ASSA ABLOY Door Security Solutions team learns the value of LEED credentials
Working as an account manager with USGBC member companies, ambitious goals for sustainability in the built environment never come as a surprise, nor do they ever cease to impress me. ASSA ABLOY Door Security Solutions (ASSA ABLOY DSS) is no exception. ASSA ABLOY DSS has been engaged with USGBC for many years, but I've only recently been working with them since they renewed as a Platinum Member under our new membership structure.
In one of my first conversations with the ASSA ABLOY DSS team, Aaron Smith, Director of Sustainable Building Solutions, shared his goal of having all of ASSA ABLOY DSS' salesforce credentialed as LEED Green Associates. Aaron asked us if we could help him meet his goal. We were thrilled not only to help with this process, but also to create a customized solution built to fit their needs. Throughout this process, I’ve learned three key things that I think made this effort by Aaron and his team a success:
1. Corporate buy-in
Aaron’s decision to cover the exam costs for staff came with support from additional leadership at ASSA ABLOY DSS. Arming employees with a LEED credential gives the sales team a competitive edge when speaking to their customers about how ASSA ABLOY DSS products can help to achieve sustainability goals. In fact, ASSA ABLOY DSS leadership sees this edge to be so valuable that they slated an entire day of their next sales meeting for LEED exam preparation, so that their team could be the first full team to be credentialed as LEED Green Associates.
2. USGBC support in solutioning
For member companies with specific, ambitious sustainability goals, USGBC has a three-pronged client team that can help deliver solutions uniquely tailored to the group. In this case, Rhiannon Jacobsen of strategic accounts, Stefanie Young of technical solutions and I collaborated on strategy, solutions and implementation to deliver an offering built specifically to suit Aaron’s goals for the staff training.
We worked with Aaron to review exactly where the value lies for ASSA ABLOY DSS. For example, we reviewed materials in advance, explored which topics would be of interest to this specific audience and customized case studies based on the customer base of this particular sales team. We also traveled to ASSA ABLOY offices in New Haven to get Aaron’s team LEED-ready through LEED 201 course and set them on track to study for the LEED Green Associate exam.
3. Engaged salesforce
Despite having limited prior knowledge about USGBC and the LEED Rating System, the ASSA ABLOY DSS sales team picked up on challenging topics easily, occasionally asking clarifying questions about the content, but more often putting themselves in the shoes of their customers and asking application questions. How does LEED fit into project bidding? How do municipalities and zoning regulations impact Sustainable Sites credits? What about concerns for security—a very relevant topic for a door security solutions manufacturer—how does need for lighting to secure areas play into the credits?
At the end of the day, everyone left the room with their own copy of the LEED Green Associate Core Concepts and Study Guide books provided by ASSA ABLOY DSS with a commitment to cover the exam fees once they finished their exam prep. Staff will continue to use the online courses and webinars available to them through their platinum membership to prepare for the exam.
I’m excited to track the accomplishments of this group throughout the summer as they sit for their exam (and surely pass!), and to work with other member companies on customized solutions to help them meet their sustainability goals.
Join us at Greenbuild in Philadelphia to learn more during our Expo Hall Session Credentialing for your Sales Staff: How to Get your Sales Staff LEED-Ready.