[NOTE: This article is focused towards PSD Agents who work domestic details]
During my once a week email read/reply marathon I came across an email from a buddy of mine back in the states who I used to work with here in Iraq [he is now working on the domestic PSD/EP circuit because his wife forced him to stop working overseas]. He was ranting about how his client would not listen to his security recommendations, would constantly change his plans half-way through the day, and would always tell his detail to stop standing so close.
Basically this guy was the typical nightmare client who only had a PSD team because he was forced to by his company, insurance or situation. For anyone reading this who has done PSD work in the U.S; this is a story they have heard a hundred times from a hundred different guys.
I was sort of curious as to the threat level the client had on him, more specifically if it was an actual threat or a perceived one. So I met my buddy on chat and he immediately launched into a rage filled rant about how his client was a self-absorbed arrogant jerk-off who only had a PSD team because the company he worked for forced him to despite the fact there was pretty much a zero chance of anything happening to him.
Having been in this exact same situation before [I started out in this business doing low-risk details in the U.S.] I told him to just “go with the flow” and there was no need to run his detail like they were escorting a politician through Bagdad or something. You see my buddy had never really worked on a low-threat detail before [having only done HSLD PSD stuff overseas] so he was going mad because he could not run a strict 3rd world “by the book” high-risk style detail.
He also said things like “Well if he gets zapped then it’s on him, I did everything I could but he didn’t listen” – My response was “seriously dude, I have worked stateside details just like that and the toughest adversary you will be up against will be trying not to fall asleep”
I know a ton of guys like this; they think that they are some sort of high speed ninja bodyguard when in reality they are actually on a glorified babysitting gig. And if you work stateside then 90% of all your gigs will be low-threat ones like this. Giving yourself an ulcer because you are trying to run a detail like you are protecting someone who is constantly under an assassin’s crosshairs is just not necessary.
Don’t be one of the “I AM A BODYGUARD!” PSD Douchebags who takes themselves WAY too seriously that everyone hates to work with. You know the type, the guy who squelches across the radio to scan the rooftops for snipers when the client is just some middle executive at a french-fry packaging plant during a labor dispute.
Unless you want to be known as “that guy” – you know the one I am talking about, he has a nickname amongst his fellow PSD Agents like “Costner” or “Steven Seagal” [You know you are a PSD Douchebag if your “behind your back” nickname is an action stars name]. I suspect my buddies PSD Teammates are calling him “Arnold” or “Marcinko” behind his back.
On a low [practically non-existent]-threat PSD Detail where your client is uncooperative you [as a professional PSD Agent] need to just take a deep breath, remember you are not protecting a wittiness who is testifying against the mob and just be flexible with the detail.
Now don’t get me wrong, I am not saying to let the client run wild – just cater how strict you will be with running your detail. If that means your client may be a bit exposed because he decides to suddenly grab a bucket of KFC on the way back from the mall without telling you beforehand or he wants to shit in a public bathroom alone then just go with it – it is not like someone is going to jump out from the shadows and throw poisoned ninja stars at him.
As for my buddy, well he launched back into a rant that included outlandish things like IED’s and L-Shaped ambushes and how the blood of his client would not be on his hands because he ran a fucked-up detail.
All I could say was: “Whatever ‘Serpico’, you do what you have to do bro – I got to hit the chow hall, later”
~James G Founder - Editor in Chief
James G is a Veteran Civilian Contractor who has worked in the Middle East and Southeast Asia for way too long; he has traveled to over 50 countries chasing fortune and glory. He spends his off time in Indonesia and Virginia getting drunk, shooting guns, writing poorly written articles and calling people names behind their backs. James G. on FACEBOOK