November 30, 2020

Are You an elephant Chained in a Circle?

It happens to Anyone…Any Time… Anywhere… For any Reason

Written by Robert D. Sollars

You may be thinking that this is an unusual question to be asking in a blog on security issues, but trust me it’s not. The statement refers to the way that elephants, for all their wisdom, were trained when they were young, so they perform in a circus or another such forum. For our entertainment.

Back in the day, an elephant would be tied harshly, with either a chain or rope inside of a small circle. They would learn, over time, that they weren’t allowed to move past the length of the tether. Therefore, even when they had nothing on their ankle, they wouldn’t venture outside the circle they perceived to still be there, even if it wasn’t and they weren’t chained.

This brings up asking you…are you chained in a circle? Meaning are you chained to ideals, guidelines, books, and professional organizations instead of going above and beyond to satisfy or service the customer, which could be the organization itself? Or in some cases returning to an easier model that isn’t so complicated and will solve the issue with less manpower and/technology?

Far too many companies, even now midst the pandemic, are stuck in their little circle of what to do. They can’t seem to break out of the circle because they are still chained by best practices, professional guidelines, associations, and a myriad of other chains & tethers. In order to get out of that circle and ensure that the chain is broken…is simple.

Break with conventional wisdom and plow your own path. Even if what you create isn’t pretty or efficient to utilize, in security you do what you have to do in order to secure the client and there, or your organization, property/people. Another way to describe this is to zig when everyone else is zagging. How many times have you heard that and thought it couldn’t be that easy?

I’ve used and implemented unconventional ideas for clients when I worked in the contract field for nearly 20 years. Now that I’m no longer in the field, I use unconventional methods to teach my classes and workshops. They are effective, efficient, and are blunt, succinct, and the participants get the point quickly.

Whatever industry you’re in, you have to look for those unconventional ways to service and satisfy your customers. Security officers? Writing & editing? Waste Disposal? Nursing? You take the best practices and turn them on their proverbial heads and do what needs to be done…the right way, whether people say it’s right or wrong. As long as the customer is satisfied and it turns out right, then do it.

An old saying from the original Star Wars character Yoda states “Do or do not, there is no try. Unfortunately, as security professionals, we are timid and don’t either propose better solutions or are afraid to tell someone. In other words, we won’t even try something different.

I’ve been called a rabble-rouser, weird, unconventional, off-target, and totally unhinged for some of the ideas I’ve come up with. But I can guarantee you that every idea is thought through and the client was satisfied with such an effective solution, even if it was ‘off the wall’ and unconventional, having never been tried before…that they had heard of.

I May Be Blind, but My Vision Is Crystal Clear

Permission to share? Of course, with full attribution

Copyright 2020 Robert D. Sollars

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