Why do global travellers need to consider security when they travel?
The current global climate is extremely challenging and global incidents are undermining the confidence in international travel. It’s important to understand that despite the threat from on-going global terrorism, the significant travel risks that require attention include geopolitical instability, natural disasters, petty crime, road traffic accidents, health and medical issues. All organisations have a legal and, more importantly, a moral obligation to keep their travellers safe.
Is the world becoming more dangerous?
I wouldn’t say the world is now more dangerous. We have seen an increased demand from organisations undertaking business in high-risk areas or emerging markets. As companies increase their global footprint, they increase exposure to risks and hazards, especially if they are exploring opportunities in complex environments.
Is the global travel security industry largely male-dominated?
It is, perhaps understandably, male and military dominated. I co-founded Priavo with my husband and this combination of ‘male military’ and ‘female corporate’ knowledge benefits our client base and the growth of our company.
Prior to setting up Priavo, in 2011, I worked on the board of a British Plc within a male dominated industry and always found more opportunities than challenges. The key is to embrace female qualities and integrate these across your business practices. This entails investing heavily in your team, working closely with clients and suppliers, and really engaging with your stakeholders. Open, honest and regular communication takes time and dedication. Clear and cohesive objectives, mutual goals and regular reviews are fundamental. The bottom line will follow.
What have been your challenges as a female MD in the industry?
It’s not an easy industry to work in. Risks are varied, complex, constantly evolving and our clients’ knowledge of the security function can often be limited although their demands are high. I have worked hard to integrate ‘softer’ skills and ensure we work in partnership with our clients to gain a thorough understanding of their security needs. This is a constant challenge in a sector fraught with NDAs, confidentiality clauses and ‘trust’ issues.
In the last four months alone, we have successfully completed 861 operational movements in 118 global locations using 63 experienced security operatives. Employing a diverse logistics team, global security partners and highly qualified, time served security operatives has been essential for local ‘ground truth’, cultural etiquette and effective Travel Risk Management.
What are the challenges facing you in your new American office?
New geographical markets are very important to continue positively contributing towards people’s safety. With Brexit looming and a predominantly American client base, a presence on the West Coast was inevitable for Priavo. The challenges will be expanding the ‘production and film’ sector state side. I see a lot of ‘Out Of Hours’ across multiple time zones ahead for team Priavo!
Priavo is a Sussex-based Security and Travel Risk Management company, serving a global clientele across the music, events, financial and corporate sector as well as high profile private individuals. Our purpose is to protect people, manage risk and secure assets by making a positive contribution to the improvement of people’s safety. Celine Murphy is responsible for Priavo’s commercial, client care, sales and marketing strategy.