Canadian Security Magazine

Top 10 Under 40: Derek Burns, Regional director, GardaWorld

By Canadian Security Staff   

News top 10 under 40

What do you enjoy most about security?

What I enjoy most about our industry is how much it impacts our daily lives. Before I got started in security, I didn’t realize that I was an everyday user. After being involved, I see it every day. When I go grab a coffee, I look at the camera systems in place, where the registers are located and the set up of access and egress in the building.

When I’m driving, I see businesses and think what their challenges would be and how we as an industry supply the solutions. I also enjoy the people. Because we are a part of so many different industries, you meet so many people with different views and backgrounds, and you learn so much about what they do!

Is there one piece of advice you have received that has helped you engage with your security role more effectively?


I think for me the biggest piece of advice I’ve received is to understand the goal. Figuring out why we are doing a project, why the customer needs the service, has really adjusted my focus on what we do to solve the problem and how we would go about doing it. Being able to stop and put yourself in your customer’s shoes to understand how much a challenge has an impact for their business has changed how I look at our services altogether.

What do you do outside of your job that helps you manage stress or gain perspective on your work?

I don’t really find the industry as stressful because the challenge of providing a security solution is quite fun! I do think for me that I’ve gained perspective looking my work as balanced with my personal life. I don’t take off my security hat when I go home, in fact it’s quite the opposite. I see how security programs contribute to our everyday lives and it gives me perspective on how important the work we do in this industry really is. We all shop, park our cars and have workplaces, and we want those to be safe!

Do you have any advice for budding security professionals who are interested in launching a career?

My advice to those looking to launch a career in security would be to remember that this is a people industry. Concepts of security, risk management, CPTED and crime prevention programs are at the top of the list, but it’s supported by a foundation of relationships. People have beliefs, fears and opinions and at the end of the day, relationships make the difference as to whether a recommendation is accepted or not. If you can foster meaningful relationships and connect with people, you can learn the industry and the technical side of the business and be successful.

Print this page


Stories continue below


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *