Starting with a personal experience that changed how I look at networking and building your resume. I took a volunteer assignment back in 2010 with Black Ice Security in the Virginia area. They have been supporting the GI Film Festival for years providing volunteer pro bono EP support. I was working in the Indiana area for a Healthcare company and had wrapped up and headed to Washington DC to support the Film Festival. People were like you drove from where! Shortly after that detail I was asked to provide support for worst environmental disaster our country has ever seen. When they asked for additional staffing support for that detail and if I knew anyone who would be good guess where I went? I asked 2 agents from the pro bono detail I had just worked. Both agents were assigned to that team for almost 2 years. Working that pro bono assignment changed how I look at everything in my field today when it comes to developing your network.
As a graduate of Class 65 it has been quite a journey in the security and protection field. It was tough to break into the field and at times it is easy to get discouraged. I can’t tell you how many times I got the “you don’t have enough experience, or you need more experience.” How are you supposed to get the experience if nobody will allow you the time to get it? I can tell you what I chose to do. I took all work I could get to add to my resume. I drove out of state to get jobs and meet people. Some of the jobs were break even for me because they wouldn’t pay the travel time. It paid off though in that I was able to start building my network and a credible reputation. You will be hit with some roadblocks, and you will run into people who wait for things to come to them. I have always said there are people who wait for things to happen and people who make things happen. What kind of person do you want to be? This business is so small you are only one or two people away from knowing everyone in it if you think about it. So, when you get the chance take a minute to help mentor someone new in the field. Help them get connected and get them those smaller gigs or something to get their career started. We were all there once so don’t forget where you come from. There is a good chance someday that person will return the favor.