The Electronic Security Expo (ESX) is quickly becoming the “UNevent,” redefining the traditional purpose of industry shows within the electronic security and life safety channel. With a mission to bring leaders together to learn more, share more and interact more, this year’s event held last week in Nashville did just that.
Offering an outlet for #PassionateSecurity professionals to come together in a collaborative and intimate environment to move the industry forward was a hit for many looking for a more modern take on the traditional expo.
More than 2,000 professionals registered for the show this year, with nearly 40% being first-time registrants. Most attended for four days of networking, quality connections with peers and vendors, and some of the industry’s leading education.
“I’ve been in the security industry for a little over 30 years now. I learned more in the past two days than I have since returning to the industry two years ago,” says attendee Jonathan Schweiger, CEO of SmartTek Systems. “This may have been my first ESX, but it will not be my last! While ISC has its purpose — ESX’s purpose is completely different. Aside from it being more intimate, it pulls the industry together — to work collaboratively in a positive, productive way by focusing on solutions, not staying stuck in the problem.”
The event — owned by industry trade associations the Electronic Security Association and The Monitoring Association — has invested significant resources in ensuring quality education is delivered at registration prices that allow integration and monitoring companies of all sizes to bring their leadership teams — elevating the industry as a whole.
Nearly 75% of professionals positively rated this year’s education sessions as “very good” or “excellent.” With sessions being offered that tackled today’s trends, some of the highest attended sessions included:
Nearly 80% of attendees have reported that they were able to have quality conversations on ESX’s expo floor. “I established next steps for resolving issues and explored solutions for new opportunities,” said one attendee. “I was able to have real conversations about future acquisitions,” said another. “I met with multiple companies with national accounts and we are now setting up service calls for them in our area,” said another. “It was refreshing to have real conversations without the hustle and bustle of a large show atmosphere.”
Over 25 products were presented with ESX’s 2018 Innovation Awards, with DMP taking the overall Best in Show designation for a second year, as a result of their TechVision Challenge shark-tank-style pitch of the DMP Virtual Keypad Access platform.
As an intimate event that focuses on relationships, ESX is defined by the passionate professionals who attend. The networking events encourage lasting connections, and the expo is designed to give adequate time for in-depth discussions. Without the hustle and bustle of the bigger shows, exhibitors and attendees alike took the time to get into real, meaningful conversations that will impact their businesses — and may even turn into lasting friendships.
“It’s been really valuable to pick his brain, share my experiences, and work through some difficult situations together,” said Slaughter. “One of the great things about ESX, is not only being able to see the latest and greatest products, but after meeting Dusty last year, one of the big focuses for me was to meet more industry professionals and have similar relationships like I have with Dusty.”
The two had their second in-person meet up this year at ESX 2018.
ESX MAIN STAGE.
This year’s programming included discussions with sought-after speakers on the future of the industry, marketing in the Age of Disruption and motivating teams to achieve more. Attendees were engaged and inspired by the relevant content in these thought-provoking sessions.
Technology experts Michael Soucie, Senior Product Marketing Manager of Google; Michael Simmons, CEO of Driveway and Jeremy Warren, CTO of Vivint Smart Home discussed emerging technologies and services during the OpenXchange Breakfast, sponsored by Qolsys and endorsed by Security Dealer & Integrator Magazine and SecurityInfoWatch.com.
The panel addressed the threats and opportunities these disruptors bring to the electronic security and life safety industry, and advised attendees on how to remain relevant and competitive in the evolving marketplace.
Scott Stratten, best-selling author and President of UnMarketing, shared how attendees could create brand stories, satisfy customers and differentiate their company in his session titled “The Age of Disruption: Everything Has Changed and Nothing is Different,” sponsored by Security Dealer Network and endorsed by Security Systems News.
Don Yaeger, 11-time best-selling author and longtime Associate Editor of Sports Illustrated, told stories from interviews with many famously effective teams and leaders, then shared their secrets for connecting with a greater sense of purpose in his session titled “Great Teams Understand Why,” endorsed by SDM Magazine.
#PASSIONATESECURITY IN SCHOOLS.
This year, electronic security and life safety professionals turned their attention to the issue of school safety by participating in the ESX #PassionateSecurity in Schools Initiative, sponsored by CSR Professional Services. This timely response to the important issue facing the country today encouraged attendees to take an active role in championing solutions to increase security and safety in our nation’s schools.
As part of this initiative, the Closing Keynote Luncheon centered on practical and innovative ways for the industry to provide solutions for school security. The panel featured moderator H. “Butch” Browning, Louisiana State Fire Marshal, panelist Guy Grace, Director of Security and Emergency Planning of Littleton Public Schools, and panelist Ryan Petty, a Parkland, FL native with years of industry experience who was personally affected by the plague of violence in schools when his daughter was killed in the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School (MSDH) in February.
During the expo, professionals contributed to a three-part mural, being donated next week to MSDH. The inspirational artwork, meant to create an environment of compassion and creativity, included quotes, like that from Anne Frank: “How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.”
The initiative was a rallying force for attendees and a reminder to everyone that the industry is working to make the school environment safer.
ESX will bring #PassionateSecurity to Indianapolis, Indiana June 2-6, 2019. Registration for the event will open in January.
ESX is grateful to all the attendees, exhibitors and sponsors that made this year’s event and these lasting connections possible. For a full listing of this year’s sponsors, visit ESXweb.com