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Andy Griffith demeanor or J. Bourne?

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  • Andy Griffith demeanor or J. Bourne?

    It says in our handbook not to fraternize with employees of clients. I'm assuming that by that we are not to associate with them outside of work, or become too chatty with them while AT work. However, I've worked for quite a while at what was reportedly some of our more "difficult" posts, and enjoyed a great rapport with these individuals. In short, I chose to be human instead of a robot. I see advantages, and dangers to both though.
    What do you people think?

  • #2
    I have worked many places, mostly apartment complexes, but some LP at convienence stores also. Sometimes I stay at a place for less than a week, other times it could be months. Our company also has a policy about not fraternizing with residents or employees.

    It depends a lot on the place and the kind of people who are wishing to fraternize with me when it comes to how I act. For the most part its a simple hello and goodbye. After awhile of seeing the same person/people everyday I may talk with them for about 5-10 minutes depending how busy I am. Very rarely do I talk with people longer than that. It depends a lot on the person. I will slowly get to know someone and if they seem generally like a good person I may talk to them more on slow nights. Never have I spoke to anyone off duty.

    I never accept food or drink from anyone, even little old ladies because your just asking for sickness, poisening, or something else.

    There are a couple reasons not to get too friendly with people. One, often times if you get too friendly with someone it will be hard to report, arrest, or tell them to stop if they are doing something wrong. This can get back to your boss or management getting you in trouble. The second is that these people may be trying to distract you, gain private/confidential information, or get on your friendly side so you won't think they are up to anything.

    In the end you be the judge on who to talk with and who not to. If people question why you won't talk with them or question your demeanor then let them know you have a company policy regarding it, or just make up something you have to go do so you don't have to talk with them anymore.
    Last edited by locknid; 08-18-2007, 06:03 PM.

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    • #3
      good advice

      Locknid,
      Also, it is never a good idea to respond to romantic overtures when working as a security guard. You never know when you're the target for a setup. Wait. I take that back. Assume YOU ARE ALWAYS THE TARGET of a setup.
      A security guard can begin to feel very isolated, and even though all one may want to do is to speak in passing, this can get you re-posted, or worse.
      At times, the J. Bourne demeanor seems to be the wise way to go. However, I do believe my Andy Griffith persona has more staying power at a post.
      Last edited by izeneers; 08-18-2007, 06:50 PM.

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      • #4
        yes good point, never get romantically or sexually involved with someone on your post. If the women/man is crazy, which most are in one way or another, then kiss your job good bye if you ever try to break-up or something else bad happens.

        I think it is best to switch between the andy griffith and J. bourne demeanor depending on the situation. If you have been on a post long enough, and start to find out who the good guys are then go ahead and loosen up a little when talking to them. There are several residents I talk with at my regular posts, but it has been about 4 months and I know they aren't bad. If you have received info that the person is bad, or they give you that vibe then don't talk.

        What I usually will do is during the first few contacts with the person I will mainly listen to what the person has to say and what kind of questions they ask me. I will also pay attention to what kind of guests they have and if I am even having the slightest problem with their apt. Slowly I will stick around to talk somemore.


        But beware distractions. Many times residents at my properties will have lookouts. When they have a drug deal going down they will have people that distract me. Either by causing a disturbance or just trying to talk to me.

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        • #5
          I've always found that the more familiar people are with you the less authority you have over them. In other words, I think that its psycological in that people fear and or respect the unknown, and if they know about you and your family and so on that you lose that edge of the unknown.

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          • #6
            I think there is a line that should never be crossed in that of being personally friendly verses that of professionally friendly. Small chit chat is ok and certainly helps to make the day a bit easier and less boring, yet, keep in mind that you have a job to do and crossing that line can and all too often does backfire.

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            • #7
              I was always told: be friendly, not friends.
              I enforce rules and regulations, not laws.
              Security Officers. The 1st First Responders.

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              • #8
                I am on an "almost friends" basis with everyone I work with just about. The flipside is though that I cannot really take action against an employee unless it's serious. I just report what happens to the supervisor and they handle it the next day. Its odd not having that "authoritative" role, but it's nice not being the bad-guy for once.
                "Alright guys listen up, ya'll have probably heard this before, Jackson vs. Securiplex corporation; I am a private security officer, I have no State or governmental authority. I stand as an ordinary citizen. I have no right to; detain, interrogate or otherwise interfere with your personal property-... basically all that means is I'm a cop."-Officer Ernie
                "The Curve" 1998

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                • #9
                  response to manipulative persons

