What private investigator skill should you learn first?
Larry’s short answer: Prepare for the simple and probable first.
When you’re starting out in a detective agency, it’s unlikely the first call you get is going to be for and electronics countermeasures sweep. (Technical Surveillance Countermeasures or TSCM)
It’s also probably not going to be for an auto accident investigation. Could be – but probably not.
It’s much, much more likely you’re going to get a call to do surveillance on a cheater (husband, boyfriend, wife, etc.). AKA: Domestic or Infidelity Case.
Skip tracing is a fundamental of investigations that will always be needed either as the main objective of the case or a an intermediate step towards serving process, a witness interview, auto repossession or just about any other case you can name!
Or, if you’re opening your own detective agency, it’s likely a law firm is going to want you to serve process rather than starting you out with , say witness interviews. That’s just the mathematical odds.
Notice it’s the “simple” case of following someone or the the “simple” act of serving process on a court case (child custody, divorce, civil litigation, etc.). Those things are common so they are also more likely.
So, learn the skill that’s most likely to get you a client! Most likely to get you paid!
By the way… Don’t let anyone “sell” you on one skill or another. Use your brain and think logically about what skill you’ll most likely need, then (if you want to take that kind of case!) lean the skill.
If you’re looking to get hired for a private investigator job or private investigator internship, consider studying/learning the skill that’s most likely to make you stand-out compared to all the other applicants!
Warning: It’s easier to recover from a “money mistake” than it is to recover from a “time mistake”.
You can earn more money, but once you’ve wasted the time, you can never get that time back.
That means, paid training may be the answer for you.
Yes, I sell paid training, but… this is one of those very rare times when you don’t have to risk money to save time! Why? Because I have a 100% satisfaction guarantee money back guarantee! If you don’t like the training (for ANY reason), simply return it for a full refund. Notice: There’s no risk!
Use some logic to choose the P.I. skill you think is best for you, then go learn it in the way that works for you!
Committed to your success,
I look for things I can recommend to you, but it’s so hard to find anything that’s worthwhile!
So, I actually bought a kind of a pricey self-defense online course.
They had the training videos and I was hoping that I could recommend it to you.
The course was actually pretty good. But no sooner had I bought it than… BAM… I was bombarded by this guy! He was constantly trying to sell me and up-sell me to more and more expensive (and unnecessary!) stuff.
I just couldn’t do that to you. I couldn’t say, “Hey, buy this guy’s thing. I recommend it”, and then have him sell to you for the rest of your life.
I Found The Solution!
I finally found a worthwhile thing. And it’s a self-defense course!
It’s better, because…
1. It’s free and
2. it’s taught by an ethical, upright, and excellent instructor who I’ve followed for years and like.
It’s Sensei Ando. He’s got a channel that you can subscribe to if you want, and keep up with the excellent videos he’s putting out.
Yes, he’s an expert in martial arts and a great person to learn from, but he also has a lot of good, solid wisdom on top of that!
He runs Happy Life Martial Arts and I highly recommend you check him out.
His free self-defense basics course is online and it’s quite good. It covers everything from breathing to how you hold your body weight and it’s got one lesson in particular you’re gonna’ need if your in our industry long enough.
That’s his lesson on ground fighting, which, if you’ve ever been-there-done-that in the real world, fights always go to the ground. I mean, I’m not a marital arts expert. Maybe there are exceptions, but I’m a guy who’s been out there and, man, it just goes to the ground!
Especially In our industry, where we’re not really “fighting” people, but as a security guard or loss prevention officer, you’re trying to make an apprehension or you’re in one of those extremely rare situations where you have to make a citizen’s arrest. Ando has made at least two citizen’s arrest that I know of. He’s a good, ethical, upright guy and he just couldn’t let it pass. It was just one of those things.
If you’re trying to become a Private Investigator, then I have some bad news for you this week.
There is nothing you can buy that makes you a Private Investigator or a Process Server.
There is no certificate, no training course, no “Union”, no identification card and (especially!) there’s no badge you can buy – that once you own it – makes you a Private Investigator.
Same for Process Server.
“Owning” something does not make you a P.I.
It doesn’t work that way.
Of course, you know by now I sell Private Investigator and Process Server training courses. So is it weird that I’m telling you buying a course or a badge or a “thing” doesn’t make you a private investigator? I don’t think it’s weird. I think it’s just being honest with you!
3 Ways to become a P.I.
1. If you want to be a Private Investigator you can get your P.I. license with the state.
There is precious little you’re going to be able to show them (aside from experience working as an investigator!) that they’re gonna count towards giving you a license. So look at your state’s requirements, see what you need. Definitely it ain’t a badge! You probably have to pass a written test. You have to have experience. They might (just maybe) count a college degree as part of your experience, but they will still require more!
But, most importantly, notice this… you can’t buy these things!
Arguably, you can buy the knowledge that will help you pass the test. But that alone still does not make you a Private Investigator! You can’t buy it.
2. Work for a licensed Detective Agency
Another way to become a Private Investigator is to work for a licensed P.I.
