Get to know PPG Springdale Assistant Security Site Lead Steph Pencak while she ushers in our very first Women in Security segment featuring PalAmerican Security Officers:
I would like to start off by expressing my gratitude for giving me the opportunity to promote women in the Security Industry. Being able to share my own story is such an honor, and I hope that I will be able to assist in showing women how they can succeed in the industry.
How long have you been in the industry & what drew you into the industry?
I began my career in the Security industry in 1999 as a part of my college internship. At the time, I was attending LaRoche College pursuing a major in Criminal Justice and in order to graduate, I needed to complete this internship. Choosing my major, I thought, would fulfill my plans on becoming an FBI or DEA agent, but after having a brief internship in the Security Industry as well as learning of the dangers of being a Federal agent, I decided to stay in a safer environment. Since then, I've dedicated myself to learning everything I could from my Supervisor, William Daher, so I can one day become a Security Supervisor myself.
What unique traits do you feel women bring into security?
I think a very important unique trait is personality. Women tend to have more of an outgoing and upbeat personality that can incite a more positive response in different situations.
Also, another unique trait is strong organizational skills— women have a stronger tendency to desire structure and neatness in the workplace.
How do you maintain a healthy work-life balance?
When I am working, I make sure to give 110% no matter how I may feel that day, and when my shift is over for the day, my focus will no longer be on work but on my personal life.
I try to exercise at least 5 times a week to not only maintain my physical health, but to promote my mental health as well. I also spend time with my niece and 2 nephews as much as I can; every time I am with them, it seems like nothing else matters, and that helps keep me stress free and healthy. I’m truly dedicated to my company, PalAmerican Security, and to my officers, but I am aware that if I don’t feel good about myself, I won’t be able to perform my roles effectively.
What's the best piece of advice that you've been given and that you'd like to pass onto women following in your footsteps?
My advice would be to set an example that others will want to follow. If you want a fellow Security Officer or someone you are supervising to portray a positive attitude at all times, then it must begin from you. If you truly care about your officers, ensure that the example set for them is one they can continuously learn and grow from.
Another advice I want to share to any woman starting off in the Security Industry is to always feel equal to your fellow officers. Though you are in a predominantly male industry, you can be as productive and successful in this industry just as well as anybody as long as you are willing to work hard and show dedication to your job.
Describe what PalAmerican means to you.
PalAmerican Security to me is the first company where I feel truly cared for. The company is always open to suggestions or complaints and try their best to assist any employee having difficulties. They truly understand how integral each officer and supervisor is to the success of the business.