September 2011

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
New Page 1

The beginning of the journey . . .

It was almost 30 years ago when computers caught my fancy. I was farming and working in the family agriculture business with my dad and brother when I realized the potential to use these newfangled devices, called computers, to do the accounting for our farm. I was never all that excited about doing the bookwork, so finding a way to do it more quickly while having real time access to the information, rather than running the business without visibility into what was really happening, was intriguing. So I spent $4500 and bought a 16K Apple II Plus with dual floppies, a green screen, and an Epson dot matrix printer. Then another $500 for the accounting software and the journey began.

There have been a lot of changes over the past three decades. My interest in technology transformed into a hobby and then a business and now a calling. We moved off the Apple platform in the late 1980s to the pc, but now it looks like things are going full circle and Apple is once again going to become part of our technology world in a much more meaningful way. We are returning to our roots. Why is that? Because mobility is no longer just a piece of the puzzle – it is the centerpiece of the IT puzzle. And Apple sits there in many cases. Through great engineering and a continual focus on creating devices that have a wow factor and just work, Apple has earned a very important place in our industry. And now it is important that we focus on that relationship once again.

Mobility – The Next Big Opportunity for HTG Members

So what does that mean to you and me? At the recent CompTIA Breakaway event in Washington DC, my key takeaway was not that the Cloud is coming and will be a big chunk of business. What hit me right between the eyes was the reality that the Cloud is simply another delivery mechanism while in and of itself doesn’t do anything by itself. What truly is the center of the future is the mobile device market that will access that Cloud and every other kind of network known to man. Companies that have scorned the partner channel in the past, primarily the large mobility carriers, were at the CompTIA event to let the partner community know that they need feet on the street to help configure the millions of devices that will be connecting to networks in the next few years. Mobility is the next big opportunity.

Empowering HTG Members

At HTG we have been working hard to create some real opportunities for our members around this space. Corporations, large and small, have been flooded with requests to allow mobile devices like the iPhone and iPad to join their company networks. Many schools are moving quickly to a ‘bring your own device’ model and a huge portion of those devices will have an Apple logo on them. To that end, I am pleased to announce that we have created a plan to enable HTG members to engage with the Apple Consultants Network (ACN) and become trained in supporting IOS in the marketplace. We will be working hand in hand with Apple to get HTG member companies trained to securely deploy and support Apple devices on corporate networks through a series of trainings and classes. This is a significant opportunity for you to enter the mobility area ahead of the competition and become the local ‘mobility guru’ that is able to help small and large businesses alike place mobile devices on their networks in a secure and meaningful manner.

There will be lots more on this in Orlando, and a pilot will be in motion in the next few weeks for companies that are already part of the Apple Consultants Network (ACN) to be trained. We will also be fast tracking a few other members into that program as well as preparing training to be made available to all HTG members shortly after the HTG ALL and Q4 Meetings in Orlando. I believe that mobility must be part of the focus for many of our member companies when it comes to supporting our clients for the foreseeable future. Early access to this training will put us in the lead in creating practices that will serve the rapidly growing demands in this area.

But wait, there’s more good news for us in Q4.

The HTG team has been working with other vendors to create unique and exciting opportunities. We are pleased to announce that HTG has been chosen as the channel user community to help drive development of a brand new product to be released by Cisco on September 7th. This has the potential to be a game changer for many of us delivering managed services to our clients. HTG will be engaged directly with the Cisco product managers to provide feedback and suggestions on the future development and direction of the product. Several of our members have been involved initially, but now they want to engage the entire HTG community as the ‘go to’ group in the channel to help them take the product to the next level. Keep an eye open for the announcement. It will seem too good to be true, but it is real and will fit most every partner organization.

More coming in Orlando

Those are just a couple of the exciting things coming your way this fall. If you haven’t registered for the Q4 event – time to execute. We will have a host of exciting announcements about great things coming to the HTG community. Your HTG team has worked tirelessly to make sure the value of your membership continues to grow. It is not a simple task, and they deserve all the kudos you can bestow upon them. I am blessed to be surrounded by a fabulous team of passionate people that wake up every morning to serve you better and better each day. I hope you understand their dedication and commitment. It is not by accident that these things are happening – it is because we truly want to serve you and help your company grow.

As is always the case, the mileage will vary based on how you respond. Vision without execution is hallucination. We can deliver a lot of things, but it is only when you jump on board and execute that those opportunities translate into impact for your company and your clients. I hope more than ever you will focus on execution for the next 18 months. We are heading into some challenging times economically. I am firmly convinced of that. It will be the companies that seek new relationships with vendors, move into new market opportunities like mobility, take advantage of game changing technologies, and just do the right things the right way every day that will ride the storm out well. That is what HTG is all about – leading, encouraging, and providing a framework that allows you to succeed in every situation. It comes down to you. Will you step up and lead? We are cheering for that and will continue to do everything in our power to enable you to win in your marketplace!

We had a great round of meetings in Q3, but we look forward to seeing you in Orlando!

PS - Are you prepared?

Business continuity and disaster recovery has once again, unfortunately, been at the forefront of the news. First an earthquake in the Northeast and then the devastation of Hurricane Irene that did a number on parts of the Eastern United States. While Hurricane Irene did cause billions of dollars of damage and lives were lost, it appears that HTG members were spared the worst of the damage. Hands that Give was ready to go if needed and remains so as that area of the country focuses on recovering. So, you were fortunate enough to not incur any serious damage this time. Now what? NOW is the time to take a pause, count your blessings and make sure you have your affairs and plans in order the next time you are presented with a threat. Rest assured, we will not allow members to face disasters or disruptions alone. Our Go-Giver culture won’t allow it. So all that’s left is for you to go all in, get signed up and give! The application takes less than 10 minutes.

Key Dates!                                         Action!
  November 7-9

HTG ALL & Q4 Meetings -
Click Here to Register Now

Latest Blog Entries

Latest Blog Entry

Voice of HTG

Voice of HTG

From the Desk of Arlin

Arlin's HTG Newsletter