Reaping Rewards From Industry Participation

Security Sales & Integration

What’s the Big Idea? With Ron Davis
September, 2012

Reaping Rewards From Industry Participation

Dale EllerIf you had just one really great idea that you could share with the alarm industry, what would it be?
This month’s great idea comes from Dale Eller, executive director of the New York Burglar and Fire Alarm Association (NYBFAA).

Eller’s great idea:
“Most people in this industry are not involved in the associations and thus are not deriving benefits that could be theirs for the taking. I urge them to reassess their nonparticipation.”

Dale Eller is a familiar face to many in the security industry, given his years-long affiliation and stewardship of local, state and national associations.
Eller is a hard worker and his wife, Paula, is right there beside him. Together they make a great couple and, more importantly, for members of the associations they manage, they get the job done. They do it in a quiet, professional manner that breeds confidence in their decision-making abilities.
Most recently Eller has taken on the role of executive director of the New York Burglar and Fire Alarm Association (NYBFAA). I was fortunate enough to provide a keynote address at the association’s annual convention, held Aug. 1-3 in the beautiful Finger Lakes area of upstate New York.
It was a great event, well attended and filled with excellent seminars. Eller did a good job in his top role, and during a moment of relaxation I asked him my inevitable question to solicit his great idea.
Consider What You Are Missing
As I have done in the past, I could’ve just taken off on his idea and laid a guilt trip on those of you who do not participate in industry events. I won’t do that. Rather, I’d like to reinforce what those of you are gaining from attending industry meetings and conventions. Take a look at some of the many benefits that convey Eller’s intention above:
  • You have made new friends that you probably would not have met anywhere else.
  • You have developed business relationships that will enable you to use those relationships pretty much as a de facto “advisory board.”
  • You’ve seen a little bit more of the world than you might have otherwise.
  • You are learning about products and services that would be hard to replicate anywhere else.
  • You are learning what leaders in our industry are doing that you could emulate.
  • You have a renewed sense of well-being in the fact that you have been able to give back to the industry that has done so much for you.
  • You have insights into emerging trends before they are talked about in industry publications.
  • You will hear interesting speakers, many of whom have ideas that can help you with the growth of your business.
Moreover, you may have learned about contracts from an attorney, acquisitions and mergers from an industry expert (I had to get a commercial in there somewhere!) or financial information that you wouldn’t have been able to get anywhere else — all for a price likely equivalent to less than a day’s worth of vacation travel.
When looking back on your collective experiences in the industry, you will likely find that the best memories have taken place at meetings, conventions, seminars and other industry events. The ideas that you will assimilate from these meetings will eventually be adopted so completely by you that you’ll believe those ideas were created in your own mind.
Perhaps they have been because you’re the one who has implemented them. Ask any successful person you know in the alarm industry about the one thing he or she credits their success to and invariably they will say, “My participation in industry events.”
Eller understands this and makes the “industry event” a pleasurable experience for everyone involved. Why not step up and enjoy the pleasure of expanding your horizons?

Ron DavisRon Davis is Security Sales & Integration‘s “What’s the Big Idea?” columnist and contributing market analyst. He is president of Davis Group, a full-service consulting firm serving the security industry, which also includes GraybeardsRus. He has 35 years of industry experience, including founding Security Associates International in the 1980s.