Profile of a Phoenix Close Protection Operator
On completion of the Phoenix Close Protection course, graduates have the qualifications and certifications necessary to become employed within the global security industry, either with G4S, or another global security business.
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One of Phoenix's past delegates joined G4S Risk Consulting Ltd as a Close Protection Officer (CPO) in April 2013, having graduated from the Phoenix course in January and then attended the first ATOM course in Feb.
Here he gives an insight into his experiences of the course and the opportunities that arose afterwards.
- What is your current role and how long have you worked in your current role?
My Current role is a Close Protection officer on a contract Southern Afghanistan. I’ve worked in the current role since April 2013
- Tell us a bit about your background? What was one of the most enjoyable aspects of your job? Can you describe one of your most challenging aspects or one off events of your old role?
I am 33 years old. I was in the British Infantry for 15 years in total reaching the rank of CSGT. I ve been on 3 x tours of N.I, 1 x Kosovo, 1 x Iraq and 2 x Afghan. My last role was an Infantry Tactics instructor at The Infantry Battle School, Brecon. There I taught and assessed future section commanders of the British army all the key areas they needed to command a section of men in all types of hostile environments. My most challenging part of my army career was on operational tour on Herrick 10 Sangin. There my role was a platoon Sgt and most of the time we as a battle group found ourselves engaged with the enemy on a daily basis.
- How did you get into the Private Security Industry?
I decided that I had achieved all I wanted within the army and the Private Security sector was a natural progression for me. I could see that the skills I learnt through my army career could be used and built upon within the security industry. A few of my friends where in the Industry so I used their knowledge to find out which was the best close protection course around. Guys that had not even done the Phoenix course said that they wished they had gone on that one so I learnt by their mistakes really. The main selling point was that a member of HR would come and interview you at the end of course for future positions. Something you don;t get at any other company.
- Please describe the experience you had with the training?
The overall experience of the training was outstanding. A point of note is that I also attend the Approved Tier 1 Operational Medic (ATOM) course after the Phoenix course. My main reason was that the instruction and the facilities of the close protection course were that good I was sold already in attending my next G4S specialist training course. In addition to that you receive a 25% discount on the ATOM course if you attended the Phoenix course. I believe that G4S look after and employ people that attend their courses as they know the standard of training you have received is the best and G4S want the best people to work for them.
- How would you describe yourself?
I would describe myself as a hardworking, diligent person who strives to better myself by using other people’s experiences to learn from and adapt.
- Could you give us a brief overview of your current role?
As a CP operator in Southern Afghanistan, I am responsible for the armed protection and security of our clients conducting business in Helmand Province. Conducting IBG tasking's providing close protection to the client in out of district moves by Heli, foot and vehicle transits, responsible for risk and threat assessment in a constantly changing high threat environment
- What are the most enjoyable aspects of your role?
The most enjoyable aspects of my role is when the tasking is complete and we as a team have achieved our aim, by providing the best possible security to the client.
- Tell us about any challenging aspects?
The most challenging part of my role is the constant risk and threat assessment which is forever changing as you move by foot, heli or by vehicle with the client to ensure maximum protection.
- What do you like to do in your spare time?
In my spare time I like to keep fit for role either cardio vascular work or weights. There is plenty of down time so it;s not a problem. There is internet in all locations so talking back home on skype or face time to the family isn’t an issue.
- Please let us know anything else that may help other Service Leavers to follow in your footsteps?
Get yourselves on the Phoenix course and the ATOM course the extra medical course got me one step ahead of the rest of the guys and I was offered a job before I was even out of the army. I had a week off as a civilian and then I was deployed to Afghanistan.