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Skills and Training Security Guards Should Have

Canadian businesses are constantly at risk of security challenges. To safeguard these establishments, security guards are entrusted with the responsibility of promptly and effectively addressing these concerns. As threats are always possible, security personnel must always remain vigilant, necessitating a specific set of skills to carry out their duties effectively.

The role of security employees in protecting the organization's people and assets is crucial, demanding that they possess the necessary qualifications to fulfill their responsibilities. Completion of security guard training is mandatory for all security guards. This training focuses on understanding the fundamentals of law enforcement, equipping oneself to handle risky situations and protect others, and ensuring personal safety in hazardous environments.

If you aspire to become a security guard, here are the essential training and skills security guards need:

Skills and Qualities Security Guards Must Have


Effective communication skills for security guards are an important part of their job. A proficient security guard should possess excellent verbal and written communication abilities. The way they communicate can significantly impact how sensitive issues are handled. It is crucial to be good at clear and accurate documentation of critical incidents and facility conditions at the end of their shift.

Effective communication is not limited to emergencies. It plays a vital role in all situations. As the first point of contact for potential consumers, security guards must maintain a positive and welcoming demeanour, accurately representing the company's brand.

Honesty and Integrity

Security guards are responsible for securing building access and protecting valuable assets, necessitating honesty and trustworthiness. As they often work without constant supervision, these traits build confidence and comfort in customers. Demonstrating integrity from the start is crucial since assessing such qualities in a security guard can take time.

Judgement and Attention to Detail

The employee's role requires multitasking and information retention to aid clients, making attention to detail essential. Each security guard receives instructions at their assigned station, emphasizing the importance of following them. A skilled security personnel can identify when decisive action is necessary to mitigate potential threats.

Before assuming the position, comprehensive training on specific requirements is crucial. Understanding security operations is essential to meet business needs, and executing tasks professionally while minimizing disruptions is a priority.


Despite often working alone, security guards need leadership abilities, especially when coordinating with others to ensure total business security. Understanding when to lead and when to follow provides smooth operations and prevents potential risks to lives. Leadership and teamwork are essential for security guards working together to secure a business's perimeter.

Physical Fitness

Candidates must maintain good physical fitness, stay within a healthy weight range, and exercise regularly. Optimal physical and mental wellness is necessary to deal with potential physical conflicts, such as outrunning robbers or intervening in fights. Professional presentation, including a tidy uniform, reflects positively on both the guard and the business in the eyes of clients and the public.

Surveillance and Vigilance

Vigilance is the constant state of alertness and timely response. Security personnel must determine potential threats effectively, and exceptional security guard remains consistently aware of their surroundings, minimizing distractions to avoid overlooking critical situations that could endanger lives. Strong observation abilities enable security guards to swiftly assess, respond, and choose the best course of action.

Required Training for Security Guards

Due to the intricacies of the job, security guards must acquire specialized skills through training. Here are some crucial training courses for security guards:

Basic Security Guard Techniques

This course emphasizes recognizing potential dangers and making quick decisions on appropriate responses. A security guard must possess the ability to identify potential dangers and swiftly decide on the most suitable response. Conflict resolution, de-escalation strategies, the use of tools, and self-defense fundamentals are also covered. Familiarity with the basics of self-defense is essential for every security personnel.

In addition, they must be knowledgeable about their job limitations and responsibilities. While some of these aspects may be covered in pre-employment legal contracts, security guard training remains crucial to ensure new guards fully comprehend their legal obligations.

Effective Communication

Security guards learn to use a composed and authoritative tone in speech, manner, and body language. Communication training covers interacting with individuals who may not comply with rules or directives and utilizing firm yet calm approaches while providing instructions or requests.

Firearm Handling (for Armed Guards)

Armed security guards are a must if businesses want to enhance the security of their operations, particularly if they deal with money, high-traffic events, or luxury merchandise.

While not all security guards are armed, those who carry firearms must undergo authorized marksmanship and firearms training for security guards. Typically, armed security guards need a state-issued permit or license to carry firearms.

Security personnel can serve as a valuable defense against armed threats but must receive proper training for this role. They are responsible for surveillance, patrol, maintaining peace and order, and protecting the safety of lives and property. As such, security staff must understand the capabilities of firearms and how to identify potentially suspicious behaviour. Also, they must know exactly how to respond during tense situations. As vital resources in emergencies, they should also be well-prepared to handle dire situations.

Observation and Documentation

Security guards receive training in meticulous observation and documentation. This involves maintaining comprehensive records of observations, including dates, times, and actions taken. Effective observation and documentation protocols are crucial in emergency situations or when reporting incidents.

Occupational Health and Safety

Security guards play a vital role in workplace safety, ensuring compliance with safety protocols. Understanding the site's danger zones helps prevent accidents that could jeopardize employees and the public. They are often required to meet minimum health and safety training standards to enhance their ability to respond to various situations effectively. This includes providing first aid and CPR training for security guards, handling hazardous substances, fire prevention, and conducting safety evacuations.

Security personnel with these vital skills and training will perform their duties more efficiently. Security guards play a crucial role in society, safeguarding people's safety and protecting valuable assets and establishments.

Do you want to secure a security guard certification and get into the best security companies in Toronto? Security Guard Group offers training designed to give you the knowledge and skills to pass the exam and get your security guard license. Purchase our Ontario Basic Security Guard Training today!



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