Today our guest is Stephane Giampersa, from Montreal, Canada. He created a training center a year ago dedicated to the Canadian security guard. They are focusing on improving their knowledge and specialize them to supervision or patrol. For almost fourteen years, Stephane has worked in this industry as a Chief supervisor, and his experience was everything but common. We have conducted an interview with him.
How much effort and time did you spend on the development of your training center?
Building a training center is something unique and very demanding. You need the audacity and willing to take risks. My business is not about buying a product and reselling it; I must create the product, and it should be at the height of what I consider, a training. I am self-made, I get answers to my questions, and I carry them myself. Writing a training is like writing a book, which may take years to certain people. I wrote two complete training books, consisting of 500 pages each, which I just rewrote to improve the contents, I have recorded 24 training videos, wrote additional articles, nine small training that I offer for free in addition to having built a training center, my website, all my logos and so on. My working hours can easily reach 110 hours a week. I have worked intensively since February 2016 on my Center, and it takes a lot of sacrifices. But the effort does not stop because I must ensure that the improvement continues and keeping my training updated every six months!
Who do you provide the knowledge, skills and experiences sharing center for? Why are you creating this?
The trainings are available for security officers. Our training will make them become patrol officers or chief supervisor. We also have advanced trainings for them that are free and we are working on a new training for this summer. Sharing our expertise will make them supervisors, patrollers or security guards but after their training, they won't be a regular guard and employers will consider them for their crucial contracts. At the moment, however, many agents have problems on the field and organizations, like the smaller security companies, may not have the time and money to invest in expensive advanced training for their employees. This has however created a certain vicious circle since the agents suffer from this lack of resources and make mistakes which sometimes cost them their jobs. I created my center to help these businesses to rely on a skilled workforce that is trained to help and officers who wish to improve themselves and reach the highest level in the industry. My goal is to bring an improvement in the private security industry in Canada and the United States by training courses that are effective for each stakeholder in the industry.
In which situation did you recognize that it is a problem when a fellow security meltdown due to the lack of resources and knowledge?
There are different divisions where a security guard can work with different responsibilities. Would you believe me if I tell you that people are actually calling patrol officers for non-urgent help instead of the cops? Or a supervisor that needs to take a decision and if he’s wrong it could cause death? Like it or not, this is the real world for a security guard, and it keeps growing. They make mistakes because they are not trained to respond to that growing demand that keeps getting harder. Imagine that you are a supervisor and you receive a call of one of your guards, and he’s crying and even fighting for his life. How would you manage this? Every second counts. How would you deal with seeing him rush to the hospital in a critical condition and keep on going with your duties? I’ve grown in this industry resolving those kinds of problems, and if we don’t train the officers to prepare them for this, those problems won’t stop growing. Knowledge will help officers to solve and react appropriately to those situations and mostly, protect themselves.
What is your expectation of a well-trained supervisor?
A well-trained supervisor is someone who is capable of respecting officers, and their protection must be a top priority. A supervisor must be a leader and defend the interests of agents at all times. Also, they must be able to handle stress and work under pressure, to respond effectively to the expectations of the employer. At the operational level, they must be efficient, able to solve all the problems, to see to the development of agents, manage all emergencies situations and much more but those are the main aspects to master for what I consider, a well-trained supervisor.
How regularly should a security personnel consider updating their education and re-trainings to upgrade their skills set?
At least once a year. It is an important investment in themselves and will keep them informed of what is happening in their field but mainly to keep ahead of the challenges facing them. We are currently working on an online platform for the continuous training of our members. The approach is different from a simple training and we prioritize a real or fictitious case study approach that is much more challenging. For security officers, we offer them development and advanced theory for free on our website where we add new training every month. The protection of the public provided by security officers will now be in constant growth and don't forget that your protection is important to them. If ever you cross an officer, tell them to NSOTA themselves!
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