2014 SSI Hall of Fame Inductee Gordon Hope
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Director of Marketing, AlarmNet (Honeywell)
Why He’s on the List
- More than 35 years applying technology to solve industry issues such as alarm dispatch reductions, wireless signal transmission, improvement of user interfaces, reliable sensors, control panels and other products
- Has been a leader and participant in the development of numerous industry standards, spending countless hours in meetings working through time-consuming details
- Examples include: Interfacing with cable-TV industry on DSL security system communication/compatibility issues, advising Honeywell on changes; early charter member of Alarm Industry Communications Committee (AICC) and still active; liaison to FCC on Advanced Mobile Phone System (AMPS) transition
- Widely known and highly regarded as advocate of joint industry initiatives and cooperation between all industry associations, including serving as Security Industry Association chairman
- Involved in launch of Ademco 5800 wireless systems and Vista hybrid control panels that played significant role defining 1990s’ premium security solution
- Key figure in driving and advocating dealers’ cultivation of recurring revenue services and offering convenience features such as the Total Connect platform
Keys to Success
“There is one person who must be mentioned first and foremost, and that is my wife Nancy. She has helped me during all these years to keep focused on things I could do something about and to let the unimportant things go by the wayside. She has been my single biggest supporter in my career and in life, and without her I would not have the level of success I have been fortunate to achieve. I also owe a great deal of credit to the giving culture of Honeywell in support of me being involved in industry-related activities. This spirit was injected into the company starting with Leo Guthart [Ademco] and remains front and center today with Ron Rothman [both SSI Hall of Famers]. Ron continues to directly support the industry with both financial resources and, more importantly, his own personal support, and continues to allow me and others to continue to play a role in industry-related activities.”
The Hope File
- Born Nov. 17, 1953 in New York City
- One of four siblings, father ran a painting and wallpapering business, mother was a homemaker
- Married 30 years to wife Nancy, with three children
- Son Brian is an installation technician with Electronix of Huntington, N.Y.
- Says if career had taken different path might have become a computer manufacturing sales rep or taken on a marketing role
- Once crafted a steel string guitar
- Officiates high school athletics and belongs to International Association of Approved Basketball Officials
- Other interests include model railroading, writing computer software and basketball
Security as Fulfilling Life Choice
“I couldn’t have asked for a better career than the one I am enjoying within the security industry, one of the best industries in North America. Because it is fundamentally driven by valuations of RMR, being involved in it has provided a stability that has been tested over time. When other industries were being severely impacted in financial periods of downturn and uncertainty, the security industry and the companies that supply it tended to be less impacted and able to weather those storms. It was and remains the fundamental reason I choose to be working in the security industry. I recommend this space to almost any individual who wants to be involved in a growth industry on an upward trajectory that can stand the test of time.”
Honeywell Furthers Ademco Legacy
“The security industry in 1989 was really just beginning to mature as an electronic industry. Much of its legacy at the time was transitioning from mechanical and electromechanical technology. My observations at the time for Ademco was that I felt it a great opportunity to apply new technology to drive the industry to new heights in terms of what could be offered to provide security solutions. The early days were marked with lots of excitement, expansion of the use of wireless sensors, the creation of a category of control Ademco coined as the ‘universal control.’ This was prior to the mass-market trends, where free systems had dominated the landscape, but where new technology was finding its way into every dealer across North America.
“Today, the industry has lived through the evaporation of phone lines, the removal of the first pervasive wireless cellular network, or AMPS, is facing a takedown of GSM by the end of 2016 and is faced with a highly competitive landscape that promises to only expand. I am have been front and center for many years on the evolution of communications, its impact on the industry and what is needed to move it forward in an appropriate way.”
Biggest Wish for Industry Change
“I would like to see a fundamental change to aggressively market to existing customers with a paranoid sense of priority. The security industry has traditionally marketed to its customers and developed good long-lasting relationships anchored on monthly RMR and the support services. This is a good thing and one that obviously is an attractive business model. However, this business model is being fundamentally threatened by new entrants that can lure this base of customers to newer business models for monitoring, a shift in value to something less than security and all being done so right under our collective noses. In order to be prepared, companies must quickly change their approach to their existing base of customers in order to create value in a different way and do so immediately.”
Opportunities Never Greater
“Right now is the best time to become a security dealer or start a business. Why? Because all the turmoil that exists right now is creating opportunity for the creative companies to thrive. The corollary is if you are an existing dealer you can expect additional competition in your backyard. This new competition is going to come at you in a different way, with different sales techniques, offerings, emphasis and message to your customers. Convenience, connectivity, remote control and systems that adapt to consumers are coming front and center. Are you prepared for this onslaught? If not, you ought to figure out how to put yourself out of business before a new entrant does it. If you can figure out how to beat yourself, you can then execute a migration plan to transform your company and be part of the growth that exists ahead in this world of constant change.”
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