12 Essential skills for the professional investigator

So much of a private investigator’s success depends upon his or her skill and ability to collect information, the ability to engage and interact effectively with others is invaluable.

Any private investigator that cannot relate to clients, witnesses etc will not be a proficient operator and therefore their operational effectiveness will be severely limited.

If a PI alienates witnesses, the witnesses will not feel inclined to give information. If he or she does not respect the feelings of others, makes people feel ill at ease, offended, or defensive, their ability to gather information will be significantly impaired. In short, to be truly effective private investigators must have personal characteristics that attract and motivate others to speak freely and without inhibition.

12 Essential Skills

Without sufficient human relationship skills, private investigators and security specialists will never be successful in their endeavours. If a PI wishes to be successful he or she must be able to:

  1. Project positive attitudes towards others
  2. Be clearly and genuinely interested in others
  3. Foster good human relations
  4. Be empathic and express concern for others
  5. Adapt to different personalities and circumstances
  6. Communicate effectively with others
  7. Be a believable personality
  8. Influence and motivate other people
  9. Manage conversations and effectively draw out information
  10. Understand the emotional strengths and weaknesses of others
  11. Have the ability to control his or her emotions
  12. Create friends rather than enemies

Law of Attraction

The reasons that people instinctively like or dislike others; trust or fear them: are attracted to or repelled by others is a subject which is too complex to make a definitive study. However, effective investigators must be aware that their total effort to communicate effectively is affected by the impression they give to others, whether in the form of body odours (good or bad), facial expressions, body language, voice tone and phrasing.

Common sense will dictate that information gathering and fact assimilation will always be easier for those investigators who can skilfully interact with others.