Vendors arm your sales people!

I had an astonishing conversation today with an ex-Citrite who mentioned that in a discussion with a Citrix salesperson they admitted to not knowing who Brian Madden is.  This, firstly, astounded me and then get me thinking that it’s not really said salesperson’s fault – why should they know if no-one’s told them?

So, this post is about arming your sales people – or any frontline, customer engaging employee – with the relevant blogs to read, tweeters to follow or, as importantly, the 3rd part eco-system vendors that help to keep their customers happy AND enable more license sales.  I add in the 3rd party eco-system vendors because said salesperson also did not know about a desktop VDI vendor that absolutely helps solve some of the bottlenecks within VDI.

These days, it is no longer good enough to know information about your own products, you should – and must – know what your competitors are up to, know how your solutions stack up against them and also be fully cognizant of any other vendors that you collaborate, or partner, with to make your own solution of more value to your potential customers.

My recommended ‘must reads’ for specific technology areas are:

Cloud – Massimo Re Ferre IT20, Richard Morrell emeacloudguy

Storage – Martin Glassborow aka Storagebod, Chris Mellor El Reg

VDI – Brian Madden, Doug Brown DABCC, Andre Leibovici myvirtualcloud.net

Networking – Greg Ferro Packetpushers.net

This might all seem “teaching Granny to suck eggs” and just common sense, but the example stated in the first paragraph clearly demonstrates that we DO need to tell people, versus teach, which eggs to suck!  I strongly urge HR teams to ensure that new hire induction includes this topic.

Armed with this information will certainly endear you more to your customers and prospects, but also make you a better community player.  After all, you can’t engage in a community conversation if you’re not even aware it’s taking place, can you?

 

4 thoughts on “Vendors arm your sales people!

  1. Good point Jane, although it’s always difficult to judge the importance of ‘the community’ to those not involved in it. Years ago (before I was a blogger and more involved in said community) I was pretty cynical about it – I distinctly remember being sent an invite for a backup roadshow with the ‘world reknowned W Curtis Preston’ and saying to a colleague ‘never heard of him’ and dismissing it out of hand. Having since come to realise the error of my ways (and even meeting aforementioned chap at Storage Field Day last year) I’ve often wondered how much the community is just an echo chamber, largely ignored by many people who might benefit from it. I know I value community very highly – if I want to learn new skills or technology I start by trying to immerse myself in whatever community exists (Twitter, Google+, physical meetups, webcasts etc) because I feel it’ll lead me to good sources of info and people to learn from etc. Maybe the glut of reality stars and pointless celebrities which fills our TVs tarnishes the genuine ‘tech celebrities’ trying to help the masses!

  2. Thanks Ed for sharing your experience prior to being converted 🙂 I think you’re right, to value something, you have to understand it first. Which is kinda the point of my post – if vendors inform their employees hopefully they’ll understand the importance. But you’re right in your last comment, I despair of the younger generation looking up to these so-called ‘celebs’ just because they’ve been on a reality TV show – what on earth have they contributed to the human race?! Anyway, off my soap box now, it’s wine o’clock 🙂

  3. Truth be told Jane…I’ve never heard of Brian Madden either. Andrè?..yes; Brian?..no. Good point though. Thanks for sharing.

    Shane

    • thanks for reading and taking the time to comment Shane, much appreciated! Brian, whilst focused on VDI in general, is better known in Citrix circles versus VMware circles IMHO 🙂

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