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Month: July, 2015

What’s wrong with not following conventional wisdom?

In my younger days in the security field I towed the corporate line. I did what I was told blindly. I believed that was the way to do things and get ahead. At the time, 32 years ago, I was with Wells Fargo Guard Services, now a part of Securitas.
I firmly believed in what Major Frank Burns, Larry Linville of M*A*S*H fame, stated “If we don’t blindly follow our leaders and act the same, we can’t be independent and free”. It is unfortunate but I thought that way. And probably because the company encouraged it, as do too many security companies still do.
I did learn, usually the hard way, as I pursued my career that this wasn’t the way to get things done. Nor was it the way to improve things and the conditions that security was under. So I started to change and have kept changing to this day, much too many peoples chagrin and even mine at times.
At this point I can say that I don’t follow conventional wisdom (CW), and haven’t for nearly 30 years. And speaking to that point I hope I never will. CW is constraining, restrictive, doesn’t allow for creativity or originality. I’ll continue to think out of the box. After all that’s where the best ideas come from, ask history books about Nicholai Tesla, Albert Einstein, Bill Gates, & Steve Jobs.
Not following CW has been considered counterproductive by my former employers, except one, & others. But it has served to problem solve and my clients well. They were counter-productive only to the company, not the people I managed or the clients I worked for. Mostly the clients and officers were always satisfied with what I did. And despite the employer, I earned several commendations for my actions.
On Linked In I came across an article several years ago, that really seemed to speak to me. Here is an excerpt of the discussion;
If you’re not up for being a creator, at least be willing to put yourself out there to support and defend new ideas. Don’t simply follow the crowd and their Opinion of something. Form your own independent thoughts and stand behind those beliefs. Don’t bow to the criticism of other critics who might criticize you. Leadership is about being out in front and taking others to new places. You can’t lead if you simply follow the conventional wisdom because it’s safe.
This statement tells me that by not following CW I’m still on the right path. I never have followed it and I’m not gonna start now. I believe that I can do well enough without following everyone else and falling into line with whatever is out there that is new, exciting, or shiney. And sometimes this means ignoring standard & best practices of others.
As security professionals it is our duty NOT to follow CW and everybody else. We need to chart the course for our clients and our own companies. So the one thing I tell clients and other people to is simple; don’t follow the rules!
I firmly believe that, sometimes, CW can be moldy, old, smelly, & totally useless in a world where things change too fast to keep up. So thumb your noses at CW and try something new, bold, & exciting. If it fails, lesson learned.
And if you get fired or disciplined for it, so what. You will know that you did what was best for the company or client. And even following the best practices set forth by ASIS International and many other organizations, security or not, will fail if you just do as they say and have put in writing. You have to be prepared to take the risk and put yourself out of the box instead of closing it on yourself!
And besides that, who says you can’t go above and beyond what the best practices are of professional organizations? As security professionals we have to be able to see beyond tomorrow and look into next week, year, and even the next decade. And following CW you simply can’t do that.
Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on security issues, specifically workplace violence. He’s spent 32 years in the security field. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page,
Here you will read about other items related to security & WPV issues.

What actually is WPV?

There are many points of view on this question. And I’ve been asked several times what it actually is if it isn’t just someone getting shot at work. The answer surprises people and others dismiss the facts I present.
But I’m going to try and enlighten you as to exactly what constitutes workplace violence (WPV). To me it’s a simple measure to tell you this fact. But the details are the surprising aspect of it.
Every crime inside a business can be construed as workplace violence. That’s right, 100% of them. From a robbery, arson, violent theft, and the like. And according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) 79% of all WPV incidents fall into this category, the result of another crime.
However, it’s the other 21% that people hear about on the news. Is the next customer going to come over the counter and hit me? Is my co-worker on the edge because of the recent divorce? And what about that student who is into Goth attire and listens to that music? Possibly the patient, or their family, who will go off for a myriad of reasons? Or possibly the college student who phones in a bomb threat because they don’t want to take a test?
These are all scenarios that are reasonably assured of occurring at one time or another. And to be honest it doesn’t really matter the business where it happens. From a hot & humid heavy manufacturing plant, to an office building, to a high school, to a well-respected hospital.
So what else will constitute an act of workplace violence? Here is a short list of the kinds of violence that will be considered workplace violence, by most security people, just not the media or general public;

