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Business is business…right?

4th September 2013 Business 2 Comments

During the Military Resettlement Training that we conduct we try and pass on a wide variety of experiences so that our students can enter the commercial environment as well prepared as possible. Part of our extended skills sessions involves explaining our views on business etiquette. Whilst it is well known that Close Protection Officers, in particular, must display etiquette whilst on the job, the business side of things is less well known and severely underrated.  These sessions work…..many of our students have gone on to form their own businesses and the feedback has been that these extra elements of the course have proven extremely useful to them in their business lives.

First Steps

You leave the course and get licensed as a Close Protection Officer. It would not be uncommon to deploy as a team member for a period of time before becoming the 2i/c and then sometime later a team leader. At this point you may well find yourself taking on more and more responsibilities and may well be asked to recruit direct for various projects. So far, so good….the plan is working!

Who pays who?

Many people in the commercial security industry are self-employed…it is just that sort of industry, it can be a good thing, allowing for great flexibility to take up excellent tasks with superb wages but of course you lose the stability that you get with an extended, full-time contract. This is where things start to get a little merky, the potential for scullduggery opens up at this phase.

Situation

You are ‘in’ with someone who has excellent connections, this person gets work in and has asked you to assemble a team of operators for a week long task. You discuss rates of pay and agree expenses. You now set out to recruit suitable people for the task and agree terms with them and this is where problems can arise. You must establish certain things such as:

  • Who are the team members invoicing? Is it you or your client?
  • what are the payment terms?

If you are looking at paying the team have you got the cash flow to cover it? Are you giving the guys what you have agreed with your client or are you taking a ‘management fee’ off the top? If so have you informed your client that you will be doing so? Does the team know this?

Going direct to the Client

If you are on the team  but have been told to invoice the client direct rather than the organiser. You see the team leader doing less but getting paid more and decide that you will approach the client direct and offer up your services direct to him. In most cases this will end in disaster. It says major things about personality and word will spread on the circuit and fast. Forget it.

Caution…walk before you run!

Why rock the boat? Just about everyone thinks that they should be running the show, that they could do it better, cheaper, quicker……in most cases the reality is quite the opposite. If you consider yourself a bit of a businessman then develop your own stuff. Sure, utilise the experiences that you gain while working for others and apply the good things to your business plan while omitting the bad but attempting to bite the hand that has fed you really well for quite some time is not a good idea.

Business is a challenge!

Business is not for dummies…some may have more good luck than others but most work very hard at it and deserve what they get. Our Close Protection Training is not a course in business studies but the greater awareness that we instil in you will benefit you time and time again……just ask the Argus Group!



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  • Neil Rowley

    6th September 2013 at 4:00 pm - Reply

    Firstly, the word ‘skullduggery’ is just not used enough in security related blogs. Secondly, we don’t join the Army or Police as a commander, we move up as we become more experienced and qualified, the same is true of commercial security. And lets not forget the value of commercial credibility, i would say its more relevant in civvy street as there is no rank or establishment to back you up.

  • nick

    9th September 2013 at 7:46 pm - Reply

    Quite correct Neil……lots to be said of working your way up rather than assuming a position based on previous endeavours regardless of who you served with!

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