What is the question that most security guard companies are afraid to ask themselves? The answer is “Should I fire this customer?”
The customer service truism dictates that the customer is always right, but as a security guard company owner or manager you know this is not always the case. Sometimes a customer is so wrong for your business that you need to cut them loose — and it’s important to know when it’s Continue reading
Unless you believe that ‘No news is good news’, I know how important it is to try to stay top of mind with your security guard company clients. I remember the occasional feeling of anxiety when things with a client had gone silent for a while. Those quiet times often lead to me thinking “I hope I won’t be getting a 30-day cancellation letter anytime soon.” But at the same time, I didn’t want to bother my clients unnecessarily if everything was going well. So how Continue reading
When I look back over my career in the security industry, some of my biggest mistakes occurred with firing and hiring of security officers. The hiring process from the outside seemed so simple, but in reality there are many things to consider including what to look for in an officer’s background, what the starting pay rate should be, or how to conduct a good interview. When you are looking to staff a post, you want to hire the best candidate for the job so conducting a good interview is absolutely essential. Generally speaking, during an interview you will want to find Continue reading
Growth is on the mind of every security guard company owner — but a being bigger company isn’t always being a better company. Smaller companies enjoy several advantages in the security guard industry, but they have to know how to leverage them. And when you do grow, you have to do it in a way that you don’t overextend your resources. “Everyone wants growth, but revenue growth for the sake of revenue growth is Continue reading
I remember very clearly the first time that I saw the results of a bid where every bidder was required to submit their company cost (i.e. Unemployment rate, uniform cost, workers comp, etc.) to show how their billing rate was calculated. I also remember the shock of comparing my company’s State Unemployment Tax Act (SUTA) rate against some of the other bidders. I thought that something had to be wrong with our rate because it was noticeably higher than Continue reading
Managing a security guard company isn’t easy: High-stakes situations can go bad quickly, and after an incident occurs, both you and your client will be looking for answers. As a result, understanding the liabilities associated with having an incident at your clients’ sites are a key part of protecting your business.
“Just because you’re a former cop doesn’t mean you understand liability,” and that lack of understanding can put you at risk of losing your clients, your reputation, and your business says John Roberts of J.R. Roberts Security Strategies.
Owning a security guard business means putting out a lot of fires — an unhappy customer who is missing an incident report, an invoice that is 90 days past due, and a field supervisor position you need to fill hanging over it all. It is easy to get stuck in a cycle of putting out fires, but that makes it hard to actually move your business forward and grow.
I was recently introduced to W. Edwards Deming’s 14 Points of Management and have become a huge fan of those principles, especially No. 5. Principle No. 5 states “Improve constantly and forever the system of production and service, to improve quality and productivity, and thus Continue reading
People do not become entrepreneurs to live stress-free. Being the owner of a security guard company means that you are in charge 24/7, but the long days and weeks can eventually take a toll on your business, your relationships, and your health. Finding ways to manage that stress means the difference between success and failure.
“It’s not about de-stressing; it’s more about how fit you are to manage stress,” says Dr. Cynthia Ackrill, chairwoman of the Workplace Stress Board of The American Institute of Stress. “There’s a false assumption that we’ll finish our to-do list, everyone will like us, we’ll be enormously Continue reading
Over the last several years there has been an extremely high volume of consolidation with security guard companies primarily by several national companies. As a result, I continue to see opportunities for small and mid-size security guard companies. Set forth below is a discussion about the merger and acquisition integration issues that these national companies are experiencing and how to position your company to capitalize on these opportunities. Continue reading
Competitive advantage is a business concept that many people misunderstand — and as a result they are not able to harness it. The owners of many security firms would probably say “our officers” or “our training” make up their competitive advantage. But if you look around, you find that most security firms will say the EXACT same thing — which makes it neither competitive nor an advantage.
Developing a competitive advantage takes some introspection. Here’s how to find yours. Continue reading