Being average won't get a business to the top of the heap in the private security world. When it comes to reputation and potential clients, even average guards need to be above the mediocre mark. Learning how to enhance the performance of these average guards is essential for securing contracts and growth opportunities; it is not easy, but it is possible.
In many cases, adjustments to operational protocols, scheduling, training, and motivational rewards are all it takes to improve the morale and capabilities of a security team.
1. Improve Hiring Requirements
The most important part of a resume isn’t the black and white qualifications; it's the gray area between the lines. Look beyond the education, skills, and training to determine whether a prospective hire has the skills, experience, and ability that fits with the business' needs. It will be a rare day when an "ideal candidate" walks through the door, so it is important to determine what elements are essential, and what elements the employee can acquire once hired.
When making a hiring decision, look at foundational elements including trustworthiness, loyalty, and professional commitment. If these elements are present, even the inexperienced new hire can become a rock star on the team.
2. Make Training a Priority
Many guards don't receive the training they need to do their jobs. They may have hours and hours of classroom work under their belt, but that doesn't always transfer into a real world environment. Instituting a regular training regimen that begins on the day of hire can help.
This can be resolved through initial training and regularly scheduled refresher sessions that cover the business, operational protocols, known security threats, etc. Continued training keeps security guards sharp and ready to counter evolving security concerns.
3. Manage Better
Average employees are often average because their managers allow them to be average. The way a manager manages their security team will determine the team's performance. Managers must hone their skills when it comes to time management, scheduling, threat identification, responsiveness, and communication; managers who master these skills can lead their team efficiently and effectively. If a manager is mediocre and content to let things slide as a matter of routine, then the team they manage will do the same.
4. Define and Reiterate Expectations
Average guards stay average because they don't know they could be doing better. Setting high expectations and continually reinforcing them is essential for improving performance. Reiterating and reinforcing these expectations on a routine basis serves to motivate employees towards achieving these standards.
However, don't just recite and repeat. Instead, recognize teams for their efforts in achieving and maintaining these standards. Tell them what they are doing well, and offer positive guidance on things they can do to improve their effectiveness in areas where the team is lagging behind.
5. Incentives are Icing on the Cake
Pay raises, bonuses, and promotions are common incentives security guards aspire to receive. However, these are not the only incentives employers can offer to top-performing security professionals. Offering an extra day off, tickets to a sporting event, or even gift cards to local businesses are also highly prized rewards. These rewards show appreciation for effort, and that can go a long way towards improving employee retention rates, job performance, and job satisfaction.
Silvertrac Software can help you by improving guard management and giving you access to the information you need to make the right decisions. See how with a free demo!