“I have been in the Security industry since I left college in the United Kingdom. I find it engaging, and I have learned a lot in the process. The training has always attracted and intrigued me, and I am aware that this experience will lead me to the field of Health and Safety, which will generate more interesting training.” This is how 42-year-old Marc Shergold, Security Supervisor at Marina Hotel, introduced himself.
What attracted him to Malta? “ It was my family. My mother, Dianne, is Maltese, and my father, Tony, hails from England. They decided to retire here in Malta and enticed me to join them, which I did in end January 2005.”
I noticed a soft look on his face and commented on it. “Yes, I admit, I love my parents and looked forward to joining them and being closer to them.” Marc stopped for a moment and then, with a smile, quipped: “And you know? Opportunities and life have gone better here. I live here with my girlfriend, Maria, and her son, Tim.”
So, did he join Marina Hotel immediately on his arrival in Malta? “No, before joining the Marina Hotel, I worked for four years at the Corinthia San Gorg Hotel. Prior to that, I had various jobs: patrolman driving from one side of Malta to another, checking sites and attending alarms when needed; Cash-in-transit runner, ATM technician, and I also had a couple of places I looked after with security services I worked for five years. I also worked as a normal guard with another hotel.
“With Corinthia, I started as an ordinary guard and was promoted to security supervisor after five 5years.”
As Security Supervisor, Marc is responsible for supervising lower-level security guards and ensuring all security guards perform their duties. He also liaises with security managers to create training programs so that all security guards have the proper training and preparation to fulfil their responsibilities.
“I help to provide and ensure safety and security for all staff, guests and the property. I carry out inspections for physical and safety hazards. Hazards can range from serious and large to even a small slippery patch which could cause injury. For example, they may find tripping hazards like slippery surfaces while conducting patrols. Instead of leaving these hazards unattended, they can stay close to warn customers and others. They can call the appropriate personnel to arrive to handle the hazard so that they can ensure that it no longer affects the premises.”
So, the devil is also in the detail. “ Correct, no detail is too small to be taken for granted and not tackled. Every little detail counts. Sometimes serious cases are solved based on tiny details which, when patched together, form a basis to see, understand and act.”
As a supervisor, Marc monitors the performance of his colleagues. “I keep a watchful eye on them and their manner of tackling issues. When I notice they are encountering difficulties, I assist them or answer their queries. Often, I show them a different approach to what they are doing, but I also assist with ongoing in-house training. It is important to remain calm in stressful situations, and I always advise my colleagues that remaining calm is also part of a solution; becoming agitated serves only to increase the stress and, hence, lose sight of what is required.”
Marc seemed a patient person. “I am a patient person, and I am always ready to listen to others. I am not afraid of hard work; I always see difficulties as a way to prove myself. I do not give up easily and will try my utmost to manage a difficult issue. Naturally, as a good team player, I will rope in any required assistance. Sometimes, issues are not a one-person job but require collective thinking and action. I enjoy participating in decision-making, and I never shy away from offering candid views about a problem that must be solved.
“Sometimes, when I go for a walk after work, my mind wanders, and I ruminate on particular problems, I arrive at exciting conclusions or solutions. I find that walking is not only good for the body but also the mind.” Walking seemed to be Marc’s most relaxing exercise after work. “ I also love trekking and am slowly returning to the gym.
Music, too, eases my tension or changes my mood. And I love cooking; I get fully engaged when I start concocting recipes. Naturally, I expect a word of praise for the result, even though I do not always get it. Meeting my parents is always great, but I love seeing my cat, Dotty, at my parent’s home. Don’t ask me about its breed; I just love it, and the feeling is mutual.”
Did Marc wish to venture into new areas of work? “Yes, I wish to grow in my job and undertake other duties. My boss, Joe Alosio, is always keen on showing me new aspects which could broaden my horizon, and I am extremely grateful for that.”
With that, we shook hands but only parted after downing a refreshing cold drink. Non-alcoholic, of course!