Successful entrepreneurs don’t just focus on mastering the business essentials. They learn how to turn their unique strengths into a competitive advantage.
That was something Jamine Moton learned from an early age. The Jersey girl was always a gifted athlete, excelling as a Division I athlete in both Track & Field and basketball at Clemson University. Her abilities propelled her to the international stage as an alternate member of the US Olympic team for Hammer Throw in 2004. But her size wasn’t just an advantage during competitions. From an early age she found herself gravitating towards the role as a “protector” for her classmates and family members. That brought her into law enforcement, where she built up a career as a bodyguard and as a police sergeant in the Clayton County Police Department.
It was her time in law enforcement that helped her realize there was a fundamental flaw in how we think about security. Today, unprepared and untrained guards are common. The industry is plagued by the “t-shirt security” model, where someone is asked to just put on a t-shirt and be expected to be ready to protect people. That creates a world where both the security guard and the people they are asked to protect are put in unsafe situations, Moton told Hypepotamus.
She started to think about how her unique strengths could be used to improve the world of physical security. She helped launch Skylar Security, an Atlanta-based security company and now a scaling marketplace app.
Moton has built up an impressive team of 300 vetted freelance and full-time security guards in Atlanta. At any given time, well over 60 are working across Atlanta, be it at big events like the Super Bowl or at highly-trafficked offices.
Security Meets Tech
Moton and her team are scaling its physical security company in Atlanta. But it is working to bring its technology to the country.
The Skylar Security app is a marketplace that connects security guard companies with vetted security professionals. The app streamlines the onboarding process and helps ensure that every guard shift is staffed.
That is a big change for the traditional security guard world, where no-shows and non-trained staff are often the norm.
It is all about shifting the narrative around what role a security guard plays in a community, added Moton.
“Security is an emotion,” Moton told Hypepotamus. “There is a community responsibility to help people feel safe. It’s not about one person’s agenda or one person’s voice. It’s about the collective being heard and everyone feeling comfortable speaking up about what needs to happen in our community.”
As an athlete-turned-entrepreneur, Moton has leveraged the community in order to grow her skills as a tech CEO. She said that Atlanta’s LaunchPad2x, The Women Entrepreneurship Initiative, and Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Ambassador & Alumus group have all played a part in scaling Skylar. She is now helping other entrepreneurs scale and grow by supporting the Georgia State’s Main Street Entrepreneurs Seed Fund.