top of page

Walking the line of Corporate Executive Protection

To some, corporate executive protection is not necessarily the most glamorous part of protection. Perhaps we think of the Secret Service guarding the President or we are on the red carpet at the Grammy awards. What about those people that have offices on the top floor? They've worked their way to the top. In this case we might think of Bill Gates (Microsoft), Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), or Jeff Bezos (Amazon). There are thousands of companies and/or people that we serve every day as protectors. No, corporate executive protection might not be the most glamorous but it can be the most stable. Remember though, in the world of executive protection you can be fired for not having water in the vehicle or not opening the door in a timely manner.

In executive protection many corporate executives want their security to be unseen. I once was asked if I was going to wear my ear piece or sunglasses. It was from an assistant that was somewhat mocking the protection detail. You must remember the executive has standing within the company and appearance is everything. The challenge is blending in while providing adequate protection. No client wants a babysitter for the executive.

In an ASIS executive protection course the instructor was told by a politician, "I want you close enough to protect me but far enough away so that I don't have to introduce you." Many Executives are Alpha personalities, that's why they are in the position they are. Give the executive their space while remaining vigilant to your duties.

The company was there before you were hired and it will likely be there when you leave. Learn to blend in. Each company has a way they do things. Dress the part. When name stickers or identification is provided to attendees of a meeting I have the administrative assistant give me one. So I also look like an attendee. Sometimes I sit at the tables near the protectee but not at the protectees table. Yes sometimes people ask me, "So what do you do?" I find the title logistics a vague enough answer so I don't have to say security. If the protectee is wearing a suit I wear a suit but in the younger tech groups most executives dress down so then I would dress down.

Learn to understand the business norms, you will likely not have any training by the executive. So you either know it or you learn to learn quickly. So while in the office work like the business: No feet on the desk, no reading papers all day, scrolling through youtube, or flirting with the cute secretary. I always liked to hear how people answered phones so I could answer the same way. Same with E-mails- I'm definitely no grammar / punctuation guru but try and respond to emails based on the company's expectations.

Lastly, know what role you play in the company. You are not the boss your protectee is. That's why you're protecting them. Do your job and remain unseen and in the background. Make sure that the protectee is taken care of. You'll spend a lot of time waiting. Waiting by a board room, waiting by a vehicle, waiting in a hotel lobby. You will likely be having a quick sandwich while the protectee is eating steak and lobster.

Make no mistake the company and the protectee are the boss. There might be times when you will need to make the decisions. There are also decisions that might be overruled by your boss, unless it's a decision that will jeopardize their safety, it is what it is and you obey the boss.

Semper Tutum Semper Vigilanti (Always Safe Always Vigilant)

59 views0 comments