It’s down to the people again

I was closely watching the exchange in the US over the debt issues and President Obama supported the Gang of Six plan to reduce trillions of debt over 10 years. In a news debate on TV, the panelists claimed it was led by somebody with whom the President had a close relationship over the years. No surprise.

Now apply this to technology and to every walk of life. Despite the new platforms and tools now at our disposal, doesn’t business still get done when people make a connection with each other and find a situation that benefits both parties? Hasn’t it always been the case, and will it not always be that way? I think so.

I do enjoy the US – such good service and huge choice of everything you care to buy. Little wonder that so much innovation stems from there. It seems to have this knack of combining ideas and people to create some of the most innovative and forward thinking applications of technology.

Look at the image above. In a Brookstone store, I found this cushion; it was a remote control embedded within the softest material. Tacky in some respects, ingenious in others, but it sells! The US has such a willingness to try things, to embrace failure as a step in the right direction; as one leading author claimed, “By failing in a project or task, that is one less mistake that can’t happen next time.”

I enjoyed being a part of the Service 800 event where the theme was excelling in customer service. I had a chance to present to the group and engaged in some interesting conversations with individuals from 3M, GE Healthcare, Lexmark, Siemens and others, as well as some quite brilliant personalities from CompuCom. Some of these great people were kind enough to share a testimonial for me (see the tab above). Europe can benefit so much by watching and learning from these service experts.

Reseller Forum

William Linard from my UK team and I hosted the quarterly CompTIA UK Reseller Forum at the Leicester City Walker Stadium. Great turnout of small business owners focusing on vendor relationships, being better at becoming a trusted advisor and setting high standards of quality for IT service and support to UK businesses. It’s not about fixing customer machines, it’s about setting them up so they don’t fail in the first place. It was a very interactive session, with some very good best practice ideas shared around the table. Once we provided a platform for these guys to meet and talk, the ideas flowed for 3 hours. Together, we are raising the bar.

Babies & Beer

Research was carried out by a leading supermarket to establish connections between products. It was discovered that beer is often purchased at the same time as baby products, in the early evening. This tells me that guys are sent out to buy necessities for a newborn baby and pick up a six-pack preparing for the long night ahead. What it really tells me is that we must use technology to slice and dice the customer database and data at our disposal in ways that are not obvious, to find new connections and alternative collabrations.