Thinking of becoming a private investigator like your favorite hero in the book? Well, don’t just sign up for a course just yet, the books don’t always show what it’s really like to be a private investigator in the real world. They may sound cool and oftentimes glamorous, but being a private investigator is no walk in the park. Their jobs are extremely stressful, the working hours are extremely odd and sometimes they put themselves out in the open where danger can literally lurk in every corner. One things for sure though, you wont run out of adrenaline in your body anytime soon when you’re a private investigator.
As a primary investigator, you are expected to pay very close attention to detail and be able to work with different kinds of people- we’re talking upper class snoots to foul mouthed ruffians here. You need to be able to talk with people of different cultures and races because that’s exactly how you can gather information. As a private investigator, it is your job to gather as much information as you can about a certain individual, group or company. While gathering information, you can wear disguises to make you less easy to spot from the crowd.
Private investigators need smooth business management skills. As their jobs depends solely on advertising, private investigators often band together in order to form a small business. Just like promoting a product, private investigators need to promote themselves in order to edge out the competition. Newer, more refined private investigator businesses are often tramped by older businesses because of the credibility these old businesses have earned throughout the years. While it may be a little risky to start fresh, it can also be rewarding as there are many employers who want fresh faces to work for their team.
As a private investigator, your salary is entirely dependent on your employer. On the average rate, a private investigator earns about $50 per hour. Working for a firm will get you about $100 per hour. If you’ve got loads of experience, you can earn as much as $200 per hour. In order to get considered for a job, however, you need at least one or two specialties in your area. Whether it’s finding an identity thief or finding irregularities in employee accounts, it’s always good to invest in a specialty or two to make you stand out.
In order to become a private investigator, most schools require a high school diploma. Being a private investigator means you need to have strong analytical skills and scientific knowledge. The school will often provide courses that are basic skills for any aspiring private investigator. These courses will include photography techniques, bodyguard training, performing background investigations via computer, writing reports and learning how to interrogate and interview people. The National Association of Legal Investigators or NALI is where you will earn your certification as a private investigator. The NALI will conduct a test that contains both oral and written parts. If you listened well enough in class, you can pass this exam with ease.