On today’s episode, we talk about how a security company can get the best work from its “C” guards. Everyone loves their top-notch guards, but getting the most out of guys that don’t always do as sharp a job can be equally important to your businesses success.
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What Is A “C” Guard?
“A ‘C’ Guard to me is a guard that… I could call at any point, any time, when I had one of my best guards call off, and they would show up for work,” I tell Johnny. “Always dependable… always reliable.”
These are guards that, for whatever reason, struggle to excel. Maybe they just forget to do certain steps, or they just can’t write a clear report. They work just as hard and are really committed, but they can’t seem to do quite as good a job as your “A” guards.
These are not lazy employees or ones that try to cut corners. Those guards should be cut loose, as they only create trouble for your company in the long run. These are guards that can still be valuable to your company, but might just need a little more encouragement and oversight.
The longer you spend in the security industry the more you will realize that 90% of the guard management battle comes down to getting the most out of your "C" guards.
Start With Hiring And Training
Identifying and maximizing the potential of “C” guards starts with the hiring process. Looking past the resume and getting to the applicant’s commitment and dedication can help you find quality, loyal guards. Asking applicants what type of role they’d like gives them the chance to highlight their strengths and display their commitment.
Someone with great qualifications and experience but limited loyalty might slack off and cause problems for you. They might also take a new job for better pay, making the turnover issue that all security companies deal with even worse.
Proper training is also critical. You want to show these guards your commitment to helping them succeed and make them feel like a valued part of the organization. If you can do that, they’re more likely to turn around and put forth their best effort to help the company succeed.
Effective Guard Management
Getting the most out of “C” guards doesn’t end with the training process. You need to continue to demonstrate your commitment to them and make them feel even more connected to the company. Part of that means remaining open to their input, no matter what level they’re at. We’ve often found that guards on the ground discover necessary tasks that get looked over in official processes.
Additionally, you want to give them opportunities to take on different tasks and responsibilities. Having a variety of experiences helps guards become more effective and better problem solvers while on duty. Plus it helps deepen their connection to the company.
“Move them around to new job sites periodically to show them different parts of the company, show them different types of posts out there,” says Johnny. “But that also keeps the mind a little bit sharper, you’re not settling into a routine for months and months and months.”
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Reward Loyal Guards
If your “C” guards continue to put in the effort, stay with your company for a long time, and demonstrate that they’re ready for more responsibility, give them a chance to try out a supervisor position. Showing guards that they have the opportunity for promotion just encourages them to stick around and reduces turnover.
Try to figure out what motivates your guards, what they value. For some, it might be having their input listened to, while others might just want some recognition.
“You need to find out what makes that guy tick,” I tell Johnny. “Does he like money? Does he like a gift certificate, or does he like a plaque on the wall?”