• Threats
Threats can come in 4 sizes. From the veiled to the open to the written – including graffiti. And usually they can, and will be, phoned in in the instance of a bomb threat. The idea behind threats, whether they will be carried out or not, is to intimidate people.
And hoaxes will fall under this category as well. It takes investigation, time, & resources to look into these hoaxes and ensure that’s all they are. Again, in the instance of a bomb threat it can take hours and several hundred police man hours. And with the economy and budget cuts as they are…

• Verbal Assaults
How many of us have been the victim of a verbal dressing down? Whether it is for something we actually did wrong or the wrong perception that we did it doesn’t matter. Nor does it matter if it is by a customer, employee, client, or manager, it’s still an assault.
As a security officer/manager I’ve endured hundreds of these. From the ones I heard during strikes in the 80’s with Steelworkers, Teamsters, & Cereal workers to the upset employee who said “You f****** idiot pea brained Barney Fife!”

• Physical Assaults
And what constitutes a physical assault, over and above the firearm, pipe wrench or other heavy object? Has someone ever thrown a coffee cup, stapler, or pencil at you in anger at work? Then that is a physical assault and should be considered an act of workplace violence . Yes, most of the time it may be innocuous, but it is still an assault and in today’s world can lead to someone getting fired or disciplined.
And if you look at the financial ramifications as well as psychological trauma that it may induce. These kinds of workplace violence incidents can cost an employer thousands, if not millions, of dollars. And if the employee takes it to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC)…

With more than 15 million Americans a year suffering through various forms of workplace violence, you see how these items are violence in the workplace. And as times get nastier and our stress levels continue to rise, for innumerable reasons, then it will only continue to get worse. Do you have a plan to deal with it?
Another statistic by the Bureau of Labor Statistics is that 70% of businesses have no plan to deal with workplace violence. Those that do, in most of the cases, have only a few sentences or paragraphs for it. And they never elaborate, teach to, or train their employees on the subject. Until it’s too late and they are facing lawsuits because of bullying or a fatal incident.

Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on workplace violence prevention and other security issues. With numerous interviews, blogs, articles, and 2 books he has proven himself in the security field for 32 years, and 24 studying workplace violence issues. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page, Here you will see and read about other items related to WPV and other security issues, as well as incidents you may not have heard or thought about. You can also follow me on twitterat @robertsollars2

