From proving the value of security to sustaining fruitful security partnerships, the role of the enterprise security leader requires a constant handle on best practices from across the profession to ensure program success from the top down. In addition to networking in the organization’s industry, security leaders who consult peers in various sectors can benefit from the lessons learned across the security field as whole.
Each month, security executives share critical leadership and tactical insights in Security magazine’s Solutions by Sector live webinar series, an editorial initiative highlighting enterprise security best practices across a number of industries each year, including K-12, manufacturing, IT, healthcare, retail and more. While each event is framed around a particular sector, the chief security officers (CSOs) and other heads of security who present these webinars provide advice that resonates for enterprise security across all sectors.
Prove security’s value
A crucial responsibility of the modern chief security officer is proving the business value of security and aligning with organizational leadership. In his webinar on Comprehensive Security Programs in Higher Education, Jay Gruber, Associate Vice-President for Public Safety and Chief Public Safety Officer at Georgetown University, discusses the complexities of proving the value of a preventative security program.
“We can put a dollar amount to keys. We can put a dollar amount to cores. We can put a dollar amount to the labor that goes into doing all that, but others are a bit more intangible,” Gruber says.
“For example, last semester, we made half a dozen arrests and we ‘solved’ about 20 student conduct issues [thanks to our camera system]. There’s really no return on investment (ROI) on that, but it helps reduce overall risk if we’re … able to help reduce crime overall.”
Define security program metrics
While framing the value of security in terms of risk, security leaders can rely on metrics to both prove value and hone their own program based on the effectiveness of each initiative. In her webinar, Can We Stay Ahead of Theft? Loss Prevention Tactics to Navigate the Storm, J. Nicole McDargh, Vice President of Safety and Loss Prevention at Domino’s, discusses the importance of fact-checking and owning security data.
“[Security leaders need] to be super clear in exactly what the [risk] is so that we can get good at going to the table to get buy-in on our programs by providing thoughtful analysis and deep thinking about what the trends are so that our CFOs, CEOs, COOs, etc. see that we’re just not looking at the headlines, but that we’re designing and building programs according to the facts that impact us directly,” says McDargh. “Dig deeper into it. Control your own data. Fact-check yourself.”
Build & maintain security partnerships
Strong security programs extend their reach by partnering with community and government stakeholders on safety initiatives. In his webinar, Security Partnerships at the Nation’s Cultural Center, Karles Jackson, Director of Safety and Security at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, shares examples of security partnerships at the Kennedy Center and how his program maintains lasting relationships with their partners.
“Being here over 21 years, I have stayed in constant communication with our partners,” Jackson says.
The Kennedy Center security team partners with a number of government agencies and community stakeholders to safely host more than 2,000 events each year. Jackson says the Kennedy Center partners with the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Federal Protective Service on physical security assessments prior to large events; conducts pre-event walkthroughs with local, state and federal law enforcement and corporate security teams; and coordinates with the FBI, Metropolitan Police Department and U.S. Park Police on training.
Collaborate across the organization
In addition to collaborating with external stakeholders, security leaders who communicate and involve internal departments in their initiatives can see buy-in benefits to their security programs. In his webinar, Executive Protection for Hospitals and Healthcare Facilities, Gordon Snow, Chief Security Officer at Cleveland Clinic, kicked off the presentation by emphasizing the importance of collaboration in healthcare executive protection.
“Your federal, state and local agencies are critical in this zone, and they’ll provide you the protection they need as you come in with different protectees,” says Snow. “Your clinical partners are critical also. A care team will be developed to take care of that individual, and you want them to be your partners also. They’ll be critical in helping you guide other protection teams, guide the patients, and guide the rest of the caregivers across the organization into the zones that you need them in.”
If you’d like to learn more security leadership tactics and bring them back to your programs, view past Solutions by Sector webinars on demand and register for future events here.