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  • Writer's pictureSam Wilks

The benefits of teaching the psychological aspects of free-trade to security personnel


As security consultant and trainer, I have witnessed firsthand the importance of understanding the psychological aspects of free trade when it comes to de-escalating violent offenders. The ideas of great economic writers like Thomas Sowell, Milton Friedman, Friedrich Hayek, and Ludwig von Mises, provide valuable insights into how teaching the psychological aspects of free trade to security personnel is an effective tool for reducing violence and promoting safety.


The Role of Incentives


One of the key principles underlying the free trade system is incentives. Incentives are the driving force behind economic behaviour. Individuals and businesses are motivated by the potential for profit or gain, which can encourage them to engage in productive economic activity. This principle also applies to violent offenders, who are often motivated by a desire for power, control, or recognition.


To effectively de-escalate violent offenders, it is important for security personnel to understand the incentives that may be driving their behaviour. For instance, if a violent offender is acting out of a desire for attention or recognition, shifting their focus to more constructive endeavours or objectives may be effective.


The Role of Property Rights


Property rights are also essential to the free trade system and can be a valuable tool for de-escalating violent offenders. Property rights provide individuals and businesses with the incentives to invest in and develop new technologies, and the same principle applies to violent offenders.


By clearly defining and protecting property rights, security personnel can create an environment where violent offenders are less likely to engage in destructive behaviour. For example, providing something as simple as clear signage and instructions for parking in a private parking lot can help reduce the likelihood of property damage or theft.


The Role of Competition


Competition is another key principle of the free trade system that can be effective in reducing violence. Competition provides incentives for businesses to innovate and improve their products and services. Similarly, competition can provide incentives for violent offenders to engage in more productive activities.


For example, a security team that competes with other security teams to provide the best service may be more effective at de-escalating violent offenders. By demonstrating their expertise and effectiveness, they can build a reputation that discourages potential offenders from engaging in violent behaviour. The public and offenders alike are well aware of those companies that are more willing and capable of going "Hands-on" when required, compared to those that will only observe and report.


The Role of Specialisation


Specialisation is another key element of the free trade system that can be valuable in reducing violence. Specialisation allows individuals and businesses to focus on their core competencies and develop expertise in specific areas. Similarly, security personnel who specialise in de-escalation techniques can be more effective at resolving conflicts without resorting to violence. Saving both the company and the clientele thousands.


By training security personnel in the psychological aspects of free trade, including the principles of incentives, property rights, competition, and specialisation, I can equip them with the tools necessary to effectively de-escalate violent offenders. This training includes instruction on how to identify the underlying motivations of violent offenders (profiling), as well as techniques for redirecting their behaviour towards more positive activities.


The Role of Situational Awareness


In addition to understanding the psychological aspects of free trade, it is also important for security personnel to be aware of their surroundings and the specific situation they are dealing with.


By being aware of their surroundings and the specific context of a situation, security personnel can identify potential threats and take proactive steps to prevent violence from occurring. This may involve implementing security measures, such as personal presence, cameras or increased patrols, or using verbal de-escalation techniques to defuse potentially volatile situations.


Teaching the psychological aspects of free trade to security personnel is an effective tool for reducing violence and promoting safety. By understanding the principles of incentives, property rights, competition, specialisation, and situational awareness, security personnel develop the skills necessary to effectively de-escalate violent offenders.


However, it is important to note that this training should not be seen as a replacement for other important measures, such as proper staffing levels, adequate training, and appropriate use of force policies. Instead, I stress, it should be seen as a complement to these measures, providing security personnel with additional tools and strategies for promoting safety.


It is important to recognise that not all violent offenders can be de-escalated using verbal techniques alone. In some cases, the use of force may be necessary to protect the safety of individuals and property. However, by training security personnel in the psychological aspects of free trade, I can ensure that they are better equipped to make informed decisions about when and how to use force.


The psychological aspects of free trade provide valuable insights into the behaviour of violent offenders and the strategies that can be effective in de-escalating their behaviour. By teaching these principles to security personnel, I can equip them with the tools necessary to promote safety and reduce violence in our communities. From the author.


The opinions and statements are those of Sam Wilks and do not necessarily represent those with whom Sam consults or contracts. Sam Wilks is a skilled and experienced security consultant with almost 3 decades of expertise in the fields of real estate, security, and the hospitality/gaming industries. His knowledge and practical experience have made him a valuable asset to many organisations looking to enhance their security measures and provide a safe and secure environment for their clients and staff.

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