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Article posted: 7/5/2013 11:50 AM

Interest in becoming a detective sparked at age 16 for Park Ridge business owner

John Frycek, owner of Special Solutions with locations in Park Ridge and Chicago.

John Frycek, owner of Special Solutions with locations in Park Ridge and Chicago.

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An interview with John Frycek, owner of Special Solutions with locations in Park Ridge and Chicago.

Q: Describe your business. What do you do?

Business: Special Solutions Ltd.
Address: 1480 N. Renaissance Drive Ste. 307
Park Ridge, IL 60068
Special Solutions, Spy store location:
7524 N. Harlem Ave.
Chicago, IL 60031
Owner: John Frycek
When business started: 1991
Web address:

A: I am a licensed private detective and a certified personal protection specialist who owns a detective agency called Special Solutions. We perform sensitive business and personal investigations and also provide protection services like bodyguard and armed executive protection and the like. We perform detailed investigations on missing persons, business and financial fraud, grand retail theft, business intelligence and TSCM debugging counter-eavesdropping services. We also own a spy and security store called Total Security and we offer urban survival training as well. We also sell covert counter-surveillance products to security professionals and the police as well as CCTV security products to the public.

Q: What made you start your business?

A: When I was 16 years old, I visited the dentist and noticed a PI next door smoking a cigar. I walked in and an older detective talked to me at length and we discussed the business. He inspired me and I then later worked for him when I was 20. I have a passion toward helping businesses, persons and the general public. I love solving problems and tribulations involving risk management, safeguarding people, solving theft issues, workplace violence, criminal damage to property, physical & reputational harm etc.

Q: What has been the most difficult obstacle in running a small business?

A: Higher taxes and general cost of doing business in Illinois. Regulations, taxes, licensing fees and other financial burden can hinder a business, but we keep soldiering on doing what we do best. Finding the right associate investigator can also be difficult as well. I am always trying to hire the right person that can mirror the same dedication and passionate cause that I have -- the professional.

Q: What areas do you service?

A: All over Illinois and Chicagoland and at times nationally as well.

Q: Is this what you pictured yourself doing when you were young?

A: I knew that I wanted to be a PI and security guy at the age of 16! I was a cop at first and then I had a sustained passion for private investigations. I love being a business man offering solutions in people's lives and business ventures. When there are obstacles and "bumps in the road" truth and validity is my offering for monetary gain.

Q: What keeps you up at night?

A: My phone and people's problems. I am on-call 24/7 and I am always available. It makes it hard on the wife and my four kids, however, this is my field and this is my life's work. I am here for a reason and I am in this field for a cause. I am good at it and many trust me for valid information and at times, their life.

Q: If you could give one tip to a rookie business owner, what would it be?

A: Pick a specialized field in private investigations and always to true and hard working in what you do. Finish what you start and be sensitive toward the needs of your clients. Listen to them and act accordingly. Give them peace of mind and 150 percent dedication in respect to your field. Network and finish all the jobs and your reputation will be immortalized.

• Every Monday we feature a small, suburban business. We want to hear about yours. Contact Kim Mikus at

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