Whitney & Security

Whitney Houston's final lesson to security


It's a deep loss to everyone who enjoys performance arts that the world lost a force as talented as Whitney Houston. But as someone in corporate security, have you ever thought about what lessons her death might hold for your business? Does it mean anything? I think so, and here's why.

I'm sure many hotels have considerations already in place for events like Whitney Houston's death, at least they would if they deal with VIPs on a regular basis. But at your own facility, even if it's not an L.A. hotel, you probably touch VIPs every day and they do present special circumstances. Even if we're not talking about a death, VIP-related incidents are going to put a lot of focus on your facility and a number of requirements on your staff.

Here's what we can consider as factors in these situations: high profile VIP, paparazzi interests, potential questions about circumstances preceding the event, interactions with other guests/employees/visitors, police involvement, coroner's arrival, consideration of person's belongings, protection of privacy, communication with family, management statements. Above all, your security department needs to run point to help facilitate these concerns; it needs to secure the location until police arrive, and it may need to consider official traffic in/out of the facility for family and police. You may be dealing with a VIP who has his or her own protective detail. How are you going to coordinate with them? Some of our forums members are discussing this topic; join in if you have additional insights...hotel-focused or not.

So, here's the education point on all of this: Does your security plan cover situations like VIP incidents? If it's just a page in the operations binder sitting on a high shelf, maybe it's time to dust off that binder and review it with your team.

And if you want another moment to remember her power and presence, I recommend Whitney Houston's singing of the National Anthem during the Super Bowl in 1991. As one of the viewers wrote, it will "send shivers through your body." I practically guarantee it will.