Executive Protection Schools

The Truth About Executive Protection Schools

Executive Protection SchoolsTraining

Executive Protection School

What you should know about executive protection schools. Several years ago I was on a layover at Midway Airport when I noticed a professionally dressed woman looking in my direction wearing an expression that I quickly recognized as one of familiarity.

You know the look that someone gives you right before the index finger begins to wag and that age old line rolls off the tongue, “Hey, don’t I know you from someplace?”

The interesting thing was that she wasn’t so much looking at me as she was looking at my black portfolio with the bright red embossed emblem which read, “SPI” for, Southern Police Institute.

That black portfolio and the Kentucky Colonel plaque that hangs in my office are the membership cards that tie me into an elite group of law enforcement professionals with whom I share a common experience and a common set of credentials.

In law enforcement circles there are only a few command schools that really matter, The FBI Academy, Northwestern Command School, and the Southern Police Institute.  If you have attended one of those three schools you have met the first several key requirements for any command level police chief job you might be pursuing.

Essential Ingredients When Selecting an Executive Protection School

Much talk has been made of two essential ingredients for success in the professional world these days.  The two new buzz words are “Branding” and “Networking.”  If you want to get the job or the contract its all about your brand and your network, few other things matter as much.

As it is in the world of law enforcement, there are certain executive protection schools that will set you apart from the competition and effectively “Brand” you as a serious contender for desirable work and that will expand your “Network” so that you are not alone in marketing yourself.

At the conclusion of this article we will show you how to make an informed decision about which executive protection school you will attend.  But first, lets talk a little bit about what’s out there and how to avoid some of the predatory marketing practices of schools that will leave you broke, ignorant, and empty handed, when its time to produce some credentials.

If you want to be certified in CPR go take a Red Cross course and they will certify you.  If you want to be certified to teach a firearms course the NRA can fix you up.  But if you want to be a certified executive protection specialist there is no such certification available.

A school can give you a certification that says you passed their course, but that certification is not universally recognized as a qualifier to perform EP services.  Any executive protection school that promises they will certify you as an EP specialist without carefully explaining that their certificate does not meet any legal standard for qualification is trying to take advantage of you.

Because there is no legal requirement of certification for EP services, there is no true need for any executive protection school to offer certification other than as a document to indicate you passed their course.

Make Sure you Look at Reputable Executive Protection Schools

However, it is important to note that some reputable executive protection schools are accredited by the state which they operate, and many schools will teach you legal requirements for use of force and use of firearms.

You also want to be on the lookout for schools that promise you work upon completion of their course.  Let’s face it, the job market is tough out there and getting EP work is just as competitive as ever.

Attending a reputable executive protection school can open doors for you but no one can promise you work just because you completed their course.  A good and reputable school will tell you this up front.

Most potential clients will want to know that you have been trained.  Anyone who is not interested in knowing whether or not you have been trained is probably only looking for a couple of knuckle dragging goons to knock people aside or to look impressive.

There is a substantial amount of liability involved in hiring untrained bodyguards.

Some celebrities have paid out large sums of money for having friends or relatives serve as protection only to have them respond inappropriately in critical situation and cause harm to citizens.  A well trained bodyguard is well worth their wages and will protect the client physically and religiously.

When you are looking for a reputable executive protection school look for one that is run by individuals who themselves have stellar credentials and years of experience in the business. There are several important factors to consider when selecting an executive protection school:

•    Location
•    Price
•    Coursework
•    Reputation

LOCATION: Fortunately, some reputable executive protection schools now offer online courses.  This is important because often traveling to another state to receive training can become cost prohibitive.

However, if possible it is best to attend a local executive protection school because more than likely your first jobs will not be long-term assignments traveling the world with a Rock Star or Rapper, living in hotels!

Bodyguard Overload

Newbie

You will likely find yourself on short-term assignments working a small venue for a political client for one night or working as a stand-in for someone who is unavailable for an executive that needs to get  safely to the airport.

A security company may want to hire you to do access control at the building entrance of a major corporation at first, or you may be asked to volunteer with a small team to protect the family of a CEO at a fundraising event.

Earlier I mentioned the importance of networking. Attending a local school where you are face to face with other EP professionals and the instructors affords one the optimal opportunity to network.

If you take an online course you miss the opportunity to interact personally with others.
PRICE: Do your homework. Compare prices of different programs. Determine how many hours of training you will receive for the fees you are expected to pay.

Don’t fall for those ads that promise you a new career for $1500 and 30 hours of coursework. The promise of a job upon completion of coursework is an outright lie.

