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Women in Security Feature: Nada Ebeid, Genetec

Women in Security Feature: Nada Ebeid, Genetec

Women in Security Feature: Nada Ebeid, Genetec

YARMOUTH, Maine—As part of Security Systems News’ and the Security Industry Association (SIA) Women in Security Forum’s (WISF’s) continuing series highlighting the contributions of women in security, this month’s feature is on Nada Ebeid, Business Development Manager, Canada, Genetec Inc.

As a Business Development Manager for Genetec, Nada Ebeid oversees the market growth for the Financial and Banking sector, as well as the Buildings and Industrial sectors in Canada. She is responsible for helping customers see their security installations as an investment rather than an expense and empowering them to leverage their security systems to other areas of their businesses.

Ebeid is passionate about technology and solving problems and has used that energy to drive several disruptive new product strategies to market throughout her career. In addition to holding a degree in Electrical Engineering, she has over 15 years of experience in the Security and Military Industries, occupying several roles related to engineering, product management, and business development.

The following is an exclusive Q&A with Ebeid:

SSN: What inspired you to get into the physical security industry?

EBEID: My career trajectory has been interesting; I actually fell into the security industry by chance. As a telecommunications engineer, I started my career in the wireless radio industry and spent some time in the commercial high-capacity radio space. Following that, I transitioned to the military space and then worked on the cellular technology side of things. I had always worked for hardware manufacturers and felt it would be good to move to the software side of things as there were more opportunities. I came across Genetec about five years ago, a gem of a company, in a fast-paced industry - I knew I’d found the right fit.

SSN: What is your current position and what is your role and responsibilities?

EBEID: I am the Business Development Manager at Genetec responsible for the buildings and industrial, as well as the financial and healthcare sectors in Central and East Canada. I ensure market growth in these sectors by understanding our end-users’ challenges to support them through their modernization journeys.

SSN: What has your journey been like in a primarily male-dominated and historically non-diverse physical security industry?

EBEID: For the most part, fairly positive. I think the world is changing, ever so slowly, but it’s going in the right direction. I think more and more, people are being evaluated on merit. I am grateful to work for a company that embraces those values. I do think generally that men and women operate differently, in very complementary ways. As women leaders are still in the minority in this industry, they can be overlooked, or even hold themselves back since there are few female role models and mentors in senior positions. I think it’s our responsibility to discuss some of these challenges and consequences openly so that highly capable women can actively drive this vision of change.

SSN: What has been done to get more women/diversity into leadership/management roles in the industry, and what else can be done? (How far have we come and how far do we still have to go?)

EBEID: While we’re seeing an increasing number of women occupy roles traditionally held by men, the ratio is not balanced. And this is even more true at the leadership level throughout the entire security industry ecosystem. There is a fantastic group of women in security that I am getting to know, and I am grateful to have access to this community to give me the perspective and encouragement to continue in my professional growth.

I think the security industry has begun to recognize the value of women and their unique creativity contributing to team cohesiveness and ultimately better profits.

I think I can only recount two times in the past three years where I was in a multi-company meeting with all women, and in both cases, we stopped to point it out. Nobody would have felt the need to comment had it been all-male participants! I’m looking forward to the day when we don’t even notice it because it’s normal.

SSN: What have you found most challenging working in the security industry and how did you overcome it?

EBEID: Finding a way to be heard was a challenge. A breakthrough for me was when I discovered I wasn’t the only one who felt that way; I got informed, reached out to people in the industry and read business studies on this topic. That’s actually how I found the WIS. Once I realized that I wasn’t alone, it gave me the courage to push through.

SSN: Have you had any role models who have helped you out along the way that you would like to mention?

EBEID: I’ve admired many in my career, and I’ve learned from most, if not all. That said, I suppose I had two turning points more recently. First, Alain Bissada, our Canada and Mexico Sales Director at Genetec who believed in me, supported me, and allowed me to take on this role of Business Development. Secondly, Maureen Carlo, Strategic Alliances at BCD, opened my eyes in many ways and helped me move up.

SSN: What advice would you give other women thinking about getting into the industry or just starting in the industry?

EBEID: Go for it! It’s an industry filled with so much fascinating technology that has the power to help our communities, our cities, and our daily lives. What’s better than working in an industry that is part of the solution to protecting our livelihoods? Also, there is a strong community so you can create solid connections with so many different people that will help you along the way.

SSN: What are your views on the industry moving forward, from both from a diversity perspective and a technology and business perspective during these unpredictable times?

EBEID: To embrace diversity, we need to embrace “different”. Today, we all know the differences between being an introvert and being an extrovert. Why? Because extroverted behaviors were getting all the attention and introverts were being overlooked. To fix that, we started talking about it and finding ways to change. I think it’s the same for diversity in the workplace. People communicate differently, behave differently, react differently, lead differently, and all of that can lead to success and great achievement. We just need to have that sensitivity and open-mindedness and, most importantly, we all have a part to play.

From a technology and business perspective, I am obviously biased since I work for the best security manufacturer! Many factors make Genetec successful, including the founder himself, Pierre Racz. Agility and business continuity are two extremely important facets of everything we do. During this pandemic, the strategies we’ve put in place for both technology and business include ways to be agile, adaptable, and sustainable. That’s a good position to be in.


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