Many detective agencies don’t have hard rules about who they hire, and they might be willing to hire and train you. If they hire you, they’ll usually register you with the state under their license and then you’re a private investigator.
Again, notice… nothing you bought got you that. No course you took, no certificate you got, nothing.
And, crying out loud, do not show up at a job interview for a private investigator and say, “I already have my badge!” I promise, you will not get you the job. You may get you thrown out of the building.
3. Be an “in-house” investigator for a company (or work for a government agency).
The third way you can be a private investigator is to an in-house investigator. That means you are an employee of a bank, retailer, logistics company, etcetera working in their fraud department, compliance office or something like that.
Usually these employees aren’t called “private investigators”, but they are doing much of the same work and the experience frequently counts towards the states experience requirement.
But again notice… nothing that you bought, got you there.
Does it make you better at surveillance? It it sure does! And, if you already own or run a detective agency, it has the scripts and other marketing to help you get more clients and make more money. But simply buying and owning the course does not make you a P.I.
Can you buy my training courses, tuck the DVDs under your pillow, take a little nap and wake up a private investigator? No! (Duh!) You can’t “buy” being a Private Investigator!
Special Announcement: As of today’s posting (and I don’t know how long I’ll be able to do this), but right now, I do have some professional process server badges. Good quality, professional process server badges that I am including, when you buy The Investigator’s Ultimate Guide to Process Serving.
But… QUANTITIES ARE LIMITED. To see if this offer is still available, check the details at ShadowAnyone.com/ps
Does a badge make you a P.I.?
So you get my Process Server training and (if I still have any) the Process Server badge – at no extra cost. Great, now you have a badge. Does that make you a process serer? Nope.
The badge helps identify you when you do get the job. But just having the badge doesn’t make you a Process Server. You can’t just throw it in your glove box and say, “Now I’m a process server.” You still have to actually do the job!
Of course, becoming a process server is a lot easier than being a, private investigator! You can get hired as a Process Server much more quickly and easily than you can as a P.I.
But notice, it’s not taking the course that makes you a process server. It’s not having the badge that makes you a process server. It’s actually getting the job and doing it.
If you are contemplating taking a course to become a private investigator, ask yourself this:
Has the person teaching the course created the results in their own life, they’re promising to create in your life?
Have they done what they are promising to teach you? Have they been there and done that?
Personally, I went from zero – nothing – to being a state-licensed private investigator, running my own agency, hiring people, feeding my family paying the mortgage and the whole nine yards!
From start to finish I’ve done it, including process serving.
Heck, that’s why I created The Investigator’s Ultimate Guide to Process Serving, because I wanted to serve process! I knew it would be lucrative for me, giving me that extra money at the end of the month to help make ends meet. To bump up my revenue. But nobody would teach me!
So, I finally had to teach myself. Then, after doing for years – gaining real-world experience of what works and what doesn’t – I packed it all together and now I offer it for sale so you don’t have to struggle in the same way.
Now you can create the same results in your life I created in mine!
You still gotta learn the information, it’s just a heck of a lot easier now.
So don’t get hustled. Don’t get scammed by anything online (or in the back of magazines), whatever it might be, that says, “you can become a private investigator” by buying their thing.
How about this… let me give you some more free information right now with my special report If You Want To Be a Private Investigator Give Up… Unless You Do These Three Things. You can get it right here…
This week I’m concentrating on the concept of “pay yourself first” which is explained really well in Mike’s book Profit First.
WARNING: Beware of people promising to teach you something they have not created in their own lives!
Mike has done it.
I am screaming this business advice to you because I have done it.
Why This Works
When you pay yourself first, you are forced to run your business on the money that’s left over… and you’ll do it.
As small business owners, we spend based on how much is in our checking account and that’s wrong.
If we have a good month, we spend more (new camera, printer, tech gadget, social media ads, etc.). But when we have a slow month we scramble to make ends meet.
Look, get a budget together. Know how much you really need to run your business. Then pay yourself first and make the business work off of what’s left.
You’ll get creative and be less wasteful! You can make it work… if you work!
How to do it. (The Tactical, Workable Plan)
If you are not currently paying yourself first and you think you absolutely cannot pay yourself anything right now… then start with 1% of your revenue.
Here’s the math…
If you make $1,000 this month as a Private Investigator or Process Server, then keeping 1% means keeping just $10 for yourself.
If you can’t do that, you need to re-evaluate EVERYTING about your business.
Should you be paying yourself more than 1%? YES! Absolutely! But if you are struggling right now… start with 1%.
Personally, I have a sizable percentage of my revenue automatically deposited into my retirement account. I run my business on what’s left over. It works.
If you like these helpful tips, then don’t miss out on my free special report If You Want To Be a Private Investigator Give Up… Unless You Do These Three Things. You can get it right here…
Committed to your success,
Larry Kaye, P.I.
P.S. – In summary: You will spend every penny you make keeping your business up and running, hoping it will pay off someday. Instead, pay yourself off the top then run (and grow!) your business off of what’s left!