One “training program” tells people they will be a “certified executive protection specialist” upon completion of the program.  When you see ads like this ask to speak to alumni of these programs. Review the refund policy. Visit other websites and read blogs or boards to read what working professionals in the business have to say.

COURSEWORK:
Again, compare the coursework of the various schools. 15 hours of coursework does NOT train you to be an EPS.  It takes months of hard work and study to become a police officer and even more hard work, study, and years of experience to become a police executive.  The same can be said for becoming a firefighter, an EMT, a paramedic.

Executive Portection Schools coursework

Military personnel and other professionals also go through extensive training before taking an active role in their field.  Even these professionals with all their training and experience will find it difficult to obtain work as an EPS.

A handful of classes with Acme Bodyguards School will not make you a “Certified” EP professional. The fact is that if it sounds too good to believe it probably is too good to believe.

REPUTATION: Word of Mouth in this line of business is important. While it’s true that not every individual is going to be happy 100% of the time with even the best of programs, the positive comments will out number the negative comments made by the public.

You need to look at the big picture. Contact the Better Business Bureau prior to investing any money in an EPS training program. Consider contacting the schools personally via telephone and ask questions. Ask to read bios of the instructors and complete course descriptions. Read about people who have had careers you admire and learn where they trained.

In the beginning of this article I mentioned meeting a person at Midway Airport.  A uniform, a certain tattoo, or even a black portfolio can gain you recognition and identify you as one of the club.  The right executive protection school can open doors for you as well, but you have to be realistic in your expectations.

My black portfolio and the school it represents got me noticed and it gave me a platform for speaking to a stranger who had nothing more in common with me than the school we both attended.  However, it is my own experience, personality, and winsome nature that kept the door of opportunity open.

Years later, I brought that same portfolio to a job interview.  The man interviewing me was an FBI graduate.  He took one look at that portfolio, smiled, and asked me a few serious questions before the interview turned into a casual conversation about the two different command schools we attended.

Look carefully at the executive protection schools we recommend and understand that when you walk into that interview or you make your pitch to get the job, you may be taking the reputation of that school into the interview with you, so choose carefully.

This article about executive protection schools

was written by Douglas Belton

 

So let’s connect soon!

Warmest Regards

Founder of Bodyguard Careers

Harlan (Hucky) Austin

 

If It Was Easy, Everyone Would Be a Bodyguard

By Doc Rogers

The bodyguard trade has a price, everyone must pay for admission. When you first start you must get specific executive protection training from a recognized school. The training does not come cheap, but look at it as an investment. Once you successfully complete your training there are additional fees that must be paid and honestly many bodyguard candidates aren’t willing to pay.

This includes long workdays (12-20 hours) intense agendas and stressful conditions, weeks and even months away from your family, living out of a suitcase and lots of unexciting hotel and airline food.  These are not complainants. The pay is decent; hard work deserves good pay and most of us knew what the job entailed before we got into the trade. However, I want to make it clear that this type of work isn’t for everybody. If it was an easy way of life, everyone would be a bodyguard.

If after reading the above, you are still interested in becoming a bodyguard, than you have the required determination and heart to succeed.  I’m not trying to discourage people from entering the trade, but remember there is a price to pay. You may be in for a struggle and lots of non-glamorous work. After your initial bodyguard training at the academy do not stop your learning process. Read everything you can on the subject.  There is no such thing as too much experience and knowledge.

When looking for work in the industry do not pass up volunteer jobs. This includes volunteering your time at local celebrity dinners or functions.  These volunteer jobs always tend to payoff in the future. It also looks good on your résumé.  But remember; go to give, not to take and serve greatly.

Next suggestion, move to city where the bodyguard trade is in demand. It is possible to find bodyguard work anywhere in the world.   But your best chances are in a city the needs bodyguards.  Do not move to any particular city on a whim. Be prepared and do your research first.  Start making daily, weekly, monthly and yearly goals for your bodyguard career.

When you first start, start out small. Get some quality business cards made, start meeting others bodyguards on Facebook and LinkedIn. Start attending bodyguard workshops in your area and mailing your résumé to Fortune 500 company executive protection units. Just make sure your résumé makes a good impression before sending them out. As you meet each goal, generate a new one until you land a bodyguard job and obtain a long-term career. With heart and determination you will make it. Keep safe and God speed.

