Would a bodyguard lie under oath for $100?

This may seem to be a strange question. It is not really something I have ever thought of before. Not until today, anyway.

Over the past couple of months, my firm has been protecting some clients who are afraid of the other party in the case. Fairly typical of an Executive Protection contract.

Since I was the first contact which the client had with the company, I decided to make myself available whenever possible. Clients like it when they are not shuttled from one E.P. Agent to another.

One day the other party decided to bring a bodyguard to the meeting. It was completely a case of “monkey see, monkey do”, right down to the monkey who was hired to do the “protection”.

Recently there was a court hearing in the case. I was attending another court and could not be there when the other side called their star witness – the “bodyguard”. I was however, quite shocked to learn that this oxygen thief perjured himself under oath by telling the court he had seen my weapon exposed on one occassion during which time I was protecting my client.

Firstly, it was a pathetic statement – I am afterall a Personal Protection Specialist, registered/licensed/authorized by the Department of Criminal Justice Services to protect clients. As a concealed weapons permit holder, I am authorized to carry a weapon concealed. Finally, being registered as an advanced handgun PPS expert, I can work armed. Being a competitor, he knew all of this.

So why make such a big deal out of it? The answer is quite simple. His client was grasping at straws to do or say something to make our client look bad. What does that tell you? He was paid off to come to court for 30 minutes to lie under oath in an effort to assist his sleazy client and an unethical lawyer.

How much did they have to pay him to soil his integrity and defecate all over whatever reputation he may have had left? I’m thinking not much. I’d say $100 – tops. It’s quite interesting to find out how much a competitor is really worth.

Make sure you can confirm what your resume says about you

What is the “job” of a resume? To show people how much you know….to make yourself irresistible to an employer? Think again.

Your resume is your “foot in the door” of an opportunity to interview. Think of your resume as an appetiser. Your resume should “whet the appetite” of a potential employer, making them want to see the main course (you).

Now, what if your resume went overboard in describing your qualities, training and experience? Have you ever read a description of a dish on a menu and picked it just because it sounded great? What was your reaction when the meal arrived and it did not live up to expectations?

I’m guessing you complained, sent it back or re-ordered. If you accepted it and said nothing, chances are you were resentful, maybe left a miserable tip and decided that you would never go to that restaurant again. Am I close?

Do you see how a potential employer may feel if you come across as something you are not? We regularly receive resumes from security personnel looking to work for us and claiming to have E.P. experience. Yet when we look at the resume, we often see that their experience involved Bail Bonds, Bounty Hunting or Repossessing vehicles, but not E.P.

SEXTON is currently advertising their Executive Protection/ Personal Protection Specialist training program to be held in Las Vegas at the beginning of October. We have received several resumes from people who have seen the announcement and then decided to send us their resumes for work.

If you can identify yourself in this, stop this practice immediately. Firstly it shows us that you have poor powers of observation. If you had read the announcement properly, you would have seen that we were not looking for resumes. Secondly, if you have no formal training, why would we want to hire you?

It would be much better if you asked about the training, then you would see that you would be taught a world of new information, techniques and team building skills, the likes of which you probably never experienced previously.

Companies are receiving thousands of resumes for only a handful of jobs these days. It is said that there are approx. 33 million resumes in circulation today. Hiring personnel are getting battlefield experience like a M.A.S.H. unit and as such, can spot fluff and rubbish a mile away.

If you don’t have what you say you have, don’t say it or write it. Go find it and do it. Then later tell a prospective employer what you can do for them today.

Congratulations to our new Personal Protection Specialist graduates

We apologize for a lack of blog postings these past weeks, but we were busy training a new Executive Protection class and then assisting them to find jobs and interviews.

The current economic climate is still pretty dire and those looking to enter the workforce or transitioning into a new career need all the help they can get. That is why it is important to get to know and understand the power of Social Media marketing. If you do not have a business to market, then you can market the service you provide.

I was following a discussion on LinkedIn (great business tool which allows you to build a professional profile)today and an interviewer was writing about interviews he was holding for a position. Believe it or not, but a number of the interviewees had to be asked to put away their IPhones/Blackberrys as they were not paying attention to the questions being asked of them.

Sites like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn can get you noticed and can allow people to find you and view your skill set, but do not forget that your main aim is to make it to an interview. If you disrespect the interviewer by having to be told to refrain from “surfing the net”, in the middle of an interview, you can bet that you are not going to be receiving a welcome letter from that company anytime soon.

Doing Business in Afghanistan….Bring a Bodyguard

As if security was not already a big enough concern in Afghanistan, a new document has surfaced that could make doing any kind of business in Afghanistan that much more dangerous and potentially lethal.

A report from TVNZ discusses the disturbing new information coming to light.

The document which was discovered in July, contains a directive issued by an Al Qaeda advisor; Mustafa Hamid. In the directive, Hamid calls on the Taliban to start kidnapping foreigners as well as foreign military personnel.

