The bodyguard industry is not a forgiving place in which to make mistakes; neglect these six recommendations at your own peril.
1. Advance Work: Do your advance work and conduct your country research at all costs. The more prior knowledge you have and the more facts you obtain the better chances you have at keeping your clients safe.
2. Self-Promotion: Bodyguards sell a product; themselves, pure and simple. If no one has ever heard of you, you have no chance to experience the so-called fame and fortune the industry offers. Bodyguards need to be professional and aggressive self-promoters in this day-and-age, because the competition is intense.
3. Luck: In this business there is no such thing as luck. Don’t sit back and hope to get lucky. Put in the time, energy, sweat and grunt-work to prepare to be lucky.
4. Training: In your down-time use these empty hours to train your mind and body. Attend bodyguard classes, advance shooting schools, exercise read industry books, manuals, and trade journals. Pump-up your muscles and brain-cells.
5. Network: Spread your network far and wide. This means making friends with other bodyguards and keeping in touch with people around the world. Having a strong network will determine your professional life. Sure, daily networking is time consuming, but it will expend your bodyguard career and bank account.
6. Tools and Equipment: It is said that a bodyguard is only as effective as the tools and equipment he or she uses. Here are some examples:
A. Resume. Use only quality paper and envelopes when sending out your BG resume to potential prospects. Wrinkled, stained or poorly printed resumes go into “file 13” (the trash can).
B. Clothing. Wear a quality suit and tie with shoes that are highly polished. You have to look and dress the part to be taken professionally and seriously in this business.
C. Weapons. Carry on the best handguns, knives, batons, etc. Make sure you are trained and licensed to carry that particular weapon. Only carry factory new weapons with all original parts in one hundred percent condition. Any weapon you carry must function normally and be fully operable as your clients’ life may depend upon it.
Keep consistent throughout every aspect of your bodyguard career. Become known as a tough, solid, dependable professional and you will achieve the unimaginable in the bodyguard trade. Keep safe. God speed.
Vince, Thank you. It’s my pleasure, Sir. Keep safe in Atlanta. Merry Christmas.
Cedric, Thank you for the nice comment. Keep safe over there in London! Merry Christmas.
Great article again Doc! Thanks for taking the time to share your job knowledge that helps shorten the learning curve. Your advice has given me many helpful things to do to promote myself down here in the Atlanta, GA area. firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’ve worked in Europe too, cedric, and I can tell you that as much as we decry a certain lack of standards, etc., here in the US… we’re VERY lucky to have such available sources of information. The EP/bodyguarding world here (just like the business world in general) is much less insular, stale, and controlled by government entities. I think it’s a good thing for all!
The efforts of writers such as Doc and all those you can follow on this site help dissipate myths and put people on the right path, with the right attitude. Sure, a cloud of mystery can benefit some (who would like to own the market and pull wool over their clients’ eyes), but it also creates a haven for bad apples and cronies, on top of unrealistic expectations from the clientele.
all your advices are VERY interesting. I used to work as CPO in France and I am now in London and I really regret to see that in France there is no website so pertinent like yours!
Thanks Tom and Alonzo: Happy Holidays and Keep Safe!
Thanks, Tom. And I’m with you, Doc: there IS a necessary and right way to gain exposure. This is what you addressed in your list, and rightfully so.
Alonzo and Doc, as aways you guys are right on spot. I really enjoy your comments
Alonzo: Yes. I know exactly the type you are talking about. You paint a very good description of these unprofessional “promoters”. They are also the one’s who often leave the team under less than desirable circumstances, because their mouths got them in trouble. Professional self-promoters attend workshops, give lectures on EP, go to conventions and pass out business cards at these type of venues.
Solid advice hard to find fault with, as usual.
My only quibble is purely semantic because most guys I’ve met were aggressive self-promoters… but not in the way Doc means.
What I too often see is people trying to get a leg up on the rest of their team or the competition by slipping gifts to the client or by entertaining the powers that be with their war stories. There’s also the guys quick to pass business cards at the most inappropriate or improper times, the chronic braggarts, and the fraternizers.
Those above are compensating and covering (because they’re usually the worst performers), not promoting. They push a selfish agenda, not their work.
I certainly agree that there is a need for self-promotion, but there are tactful and professional ways to go about it. Sometimes, our work doesn’t speak for itself (especially when surrounded by self-promoters!) and we have to advertise a bit, in a business context. But what comes to my mind when the subject comes up is unfortunately the type that does not need encouragement!