How do you?

How do you get someone to see the value in IT?  Seriously.  And I’m not talking about the “good enough” problem.  But someone understanding that not either spending money for the right licenses, the right hardware, the right platform, the right solution is holding them back? 


And quite honestly I blame this on two things… one is the culture of the industry.  We are inquisitive beings that like to do things ourselves.  As such we don’t then reach out for the expertise when we need it.  We just continue to do what we do because it feels comfortable until something comes along to wake us up.


Secondly, I don’t think we value our time.  We use Excel and paper and the ways we do business because it’s just easy to continue to do what we do.


I can understand when someone says “well Vista is a hard sell because XP sp2 works so well”.  What I have a hard time understanding is when someone isn’t seeing that a peer to peer network is holding them back.  Or that manual timesheet doesn’t capture the time well enough and revenue is lost.  I never could see the value in the trial version of SBS, as I saw it as a lot of Active Directory installation to then just turn around and rip back out again.  I could see the value and the promise.  But some folks need that hands on, the happy customer story, the view of the solution. 


What’s the answer to this problem of a lack of vision?  Is case studies and happy customer stories enough?  I don’t think so.  I think we’ve been spun at and marketed that we’re not buying stuff like we used to. 


I think the key is to not just sell stuff, but help the solution seller help the business process.  There were several folks who talked about that they were trying to get the SBSC credential and they would come in behind the SBSC certified youngster who was technically adept, but business lacking. 


It’s the process …and I think that’s what all this marketing stuff can’t teach. 


Business savvy. 


I’m not sure it comes in slick brochures and 3 minute advertisements and elevator pitches.


It comes from the school of hard knocks.


(BTW I misspelled the S”B”SC initially as SCSC… if you want to know about SBSC and don’t… check out https://partner.microsoft.com/US/40021525)

2 Thoughts on “How do you?

  1. Art Billings on August 23, 2007 at 8:46 am said:

    Forgive my ignorance, but what is the SCSC credential? Thanks.

  2. Excellent post ! I think this topic deserves a blog of it’s own. I think about this problem all the time. You can’t get people to spend money ! If what they have is working the wallet closes.

    I just went to a company three weeks ago where they were trying to set up a VPN on a Windows Server 2003 machine. The “kid” IT person there had run the RAS setup wizard and had turned on VPN port forwarding on in the Dlink router. But he said when the VPN connected they could not access anything.

    I went to bring up Users and Computers but it wasn’t there. I looked in the local computer management and there were no local user accounts. They weren’t logging into the Xp Pro workstations with any user accounts !

    And on top of it the server had only one NIC card.

    So I had them buy another NIC card and installed it. Then I went to setup the Westell “router” for port forwarding VPN and discovered that it wasn’t a router but a Westell ADSL modem from 2000 ! I told them to see if Verizon would send them a “modern” modem/router but Verizon wouldn’t do it. At least not for free. Verizon needs to be tought a serious lesson for screwing it’s DLS customers that way.

    So I told them to buy thier own ADSL router. I said I would set up a domain for them with proper user accounts and file storage etc. I haven’t heard back from them since. They probably decided that it was costing too much money to set up a vpn that they didn’t really need anyway because what we have now works fine.

    Oh, and the server was set up for an Oracle database by an oracle “guru”. That explained why they had no user accounts. They only logged into the Oracle database. But the Oracle guru set up the server with a RAID 5 array and then on top of that created a dynamic disk mirror ! So first they had lost one disk worth of space with the RAID 5 array and then they lost half of that with the software mirror that was sucking cpu time ! What a waste !

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