Part 1: What you can do, what you shouldn’t do and what can you get away with - By Female Practitioner Rachel G.
Women in the EP industry are stereotypically pictured closer to something you would see in the Secret Service; suit, hair in a bun, and an ear-piece. Which, if you chose that route, is fine. However, a female EP agent looks more like a regular person. If what we do in EP is surveillance; looking for the people who are looking at you, and more importantly: who is looking at the client, the first priority is the ability to blend in and adapt to your environment. The last thing you want to do is attract attention to yourself and the client, or even worse, attract attention to your client because YOU stand out.
Women are naturally less assumed to be doing security work; we don’t generally look the part. In actuality, this is our greatest advantage. As far as anyone is concerned, you are the nanny, girlfriend, sister, or any family member and thus viewed as less of a threat. You would be surprised how far you can get with the right attire and confidence. If you look like you’re supposed to be there, people will assume you belong and leave you alone.
Perception is reality; you can be as creative as you want in order to paint the picture of perception.
Going back the fundamentals of human nature, women are viewed as the more nurturing half. Therefore we can play into much more approachable behavior. It’s all in the fine art of communication. How does that play into EP? If a person is painted as a “threat” or requires more investigation, you can be that approachable person to gather that information. If you need to go probe into a venue (red team), confidence, the right attire, and proper communication will get you there. If someone were to start asking questions, it’s a simple as playing the ditsy woman: “Oh, I’m so lost! I was supposed to meet some friends” and so on. Don’t be afraid to play into those stereotypes. Stereotypes are there for a reason, it is common, resulting in expected behavior. It’s important to maintain a degree of femininity dignified with proper manners that go accordingly. Never forget, you’re a woman. There is no need to act out of character.
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