Twisted Copper Pair Podcast
Just as our customers are evolving, so we as service providers need to evolve with them
FCS are an incredible force within the telecoms industry in the UK, a not-for-profit industry association for companies which deliver professional voice and data communications solutions to business and public sector customers in the UK.
So I was delighted to be asked to speak at the FCS Comms Provider 16 event on the future of the copper network in the UK. Given that my Crystal Ball is as flawed as most, I thought it would be useful to look back over the last 20 years of consumer behaviour, use today’s analysis and then project forward.
The podcast outlines the gist of what I said.
There is a reference in the podcast to the book Exponential Organisations, specifically to a ‘brain’ diagram that demonstrates the approach that innovative, successful companies use. I urge you to check it out, it is well worth your time.
I was also delighted with the response, here are a few snippets that I caught on Twitter. (You can follow us on @CopperRoadUK)
Marketing in the channel is a tricky proposition, to many it is a luxury, at worst a bit of a dirty word. In this episode we talk to Mark Saunders, Group Marketing Director at Nine Group to get his view on permission marketing, customer relationships, brand and systems.
There is a great example of story telling that refers to a talk that Kevin Spacey gave to the delegates of a recent content marketing workshop, that can be found here.
In Mark’s own words. Marketing, more than just colouring in!
The Internet of Things (part 2)
I was delighted to visit Pangea’s offices in Surbiton this month to speak with Dan Cunliffe on the what the IoT really means to the UK reseller.
There are a couple of real lightbulb moments in this podcast, not least of all how if we simply change our perception of what we believe the IoT to be every reseller has the opportunity to benefit from it.
There is also a great description of a wide area network that demonstrates this belief perfectly.
And a stark warning at the very end!
Twisted Copper Pair Blogs
How do give your project the best start, with 6 questions.
What is the real reason that projects are successful? There are a number of factors, not least of all the specific project method that’s employed. I love it when you engage in a conversation with a project fanatic. I’m talking about people who are adept at a specific flavour of project management and get uncomfortable in discussions on the benefits of any other approach.
Whilst not knocking any one style in particular, it’s worth taking into consideration that certain project approaches do tend to favour certain circumstances. Agile does have a lot of benefits when working on software development projects for example. It is important to understand that they all have strengths and weaknesses and it is important to get an understanding of both. When you’re faced with someone who is brilliant at one type of project approach ask them these six questions.
- Is it right for the environment that it is being deployed in?
Is the approach a natural fit to the business and the type of project that is being undertaken? Agile for software development, Waterfall for an office move?
- How are the project elements communicated?
What is the ‘preferred’ method of communication, the updates, project reports and so on? How well do they work for the business and for the stakeholders? It’s all very well for the consultant or project lead to be a guru in one particular method, but if the stakeholders can’t make head nor tail of the updates, it might be for nothing.
- What is the technical backbone of the methodology?
Is it heavily reliant on proprietary software? Does it require additional training, is it only available to a ‘select few’? Or is it all in the head of one or two project managers using a Gantt chart that no-one else has access to?
- What are the immediate benefits of the solution over others that might be available?
Are there fewer people needed, is it quicker or more cost effective than other approaches that are available?
- What about any other benefits?
Is it easily migrated to other projects, or to other parts of the businesses?
- How does it get us close to the solution?
Ultimately, will it deliver a reliable result or objective that meets the stakeholder’s requirements, completed within an achievable, pre-agreed time-frame for the money that was set aside and completed by a team of people who would be willing at the end to do something similar.
If asking the questions above result in a blank stare and furious muttering about how waterfall project management dates back to World War 2 and has no place in the business, then you might have a problem on your hands.
But catching zealous behavior early and adapting the approach to your specific needs is as important to ensuring the successful completion of a project as the method being deployed.
Spoiler alert: It isn’t your excellent customer service. I had this dialogue with a client recently. “Our USP is our excellent customer service.” “So is [competitor A]’s and they’re cheaper.” “But ours is so much...read more
Telling a good story is not enough. Really another story about story telling? We talk about connecting with the customer all of the time and there have been enough posts recently on social media about how we’re pretty sick of people telling us it’s all about telling...read more
Within the channel, the traditional view is that it is very rare to create a new product from scratch. That is, for the most part, products are provided by the originating vendor fully formed, albeit not commercialised specifically for the channel end user, for the...read more