t think of those who drive these same individuals as being considered Executive Protection agents as well. As an EP specialist, I now understand and have experienced some of the vast role’s EP work will encompass.
My transition was a tricky one. Coming from a field where we are trained to address crime once it happens, mentally it leaves you in response mode. EP is very proactive, as such, we must anticipate what could happen and work to mitigate that. Also, as an Law Enforcement Officer, you have control over almost every situation that you’re in. The law gives you that authority and that luxury. In Executive Protection, not so much. So there’s another shift in mindset that one must have. As an EP professional you don’t have the same authority that LEO’s have, so you can’t bark out commands, stop traffic, block public access, etc., as such, the transition was tricky. The best way I can describe it is, not difficult but also, not “easy,” so to speak.
The Circuit Magazine held a Virtual Learning and Development Forum on September 4, 2020, that was attended by Executive Protection specialists and experts from around the globe, including the UK, US, Europe, Latin America, Middle East and West Africa.
Before you build your company’s or personal brand lets first take a moment to reconcile what branding is and how it differs from marketing. Branding is the process involved in creating a unique name and/or image for a product or service in the mind of the consumer. The goal of “Branding” is to establish a significant and differentiated presence in the market that attracts and retains loyal customers. What differentiated message have you created in the mind of your desired clientele?
Did you know: Historically, street crime increases, proportionately, with population growth? Crime in England is accelerating, and according to police figures, the London murder rate has now surpassed that of New York for the first time in modern history. Not only does this place the general public at risk but arguably, it exposes the front-line security operator to even greater danger.
Having dug around in the last year to see what’s going on with security training courses at home and overseas, it would appear that there is a gap between what’s acceptable, to what’s a complete rip off, and that gap is as wide as the Grand Canyon.
The “workout” is only a part of the overall Physical Fitness picture. Give or take 8 hours a day for sleeping, that leaves 16 waking hours that require physical activity. I use the word “require” because if we want to stay active for the long game, then it really isn’t an option and it must be a priority. This is where I feel the missing link is for most people, a basic understanding of true Physical Fitness and how to apply it to everyday living without just viewing it as a workout period.
In the early days of ‘private contractor’ work in Iraq following the end of the war in 2003, medics were generally unregulated and unregistered, most being ex RMAs (now CMT1s) who had left the military and qualified as HSE Offshore Medics. Some had not done any ‘civilian’ courses but were hired on the strength of their military qualifications and experience; the guys would generally operate as firstly a PSD team member/operator, and secondly as a team medic. In those days the drugs and equipment carried by the medics was very limited; generally, FFDs, quick clot, blast bandages and if you were lucky some morphine auto injectors, Paracetamol and Ibuprofen.