To help enhance our customer service experience and drive employee engagement, we are pleased to announce a new role for your Business Administrator Babita Prakash, who will now be responsible for team and community engagement.

The coronavirus pandemic has taken a huge toll on all of us. On that, we can all agree. But it’s also presented new opportunities to build stronger connections with our clients and team members. For a security company in a highly competitive market such as the Greater Toronto Area, that’s extremely important. More so, it’s critical to continually enhance the client service experience here at Wincon Security, while building on an already strong employee culture.

The COVID-19 crisis has highlighted the importance of communications and collaboration. As our clients faced unprecedented challenges ranging from new social distancing-related security requirements to full facility closures or capacity limitations, our team demonstrated their ongoing commitment and dedication to service excellence. That we have a highly engaged group of security professionals was no surprise. But the way they stepped up to serve our clients and meet their quickly evolving needs was truly inspiring. Still, they, like our customers, have endured widespread disruption overly nearly two years. Restrictions will likely remain in place into the foreseeable future, so they’ll continue to be tested on a daily basis.

At the same time, many of our clients are only beginning to recover from the worst of the pandemic’s financial malaise. They not only need reliable security service, but they’re also relying on our management teams to provide proactive consulting on everything from integrated security solutions to condo concierge security coverage or property guarding strategies to keep their people and assets safe.

In response, we’re taking steps to empower our team to be even better. The person who will help drive that initiative is Babita Prakash, our Business Administrator, who will now assume added responsibility for team and community engagement.

Daily team touchpoints

Babita is the ideal person to assume this important new role for several reasons. With more than four years of experience at Wincon Security, she has a keen understanding of our clients’ needs, along with the composition of our workforce and the communities that they help to protect every day. She also has more than 20 years of industry expertise and widespread knowledge about the ins and outs of security solutions delivery.

Perhaps most importantly, she’s a wonderful communicator who takes the time to listen. Her empathetic touch and focus on both process and effective motivation are integral skills in this role because Babita will be tasked with engaging and supporting our front-line staff. We want to remind them that they’re both appreciated and have management’s ear, either via Babita or their direct supervisor, no matter the work-related challenges they may be facing.

“As we near the 30th anniversary of our company, I’m very excited to find new ways to better serve our clients and to provide the very best career experience possible to our security professionals and support staff.”

Leading the way by listening and engaging

Babita will be responsible for working with our leadership team to:

  • Ensure that each team member has the tools and resources to fulfill their roles. In addition, she’ll work to ensure that they’re also fully comfortable in their workspace and environment. Whether at our office or at a client site, we want to remove any potential barriers to their workplace success.
  • Provide a safe working environment. That’s especially important when our team members are working at commercial or industrial facilities, or even public-facing settings, where tensions have occasionally risen throughout the pandemic. Our guards are fully trained to manage conflict situations, but we want to remind them that we’re as committed as ever to ensuring they can always do their jobs safely.
  • Encourage staff to share ideas and concerns directly with their immediate supervisor or our leadership team. One of the drivers of Wincon’s nearly 30 years of growth and success has been our ability to constantly innovate and enhance our service experience. Our team members are a critical source of insights and information from the field, and we need their assistance to continue improving our service offering. Babita will help facilitate that steady flow of information.
  • Promoting teamwork and collaboration. That this already happens on a daily basis is a testament to the strength of our employee culture. But Babita is excited to take that feature of our work experience to the next level. She’ll be encouraging our team members to share ideas among themselves, to exchange real-time information and to help nurture each other’s career development.
  • Recognize each other’s achievements. One of our goals for 2022 is to ensure that when a member of our team does a great job, their hard work and commitment to excellence is acknowledged. So, Babita will be actively encouraging our team to recognize great work and to report it to her, their supervisor or a member of our leadership team. We’ll be honouring outstanding performance in various ways throughout the year.
  • Promote Wincon’s culture. That could mean sharing the word with friends and prospective employees about what a great working environment we’ve built, why Wincon is the right place for them to work or why they should engage with our recruitment team to learn more about our work experience and compensation packages.

As we near the 30th anniversary of our company, I’m very excited to find new ways to better serve our clients and to provide the very best career experience possible to our security professionals and support staff. We have a very big year ahead and I know that with Babita at the helm, our dynamic new employee engagement initiative is in great hands.

Is your business interested in retail loss prevention services?

Fill out our quote form and enjoy a consultation with us to learn about your retail security options.

Winston Stewart, President and CEO
Wincon Security 

The holiday season is almost here and with it comes wind chills, snowfall and icy conditions. For condo property managers and condo boards, that means working with their security teams to pay close attention to the many potential holiday and winter security risks that can arise across their condo communities when the thermostat drops and the holiday lights are strung.