The unreported costs of WPV

The media field reporter stands in front of a building. Talking into his microphone he tells the story of a workplace violence (WPV) incident that happened at the business. Days later, after the blood has been cleaned, equipment replaced, productivity is back up again, and everyone is calming down, where are the news cameras?
This is an issue that has plagued families and loved ones of WPV victims since it came into the mainstream in the mid 80’s. No one pays attention to what happens after the investigation is over. But there are many costs that the cameras, reporters, and their words won’t cover.
And most of the public, media, or uninformed on WPV, won’t notice it either, even if they wanted too. The unreported costs of WPV are far more expensive than the cost to the business of clean-up, reputation restoration, replacement of equipment, and etc. It can run for a lifetime with nightmares and anxiety.
Those of us in the security field and specifically WPV will instinctively know these items. But most everyone else who doesn’t perceive much, except the latest fiction of TV, won’t. Even most security professionals won’t know these issues either because they just aren’t associated with them on a daily basis, like cyber security experts &other security professionals are on their specialty.
So, what are some of these unreported costs to businesses and one of the reasons that businesses will ignore the potential issues associated with WPV, by sticking their heads in the sand and having the CHH attitude?
1. Economic loss for the families (especially if it was a single parent as in a Domestic Violence (DV) incident
How do you tell a child that you have to move because you can’t afford to live near their school anymore? It’s not easy.
2. Emotional toll on the families
Again, do you want to be the one telling a young child that their mother or father is never coming home again? As heart-breaking as it is for the kids it may be harder on the bearer of bad news.
3. Economic & emotional loss for employees
For some employees who may be close to the co-worker it will be hard to not look over and see their face across or next to them anymore. For some it could cause traumatic episodes, leading to psychological issues.
4. Communities
The whole community will feel the loss of an employee. Even more so if this individual was a volunteer for certain programs or groups and did a lot of charity work for non-profits, kids, hospice, or whatever.
5. Sense of safety that every worker has a right to feel while on the job.
As a kid you experienced the safety & security when your parents told you that there were no monsters under your bed and they checked for you. Then they let you sleep in their bed on stormy nights. Now imagine the monsters standing in front of them every day.
6. Work disruption/loss of productivity
A deadly WPV incident will disrupt your work flow no matter what. Even if it’s not fatal your work and productivity will be interrupted. According to some surveys it will take 6-8 weeks to get back to full productivity.
7. Medical and workers compensation claims
Depending on the injuries and wounds, this could very well cost you into the millions. And then of course there are the employees. Even with a Cadillac health insurance plan it could cost them upwards of several hundred thousand dollars.
8. Litigation
An average lawsuit that is settled over a fatal incident is nearly $6 million. Inadequate security could cost you $1.2 million. And if you look at the findings against U.S. Security Associates in March over an incident at the Kraft facility in Philadelphia, in 2010, it was over $45 million for 2 families.

You see that most of those items will never reach the full audience of people who may have watched the incident unfold in rapt fascination. None of the final toll gets reported, except in limited circumstances. But these costs that are directly related to an incident of WPV are real and can last for a lifetime for the families who now have to live without a loved one. Or the victim themselves who may have to live with the horror of being wounded and possibly disabled, both physically & psychologically, by an incident.

Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on workplace violence prevention and other security issues. With numerous interviews, blogs, articles, and 2 books he has proven himself in the security field for 32 years, and 24 studying workplace violence issues. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page, Here you will see and read about other items related to WPV and other security issues, as well as incidents you may not have heard or thought about.

