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#268109 - 06/30/06 08:45 PM Becoming a doorman
McSensei Offline

Registered: 06/15/05
Posts: 1069
Loc: Kent, England
I'm currently in the process of getting licensed to start doing some doorwork.
What I intend to do when I start is write up a doormans diary on here. This week I have been on a course to get the certificates I need to get a S.I.A.* Door Supervisors badge and will serve as a starter.
I'd been looking for a course run at a reasonable price though it seemed to me that most people were charging an absolute fortune for this course, around 300 quid and upwards, but then I come across a place that does it for 174 quid and I bite their hand off.

Monday morning and there I am sitting in a classroom for the first time in 20 years. The instructor for the course is a lovely fella by the name of Chike. He starts off by giving out a wad of paper, 97 pages to be precise and explains that this is the material we need to learn in the next two and a half days ready for an exam on it the afternoon of the third day, Wednesday.

The 97 pages are broken up into "modules" (what ever happened to sections??? ). There are 11 of them and are titled thus...

1)Roles and responsibilities
2)Behavioural standard
3)Equality and diversity
4)Civil and criminal law
6)Licensing law
7)Drug awareness
9)Health and safety at work
10)Emergency procedures
11)Recording incidents and crime scene preservation

That first day we covered 1 to 5 and seemed to fly by at the speed of setting concrete. Tuesday was no better and it was all I could do to stop myself falling off my chair and sinking into a coma. We got up to number 9 which just left the last two on Wednesday morning before the exam in the afternoon.
Here is what I thought of each section. Oops sorry, "Module"!!!
1,2 and 3 imho absolutely of no use whatsoever. 4,5,6,7 and 8 were quite interesting and probably the most relevant to the job. 9 and 10 just stated the obvious and 11 was mostly covered in earlier sections.

Wednesday pm rolls around or limps around if truth be told and we settle down to do the exam.
35 questions, multiple choice format, in 1 hour.
The pass mark was 77% which is about 28 out of the 35 that you have to get right to pass, which I thought was high in comparison to the fact that you can achieve A-levels with a lower percentage than that.
Still it wasn't overly difficult and with a bit of common sense I think a lot of people could pass it without the training beforehand.
I think I scraped it, but I won't know for a couple of weeks.

Thursday, yay!! Last day and another handout comes our way.
20 pages this time and 2 modules.

1)Avoiding risk
2)Defusing conflict

Far too passive for my liking. It seemed to me that they were teaching that if it goes off you should get away from the trouble and get help. Surely the job is to be there and be prepared to sort out the trouble, on your own, physically, if necessary. Also, I didn't agree with some of the body language they tried to teach. Keeping your hands down and with the palms showing when someone is being threatening and abusive is inviting a right hander if you ask me.
It was still interesting and it might work with some people, but if you are relying on it and can't back it up physically, you are going to be in a world of trouble.
And there lies the problem. Anyone can do this course and to be honest, there were a couple of people on this course that clearly had no idea of how to handle themselves. They weren't even big built or anything. So what are they going to do when the sh!t hits the fan?

The exam in the afternoon was exactly the same format as the first.
This time I sailed through it and am pretty sure I got 35/35.

All in all I think that this course is a course designed for the shiny, clean, politically correct brigade. What they are trying to create here is a situation where doormen are no more than professional witnesses.
All the way through the course it was reiterated that doormen have no special powers(in law). So why do they have to be licensed and pay a fortune for it and have to waste there time on stupid courses that have been designed by someone that probably couldn't spell "door"!!!
Even licensed taxi drivers get to use the bus lanes.

Yet another example of society pretending that sh!t doesn't happen I guess.
I think there is going to be a whole new breed of doormen with a nasty surprise coming their way.

So there you go. My next installment will probably take a while because it now will take a few weeks to go through all the processing

*SIA-Security Industry Authority

#268110 - 06/30/06 09:24 PM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: McSensei]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Very interesting, McSensei.

In America (as far as I know), there are no requirements to being a doorman, with the exception of being huge or especially kick-ass. Oddly enough, I was a security guard (unarmed, heh) for a while when I was around 20 or 21. I had to take a course, pass a test, and be vetted by the state police (I still have the card, LOL).

But being a doorman here seems to involve mostly just showing the interviewer that you can get out of a headlock.

Ironic, considering that most of the security jobs I had I could have slept through with little notice, compared to the much more active life of the average doorman.
"In case you ever wondered what it's like to be knocked out, it's like waking up from a nightmare only to discover it wasn't a dream." -Forrest Griffin

#268111 - 07/01/06 06:44 AM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: MattJ]
Prizewriter Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 10/23/05
Posts: 2577
Great stuff McSensei!

