Hiring Manager, Mentor, Private Investigator: Worklife in the Security Sector
Dick Scott joined the Winnipeg Police Service at age 19 and led a varied career. During the 1970s, he was involved in hiring police officers, then became a trainer at the Police Training Academy.
In the 1980s, Dick was in charge of the property crime investigation division. In 1989, he moved to Brandon to take up the Deputy Chief position with the city’s Police Service.
Six years later, he became Chief of Police, and retired in 2001.
Dick now puts this breadth of experience to use as a director of operations in the private security sector:
We have 64 people who work full-time, four in administration and sixty who protect property at various sites around the city.
There are also 150 people working part-time who do special duty guard service at public events.
Mentoring is also part of my job. If someone is having a problem, I don’t tell them how to solve it. We talk it over, and, lo and behold, they find the answer to the problem facing them.
People are intelligent and know the answers, but sometimes they just lack confidence. They think, ‘If I do this, am I going to get into trouble?’
So, I tell them, ‘there is no wrong way, it’s just that you have done it differently. Maybe there’s a better way to do it and we can look at that.’
Nobody comes to work to make a mistake. I try to find out if the company has failed them or if they failed us.
Usually, it’s because we haven’t given them the right information, so I’ll offer education in the area where the mistake occurred.
I like to help people realize their potential. When I see someone who has the capacity to move up within the company, I offer them training courses so when there is an opening they will be prepared to take the job.
Courses are completed by computer and I guide them through the modules because I want them to feel supported.
It’s all part of keeping good people by giving them opportunities to advance.
Every security officer in Manitoba has to take a 40-hour security course from an approved training provider and pass a Provincial examination.
I use retired police officers to do this training.
I’ve always believed that training is something no-one can take away — if you’re trained nothing is going to stop you.
I also do private investigations. A company might call and say they need services that include a drug-sniffing canine.
After arranging to get the canine, I will meet with the handler and the client to create an action plan. I then complete the investigation and write a report.
There’s a lot of paperwork in my job but I don’t find it to be boring — it tells a story.
I get calls from insurance companies in Canada and the United States to help them with a particular situation. It could be in regard to someone living in this area who they suspect is making a fraudulent injury claim.
It makes sense for them to hire me to do the investigation rather than sending one of their staff out here.
Police departments across Canada contact me to do background checks. They might be hiring someone who lives in a community in Westman so they ask me to do an on-site visit.
With Security, it’s seven days a week, 52 weeks a year. You’ve got to do what you’ve got to do, it’s all part of the job, and people who work in security understand that.
— by Brandon Now