Commercial Integrator + Security Sales April 2024 - 62

SSI
HALL FAME
INDUSTRY
OF
Kirk MacDowell
President and CEO, MacGuard Security Advisors, Inc.
Keys to Success
" The most essential trait of a leader is
KIRK MACDOWELL
The MacDowell File
■ Born 1954 in Santa Monica, Calif.,
youngest of three children
■ Father worked in aerospace and
then for the Episcopal Church;
mother was a homemaker
■ Married to Sheri for 31 years, with
four children and four grandchildren
■ Earned a B.S. degree in public
administration from the University of
Southern California
■ Served on numerous industry boards,
including SIA, TMA, SIAC, AIREF and
ESA's Leadership Identification and
Nominating Committee as chairman
■ Honors include ESA's Sara E.
Jackson Award and SIAC's William M.
Moody Award
■ Served in law enforcement; continued
to serve as a Reserve L.A.
County sheriff's deputy for 29 years
Why He's on the List
■ Founded an alarm company in 1982
with less than $1,000 and grew it
300% with 72 employees; named one
the fastest-growing security businesses
in Los Angeles and recognized
as best new business of the year
■ Led Post Alarm for seven years
■ Past president of the Los Angeles
Burglar and Fire Alarm Association
■ After years as an entrepreneur, joined
General Electric Security at age 50;
was selected Business Leader of the
Year with team sales of $198 million
■ Served as chairman of SIAC; focused
on key goals: a commitment to SIAC's
industry relevancy and fiscal conservatism
during the pandemic
integrity, which, I believe, is a key to
success. Integrity breeds trust, and, if
one is trusted, one can build strong teams
where taking calculated risks is encouraged,
communication is transparent and
success is jointly shared with the team.
For someone who desires to become a
Hall of Fame inductee, live your life with
integrity. "
" Collaboration and a concerted effort
to listen, especially in trying times, have
helped me see other people's opinions
and rationales. This skill will serve one
well when working in large corporations,
industry associations or personal
relationships. "
" Lastly, try to always place the needs of
others first. It can be the hardest but also
the most rewarding. "
Enduring Memories
" We had a company-wide sales meeting
in Miami while working at GE Security. I
had a team of nine, and two of them did
not show up for our team meeting until
1pm, after an extravagant night out on
the town. When they walked in, I let them
get settled in and, without missing a beat,
asked them to review their sales plans for
the next year, as the rest of the team had
done in the morning. I never brought up
their tardiness, nor did I chastise them
verbally in front of peers or in writing. It
sent a strong message. They were never
late to any team meeting again. And,
many years later, they each confided
independently of the other that this act of
leadership impacted them both for years. "
Words of Wisdom
" I spoke at an industry meeting circa 1995
and mentioned a phrase I frequently use:
'my pleasure.' I use it instead of saying 'no
problem,' which are two negative words.
Many years later, an individual told me
that his successful integration company
had been built using the mantra 'my
pleasure.' That made me feel great. "
62 Commercial Integrator+Security Sales & Integration | April 2024
" In the early days, I knew every one of
my customers by name. As the company
grew, so did the staff, and I remember
having seen a check made payable to my
company for an alarm installation. The
check was from someone I did not know.
At that moment, I realized I had a 'real'
company. "
MacDowell has served on the boards
of SIA, TMA and private industry
corporations.
Making Our Industry Better
" I would like to see more organized mentoring
by seasoned professionals in the
industry. We need new talent, and FAST is
doing a superb job unifying the industry's
efforts. What I've seen in my consulting
practice is that there appears to be more
emphasis on hiring new people rather
than on retaining existing good talent. "
" I believe in mentoring talent and think
more should volunteer to advise others. If
we combine mentoring, talent retention,
and recruiting new and energetic employees,
it is a perfect trifecta. "
His Legacy
" I would like to be remembered for my
passion for the industry, as an ethical
contributor, and as a solid mentor. And to
be memorialized for a few of my stories,
which are all true, by the way! "
2024
KIRK MACDOWELL

Commercial Integrator + Security Sales April 2024

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Commercial Integrator + Security Sales April 2024

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