While the weather is an obvious source of challenges, it’s not the only one. As we outline below, everything from the risk of parcel thefts to added stress on building infrastructure with residents continuing to work from home threatens to put a lump of coal in condo managers’ stockings this holiday season and beyond. It’s the time of year for security providers to be more engaged than ever and to focus on both reactive and proactive risk mitigation. Here’s how:

It’s beginning to look a lot like parcel season

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the volume of parcels flowing into condo properties has surged as e-commerce became the only means of shopping. Now, even with social distancing restrictions largely relaxed (at least for now), many consumers are increasingly turning to e-commerce for their holiday shopping needs. The problem is that most condo buildings aren’t equipped to handle a continuous influx of packages. Condo concierge teams have been forced to play the role of parcel handlers in addition to their regular duties. Security guards are tasked with ensuring that items aren’t lost or stolen, but that’s easier said than done if a lobby isn’t equipped with a secure parcel storage area.

To make matters more complicated, the holidays typically result in a deluge of pricier packages as residents purchase Christmas gifts and have them delivered. When parcels go missing due to improper storage—or when they’re mistakenly given to the wrong individuals by a concierge—the condominium corporation could face significant liability and compensation costs.

The next two weeks will see a surge in deliveries. Condo boards and managers should develop a strategy to receive, document, and store packages, perhaps by setting up a storage room or even introducing secure parcel storage lockers to help manage the influx. Being proactive about delivery management will only help to enhance the resident experience and avoid potential complaints or conflicts.

“Properly trained condo concierge and security patrol teams are the first line of defence against mitigating legal liability and other risks. Guards should be responsible for identifying, documenting and reporting potential issues such as icy sidewalks, while also taking action to address those issues.”

Oh, Christmas tree!

Every year there are holiday stories in the media about Christmas trees catching fire or electrical issues with lights creating similar fire hazards. The reality is that most people will forget decoration safety best practices from one year to the next. Security providers should help condo managers develop information emails and notices to remind residents to keep live trees sufficiently watered and to test all lights for proper functionality prior to use. Other decoration-related points to consider: Are residents allowed to hang lights on balconies? If so, are there restrictions on the types of lights that can be hung? If the practice is prohibited, residents will need to be reminded. Enforcing rules such as those can consume a security team’s time and distract them from core duties. Best to use the communication tools available and inform residents about their responsibilities in advance, while continuing to send reminders.

The same goes for Christmas tree disposal. Natural trees are wonderful, but they create a mess if they’re not properly disposed of. Request that residents bag their trees before transporting them through building corridors and direct them to appropriate disposal areas.

There’s no place like home for the holidays (and to work remotely)

An often-overlooked consequence of pandemic-era remote work arrangements is the extra strain on condo building infrastructure. Everything from increased HVAC and electrical demand to the potential for water leaks (think burst pipes due to added use) and the risk of elevator break-downs as service demand spikes, can cause havoc for condo property managers and security concierge teams. Condo managers should be prepared with a plan to manage and mitigate winter-specific risks that come with residents spending more time in their units and using services. Security teams should be prepared to investigate and address building system malfunctions on a proactive basis, highlighting issues before they can escalate.

Baby, it’s cold (and icy, wet and snowy) outside

The most immediate risk for condo managers and residents is from the elements. Winter inevitably brings an unpredictable mix of snow, ice, rain and the potential for slip and fall incidents. Properly trained condo concierge and security patrol teams are the first line of defence against mitigating legal liability and other risks. Guards should be responsible for identifying, documenting and reporting potential issues such as icy sidewalks, while also taking action to address those issues. It only takes a few minutes to salt a busy pathway, for example, but that simple act can save a great deal of response time, stress and cost if an accident occurs.

The same approach should apply inside a building, as well. Security teams should be on the lookout for frozen pipes, faulty mechanical systems—a malfunctioning heating system can lead to a temperature drop in mechanical rooms that increase the risk that pipes will freeze—overland flooding and other hazards that could result in expensive repair and cleanup work if left unchecked. That’s especially important in underground parking garages, many of which can be prone to flooding. Those problems could escalate quickly in the event of a major snowstorm or rapid thaw cycle.

Training condo security guards for winter weather

The key to effective condo security risk mitigation—both over the holidays and throughout the winter—comes down to strategic planning, communication and training. If a condo building is equipped with a winter safety and readiness strategy (which should be a component of comprehensive emergency response and disaster-preparedness plan), many common challenges can be avoided. Condo security teams must be trained in relevant procedures and be held accountable to maintain reactive and proactive risk mitigation policies. Top security firms in the Greater Toronto Area will take that approach as a best practice. That includes active emergency response, such as training condo security concierge and patrol teams to be able to activate backup generators or liaise with trades or technicians when emergency incidents occur.

Last consideration: condo property managers need to work with security providers that deliver pre-deployment training to their guards. A security team is only as good as their preparation. Unless that training is updated regularly and customized to the unique features of the property and resident community they’re protecting, it won’t be effective.

Is your business interested in condo security services?

Fill out our quote form and enjoy a consultation with us to learn about your condo security options.

Winston Stewart, President and CEO
Wincon Security