The security function & customer service

Despite what most people, usually the bean counters and c-suite believe, providing exceptional customer service isn’t expensive or impossible, nor does it have to be, in order to be better than your competitors. And as for the labor aspect of it goes… it only applies in training and the supervisory follow-up, which is mandatory.
The biggest aspect of teaching customer service to your security staff is this simple little fact; Customer service is not a destination but a journey. And the journey is never completed. You are always on that road to get to exceptional customer service. And the road blocks and obstacles to overcome are never ending, which is what makes the journey so difficult to stay the course.
As for the officer’s effort, that is a different story. They have to put the effort into providing customer service over and above almost everything else they do at work AND other places as well. This is in addition to their security function. But, believe it or not, excellent security and customer service go hand-in-hand.
I like sayings from people who are far and away wiser than I am. One of them is from Socrates and he said;
We are what we repeatedly do
(This part is not his but I add it in because it is appropriate (
Excellence, therefore, is a habit not an act
Another saying, that isn’t quite so old, that I like to use is;
The Best isn’t and Good Enough Never Is
I don’t know where I got that one, but I’ve used it for nearly 30 years.
Another thing I tell people is this;
you have to do whatever it takes to get the job done- Right
It doesn’t matter whether you get it right the 2nd time or not, what’s important, especially in security, is to do it right the first time. The second time around may be too late.
One item they are surprised at is when I talk about their internal customers and the 5 sets of customers they serve on a daily basis. Regular security officers are often surprised that they have to deal with 5 different sets every day. When I ask this question, I rarely get more than 2 or 3 answers that are right, and never all of the5. And when I do tell them, the light bulb goes on.
one of the other items that I teach, in my COQS workshops, is the clock. I show them, figuratively, a clock face. I start by telling them that customer service is at noon. But then as they, and their co-workers, get disgruntled, upset, things are not fixed, the company cuts costs, and etc. the clock winds down to the bottom. The employee then starts complaining, sometimes rightfully so, as the clock winds back to the top, and it all starts all over again! The purpose of this clock is to show them how they are dependent on each other, and themselves, for customer service and their own jobs.
Another question I get from security people many times is simple enough. I’m there to protect the client/company’s property, not to be liked or treat some of those idiots with kid gloves. My simple answer back to them is ‘What does it hurt to treat them with exceptional customer service? If you’ve done your job, they won’t try to get anything over on you and they’ll respect you even more’
Unfortunately, I usually only get a guffaw and a totally disbelieving look from them. But I can guarantee you that utilizing customer service within the security function works in your favor, if not immediately then eventually as long as you stay on target.
And by staying on target and utilizing customer service within the security function you can learn many things about what happens within the facility that you probably wouldn’t otherwise. Until it was too late to do anything about it. Whether it be WPV, fraud, theft, time theft (yes this can be a major problem), or any other major crime or rule breaking by employees. And the feeling that will come over you for being trusted enough…
Customer service is one of those aspects of security that is rarely trained, unless you’re a ‘receptionist and window dressing’ for the client or company. ALL officers need to know the finer points of customer service, no matter where they are posted. Then it is up to them to learn the selective judgement in when to use a gruff authoritative tone or a much lower key approach. And that is the manager’s job to teach that selective judgement, if it’s not already known to the officer.
I’ve been using and teaching customer service in security for nearly 30 years. Have I never been wrong and treated a customer/client (internal & external), or a vendor badly? Of course I have! But I never try to and always attempt to correct the problem if I did.

Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on security issues, specifically workplace violence. He’s spent 32 years in the security field. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page, here you will read about other items related to security & WPV issues.

Technology vs. Manpower: Which is better for Security?

This is an argument as old as the industrial revolution itself. And of course there are business leaders who will say that technology is better and others who will vehemently defend manpower instead.

Technology is a wonderful thing. It allows us to stay in touch with loved ones and friends that are thousands of miles away. It saves lives because it helps to develop new medicines and devices. And for those of us that are disabled, it allows blind people to use the computer to write & communicate.
And in the security field it allows a reduction of the security staff because one person can watch the entire facility from a control room. This allows for resources to be spent on other projects. But is there a drawback to this?
A single person can now monitor alarms, cameras, speakers, and environmental controls within one little room. And in the same room, they have access to the entire world to attract attention and assistance if needed.
There are several issues to contend with the technology aspect of security that you may not have thought about;
The first is a power outage. Yes, I know that all primary systems will be on a back-up generator, hopefully. But if the generator goes bad then what. Look at what would happen at a nuclear power plant that suddenly loses power and can’t replace it for a few days. It could be catastrophic and for an individual business the loss of environmental controls can be just as deadly and financially fatal.
#2 would be the human aspect. Most of you know that the optimum ability of most humans is during the day while being active. What happens if your 3rd shift control room person falls asleep during their shift because of a hard day with the new baby or bill collectors?
#3 is the possibility of an EMP (electromagnetic pulse) which could, literally, knock out every piece of electronics in the business, rendering all of the technological gadgets inoperative. From fence alarms, to motors that control gates, to security equipment, cell & landline phones, computers (and its assorted portable relatives).
#4 would be the inevitable break down and short circuits of the equipment. Can you really go without alarms on the perimeter fencing or the boiler room for days or weeks on end? I’ve worked in industrial plants that had a dedicated & licensed electrician to take care of these things. The fixes don’t always come quickly, sometimes it takes an entire week and an outside contractor to get it fixed. And what happens to the productivity of the plant in that time while they track it down and either replace or repair?
#5 is that inevitable question for a disaster from within or outside the facility. Who will call the police and/or coordinate the active shooter plan? Technology can be circumvented by running over the ‘junction box’ for phone lines. And without a human voice on the intercom it may make panic worse.

