It’s not just the advances

There is a trend that I am hearing when I speak to new specialists in the industry. When I refer to “new” I am talking about men and women within the last 5 years that have entered this industry and that is the hoopla and misrepresentation of the advance work. Before I get started, I will say loud and clear, Advance work is a vital portion of what we do, but it is NOT all we do. To think that the emphasis of executive protection is advance work is not only cheating what we do, but absolutely WRONG. Let me get something else clear, we need to stop saying just Advance, but what we do is protective advances.

In the past when I had to explain to people outside the industry the difference between EP and bodyguard work, is the advance work we do. That was my way of validating the difference. Most people outside this industry have no idea, and in most cases, would not understand all of the other important facets of the job. But what I am getting fed up with is how people in this industry feel that our net-worth is the advance work. In fact, you don’t even get to an advance if other important factors have not been exhausted. We are not just a craft built upon advance work. The importance of the advance will never be diminished, yet, I rarely hear anyone exaggerate about the amount of training or professionalism that differentiates us from the average security person.

Sadly as it may sound, many specialists in this industry can not conduct a proper advance, yet they laud their ability to do so. Fewer than that know what a threat and vulnerability assessment is, and that number drastically decreases when you ask how many of them know how to conduct one. This is another extremely important aspect of who we are. What scares me is that our specialized sector of security is being minimized to a one word sound bite-ADVANCES. The same evolution with the overwhelming and seemingly importance of the weapon in this industry. The weapon work is starting to replace mindset. When the importance of the weapons replaces mindset and sound judgement we will turn into goons with guns. Stop the madness and start really understanding what the Executive Protection Specialist is.

The importance of the advance is stressed in most of the executive protection courses yet if that was all we did nothing else would be taught. Yes, operationally, everything we do evolves around the advance but remember it is not all we do. Don’t stop you’re training after the EP course. Get specialized training other than shooting a gun and then you’ll have more to say when you explain who we are and what we do.

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