How to Excel in the Bodyguard Trade

By Doc Rogers

For many the bodyguard industry is not easy to excel in. Breaking into the bodyguard business can be an uphill battle.  This is the cold, harsh reality of the bodyguard and executive protection industry. However, there are a number of executive protection and bodyguard schools you can attend to better your chances of breaking into the trade. Refer to Harlan (Hucky) Austin’s Executive Protection Schools E-book to find the best options.  Here are some suggestions that have helped me over the years to excel in the profession, protecting people, making a good living and doing what I love. Please pay very close attention.

1. Customer Service.  Whether you are just starting out in the business or a seasoned veteran you need to provide customer service.  Some misinformed apprentice bodyguards don’t get this. Their point of view is “I’m a bodyguard, protecting clients’ against personal threats; I don’t need to provide customer service.”  Bodyguarding and executive protection is a service industry; we are here to improve the client’s quality of life. Customer service provides value to your client, builds your professional reputation and helps you to earn client loyalty.  And to do this you must be hundred per cent focused on the client.

2. Get Results. In your efforts to provide amazing service to your clients, make sure you give them the results they are looking for.  You don’t hear the word “results” often when talking about the bodyguard trade. Results are the favorable or concrete outcomes of your bodyguard duties.  Results speak louder than words. Here are some of the results clients may look for when retaining your bodyguard services:

A. Reduced fear. B. Reduced annoyances. C. Smooth and fast-tracked services. D. Crisp and expedient ground transportation.  E. VIP treatment. F. Low profile or high profile bodyguard service (depending on client’s request). G. Make a difference in the client’s life.

Bottom-line; do the things you were hired for in the first place. That’s why you are paid the big bucks. Do the above things consistently and watch your client base grow.

3. Network Intelligently. The bodyguard trade is a connections game. Who you know, can get you work and make your career. Start networking seriously and make the right connections. This is no easy business, but making good connections help. If you play your cards right, attend the right bodyguard academy, go to the right seminars, workshops and conventions you may find yourself employed and going on assignments in no time. The pitfalls; if you don’t plan you may find yourself unemployed and broke quickly. A winner plays the game like it is the last game he will ever play. It’s your decision.

4. Strive to Be Better Than Your Last Assignment.  Improve your bodyguard craft, service and people skills. Learn from your last assignment (the good, bad, and ugly). Commit yourself to do better each time. Keep learning the trade by reading and taking distance study courses. When not on the road attend bodyguard workshops and seminars and interact with the instructors and people in attendance. As you increase your knowledge, you will be able to help clients more efficiently.  There are no “get rich programs” in the bodyguard or executive protection trade only hard work, adding value and serving and keep client’s safe. Good luck and God speed.

Finding work in the Executive Protection Industry

Executive Protection

Finding work in the Executive Protection Industry

Finding work in the executive protection industry can be very competitive. Having executive protection training and experience are assets that would enable you to do your job right. I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but the nature of the beast is that you are faced with an enormous amount of competitors targeting a very select market. Allow me to give you an example that perhaps will help you see this point from a different perspective.

For the sake of the argument let’s say that you are in a room with two hundred other people the same gender as you and you are all dressed the same way; remember, your physical appearance doesn’t matter and you all possess the same or very similar qualifications, experience, and executive protection training.

From a distance, you all look the same; the question is how you will make the potential employer pick you over everybody else? Sure, you can be the court jester, start jumping around yelling “pick me, pick me.” Realistically that approach will not get you the job, so making a fool out of yourself is not recommended.

What you need is to understand that the niche of executive protection employers you are targeting is specialized and has very specific needs. It’s your job, and yours only to find work. If your idea of executive protection job hunting is that the employer will come and knock on your door while you are in your pajamas at home browsing the internet, tweeting how you spent your night, or playing Farmville games on Facebook, you are severely deceived.

The reality is that it is up to you, and only you to make yourself available, find and utilize resources to get you where you are envisioning yourself to be. There is no genie that will jump out of the oil lamp and will inform you that you have three wishes available at your disposal. In other words, you need a plan.

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The Two-Minute Video Tip: Choosing The Right EP School

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQLVxQqyJ3U[/youtube]

In this week’s installment of the two-minute video tip, host Harlan (Hucky) Austin along with special guest Elijah Shaw talk about choosing the right Executive Protection School.

Without a doubt, one of the best things you can do to increase your chances of obtaining work as an Executive Protection Specialist (Bodyguard) is to obtain top-notch training.

That being said, it is certainly meaningful when I see Executive Protection course work from a reputable school on an individual’s resume. By reputable, I mean a program that is run by individuals who themselves have stellar credentials and years of experience in the business.