The Client’s Luggage
To carry or not to carry? Is that really a question?
Whether or not to carry luggage has always been a debate in executive protection training and standard operating procedures within the team. Is a protection specialist a lap dog or guard dog? Do we carry luggage?
In our opinion, yes.
Executive protection is a diverse industry. The fundamentals remain constant, but the client, company, risk, and manpower vary greatly. On corporate, family, and celebrity details, security is responsible for keeping the client safe AND ensuring that their itinerary runs seamlessly and with efficiency.
What happens if a client looses a bag? What if that bag was carrying three of his Harry Winston Tourbillon watches worth 1.5 million dollars each? What if that bag had your client's laptop with vital company intellectual property in it? These are risks that may carry a substantial impact to the client and their business and are security’s responsibility.
So how then do we deal with the additional consideration of securing the client’s property?
Here is an example of a luggage policy API put in place for a billion dollar client:
-The new guy on the team gets luggage detail
-There will be an agent with the client's luggage at all times during transit, arrivals, and departures.
-The agent will have a luggage inventory sheet and photos of all bags
- The agent will conduct a physical and visual inventory of all luggage before the luggage moves to a new location - plane to vehicle, vehicle to room, room, to vehicle, vehicle to plane, etc…
-The agent will escort the bellman or bellmen with luggage to and from the lobby and hotel room or vehicles. (Utilizing the resources around you like bellmen, valet, hotel staff, etc. is a vital tool)
Now, what happens if you have to carry a piece of luggage? This may allow you to stay closer to your client and put you in areas where the staff is limited.I can already hear some of you saying “I’ve got to keep my hands free, just in case.” Actually, that’s not true.
1. If an attack occurs on your client while you have luggage in your hands….. Just drop the bags!
2. Fact: Your reaction times with bags in your hands or with your hands in an “interview stance,” are the same. The Pro-timer does not lie on the range or the mat. (If you don’t know what a Pro-timer is and you carry a firearm in a protection role, please invest in one. A Pro-timer and holes in paper are the best way to test your true reaction time, marksmanship and speed.)
3. Be open minded. Train to work with and around luggage the same way you train to work with and around vehicles or anything else. If you’re not open minded, you may want to rethink being in the protection industry.
Remember the AS Solutions tagline of keeping your client “Safe, Happy, and Productive.” Luggage is a big part of the client’s productivity while traveling. Losing bags, causing stress and derailing your client’s drive and focus on business because “damned security lost my bag” will do you and the team no good. Just as telling a client and or a manager that you “don’t carry bags” will get you fired pretty quickly.
At API, we focus on building and molding a practitioner to truly understand facilitating the client’s needs above and beyond security.
Learn more at our upcoming 7-Day Executive Protection course
May 21st -27th 2017 in Las Vegas, NV