I will grant anyone reading that replacing people with machines is much cheaper in the long run, maybe. One electrical short-circuit can cost a company the equivalent of a year’s pay for an officer. Are there many drawbacks to using officers instead of technology exclusively?
#1 is the officers themselves. If they are contracted how do you know you’re getting the best people for your location? There can be a myriad of issues with using contracted officers, including (not all inclusive) lack of pay and training, background checks, adequate supervisory controls, and such.
#2 and probably most importantly, is that officers aren’t always the most dedicated and observational people on the planet. Officers absolutely must be observational in order to efficiently do their duties effectively.
#3 is that officers don’t always reason logically when they need to. Whether they are contracted or proprietary they may be the lowest paid person working at your facility and not necessarily the most intelligent to be able to reason through a problem.
#4 is the restraints that management, both company and client, place on them. Like my blog post last month on observe & report. It’s hard to do your job efficiently and effectively if your hands are tied.

So what’s the solution to this dilemma? I know that most security professionals will disagree with me and want to go with more technology instead of training officers correctly. But the truth is that a mixture of the two is the best approach to this question. Mainly because they can back each other up.
If the alarms go down and stop working, then you have an officer to patrol the perimeter and check on the chemical tanks. If an officer inadvertently falls asleep then you have the technology to back them up, hopefully with an audible alarm to awaken them.
Is what I mentioned above all the issues involving technology vs. manpower? Not by a long shot. But it should give you a few things to think about before eliminating officers and going with all the electronic wizardry or a watchman who may snore.

Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on workplace violence prevention and other security issues. With numerous interviews, blogs, articles, and 2 books he has proven himself in the security field for 32 years, and 24 studying workplace violence issues. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page, Here you will see and read about other items related to WPV and other security issues, as well as incidents you may not have heard or thought about.

Whatever it takes to get the job done – right

This is a phrase I use when I teach a customer service class and any person who asks outside of those classes, and always get the question. What does that mean, whatever it takes? People are confused about the phrase and unknowingly, a little scared as well.
The phrase means, in a long explanation, that whatever it takes to do your job correctly, and right the first time you must be willing to go above and beyond the normal protocol of your position. If you have to break a few rules or do something that’s not considered best or standard practice, then you must be willing to do it.
The idea is to satisfy the client with a job that is well done. And doing it right the first time so it doesn’t have to be corrected and revised at a later time. And there is a difference in getting the job done right and just getting it done.
Do you know these phrases?
Good enough for government work
The best isn’t and good enough never is
Do you know what these phrases mean to you and your officers?
If you allow your officers and managers to do a job and say Good enough for government work, then you are slighting not only the company/client but the officer, manager, & yourself. On the other hand, the phrase to live and work by is the 2nd one, The best isn’t and good enough never is. You should strive to be your best and never settle for simply doing the job and only what is required, which means do everything you can do to go above & beyond.
The title of this post means that no matter how long you have to work, you have to work to get it done right. And you can’t be scared to go above, around, or through, standard practice to get things done. And get them done the right way, above & beyond.
That means you may have to violate, or bend out of shape, company policies/procedures or rules/regulations, and in some cases to avoid other issues. It could mean finding a unique solution that may not have been thought of before, even if it is old school. Can you say out-of-the-box thinking? It also means taking the industry best practices and turning them on their head to get done what needs to get done.
I’ve done things my entire career this way. And as you have read in more than one post I stick with those ideas and don’t necessarily follow the lead drummer. I’ve been fired and disciplined for doing things my way several times and that’s okay.
I’ve been yelled at for doing things against protocol and company policy. Bending the rules and cutting corners and getting rid of sacred cows is a way of building a career and solving problems. Most of the time it has worked out to my advantage of my officers, and the company/client. And of these times I’m proud of what I did.
So the obvious conclusion is Do whatever it takes to get the job done – right. As long as it’s not illegal, immoral, or unethical then it shouldn’t be an issue. Don’t be scared to take a leap of faith based on what needs to be done.

