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  • Writer's pictureCraig Knowles

Challenges for those starting out as Close Protection Operatives in the Private Security Industry

Updated: Apr 7

Contrary to popular belief, it's not true that you'll face insurmountable challenges when starting out. There's no such thing as a lack of work. The problem arises when you aspire to work beyond your current level of remuneration, expertise, or the comfort zone of your employer—without showing patience to acquire experience in lower-level roles before climbing up the career ladder.

I understand, some of you may have a military background, law enforcement experience, a stint in government or security sector, or a blend of these. You might have attended a top Close Protection training course and feel ready to take on a top-tier role. But what's holding you back?

The crucial factor many tend to overlook is earning your employer's trust. Over the years, I've received numerous emails, messages, and calls from people expecting to be hired instantly based on their credentials and resumes. Sadly, this is not typically how it works.

Please don't misunderstand, I'm not questioning anyone's skills or experience that may even surpass my own qualifications. However, for an employer to deeply trust you, it requires more than just experience and skills. You need to prove that you can maintain the necessary soft skills while under pressure, ensuring the safety and security of their principal.

Building a strong foundation of trust and instilling confidence in your employer are essential prerequisites before being entrusted with the responsibility of protecting a high-profile client, even though skills and experience are important factors. This is likely why newly qualified individuals are often assigned to the Residential Security Team (RST) detail initially, as it allows employers to closely monitor their performance.

To initiate this process, two approaches can be utilized. One option is securing a recommendation from a currently employed operator. The second approach calls for you to invest considerable time in understanding the job's real intricacies, which cannot be accomplished solely through attending a close protection course.

Once your employer acknowledges and trusts your capabilities, you may be considered for other more worthy roles. However, it's worth noting that this can be a lengthy process, thus underlining the importance of patience in this line of work.

You should also watch what you say on social media platforms as that reveals a great deal about your character and suitability for certain positions.

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