                  If someone seems to desire to abuse the casual rapport a guard has with them, how about this: (and I've used this one more than once...):
                  "Now, Mrs. So-and-So, we seem to be almost like old friends. You wouldn't want to get an old friend in trouble, would you?" Make the implication that you are certain they would not want you to get into trouble, but be very sincere in your concern that granting their request WOULD get you in hot water. Also mention that you have to be fair by treating everyone equally.
                  This has gotten me out of more than a few of those situations. Typically, the request was for me to allow a family member into a secure area without the necessary clearance procedure. And don't feel shy about directing any ire they might exhibit at the one who should deal with it: the person who asked you to enforce the rule in the first place: "I'm sorry to have to require you to do this, Mrs. So-and-So, but this is what they make me do to clear people for entrance into that area." If this doesn't work, hey, I've always said, I'd rather be fired for doing my job than for not doing it.
                  The last time I broke my long-standing rule: "Never gather honey where you work for your money", the sheer physical beauty of the girl (an A. Jolie twin, I kid you not; would any man have stood a chance?) lured me into saying, "Hey, what could go wrong? I know I'm a nice guy. It'll be great." Know how this one turned out? You got it! She was a complete psycho, and I mean that in every sense of the word. Jolie, herself, would have been terrified of this head-case. Often women (and, I'm sure, men already in power...) would love to have control not only over someone's heart, but their income, even the roof over their head, as well. Been there, done that...got the t-shirt. One day I was stupid enough while working with this person and sleeping with her to leave my cherished pet dog at her apartment one fateful morn as we both left for work. In talking back and forth during the day, she chose to start a fight, verbally throwing me out of her apartment, leaving my canine child in her evil clutches. What to do? Her apartment was around ten minutes away, and in full view of more than one CCTV I left my post, raced over to her place, and retrieved my 120# slobbering baby, along with some personal items, then rushed over to my own abandoned apartment to drop them off. Time: exactly one hour. Somehow, I managed to get back to my post undetected. Later, she was really PO'd when she got to her apt., only to find her substantial leverage had simply vanished, and expressed this resentment to me in terms I will not spell out here.
                  I know...stupid, and irresponsible. But this can happen to you as well, far more easily than you'd like to believe, unless you DO NOT GATHER HONEY WHERE YOU WORK FOR YOUR MONEY. PERIOD.
                  Beware: being a security guard can make anyone feel extremely isolated, eventually, yet you often find yourself surrounded by some truly beautiful people under the employ of your client. DO NOT LET YOUR LUST FOR OVERTIME CORRODE WHAT MIGHT HAVE OTHERWISE BEEN A HEALTHY, AND PROTECTIVE, PERSONAL LIFE. This alone will save you from the aforementioned chaos.
                  Last edited by izeneers; 08-19-2007, 05:32 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by HotelSecurity View Post
                    I was always told: be friendly, not friends.
                    Hotel is right on! I will make idle chit chat, local sports or the weather. But, I do not interact unprofessionally with clients or their employees or tenants in the housing communities we serve. It is just bad karma. I do my best to not be put in a comprimising situations. For my personal safety and professionally.

                    Be safe,

                    Hank
                    " We are determined that before the sun sets on this terrible struggle, our flag will be recognized throughout the world as a symbol of freedom on one hand and of overwhelming force on the other" - General George C. Marshall

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                    • #11
                      I try and be friendly. Being friends isn't a problem as most of the staff won't lower themselves to chat with a lowly guard. I much prefer to chat with the contractors who come in, they tend to be very friendly.

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                      • #12
                        "Be friendly, not friends..."

                        Ditto, hotel!

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by craig333 View Post
                          I try and be friendly. Being friends isn't a problem as most of the staff won't lower themselves to chat with a lowly guard. I much prefer to chat with the contractors who come in, they tend to be very friendly.
                          Ain't it funny how that 'attitude' changes when the proverbial hits the fan?

                          I like to think I'm polite but never familiar with clients/employees, as for potentially feeling isolated at work... I go to work to do just that but socialize in my down time, besides I prefer working by myself it fits my personality type better
                          "We make a living by what we get, but we make a life by what we give" - Winston Churchill

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                          • #14
                            exactly my point, Mael...

                            ...being in control of one's demeanor on a guard post is greatly enhanced by having a healthy, connected life outside of work. Too much OT can break up one's personal life...there's gotta be a balance.
                            We are kindred spirits as far as the desire to work alone...especially in this biz...

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                            • #15
                              Thats one of the reasons I went into this field. I don't have the "need" to socialize at work. If people want to chat thats fine (as long as it doesn't interfere with your job natuarally) and if they don't thats fine too.

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