Northern Alarm Protection: A 50 year journey
By Andreja Alimehaj
"I have known this amazing business owner who celebrates his staff and customers alike, for over 20 years. Dave, like his father before him, believes in people and that has allowed him to be ADI Toronto's Humanitarian award winner for two years in a row." — Joanne Rowe, ADI Toronto
By Andreja Alimehaj
No company of any size can be successful without a strong team and making sure all team members know that they are a valued part of the family. Understanding this, makes it easier to embrace the Northern Alarm Protection (NAP) vision.
It is this “family-first” atmosphere that David Koziel is most proud of. “Everyone here at Northern Alarm Protection truly understands that they are part of this family, when you have that kind of support behind you, their compassion to help clients is genuine and it radiates throughout the entire company,” he said. “In this industry we are problem solvers, as we need to provide solutions to our customers for their security concerns, plain and simple. If our customers do not believe in us, trust us, or see our compassion and integrity, how can they believe we can play a vital role in solving their problems.”
The security alarm service industry is highly competitive in nature, beginning with the dominance of a few of the biggest players holding the largest portion of contracts. Today, the industry has an approximate $3 billion market share with over 3,000 businesses operating within this space. Given this saturation, establishing a successful and sustainable business that rises above the rest is a herculean feat that Ontario-based company, Northern Alarm Protection has done for 50 years.
The cornerstone of Northern Alarm Protection’s past, present and future is cultivating a company culture and business practice that is steadfast in its values: that employees are family, your word is your bond, and clients’ needs are at the centre of everything you do. This commitment to clients began in 1971 when Ted Koziel started his career with Northern Alarm Protection, later purchasing the company as his own — a gradual but steady evolution that pivoted from accepting various installations to charting a new path of its own. Initially working with a large oil company at the time, NAP introduced clients to new megapixel technology — which was a technological advancement introduced to capture and read licence plates.
This would be Northern Alarm Protection’s first venture into understanding the importance of introducing technology that is driven by the end user’s desire. “We are often told the opposite, but I don’t believe you can tell people what they want from a technological standpoint,” explained Ted. “You have to look at your client’s lifestyle and find what products enrich either their business or life.
Today, Ted’s son David, is building the next chapter as CEO of the company, ensuring that the company’s foundation of family, relationship building, innovation and philanthropy remain the anchor principles of Northern Alarm Protection’s business practices. He developed his comprehensive knowledge base and experience early on in his career at the company — first his teenage years, part time as a helper on job sites and later full-time as an account manager. This exposure to the work required at all levels of the business is what he now leverages in his role at the helm of the company. “Working with my parents for 16 years prior to my father’s retirement, I was able to see what worked and didn’t work,” David said.
“Since I was part of all the processes from coordinating installs, scheduling service, quoting, and most importantly day to day financials, the transition to the role of president and CEO was natural. It has also allowed me to know what was required to bring the company to the next level.”
From the very beginning at Northern Alarm Protection, Ted was focused on providing state-of-the-art security solutions. After purchasing the company, he continued with his commitment to the company’s ideology of family, team members and clients, laying the blueprint for a greater future after his retirement.
Transformation and adaptation to new methodologies can be challenging. In the security industry, this means implementing constantly changing technology, keeping current on trainings and certifications and establishing loyal partnership and support with manufacturers.
For 50 years in the business, no one has done this quite like Northern Alarm Protection. They have not only seen the technical transformation of the industry but embraced it, from the early days of security systems being only for the economically privileged to what it is now, a commodity for all. The Koziel family has championed this evolution every step of the way, knowing that it is not about the cost of the product but about providing the right solution to the customer.
For Ted, his wife Maureen, and David Koziel, and the entire NAP team, the 50 year milestone is an achievement that is done through determination, integrity, and good old fashioned hard work, but never at the cost of their customers’ needs or best interests. A winning formula for past and future success.
Andreja Alimehaj is a marketing and communications ninja with Core Products (firstname.lastname@example.org).