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The Job Market Seeks Former Military

Military friendly employers are listed on the internet by hundreds of companies. Are these just patriotic firms who value and appreciate the service to this country by serving and former members of the US military? In part, the answer is yes. However, there is more to the answer. These companies also value the work ethic, existing skills, and commitment to ‘getting the job done’ that former military members bring to their companies. Even so, military friendly employers remain selective to choose the best candidates to fill job opportunities. Each former military person needs to continually upgrade skills and education to be that “best candidate” for the given job.

Globalization of the world economies has caused major changes to the job opportunities for veterans. One dark side of globalization is the emergence of international terrorism, drug cartels, and international crime syndicates employing both high technology and traditional crime methods. The threats from this ‘dark side’ have substantially expanded the need for enhanced corporate security and, in particular, executive protection training.

Executive Protection and Corporate Security

Kidnapping, extortion, piracy, and terrorist threats are now parts of modern business security planning. Kidnapping is a worldwide problem as terrorist groups, drug cartels, and other criminal enterprises use kidnapping as a lucrative source for revenue.1 One immediate consequence is an expansion of job opportunities and the need for executive protection training. The first thoughts on executive protection are the United States Secret Service and the Department of State Diplomatic Security Service. However, the commercial arena is where the fastest growth in executive protection jobs is occurring. Security planning is a comprehensive challenge involving a variety of skills and a firm base of knowledge and intelligence regarding the various security threats. Furthermore, kidnapping is a worldwide problem ranging from Latin America, Africa, Asia, the Middle East, and to every corner of the globe where international business is conducted.2 While most of the kidnappings are for money as ransom, kidnappings also occurs for political purposes and to advance terrorist objectives. The increase in the threats of kidnapping businesspeople gives rise to a parallel increase in new job opportunities with private security firms and company internal security divisions. These job opportunities exist within the US and internationally.

The job opportunities range from intelligence experts, political analysts, facility security, protection of individuals, protection management concepts, crisis contingency planning and conduction of executive protection in the field.  These opportunities may demand knowledge of terrorist and criminal group practices, experience with surveillance/counter-surveillance and working with local law enforcement. Executive protection training and a business protection education are essential preparation to work in the business security area.

Case studies are readily available showing the kidnapping threat as a problem on both domestic and international fronts. In 1992, Sidney Reso, a 57-year old president of Exxon International, husband and father of five, was kidnapped from his New Jersey home and died during the kidnapping. The kidnapping was predicated on the predictable routine by the Exxon executive.4 International kidnappings can be based on information from news articles, observing business travelers staying in prestigious hotels, insider information, travel routines, and even business cards. The Internet is also an important source for kidnappers to gather information to select an individual or business target to plan a kidnap operation. Business kidnapping is a growth industry as are jobs in the executive protection business to preempt and defeat the kidnappers.

The Solution: Avoid Kidnappings and Other Business Security Problems by Preparation

Military friendly employers will continue to look to former military members as candidates for domestic and international security jobs. However, the competition for these jobs requires preparation by the candidate. Business security and executive protection training are highly specialized fields. Only a few online schools provide the qualified faculty and a curriculum focus for this unique career field. Retired military, active duty military planning to leave the military, former military, and law enforcement officers should continue their professional education to reinforce enduring principles and stay abreast of new techniques and methods. This commitment to education is the essential preparation for individuals desiring to enter the commercial and public security protection field.


1. Briggs, R., Kidnapping is Big Business. Retrieved: www.fpc.org
2. Kidnapping of US Executives, Retrieved: www.globalbusinessnews.net
3. Hostage to Fortune in High Risk Regions. Retrieved: www.globerisk.com
4. Executive Protection Security Case Study. Retrieved: www.ssgonline.com/security-services/ep-security/case-study

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