If you’re scared to jump, then you’ll never accomplish anything i.e. Steve Jobs or Albert Einstein.

Take your fears of whatever and tuck them away in your back pocket and keep solving problems for the officers, company, and clients. You will be recognized as someone who isn’t scared to take risks and will do whatever has to be done to get the job done – right!

Decide what’s right, and then do it!
Shawn Upchurch
waiting gives the devil time. If you have a good idea, believe in yourself and are prepared, you should take the leap

Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on workplace violence prevention and other security issues. With numerous interviews, blogs, articles, and 2 books he has proven himself in the security field for 32 years, and 24 studying workplace violence issues. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page, Here you will see and read about other items related to WPV and other security issues, as well as incidents you may not have heard or thought about.

A Conversation about WPV

“But workplace violence (WPV) isn’t that prevalent and isn’t likely to hit my business. I take care of my employees and they are all happy”
So started my recent conversation with a small business owner in Scottsdale, AZ. What I found out was that he didn’t understand what WPV really was. Nor did he realize, or acknowledge, the many different facets of it.
“WPV affects 100% of all businesses in this country.” I said “Just because it doesn’t involve a firearm doesn’t mean that something isn’t WPV.”
“Like what?” he said with a scoffing smile
“Items such as bomb threats and hoaxes are considered WPV. Verbal assaults and threats are also elements of WPV. And then of course, you can add bullying and harassment into that as well.” I then went on to name a few WPV incidents that had occurred in the Phoenix area.
“Are you kidding me? Those things are not WPV.” He again scoffed
“Ah, but they are. The reasoning is that each and every one of them can contribute to someone bringing in a firearm or using something like an ink pen or coffee cup to assault.”
“But OSHA only counts actually assaults and not that other stuff.”
“This is true and a fact that too many WPV professionals believe and fall into. OSHA only counts 2 million incidents a year. However, they don’t count incidents in schools, against teachers and staff…” seeing his look I explained “Are not schools places of employment for teachers and administrators?”
“Yes, but it’s not the same” he persisted. Instead of arguing with him I went on.
“In 2005 the University of South Florida released a study that concluded that more than half of American workers are assaulted, bullied, harassed, or threatened every year, over 75 million. And more than 10% of workers are actually assaulted every year. Whether those are physically or verbally, and yes a verbal dressing down by someone, if done in anger, is an assault.” I stated.
And the disturbing thought is that each fatal incident can cost you as much as $10 million dollars. And this doesn’t count the fact it’ll take about 2 months to get back to full production and productivity. And then of course the psychological trauma induced by the incident…”
“But that’s why I have insurance! They’ll cover all that stuff, I don’t need to worry about that.”
“Are you sure?” I queried. “Few companies, unless they are self-insured for millions can rest easy knowing that they are actually covered.”
“Well… I need to mingle some more, but I really don’t believe all of that.” He turned to walk away and then asked “If I were wanting to talk to someone who would I call around here (meaning Kansas City)?” I gave him the name of a very reputable consultant and security company I used to work for and went on my way.
Several weeks later I received a call from the consultant and the company thanking me for the referral for a WPV evaluation. Apparently the business owner didn’t want to talk to me about it, but then again I do live in Phoenix!
And the business owners occupation? He owned a company that molded and anodized metal. He had about 75 employees, more in the business season.

Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on security issues, specifically workplace violence. He has spent 32 years in the security field. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page,, here you will read about other items related to security & WPV issues.

