Thursday, June 17, 2010

Sorry Been Busy with Customers

Seems like I missed some reading this week. I was busy with customers. And even busier next week with them. We have meetings with 6 over the next week. A really busy schedule and I am not even going to some in person because of distances, luckily we use LotusLive Engage for these.

As I have posted recently the world of infrastructure is booming. Budgets are finally open(well some are), customers are calling and being receptive to our calls.

Life is good...now. Compared to the 2nd half of 2009.

But it's been hard, no question.

Oh, and we don't sell Microsoft or Google or Oracle.

We sell IBM products and services, lately more Websphere.

Not just Lotus services and licenses.

Oh, and we don't do Domino application development. We have partners to help if the customer asks, but that is maybe 5-10% of business.

We work with IBM sales teams, some better than others, but in a large family not everyone sees eye to eye and it's a big world. SMB markets need more sales people and IBM recognizes that the small sales staff in some places must work with BPs and luckily some are doing so with us. Out LCTY last week provided excellent leads as well.

Customers moving from Domino.Doc to Quickr, leveraging LotusLive, Sametime 8.5 upgrades and implementations, New Notes/Domino installs, Upgraded 2 customers from R5/6 to R851, Websphere installs, support issues and disaster planning(we are in South Florida).

But zero Lotus connections. This may change shortly after some local LUG and PoT events.

We work with our vendors/partners to go directly to clients. We don't argue with them and we believe that our honesty with them is returned and appreciated. Of course it is not always returned, but that is how life works and we do the best we can. Sometimes honesty can hurt sales, especially in time related matters but we'd rather retain a customer than lose them forever.

It's still hard to believe one of our customers jumped to Exchange and we got caught flat footed. But as I tell people, if we never meet the CEO, especially, then there is always a chance of it happening. One IBM rep wants to go in and save it, we would try, but the CEO is not going to let it happen. We are looking for an exit interview so to speak to understand what we(read IBM and us) could have done better. We know some answers and they were beyond our control and that hurts the most.

But the life of a BP is not easy sometimes and it takes a lot of strength to keep moving forward in the face of adversity.

So while we are not hiring today, we are seeing business grow and some of you may get calls from us to help on a contract basis or join us before the year is out.

I think that is a good reason I have been offline or not blogging.