Image is everything?

I want to start this post with a hat tip to David Corbin, MS, CPP, CHPA. He posted the provocation for this blog/ rant on LinkedIn this week. Link to that post here.

What David was getting at with his post is that we need a rebranding for the security industry, and I am shocked that we have not forced it to happen yet. The word security conjures up some pretty revolting stereotypes. The master of disaster, Paul Blart, comes to mind. Paul Blart is not what bothers me – what bothers me is that we (our industry) have earned each of those stereotypes. We’ve worked hard for them.

Don’t get me wrong; there are people and organizations out there that are moving the ball forward and setting a positive standard. I have the privilege of working with people every day who are striving to be professional proactive protectors, and I love it. But every step forward they take, they are drug two steps back by some piss poor excuse for security. I have worked to end using the word “security” in my organization because I do not want our professionals marred by the reputation that proceeds them. We should all demand that we put the pro back into protector, amongst our peers and our industry.

As David pointed out, our professional organizations can lead the charge. ASIS and IAHSS need to step up with better branding. We need to stock the internet with different stock photos of security (also as David pointed out), but more than that – we need to live it out each day. We need to take more seriously how we train leaders, train officers, and yes… how we wear a damn uniform. It is hard to honestly communicate the simplicity of wearing a uniform well, and how that translates into an improved professional profession, but the impact is astounding.

I will get off my soapbox now, but as I go, I hope you will join me in calling for change. Image is not everything, but image sets the tone for so many things. We have to start taking that seriously if we want the rest of the world to take us seriously. We impact so many things. We work in a noble profession. We choose to work in a job that is dedicated to the safety of others. It is time that our image better reflected the nobility of our work.

What do you think? Does image matter? Do we have the power to erase the negative stereotypes and rebrand ourselves as professional proactive protectors? Join the conversation in the comments below, and don’t forget to like, follow and share to support The Proactive Security Blog.

One thought

  1. Image and appearance definitely matter. Representation also matters, so I encourage us all to be mindful about the diversity we are or are not using in flyers, brochures, and other outward facing media. Imperative to support various genders, cultural, and racial diversity in all we do and promote.

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