Using a defibrillator on your corporate culture

There are many times when a change in the culture, either at a corporate or local level, needs to be accomplished, quickly. You hire an effective manager and expect them to come in and overnight change the culture. But, there is no quick fix for anything in the corporate world. And that is doubly so for security.
The corporate world, even in today’s ever changing economy and downsizing to be leaner and more competitive is restrictive and doesn’t recognize creativity or originality if it’s outside the ‘norm’, of their thinking. In order to accomplish the shocking of the corporate culture you have to be willing to utilize your own experiences and knowledge to get the job done. That means you have to Hit’em fast and hit’em hard, and knock their proverbial socks off.
You may think that it’s an impossible task, but I assure you that it will work. And in order to make it work efficiently and effectively you have to take your own situation and tweak it so that it works for your individual predicament and the employees you’re responsible for. Add in a lil bit of creativity & originality, outside the box, and you will accomplish the goal.
Some cultures can be transformed simply by bringing in a new Manager or VP. Others can be brought in and have not a clue what the issues are, especially if they are from a different region of the country, such as Los Angeles to Omaha or vice versa.
And I will be the first to admit that I haven’t done this very often on a large scale. Usually it’s been done on a smaller security post with less than 10 people. And I will also admit that I don’t really fit the ‘corporate image’ since I follow that business book ‘it ain’t broke, then break it’. Not many corporate people like that kind of attitude within their organization.

The Problems:
The culture in your company/security post may be rotten to the core and you know it by an array of things that are occurring on a continual basis. Turnover, mistakes, no reports, forgetting to change the disk for the CCTV, attendance problems, and a myriad of other issues. So you know what the symptoms are; now you have to find the original issue. And that is probably the hardest part of all of this.
You will have to spend days, weeks, or in some cases even months to figure out the main issue that is causing the problems. To do this you can employ the method (I prefer) to talk to everyone and take careful notes of what they say and when they say it. I am a great believer in consultants in many cases, but in this case the manager needs to be out there talking and asking the questions. It doesn’t matter where the questions come from, just so that the manager knows their people.
And in addition to taking copious notes on what’s said, there are a couple of other things that need to be watched. Are they nervous or have anxiety? What’s their body language? Are they being overly calm? You have to pick up on the little subtle things to finally figure out what’s wrong.

The Solution:
This is where the shock comes in. You can call it whatever you wish. But I will guarantee you that this will work;
A couple of decades ago, I had a very large account. It had its own Account Manager, 30 buildings, 20 supervisors, and well over a hundred officers. The main issue I faced was turnover, 400% per year. The root cause of the turnover? The supervisors were over-bearing, and arrogant. So the solution was fairly simple. I offered a proposal and it was accepted by the officers & supervisors. An ultimatum to the supervisors. Get better or else you’re gone. Simple as that. No dancing around the issue, no pleasantries.
In 30 days the officers gave their evaluation of their supervisors. It was kind of surprising how quickly the supervisors shaped up a came into line with being good supervisors/managers! The officers rated them on the same scale and framework that the supervisors graded the officers on.

The Results:
The results were not bad in my opinion. We lost about half the supervisors within 6 months because they couldn’t, or wouldn’t, maintain the change. We also terminated about 30 officers in the same amount of time Even the Account Manager was faced with termination, and he eventually left on his own accord.
Was this a shock to the corporate/client /company culture? Of course it was. Supervises/managers were not normally called out and issued such ultimatums. Will this approach work today? Yes it will. And sometimes there is no choice, especially as a contract company if you want to keep the account from being lost due to internal BS within the post.
So how do you use a defibrillator on your corporate culture, or company, client, or post? Use your knowledge, experience, creativity, originality, & get yourself outside the box that most people are trapped in. There are times you need to go to extremes to get the most out of your team, especially if they’ve been lax. Don’t be afraid to do it. As I said above, hit’em hard and hit’em fast!

Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on security issues, specifically workplace violence. He’s spent 32 years in the security field. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page, Here you will read about other items related to security & WPV issues.

