Client’s Challenge: An International Board Worries About an Active Shooter Event in Its U.S. Facilities

The Global Security Director put it succinctly. “We recognize that gauging the potential workforce-related threats and vulnerabilities across our branch offices is crucial to preventing an intentional act of violence,” he said. “While we have not had a violent event up to now, I want to make sure that we develop the capability to identify and mitigate any threat early enough to prevent harm to our people, our operations and our brand.” He looked across the table at Hillard Heintze’s Managing Director Matthew Doherty. “Where do we begin?”

Our Solution: Undertaking a Robust, Three-Phased Approach to Workplace Violence Prevention

Hillard Heintze led the design and execution of a three-phased plan. Over the next several weeks, its threat assessment experts first undertook a detailed needs analysis based on the company’s capability strengths and weaknesses. After uncovering several vulnerabilities, Hillard Heintze made recommendations on issues such as who should participate on the company’s threat assessment team, what kind of staffing was needed, how new investigators would learn and experienced investigators teach, and what balance of specialized threat assessment expertise and general investigative experience would work best, among many other factors.

In the second phase, the Hillard Heintze team customized a one-day training curriculum on behavioral threat assessment for the company’s key internal stakeholders – i.e., supervisors and managers from HR, compliance, legal and security as well as from various operating units and geographical divisions. Finally, they worked closely with the company’s leadership team and functional heads on planning a four-city pilot training program for rollout over the next business quarter.

Impact on the Client: With a Plan in Place, Leadership is More Confident About Prevention

This company is further ahead than its comparably sized competitors in addressing the risks associated with workplace violence prevention. As its Chief Security Officer explained, “The benefits actually extend beyond this particular risk-based focus. We believe that a vibrant, happy workforce lies at the center of our financial success and operating performance year after year. Doing the right thing in workforce protection is just one of the ways we’re advancing our business.”

Unplugged: The Project Manager's Post-Engagement Perspective

“Our training team on this engagement – as it almost always is – includes Hillard Heintze threat assessment experts and Strategic Interactions’ simulation instructors.

It’s really a very synergistic partnership – from our side as well as the clients. You really need both sides: the threat assessment expertise as well as Barry Spodak’s and David Swink’s pioneering approach to interactive behavioral simulations.

And like ours, Strategic Interactions’ base of experience is unparalleled. They’ve trained the front-line teams at the U.S. Secret Service, U.S. Marshals Service, U.S. Capitol Police, and the CIA as well as major companies like Time Warner, Ernst & Young, General Dynamics, PBS, Fidelity Investments and many others.”

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