I think the softly-softly approach of the material is so that they can keep themselves (the school issuing the license) right. Suppose if they said "When it all kicks off, get stuck in, Vale Tudo Style!!!" then they could be liable if someone they licensed but someone in hospital (i.e. it could be construed that they were advising you to attack someone).

Most police officers will tell you that the law doesn't cover a lot of the situations they encounter. They have to know the rules, use their own judgement, and make a decision.

I think the course is designed so that you can keep yourself right in the eyes of the law.

Did you cover any First Aid at all? The certificate you get in Northern Ireland requires you to know some first aid.
"Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food" Hippocrates.

#268112 - 07/01/06 11:49 AM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: McSensei]
Gavin Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 2267
Loc: Southend, Essex, UK
Great observation mate... exactly the same as my own experience. The job is always learnt doing it mate... now you've cut through the all the red tape of the training you now got to go through the mess of actually applying and getting your badge. Atleast another 6 weeks for that mate. Then its all plain sailing from there on in mate. Thanks for sharing!
Gavin King
Follow me on twitter @taichigav

#268113 - 07/01/06 09:10 PM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: McSensei]
Cord Offline

Registered: 01/13/05
Posts: 11399
Loc: Cambridge UK.
How times change.

This was my training for the job.

Step 1. become best friend and training partner of the son of the landlord of a local pub.

Step 2. Anytime trouble kicks off in pub, be eager to wade in and help kick the fu*k out of anyone giving the staff/regulars grief.

Step 3. Have the Landlord find out his pub is under police surveilance as some of his punters are known drug dealers, and that he must get rid of them if he is to keep his licence.

Step 4. Have Landlord put his son and his lunatic best mate on the job, enforcing a dress code and telling undesirables that they are just that, and are barred.

Step 5. Pay the dynamic duo 20 quid a night in hand, and as much beer as they can drink during, and after, working hours.

Happy years from what I can remember

Get through the course, then learn how to do the job properly. Just like driving- get through the 'look-signal-manouver' crud, then donut out of the test centre
Don't let the door hit ya' where the good lord split ya'

#268114 - 07/03/06 03:30 PM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: MattJ]
pepto_bismol Offline
infinite kudos

Registered: 03/04/06
Posts: 480
My uncle is a doorman at the palace hotel in San Francisco. He said most of his money comes from nights, and his weekends are tuesday and wendesday because friday-sunday= best tip days.

I don't remember him ever mentioning needing a license to be a doorman though...
YAY pepto bismol! No... not... kryptonite

#268115 - 07/04/06 10:58 AM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: Cord]
Gavin Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 05/11/05
Posts: 2267
Loc: Southend, Essex, UK
Cord you'd love it where I'm working at the moment. Southends busiest bar/pre-club club. Full to the brim with young ladies (McSensei will back me up if he can remember what the last bar was like on Sunday night! ), an absolute top door team who have absolute no objections about getting stuck in, a manager who takes us all out for a drink before we start, a manager who turns a blind eye when a well deserved slap is dealt out (in fact he usually gives you a drink for it!), a manager who supplies numerous drinks throughout the night (3 out of the past 4 weeks I ain't been in a fit state to drive home)... oh heck, it's a venue with lot's of women, quite a few punch ups and an absolute diamond of a manager! Absolute pleasure turning up for work every saturday!!!
Gavin King
Follow me on twitter @taichigav

#268116 - 07/04/06 12:35 PM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: Gavin]
Cord Offline

Registered: 01/13/05
Posts: 11399
Loc: Cambridge UK.
Happy Days Seaside towns are the best in every way. something about the atmosphere and the interaction between locals and tourists that make them unpredictable yet as comfy as an old sweater all at the same time.

there are times i miss the job, but then every time I get caught hard in sparring, I feel kind of glad these older bones look after property instead of pi$$heads these days.

Still nothing better than administering behavioural correction to those who truly need it however
Don't let the door hit ya' where the good lord split ya'

#268117 - 07/12/06 11:09 AM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: pepto_bismol]
BuDoc Offline
The doctor will see you now

Registered: 05/03/05
Posts: 1067
Loc: USA and Abroad

Your Uncles profession is vastly different from what Cord and Gavin do.

Your Uncle probably works for tips opening the door, helping old ladies with packages and hailing cabs. I would think that there is probably no special training or licensure involved. Just a friendly personality and the ability to brave a cold windy evening.

Cord and Gavin are what we would refer to as Bouncers.

Medical Advisor for the Somolian National Sumo Team

#268118 - 07/16/06 08:47 AM Re: Becoming a doorman [Re: McSensei]
ButterflyPalm Offline

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 2637
Loc: Malaysia
Here's a little tip (no pun intended) Take those 97 pages with you, and in a time of need, roll it up into a know what to do

Edited by ButterflyPalm (07/16/06 08:50 AM)
I'll rather be happy than right, anytime.

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