Suppose you have ever been responsible for organizing or managing an event on a large scale. In that case, you will know that security is one of the most critical factors you need to consider.
It is your role as the person or company responsible for hosting the event to take the appropriate steps to ensure that the attendees and staff are as safe as they can be – and one of the key ways you can do that is by hiring trained security guards.
Here’s how you can optimize the success and safety of your event with a security team.
Tennessee LOVES special events. Whether it is crawfish in Memphis, jazz in Jackson City, or the Grand Ole Opry in Nashville, barely a weekend goes by without something for residents and visitors to enjoy.
Unfortunately, these events can be prime targets for criminals like pickpockets and drug dealers, as well as frequently seeing crowds getting out of control and individuals becoming heavily intoxicated and causing danger to themselves and others.
Unchecked, this behavior can rapidly escalate into full-blown fighting, rioting, and even looting. Fortunately, the mere presence of a security team can mitigate the risks. They can also cut off any issues before they become fully developed if well-trained and effective.
The nature of special or infrequent events (festivals, shows, and sporting events, for example) means several potential security challenges need to be addressed. These include:
● Access control and ensuring only invited/ticket-holding individuals are on-site
● Crowd control
● Alcohol and/or drug fuelled incidents
● The risk of threats to performers, VIP guests, and staff
Of course, you could hire volunteers to manage these risks or untrained personnel. Unfortunately, without the proper training, your security will be poorly equipped to deal with any incidents that may arise. As part of the training given to security guards, they are encouraged to develop particular skills that can help at special events – including risk assessment, situational awareness, and conflict de-escalation. No matter the type of event that you are managing, all of those traits will benefit both you and your guests.
Your trained security guards can provide various services while working at your event, including:
● Checking identification/tickets at entry points
● Bag checks and detector sweeps
● Incident response
● Escorting troublemakers off-site
● Providing first aid in an emergency
The best way to ensure that your security staff is in a position to provide you with the best possible level of service is to enable them to communicate and collaborate with other stakeholders – event management, other security personnel, law enforcement, medical personnel, and other key staff. This collaboration with key stakeholders will ensure that everyone involved in running and securing your event can remain up to date on the progress of the event and any situations that are developing.
Imagine a worst-case situation for a moment. You have organized a music festival, and it is well-attended. Unfortunately, there is a rowdy crowd for one of your acts, and many people have been crushed against the guard rail.
You are being criticized in the local press, and there is talk of a civil suit. The reason? It has become public knowledge that you skimped on security – using untrained volunteers rather than trained professionals.
Alongside the guilt over the injuries that have been caused, you are now looking at a liability issue and irreparable damage to your reputation.
Minimizing these two issues will provide you and your company with an immediate and tangible financial benefit. There is a third way; hiring professional security can impact your bottom line, though, this time positively: attendee satisfaction. When your audience or guests feel safe and secure (because of very visible security personnel), you are more likely to get positive reviews and repeat customers – invaluable in any business, but particularly so in the world of hospitality.
The first thing you need to do is conduct some background checks. You can go as deep as you feel necessary here. Still, as a minimum, you must ensure the guards have a State of Tennessee Registration. Their registration is their license to work in the security sector, demonstrating that they have undergone the required training.
As with any other role you hire, you can look into professional experience, recommendations, and criminal records. This background information should give you an idea of the type of person you entrust your staff and attendees with.
If you have decided that working with a security company is the best option, be sure they are reputable and have conducted all the appropriate checks on their team. Otherwise, you could be letting a poorly trained or unqualified person have a position of power at your event.
Before the commencement of your event, whatever it may be, it is best practice to brief your security team. Walk the team through the site if you can, and explain your expectations for the day or evening of the event, focusing on how you expect them to act to control your attendees and safeguard the people, property, and premises as applicable.
Contact the Alliance Training and Testing team if you need further guidance on security guards. We specialize in taking individuals through all the steps required to become professional security guards in Tennessee, and we will also be delighted to help train your team.