SSI Summit to Launch Year-Round VIP Networking Groups

On top of having the ability to meet once a month with an elite group of integrators/dealers, group members will be able to connect with each other all year long via a dedicated chat forum.

SSI Summit to Launch Year-Round VIP Networking Groups

Who can forget the ritual of sides being chosen up when playing team activities as a kid or even pick-up games and sports as a teen or young adult? From both competitive and self-esteem standpoints, for most it was an anxiety-inducing experience (unless you were the team captain or a known superstar).

Personally, as a decent athlete with good size (tallest kid in my grade school) I typically ended up being a mid-round selection. Why did the majority of us put so much stock in those relatively insignificant drafts that were often based as much on popularity as they were on ability? The answer is because as humans we have the innate desire to belong, to be valued and to WIN.

From the playground and neighborhood gym to our work lives as security professionals, that psychology carries over. We want to lead or be part of a successful team and to be individually recognized for our hard work, ingenuity, talents and achievements. One of the best methods to accomplish that is through collaboration that allows for voicing challenges, brainstorming solutions, exploring opportunities, commiseration, feedback and best practices sharing.

From a company standpoint, the greatest benefits are realized when that type of collaboration is facilitated not only within among internal personnel but also through networking with colleagues contending with similar business realities.

Unfortunately, all of that has been much more difficult to do given how the pandemic has turned everyone’s world upside down in 2020. For the bulk of the year now, most workers have had to function remotely and all of the electronic security industry’s many trade shows and conferences have either been canceled or pivoted into virtual events. The SSI Summit (SSIS), one of the three prongs of the Total Tech Summit, is among the latter.

Since 2016, one of the most valuable aspects of SSIS for the select, progressive security integrator and dealer companies represented has been the relaxed, enjoyable, enlightening, and productive networking and dialog that takes place among the manager, executive and owner attendees.

For these several years I have observed and been told by participants how the group and one-on-one discussions fostered by the event promote the sharing of ideas and help solve problems or operational conundrums. That kind of connection and interaction is more critical than ever during these turbulent and uncertain times.

I have some fantastic and exciting news. To offset those challenges and continue the tradition of this publication and all its media rising to best meet the business and technology needs of today’s security pro, I am delighted to announce the launching of the SSI VIP Peer-to-Peer Networking Groups.

These yearlong group conversations will take place each month and will be guided by myself, Senior Editor Rodney Bosch and Web Editor Steve Karantzoulidis. Each group will be custom-created so members are placed among peers who can help their business grow and not have to worry about competitive conflicts of interest.

“When you are a more experienced integration company, peer-to-peer networking is the name of the game in terms of advancing your business,” says Jason Knott, chief content officer for SSI parent company Emerald. “That is why I am so excited to be kicking off our networking groups. The information shared among the participants’ issues related to HR concerns, productivity, software, rates, profitability, sales, employee management, training, hiring, new products and technology can be the difference-makers in profit and revenue. Plus, we plan to do it in a fast-paced, relaxed environment with a minimal time commitment.”

On top of having the ability to meet once a month with an elite group of integrators/dealers, group members will be able to connect with each other all year long via a dedicated chat forum. That communication channel will allow opinions and insights to be conveyed, questions answered, solutions posed to common or unique challenges, or even coordinate a face-to-face meet-up at an industry event once they return.

These new chat forums will be created specifically and individually for each SSI VIP networking group, but in case someone wishes to connect with other Total Tech Summit participants (residential and pro A/V integrators), that will also be possible using direct messaging or general forum groups within the security vertical.

How can you participate? It’s simple; apply at But the slots are limited, so don’t delay — PLUS there is a special time-sensitive incentive.

Those who act quickly and are among the early VIP members will receive an introductory marketing package featuring quarterly emails promoting your company and its expertise to SSI sister publications Campus Safety (healthcare, college and K-12 decision makers) and Tech Decisions (corporate end-user decision makers).

As if that was not enough, those emails will include a link to your company’s own promotional video or other marketing materials of your choice. You can’t afford NOT to take us up on this offer.

The next few weeks we will be organizing qualifying integrators/dealers into small groups of 10-12 companies. The plan is to kick off the VIP Peer-to-Peer Networking Groups in conjunction with December’s digital Total Tech Summit (Dec. 1-4 for the SSIS). I look forward to seeing you at the event and helping your team WIN throughout 2021!

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About the Author


Scott Goldfine is Editor-in-Chief and Associate Publisher of Security Sales & Integration. Well-versed in the technical and business aspects of electronic security (video surveillance, access control, systems integration, intrusion detection, fire/life safety), Goldfine is nationally recognized as an industry expert and speaker. Goldfine is involved in several security events and organizations, including the Electronic Security Association (ESA), Security Industry Association (SIA), Security Industry Alarm Coalition (SIAC), False Alarm Reduction Association (FARA), ASIS Int'l and more. Goldfine also serves on several boards, including the SIA Marketing Committee, CSAA Marketing and Communications Committee, PSA Cybersecurity Advisory Council and Robolliance. He is a certified alarm technician, former cable-TV tech, audio company entrepreneur, and lifelong electronics and computers enthusiast. Goldfine joined Security Sales & Integration in 1998.

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One response to “SSI Summit to Launch Year-Round VIP Networking Groups”

  1. Adrian Dalton says:

    Sounds good, sign me up! Lionel Felix, CEO of the fastest growing AV company in Texas, will be part of a group that will be hosting a free, live Q&A Session being held tomorrow, Tuesday, October 20, 12:30PM.

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