THE BASICS OF ADVANCE WORK®
The advance man proceeds to the operational area and sets up security arrangements and logistics in advance of the client and the bodyguard detail. The “advance report” should include photographs, maps and facts based on observations. Prior to your advance work you have to have a plan. You have to get a specific data on where the client will go and what the bodyguard detail requires.
TYPES OF INFORMATION
You will be obtaining knowledge acquired by on-the-ground assessment, examination and meeting face-to-face with various personnel. This includes gauging the various potential risks within the operational area. Such as possible or actual criminal activities, potential terrorist capabilities and other information which could affect the accomplishment of the bodyguard assignment.
While on your advance work assignment you will have to make daily strides toward your operational goals. That means spending time each day working on setting up security arrangements, meeting with various personnel from the airport, hotel, venue, etc. That does not mean spending 3 hours in a nonproductive meeting that has nothing to do with security. It means taking real, measurable action on getting your advance work done and reporting your findings back to the bodyguard team detail leader. I could write volumes about on-the-ground actions that are time wasters, just stick to your schedule, your checklist and orders.
You should have a list of things to get done each day while on your advance work assignment. A checklist is vital to ensure you are not wasting time and are achieving specific, measured goals for the accomplishment of the bodyguard assignment. At the end of the day, review notes and start organizing them in your advance report. After you are done, start planning out the following day’s activity from your checklist. Manage your time and energy.
START OF DAY
Always start your day with a morning ritual (shit, shower, shave, eat, work). While in the filed make notes and reminders, check email at regular intervals. As mentioned prior don’t get caught up in useless meetings that have nothing to do with security. Do not allow anyone outside the bodyguard team to dictate how you work or what meetings you need to attend. That is your responsibility and you have to be selective about your time and put your security advance priories first. Be professional when meeting with others, but let them know up front that your time is limited. You might tick a few people off, but that’s tolerable.
Advance work duties are produced largely in the field and the information obtained is used mainly by the bodyguard team, the client and staff. This is the reason you should bring the tools that work for you, whichever suits your style while on the road, such as a laptop, portable printer/scanner, yellow pads Outlook, mobile-phone apps, street maps, schedule book, digital camera, GPS, voice recorder, a comfortable carry bag, etc.
Although the advance man normally works alone and is not actively guarding a client, it is still his responsibility to keep low key and professional. Those engaged in duties or activities of advance work should not have the appearance of security because the objective of advance work is the setup, arrangement and preservation of security for the client’s arrival. However, your assignment is not shadowed in absolute secrecy. You can tell various personnel who need to know your position within the bodyguard team but use discretion. Do not walk around a five-star hotel wearing a t-shirt that says “Kill’em all and let God sort’em out.” This may draw unwanted and unnecessary attention to you and your activities.
Your completed Advance Report should contain quantity information with a high degree of accuracy. It should provide valuable insight on how the bodyguard assignment will unfold from point of arrival to point of departure and all activities in between. Your Advance Report should be in a logical, balanced and progressive plan on how the bodyguard detail will develop with photographs, maps and facts based on advance knowledge of the locale.
Once you successfully complete your advance work duties, what do you do next? On some bodyguard assignments, the advance man will merge with the arriving bodyguard detail and become the trusted point man. This makes sense because the advance man knows the area and the people extremely well. However, at other times after the advance is completed the advance man moves on to conduct advance work for other clients. If this is the case, make sure you get a recommendation letter from all the clients concerning your advance work preparation jobs. Having good references can be the clincher to getting that next assignment. Keep Safe & God Speed.
NOTE: ICEP provide advance work, executive protection and secure corporate transportation for business travelers in: Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea (South), Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar (Burma), Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Vietnam, Thailand and Yemen. Please send us an email if we may be of assistance to you. Thank you.