Perhaps as a business owner you ask yourself “Is my business prepared for a workplace shooting today?” This past Friday I traveled to Naples, Florida to present to a group of risk managers, emergency managers and other administrators at the Florida RIMS Educational Conference 2017.
This was my third year in a row presenting so I was weary that maybe the group may be a bit “tired” of me!
In 2015, I presented on how to respond to an active threat in the workplace.
In 2016, following local incidents that really impacted home (as a Florida-based company) like the Pulse Nightclub Massacre, I presented on the civilian response to an active shooter.
This year, upon request of the board I repeated the civilian response aspect and honed in on exactly what each person is capable of doing if faced with a threat while in public with their family.
I also then took the momentum of that and challenged the crowd to bring this idea back to the workplace. Through a case study of the San Bernardino Incident, we learned two important lessons from the staff that had undergone active shooter training 1 year prior to the incident:
- That staff reported after the incident that they implemented what they had learned during the shootings, such as barricading, evacuating, and other measures they had been taught.
- The workplace, which had been hit with approximately $200 million in civil actions, rejected all claims of any negligence charges or liability concerning the victims in this case due to the training they had undergone.
I think these two points really hit home with the audience.
Participants worked through the pros and cons of training for an active threat or workplace shooting today
As an administrator you have enormous responsibility; you not only have the safety of your employees at your hands, but also the integrity of the company.
The potential to save lives and minimize mass casualties is there.
The responsibility of providing procedures and training for an active threat can impact the financial fate of your company in more ways than one.
We even discussed the stake of your company’s reputation following a tragic incident.
Overall, the staff participation, the thought-provoking conversation and the environment was one of empowerment and change.
To say I left that conference feeling accomplished was an understatement.
One of the most important bits of feedback I received after the training came from a gentleman who attended each year of my presentation. He said to me, “Steve, it is because of your first presentation that I went back to my workplace and began working on procedures for a threat. After that, we worked on training our staff. I just wanted to tell you that and let you know the impact you made on our workplace. Thank you.”
If that wasn’t enough to make me feel great, I don’t know what else will.
I challenge you to make that change within your workplace.
Remember our initiative to POLICY-TRAIN-DRILL.
- Have a written policy for response to an active threat;
- Train you staff in active threat response; and
- Conduct drills regularly with your team in a manner that works for your workplace. If physical drills seem unreasonable, develop table-top exercises that include administration and workers.
In today’s times, it is no longer a question of “Do we need active shooter training?”, rather it is, “Is our business prepared for a workplace shooting today?” and “Why don’t we have procedures and training in place for an active threat yet?”
With no national standard for active threat response training, I encourage you to do your homework when looking for the best training option for you.
As always, the Guardian Defense team is here to make sure your company’s needs are met. Simply >>click here<< to schedule an appointment with one of our Safety Specialists and assess how to prepare your business for an active threat or workplace shooting today!
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