Each week, I am highlighting on some of the incredible people who are in the Audio Video Industry. As this blog is mostly about AV insiders, today we are profiling Hagai Feiner .
Here is a brief intro about him.
Hagai Feiner has worked in the Audiovisual industry for over 15 years. He is currently CEO of Access Networks.
Please drop your questions in the comments below and I will make sure that he sees them.
1. Describe your journey in the AV industry? How did it start?
My journey in the AV industry started in 2002, when one of our commercial clients decided to buy and renovate a home in the Beverly Hills flats. I was consulted on the network infrastructure needed and recommended we use the same hardware for the house as we did for his office. It was during that project that I first encountered an integration company. My observation was that the needs of this home (as it related to the network) were not that different than the needs of the businesses I was servicing. That moment sparked the original idea that became Access Networks.
2. What do you think are the challenges that are facing a new person who wants to join the industry?
Connections, education and attitude. It’s hard to get started in any industry. There is such a wide array of products and configurations across multiple market segments, making it difficult for a newcomer to focus on any one discipline and the specific brands and designs that define it. Lastly, you have to approach everyday challenges with the right attitude. Our industry requires a lot of grace under pressure in order to reach desired goals and ultimately please the client.
3. What are the positives of working in this industry?
Definitely the people. We have a wide spectrum of personalities in our industry, and I always enjoy my interactions with them. What separates our industry from others is that many in our community have a passion for what they do because they grew up with these technologies. Take audiophiles, for example. The first time I listened to a high-resolution track in a balanced room with a sound stage, it opened my eyes (and ears) to what is possible. And these outstanding advances are only made possible because of the passion of the individuals who design these systems.
4. What in your opinion would you change in the industry? What are the negatives that are prevalent?
This is a tough one as there is not much I would change. But if I had to pick something, I would change how we, as an industry, deal with commoditization and Internet selling. It comes down to confidence in who we are, what we do and what we stand for. You can get any product online and you can always find things cheaper. But end-users (our clients) will never be able to match the experience of having someone qualified designing, installing and integrating their complex home technology.
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5. Describe your ideal client? What do you wish clients to know before hiring you?
Our ideal client is an integrator that understands the value they bring to a client’s home and is willing to turn over the design and delivery of the home network to our team here at Access Networks. We have established ourselves within the integrator community as a service provider that performs our work to the highest standards. We appreciate the trust that our clients place in our services and proven track record.
6.If you were going to start over, what would you do differently?
I would probably have sought funding and hired reps on day one so we could have grown faster. Most of our growth has happened since 2010, and I believe we could have progressed earlier and faster with the right people and financial infrastructure in place. That said and given the route we did take, I couldn’t be more pleased with our position of respect that we have earned within the CEDIA community.
7. Describe a typical work day for you. What are your daily disciplines?
Although busy at the office, I force myself to stop, get some fresh air, and gain a bird’s eye view of what we are doing and how we are executing initiatives so that the company stays on track. I am not afraid to be loud at the office from time to time. We occasionally need some noise to keep things vital and fresh.
8. Describe the apps and gear that you use daily which makes you more productive?
I always say “if it is not on my calendar, it does not exist.” In addition, I frequently use the GoToMeeting app, Avis app (it’s awesome for quick rental booking), Tile (a life saver), Hotel Tonight (you’ll thank me for this one), Google Maps and Ring Central. On the personal side, Escort Live (when I speed) and iAquaLink to turn on my Jacuzzi remotely.
9. How do you stay relevant in this industry?
That’s probably the biggest question and the one that constantly occupies my mind. The way we stay relevant is to observe the residential integration industry alongside the tech world, listen to the evolving needs of our clients and connect innovations in networking to address the marketplace. This has been the business model for Access Networks since the start—bringing value to residential integrators based on evolving enterprise solutions. Our newest offering, Access Networks Live Monitoring is a direct result of this ongoing process.