Do You Have a Deputy Dawg Working for You? Part 2
Written by Robert D. Sollars
It won’t be easy and you will be labeled a hard ass but…it is necessary. To overhaul the industry in a time of dangers never before thought of in this perilous world. As security, not to mention just pure, professionals we need to maintain a security watch on people, property, & assets as we have never had to do before…even in a time of war.
We can start with our security force and ensure that they are officers, not just rent-a-cops and guards of yesterday going back 5, 20, or longer ago…they were little trained, with even less motivation in most cases. Hopefully, these posts will assist you in beginning to turn your guards into professional officers.
Training is an excellent first step, and mandatory, but testing is a compulsory 2nd. After training someone, whether it is orientation or On-the-Job, you need to test them. If you don’t test, how do you know whether or not they learned, and retained anything? How can you correct any issues that come about because of a lack of understanding if you don’t test? The correct and only answer, unless you’d rather wait until someone fucks up royally, which helps absolutely no one and you could possibly lose a contract or worse a life, is you don’t!
Written tests should be administered at the end of any training. The written, not just Truth & False (T & F) or multiple choice, forces the officer to think out their answer and put it in writing. No matter how bad their grammar is, hopefully, it’s at least passable, and the answer will be thoughtful and well-explained. When you see them in the office or on a post, ask them a question about their assignment, this forces them to recall important information immediately as if they were working, which indicates their mindset.
Both of these tests will keep them on their toes and keep them thinking and learning about their assignment. Additionally, it will keep them up-to-date on their post, client needs, as well the industry and company news. It also gives you the opportunity to correct any issues that may have arisen before it’s used badly or incorrectly…causing even more issues. Those issues will usually lead to even greater problems that you DO NOT want either
FIELD SUPERVISION: While out conducting post inspections, you, or a suitable company representative, need to be doing more than just shooting the breeze. Delve into their knowledge of the post, security, post orders, and other such items. After the breeze has been shot, leave them with something to think about, a motivational thought or security tidbit.
This will also help to get them into the idea that they need to be an officer, not a guard. Your field-level supervision needs to be the official presence of the company and uphold the industry and company standards.
Guards see field management as a royal pain in their ass and trying to catch them doing something wrong. But to an officer, they will see it as an opportunity to learn and grow, whether within the industry or company and learn from a more experienced officer.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with chewing the fat with an officer, for a long time, if it’s okay with everyone involved. The key to this approach is getting to know the officer, their needs, issues, and anything that may hinder their job performance. Therefore, by knowing them, you’ll also get to know if anything may hinder the client and their goals.
BE CURIOUS & PARANOID: Yes, I said paranoid. Does that mean calling someone every time they hear a sound or see a frightening shadow? Of course not! What it does mean is that they should take nothing for granted and be hyper-vigilant. If you hear a noise in a dark facility, no matter what kind, then don’t think it’s just a rodent, it could be a criminal, sounding like a rodent, in other words, ordinary normal sounds, being wery, wery quiet. And curiosity killed the cat, but it won’t kill the officer… unless you’re in a slasher/horror movie.
CUSTOMER SERVICE: Yeah, I know what you are thinking about providing customer service in the security field. There are many levels to customer service and your officers, new & old, must be proficient in learning how to deliver it. There is so much more to customer service than smiling and being respectful to others. Customer service is not an act but a habit. Therefore, in order to make your officers into customer service extraordinaire, you need to make them effective, efficient, & train them in the skills they need.
Did you get to YOUR level of expertise by sitting and doing nothing? Probably not! More than likely, you put in years of field experience & study to become the professional you are. There isn’t a magic elixir to take, to make you a security genius. Nor is there a metal helmet you can put on to attract the knowledge of the universe…that would be fantastically wonderful. But that’s not practical, so it leaves one thing and one thing only. Observe and learn!
Have your officers learn and keep learning about everything. Have them observe everything and record it mentally and in their pocket notebooks, which should be mandatory, if you can get them to change their perception of themselves, and the client, management, & employees change their perceptions then you are on the way to having officers, not guards. And if you can do that, then your officers will gain and be respected as such…which can provide benefits for the company/client down the road.
Not a commercial, but yes I can help you do that, effectively, efficiently, and without all the fuss!
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It happens to Anyone…Any Time…Anywhere… For any Reason
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Copyright 2023 Robert D. Sollars