Sunday, October 17, 2010

Three Things To Look for When Hiring a Bodyguard or Executive/Close Protection Security Specialist

Three Things To Look for When Hiring a Bodyguard or Executive/Close Protection Security Specialist

How do you know if you are hiring a qualified security professional for personal protection?  Being a bouncer, doorman, cooler, security guard, military or police are not in themselves qualifications to be a certified experienced protection professional.  While most trusted professionals in the industry have a foundation in military or law enforcement, being a qualified bodyguard requires specialized training.  

The answer is documentation.  Here are three things to look for when hiring a bodyguard, or as they like to be called, protection professionals or protective specialists.  This will go a long way in helping you avoid the fly-by-night or a wanna-be tough guy just wearing sun glasses and talking a good game.

For VIPS, celebrities, CEOs and other high profile and at-risk individuals, a bodyguard can be one of the most important decisions one can make.  Professional bodyguards not only facilitate more efficient business and provide safety, a good protective agent will inspire peace of mind, reducing stress and adding to quality of life. 

1. Training and Experience
Most bodyguards or Executive Protection Specialists or CPP (Close Protection Professionals) have a background in  military or law enforcement as well as specialized education.  Ask for documentation and check them out.   For military service members you can ask to see a copy of a DD-214.

2. Reputation and References
Professional protection agents will have a prepared list of references available for you.  If for any reason they make excuses or try to distract you from this step, it is a big red flag.  Credible bodyguards will encourage you to check them out.

3. Confidentiality and Professionalism
It pays to do your due diligence when hiring a bodyguard.  After all, it is the security of your assets or loved ones at stake.  It is best to take your time and do the necessary steps to verify the agent and or firm you hire.  You can also contact other firms.  Even if they are in competition with the one you inquire about, true professionals often refer business to one another and work cooperatively on larger details.  It will give you more insight to make a more informed decision.

You can also look for industry accepted training certifications such as ASIS or others.  It is strongly recommended that you verify successful completion of training from a recognized training institution such as ESI (Executive Security International), BTI (Bodyguard Training International/USA Bodyguards), R.L. Oatman and Associates, Gavin de Becker and Associates, Sexton Security and others.  These are a few of the more respected and recognized bodyguard training facilities in the USA.  A bit of research online can help you get some quick answers.

John D. Nottingham, EPS, 6th Dan
Nottingham Sword & Shield Security
4731 E. Greenway Suite 10
Phoenix, AZ 85032
(602) 896-8721
Member: ASIS

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