If you sacrifice liberty for security

The entire quote is from one of the most noted and famed statesmen from our war to gain independence, Benjamin Franklin. “If you sacrifice liberty for security then you will have neither”. And it’s true. The more we give away our freedoms to gain peace and security from the nasty violence filled world we live in, and then eventually we’ll have neither. And when we finally notice we’ve given too much, it’s too late.
It’s been nearly 14 years since we were horrified that an airplane hit the World Trade Center. Then Tower 2 was also hit. Then as we watched silently, both towers and another collapsed into nothing but a huge pile of rubble.
Since that fateful morning in 2001, we have heard practically everything there is to hear about that day and the tragedies that followed. And more recently, as in the past week, we’ve heard about potential terrorist attacks within America. But after 14 years and trillions of dollars spent trying to defend us and prevent another terrorist attack, even the lone wolves. Despite the Patriot Act, the invasion of our privacy, and 2 wars ‘over’ and another looming, have we really become safer?
As our Day of Independence approaches, we are once again being threatened by an enemy who wants nothing but the total destruction of our freedoms. And we know about the potential attacks on us through above all things social media.
The Islamic State) ISIS) has vowed to commit more atrocities on the United States and its citizens on this glorious day of independence. So the question is should we be scared of ISIS attacking us in America? I can say emphatically, NO!
We must be vigilant and slightly paranoid, I said slightly, and never dismiss anything, or anyone, that appears suspicious during our holiday festivities. But scaring us into not doing what we can do in a free society is exactly what they want. If we don’t go to the fireworks shows, BBQ’s, parties, and yes, guzzle great amounts of beer, then they have already beaten us and won. Is that what you want?
Terrorism is a real issue in our world. It came home in 1993 with the first World Trade Center bombing. Then again in 1995 in Oklahoma City at the Alfred Murrah Federal Building, and then with the USS Cole in Yemen. Then that dreadful morning in Manhattan.
Now with ISIS and the radicalized lone wolves they cultivate we are all at risk again. But we have to remember one lil thing about ISIS and what they can do to us. They can beat us down. They can knock us to the ground. They can even kill us. But they will never defeat us!
We need to be thankful that we have men and women who are willing to lay their lives on the line for us, some of whom stay behind. Some of us are too old, disabled, or not eligible for service, but. We would gladly lay our lives on the line. We will learn a lot on the day we get attacked and bloodied on American soil. But since we’re Americans we will forget about them very quickly and devolved into, once again, partisan bickering
I say thank God for the millions of police, fire-fighters, medical personnel, & our military (past and present) for doing what they do. May God keep them safe as they do their courageous duty.
And lastly, don’t be someone who shrinks at a threat. Whether it be real or symbolic to scare the holy living s*** out of us. Again, if we stay home and not enjoy all that those who have suffered and died for us, then ISIS has already won. The question you have to ask yourself is simple; are you a proud American or a mouse living in fear of the cat?

“The world ain’t all sunshine and rainbows. It is a very mean and nasty place. It will beat you to your knees and keep you there permanently if you let it. You, me, or nobody is going to hit as hard as life. But it ain’t about how hard you hit, it is about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward, how much can you take and keep moving forward. That’s how winning is done.”
Rocky Balboa


Robert D. Sollars is a confirmed American Patriot.

WPV numbers for June 2015

Indianapolis, IN. June 9
San Marcos, TX. June 10
LittleRock, AR. June 15
Charleston, SC. June 17
New Orleans, LA. June 20
Acworth, GA. June 23
Phoenix, AZ. June 24
Flagstaff, AZ. June 26
June: 8 incidents 12 dead 8 wounded

Total # of incidents year to date: 79 Arizona 28
Year to date totals 69 Dead 105 wounded

Robert D. Sollars is a recognized expert on security issues, specifically workplace violence. He’s spent 32 years in the security field. Contact him at 480-251-5197 or Visit his Facebook page,
here you will read about other items related to security & WPV issues.