September 2010

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Scott's Message

Greetings! Summer is behind us, fall is here and in 45 days we’ll all be in Orlando. Here are three thoughts to consider as we look forward:

We Batted .929 in Q3. What’s the Lineup for Q4?
13 of 14 prospective members that attended Q3 meetings were voted into their group (92.9%). This is considerably higher than previous quarters. We think this is due to factors such as the quality of applicants, more experienced facilitators engaged in onboarding, and the structure of our Foundation Program. You also played a role if you helped a new member succeed in your meeting. Mentoring is a key component in the success of all new HTG members. The first week of September we assigned 21 prospective members to facilitators for vetting prior to attending Q4 meetings. This includes 8 prospects for HTG23, our new group, which launches in Orlando with Rich Anderson as its facilitator. Be a leader in helping prospective members engage – we all benefit.

Meeting Agendas: Is Your Game Plan a Winner?
No one gets up in the morning psyched about building a great meeting agenda. Yet when positive and negative comments reach me about meetings, the agenda commonly lies at the core of success or failure. Agendas are more than lists of topics and times. Agendas build consensus, limit guessing, demonstrate planning, communicate preparation, identify probing questions, assign accountability and provide a roadmap towards achieving the goals of the meeting. Agendas are living documents that help allocate the most precious resources we have in the meetings – time and ideas. Sure, great people, facilitators, preparation and energy can save a meeting. But if you expect your team to perform well in the big game, you know you want them to have a quality game plan . . . the same goes for your business and group. Great groups have – and use – strong agendas. Does yours? (Note: Your facilitator has access to agendas from every HTG group to check best practices.)

Service Excellence: Competing on Technology and Simplicity
I like looking for examples of poor and excellent service – kind of like a secret shopper. One day last week I had my windshield replaced, met with a mortgage banker, worked with my landscape guy and went to the dentist. Each of these experiences offered opportunities to exceed expectations and to drop the ball. I noticed a wide range in the use of technology – online appointments, text message confirmations, follow-up surveys, document scanning, Wi-Fi in waiting rooms, digital x-rays, etc.

Still, the more companies race to add technology, the more they must balance internal and external simplicity in processes and culture. (See related HBR article from Arlin.) Those of you in HTG6 and HTG8 have heard my talks about competing on simplicity many times – all things being essentially equal the simplest solution wins. This means someone needs to “own” simplicity in your organization, and be held accountable for its continued improvement. I encourage you to look for Simpler Service Excellence inside and outside your own company. Marry that with the personal relationships that play a strong role in driving repeat business. And look for examples around you that benefit your business.

Finish Q3 strong. Get ready to make your meeting and Orlando experience great!


Registered? Registration closes September 27th!
Booked your hotel? Rooms are going fast.

We have invested some time and made some big changes to the agenda. Check it out!! You might want to review your session selections that you made previously. Make sure you are signed up for the right sessions. Go to the HTG Reg Site, enter Already Registered and review your selections. Spots will go fast so don’t hesitate!!

The Service Leadership Guide to Solution Provider Profitability
This is the second installment of a three part series presenting the Service Leadership Guide to Solution Provider Profitability. Part 1 (where we presented Opportunity #1 – Desire Profit and Reject Loss) can be found on the Service Leadership portion of HTG’s SharePoint site.

Opportunity # 2 – To Manage, You Must First Measure
Only the bottom line matters, just as in winning a race only the final time matters. But in preparing for a race, the process of shaving a tenth of a second here and another tenth there, means being able to measure a multitude of factors with some precision.  We noted before that services companies are the manufacturers of the services they sell. Profit in manufacturing comes from several sources. In the table below, we translate profit sources from traditional manufacturing into those for an IT services company:

Read Part 2 on the HTG Sharepoint Site

Carly Fiorina visits ARRC Technology

Carly Fiorina, former CEO of HP and California Senate candidate running against Barbara Boxer, visited ARRC Technology on August 10th. ARRC, located in Bakersfield, California is a member of HTG8. Fiorina is PRO-small business and campaigning on a platform of job creation. While at ARRC, she conducted a tour and took the time to speak to many employees.

The visit was part of a two-day statewide tour rejecting Barbara Boxer’s 28-year record of failed leadership and urging Californians to instead support Carly Fiorina.

From the ARRC office, a press conference was conducted featuring the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the California Manufacturers and Technology Association (CMTA) and the California Chamber of Commerce. During the visit, Fiorina also earned the endorsement of the Greater Bakersfield Chamber of Commerce (GBCC).

Monique Rogers with ARRC, member of HTG8, looks
on as Carly Fiorina addresses the staff at ARRC.

Conveying Knowledge and Trust in Online Video Delivery

Can we agree due diligence plays an important role in selecting any prospective organization you intend to do business with? Odds are, your time is precious. Most of us would rather watch an individual share who they are & what their business is all about, rather than read about it. These conditions, along with the increasing demand for quality, have created the perfect storm for professional internet delivered video.

When capturing content, there are some effective principals we at Varvid follow. These are meant to help you understand the difference between OK footage and videos that connect and engage.

Read on

SMB Alliance Meeting in Denver, CO

Ingram Micro’s SMB Alliance will be hosting their final “Business Practice Workshop” featuring Ryan Morris, on October 19, 2010 at the Denver Aquarium.  At this event, community members will have the opportunity to:

Join industry expert Ryan Morris as he discusses the current trends of the SMB market, driving
demand, and best business practices
Visit our manufacturer partners at the member exclusive tech fair
Network with other solution providers
Participate in our manufacturer round tables

Register Now! Registration Deadline: October 1, 2010
All attendees will receive a $250 American Express Gift Cheque to help offset any travel expenses. For additional information please visit the registration site or contact me directly at any time. I hope to see you in Denver, CO!

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , Marketing Manager, SMB Alliance, Ingram Micro
Phone: 716-633-3600 Ext. 67850   Fax: 716-565-7705

Ingram Micro announces the appointment of Galen Lambert, president of Computer Solutions, Inc. and member of HTG4, as the latest member of the Ingram Micro SMB Alliance Council. Galen joins Ben Rife, Kurt Sippel and Rene Sloos among the HTG members represented on the council which in turn represents over 3000 Ingram Micro customers.

According to the team at Ingram Micro, it’s Galen’s industry knowledge and expertise that make him a great leader, and an ideal pick for their next SMB Alliance council member. The announcement came during the recent SMB Alliance Invitational in Orlando, FL that was attended by more than 200 solution providers from the US and Canada, including 25 HTG members. If you are interested in learning more about the Ingram SMB Alliance feel free to contact This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , Business Development Manager at Ingram Micro.

HTG Team and Members Named to MSPmentor 250

Three members of the HTG team have been included in the third annual MSPmentor 250 report, a list of the world’s top managed services executives, entrepreneurs and experts, community leaders and coaches. Included in the report are Founder and CEO, Arlin Sorensen, President, Scott Scrogin, and Director of Operations, Christy Sacco.

Managed services leaders were selected based on criteria such as company profits and growth, industry participation and recognition across the managed services, software-as-a-service (SaaS), and cloud markets. Due to the number of submissions, MSPmentor allowed only three employees per company to be named on its list.

HTG founder Arlin Sorensen has been recognized on the list since its inception in 2008, and this is the second year in a row Christy Sacco has been included.

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