12 things you do not want to hear from the security manager in your organisation

Does this sound familiar: A mature inflexible individual, perhaps with a background from the armed forces or the Police. An overconfident individual who is fiercely protective of his position and status and whose failure to keep his knowledge current is only surpassed by his cocksure demeanour? In other words ‘arrogant with little to be arrogant about’. Here are some statements that indicate the security manager is not all that he should be:

1. “Risk analyses are for theorists”

2. “Why should we set goals for security and contingency work?”

3. “Information security is the responsibility of the IT-department”

4. “Our security work is largely about physical security and protection”

5. “In the security department, we are working on security. We have little in common with HSE- who are working with safety”

6. “We have procedures for things like that in the security department”

7. “There is a professional security reason why you cannot do it that way”

8. “We like working ad hoc, without planning far ahead. We do not need strategy for our work”

9. “If I will have something to do with the management meeting, it will be to explain to them how we need to do things here”

10. “Security work is dependent on having a clear leader figure”

11. “When we are training the senior management, we have to add sirens and action so that we can test how they solve problems in different situations”

12.Give me one good reason to why we should write an evaluation report and follow up the learning points after an exercise”

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Have you ever met this type of security manager? The point here is not to tarnish anyone, but to shed light on the fact that the discipline of security and contingency has evolved over the years. Fortunately, most of the people out there are competent and civil, with team working skills and professional integrity. Should you be unfortunate enough to encounter one or several of these statements, it is a sure sign that the security manager needs a professional update.

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By Yngve Dyrøy

Yngve is partner at One World AS. He has more than 25 years of experience from Safety & Security, Contingency and Crisis Management. Former employers include Oslo Police, The national Police directorate, Teleplan Consulting and The Central Bank of Norway. Yngve has a bachelor's degree from Police Academy and a master's degree in Safety and Security Management from the University of Stavanger. His key qualifications are project management, risk management, crisis management, contingency planning, training and exercises.

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