Who’s in Charge South of the Border?
- By Ralph C. Jensen
- Apr 22, 2010
Security, for all intents and purposes, is a male dominated industry, or as Lucy Rivero puts it, “Mexico is full of machos.” But make no mistake, Lucy is security south of the U.S. border.
I met Lucy yesterday morning by chance as I was poring over e-mail and text messages. She and her son were making their way toward the entrance of the tradeshow when a couple of well-dressed men wanted a moment of her time.
I knew right then that Lucy was someone I had to meet and introduce to our readers.
Lucy is the president of InAlarm, a well-established distribution house in Mexico City, but the company also has 11 other branches in Mexico, as well as one in Guatemala and one in the United States.
For 25 years, InAlarm and Lucy Rivero have been synonymous with security in Mexico.
Lucy’s story is an interesting one; she started in Dallas as a secretary for a distribution company. During that time, she became acquainted with the products and the people that bought them. The company went out of business, and Lucy wanted to return home to Mexico. She did, with a dream and an idea.
“People ask me for advice about going into business,” Lucy said. “First I warn them and tell them to get an education. Training is one of the most important parts of the business world. Then be patient.”
Among the key elements Lucy prescribes is to love your work and attack it with a passion. And Lucy knows a thing or two about passion: She started her business in Mexico City with only $5,000 and an idea. Simply described, for her, passion was a willingness to knock on doors to get the business up and running. InAlarm now distributes alarms , CCTVs, access control products, fire detection equipment and the newest converging technology, IP communications.
After you've established your business, then what? Training and customer service.
“Customers deserve service,” Lucy said. “Distribution is hurting worldwide and we have to describe ourselves as service providers in order to be successful.
“Opportunities happen every five minutes. You have to work with passion.”
Yes, sometimes I’m a little pushy, but I’m happy I walked up to get an appointment with Lucy. It was the best 20 minute interview I’ve had in a long time. And, I’m happy I came down south to learn about working with passion.
Ralph C. Jensen is editor-in-chief of Security Today magazine.