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Maybe the term mission creep needs to be defined

After posting yesterday’s blog, “When mission creep leads to the detail crypt” took off into other non-security related tasks that, if not weighed against the mission, could appear as mission creep.  Without being to scientific or mission specific definitions and expectations of every detail.  Let’s all agree that the reason we are on a detail is to provide some level of protection.  I will agree that in many cases we tend to be facilitators and less of a protective value.  In that case we are, as I refer to as, executive concierge.  If you know that going in, then for the most part all bets are off as to what are the detail expectations.  Mission creep is the meal of the day.

But for those details that are etched in stone that your primary mission is protection mission creep can not be construed with those tasks that may seem domestic, if and only if, the choice to do them are for the overall security expectations.  Frank Gallagher brought up a perfect example when he asked “Does it make more sense for someone on the detail to go get a principal’s prescription from the drug store risk getting him/her harmed by doing it?”  That in my opinion is NOT mission creep.  In fact that is proactive.

For the prupose of defining what I mean as mission creep let me put it this way.  Mission creep is volunteering to do any task that is not related to the overall security responsibility or expectation.  The example I gave yesterday is mission creep and I will challenge anyone on that. 

Many times when I am advancing a trip for one of my clients and I know 1 Alpha [wife] is accompanying him, I will add several known shopping stores [retailers] to my advance even if it is not on the itinerary.  I am not asked to do so, but I know from past trips that is usually an OTR.  Many of you might see this as going beyond the scope, however in the whole scheme of the protective mission, I have alleviated having to push someone to do a “hasty advance”.

Mission creep changes the expectations of the client/protectee not the detail.  Once the client/principal view something new as expected and it does not meet the overall security mission you have crossed that territory into the gray zone.

1 comment

  1. Josh

    This is on the money…There are many things EP specialists do that may not seem to have a “protective function”. However, when looking at the overall picture, it’s exactly what they are.

    Sadly enough, I was once witness to a detail member volunteering to fix the protectee’s breakfast and “dog watch” since the chef (sick) and personal assistant (dentist appointment) were not there to do so. It wasn’t long before these tasks (especially dogsitting) were being pushed off to the security detail on a semi-regular basis. Luckily we put a stop to it quickly, but it briefly compromised the perception of the detail and are overall effectiveness. Needless to say, Mr. Dogwatcher and chef was told to “pound sand” soon thereafter.

    In total agreement adding shopping stores for the Mrs. or girlfriends…it happens more often than people think.

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