This new kidnapping blitz is believed to be a tactic to force foreign Governments, in particular the U.S., to release terrorists in a type of “prisoner exchange” program. This idea is no doubt fashioned after the type of prisoner exchange operating between Palestine and Israel.

The bottom line is; if you are fortunate enough to have landed a Govt. contract or are planning on visiting Afghanistan as part of a private initiative, think long and hard about your personal security.

Proactive measures are ALWAYS more effective than reactive ones. Effective in every way – from a P.R. point of view, to a financial one – it will be many, many times cheaper to pay a professional Personal Protection Specialist to protect you for a week or two whilst in a dangerous city or country than it will be to negotiate a ransom, which may start in the millions of dollars.

Be careful when hiring security for the Inauguration

I’ve been hearing and reading about security people looking to work in Washington D.C. for the Inauguration. Those looking to protect clients would be well advised to think twice.

The D.C. traffic is quite hateful at the best of times. How will non-locals be expected to negotiate roads and routes that have been closed and detoured?

One major concern for anyone looking to come to work in the area should be the local laws. Will you be properly licensed and insured to work in the area? Won’t you be a liability to the client if you are not?

In an earlier posting we discussed compromising one’s integrity and ethics. How is it possible to work in an ethical manner if one works illegally? Since every hotel in the District of Columbia is said to be sold out, many clients will travel in from Maryland or Virginia.

In order to protect a client in the Commonwealth of Virginia, one must be registered as a Personal Protection Specialist with the Department of Criminal Justice Services. Failure to hold a registration while engaging in executive protection is a criminal offense – punishable by a $2000 fine and/or 12 months in jail.

Clients: For your safety and liability sake, insist on using personnel who are employed by licensed security companies and steer clear of freelancers. If something goes wrong or if their status is ever challenged, it could not only cause you embarrassment, but could lead to a criminal prosecution.

There will be a lot of amateurs looking to “cut their teeth” in January. The wise will leave it to the professionals.

How to protect your company and employees from workplace violence

Q: We have an employee who has made a series of threats to co-workers. He boasts about having a gun. We are considering terminating his employment. What should we do?

A: Employers have a duty to provide a safe workplace for their employees. While you seem to have reasonable grounds to suspend or terminate this person, you must at the same time ensure that nobody is harmed if he becomes violent. Workplace violence is a serious concern for companies of all sizes. Workplace violence is defined as: any conduct in the workplace which causes an individual to fear for their personal safety, the safety of their co-workers, family, friends and/or property.

According to the Dept. of Justice, 516 cases of homicide occurred in the workplace in 2006. However, the number of assaults, not resulting in death, amounted to 1,700,000 during the same period. This extremely high number, 1.7 million, highlights the prevalence of employees being victims of workplace violence. Many employers realize the importance of having a security presence in place before terminating someone who may have even the slightest chance of reacting violently.

It is extremely important to choose a security company whose personal protection specialists have proven experience in this area. A professional security firm will provide experienced agents who will be able to blend into the surroundings without alerting anyone to their real purpose. If they are to be armed, they will be carrying concealed weapons that will not be noticed by anyone at the place of employment.

In many instances, the person being terminated may focus on one person such as a HR manager and hold them responsible. In these days of easy access to personal information, it may be necessary to have a personal protection specialist placed at the manager’s residence for a few days. We have handled cases where we have had to place four or five agents at several managers’ residences on a 24 hour basis for several days.

When it comes to hiring personal protection specialists in order to safeguard one’s employees against workplace violence, the rule of thumb is to hire them from three to four days. This period is commonly known as the “cooling off” period. If a terminated employee is feeling resentful and angry, it is very likely that these feelings can worsen as they “stew” over their misfortune. They can make the situation even worse if they abuse drugs and/or alcohol.

Employers/HR Managers should keep in mind that the three – four day “cooling off’ period is a guideline, NOT a rule. We have worked many serious cases where our agents were required to remain at the workplace and/or “shadow” a threatened manager for several weeks. Each case should be carefully examined by the company and security consultant working in close harmony. A proper threat assessment needs to be conducted on a case by case basis.

The following are important points to consider:
• Most incidents of workplace violence start as a small confrontation.
• If left unchecked, minor conflicts will likely escalate
• Conflicts often lead to threats
• Threats need to be taken very seriously as Violence includes threats

When companies declare that they have a zero tolerance policy toward work place violence, they must mean this and not just pay “lip service” to it. The policy needs to apply to all employees, regardless of rank, status or seniority. Reported incidents need to be investigated and followed-up immediately. If the firm is not equipped to conduct an in-house investigation, it should be immediately outsourced.

If an employee is suspected of having committed a work place violence incident or to have engaged in conduct that caused an individual to fear for their personal safety, or the safety of their co-workers, depending upon the results of the preliminary finding, that employee may have to be placed on administrative leave pending a full investigation.