Screening of hobbyists and providers is a critical process that is not to be taken lightly. Otherwise, you are swimming in turbulent waters by placing every aspect of your life deadcenter in the hands of a stranger when meeting with a person whom you do not know. Even if you have met with that person before and the date was a success, their true identity is not guaranteed. Or is it?
At one point, City Girls was the new kid on the block
Sure, we were experienced in the field of professional dating, but we lacked the trust of our peers because no one knew where we came from. Faced by skepticism of others in the industry, we relied upon reference checking, verification services and other methods, processes that were anything but reliable. It is a confession that we cringe to admit. A surefire method, employment verification was a process that we only dreamed about.
Why bother with employment verification?
Still green in the tedious process of verification, we weren’t really interested in this method. Reference checking seemed sufficient. Why not? Everyone else was doing it — and still is, for that matter. But at some point, the problems began.
Old school verification methods guarantee risk
With a growing sense of uncertainty came the decision to review our verification policies. Because reference checking is not a foolproof answer to safety, problems naturally surfaced. Most notably was an incident involving a moron that had been ‘verified’ by an Asian-run agency in New Jersey. It was the year 2013. Upon entering the hotel suite to greet his date, this idiot proceeded to ransack the room for anything he could grab. The independent escort screamed at the top of her lungs for help which scared him away, but not before he took off with her mobile phone. Thank you, Asian agency for opening our eyes to the perils of reference checking! We were terribly relieved that the escort’s life was not endangered.
An incident that could have cost lives and our Club was the moment of truth
What if that creep had been a psychopath? Sexual predator? No one wants to think about the potential consequences. Through this crisis, we realized that all information provided by this jerk was false. Moreover, we certainly had to consider the disturbing possibility that the entire predicament was a scam orchestrated by the Asian agency in an effort to jeopardize the good standing of City Girls! It was at this point that we banned the entire reference checking process.
Renee, owner of Après Vous Agency enlightened us
It was a booming year for City Girls as we were calling everyone in their mother for reference checks. Après Vous was no exception. Just imagine the volume of outgoing calls when you consider the fact that we were verifying hundreds of hobbyists on a monthly basis. We recall our first and only phone conversation with Renee that is forever seared in our memories. Keep in mind that this female business owner is kind, respectful and patient. But on this occasion, she was annoyed by the volume of our incoming calls (around ten per day) we were imposing upon her staff, often during peak business hours. What other solution did we have to verify our members? During our fifteen minute conversation with Renee, we learned vital information that set the course of the future for City Girls Club: rather than bogging down phone lines with bothersome calls for references, why not use employment verification? Thank you, Renee! The rest is history.
City Girls discovered the silver lining of that dangerous occurrence
Every member’s name had to be verified before scheduling a date and every member’s identification had to be shown at the beginning of an appointment. Subsequently, things felt right. Authenticity ensures accountability when you know a gentleman’s true identity. Such a method breeds trust between two people who are meeting for the first time. Without this obligation, a gentleman is not liable for his actions in that he is given free reign to violate or worse, harm an escort and thereby capable of vanishing without a trace. What recourse would we have had with the agency reference who verified this dude? None.
The shocking truth revealed after verification policy change
A statistical pattern surfaced:
About 90% of names were either fake or modified;
Nine out of ten guys used names different than the names that showed on their IDs.
Wow! Where was the safety in reference checking if in fact, none of the data provided was accurate? We were mortified to learn that had we continued to use the reference checking process, we might have under minded the confidence of thousands of City Club members who entrusted us with their loyalty and safety. Since then, we have not encountered any issues with the security of our members.
Stay tuned for our next article about screening
Part two in a series of three, look for our next article about The Secure Method of Employment Verification. See you there!