Mall's New Security Chief Urges Customer Service
When MaryBeth Bartlett, a born and bread Midwesterner, was offered a chance to become head of security at the Beverly Center, all she had to do was pack.
"In the middle of winter in Michigan it's not tough to make a decision to come out to the West Coast," said Bartlett, who took over as the Beverly Center's director of security a month ago.
While she is responsible for the mall's security operations, including an undisclosed number of security officers, Bartlett said she has no immediate post-Sept. 11 changes in mind. The mall already has started its overhaul of old practices.
"Right now I'm getting used to how things have been run, determining where I'm going to change things and where things will stay the same," she said. "But it won't appear as if much is different."
Before heading West, Bartlett was security director at Great Lakes Crossing, a retail and entertainment center in Lansing, Mich. Great Lakes is owned and operated by Taubman Centers Inc., as is the Beverly Center.
Bartlett said mallgoers are largely more tolerant of stepped-up security than air travelers, who have lots to grumble about. Still, she is trying to keep an eye on not affecting customer service. "First and foremost, it's going to be about customer training," she said.
In addition to redefining security patrol parameters for the sake of better visibility, Bartlett said she is encouraging security staff to increase the amount of communication they have with consumers.
Bartlett, a Michigan native, received her criminal justice degree from Michigan State in 1990. To help out with college fees, she began working at Meridian Mall in Okemos, Mich. Upon graduation, Meridian hired her as its security director. Bartlett worked in that position until 1998, when she took her first Taubman job at Great Lakes Crossing.
She is single and lives in Los Angeles.
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