By Todd Anthony Puma November 27, 2013
One of the banes of our business is that every job is a new project, a new home, a new client, a new sale. It can be draining, both emotionally and economically to be constantly selling. It can take away from building the operations of your business and achieving operational excellence because you are spending more time selling new business than working on improving your business processes.
By John Sciacca November 26, 2013
At some point, even the best-designed system will run into some kind of glitch. Maybe it will be from a power outage, maybe it will be due to a guest with button jab-itis, or maybe it will come from a Stuxnet virus attack. But no matter how it happens, when it happens, you’ll be getting a phone call or email from a client wanting to get things back on track.
By Heather L. Sidorowicz November 21, 2013
I bet that I am an anomaly in this industry. I am not only female, but I didn’t start this gig as an installer. My bet is that many of you started installing for someone else or installing for yourself. From there you may have grown into a larger business. However, your roots and foundation come from “the field.”
By Todd Anthony Puma November 20, 2013
The beauty of being an integrator and moving into a new home is that I get to do whatever I want for AV and electronics. The curse, however, is I’m always trying different solutions on myself because I’d rather be the guinea pig than my clients. I’m currently in the process of finishing off my home’s unfinished basement and creating my dream theater room.
By John Sciacca November 18, 2013
I remember reading John Grisham’s novel, The Firm, several years ago, and recall Mitch’s marching orders from the nefarious firm of Bendini, Lambert and Locke as being something akin to, “If you talk to the client on the phone, bill them. If you make a photocopy for the client, bill them. If you even find yourself at your desk, drinking a cup of coffee and maybe flipping through a magazine, and your mind happens to wander to where you even think about the client, bill them. In fact, just thinking about billing the client, you should probably bill them to be on the safe side.”
By Brendan Morrissey November 15, 2013
You’re spending hundreds (or maybe thousands) every month on a litany of marketing activities to promote your integration business. Whether it’s outbound tactics (direct mail, yellow pages, radio) or inbound (online advertising), you’re left wondering: “How much impact is this really having on my bottom line?”
By Heather L. Sidorowicz November 14, 2013
Grab a handful of AV magazines and you’re sure to see some pictures of AV rack installs. Every week I’m sure to see articles about a rocking rack in my inbox, and each year at the CEDIA Electronic Lifestyles banquet an award is given for the best rack. Maybe us industry people get so excited about racks because we spend so much time with them—terminating, testing, and troubleshooting; we know that it is the brain, heart, and brawn of the system. Yet, I find our industry’s fixation on the rack to be misguided. It is the Interface that is the true soul of the system.
By Todd Anthony Puma November 13, 2013
Have you ever gone to hotel or to a restaurant that your friends have been raving about and thought it just wasn’t all that? Or had a friend come back from a great local shop that you love, only to have them say it wasn’t the greatest? Or how about when you deliver your same great service to a client, but have them end up unhappy or dissatisfied?
By John Sciacca November 12, 2013
The Holy Grail of our industry seems to be developing some form of a recurring revenue stream. Far better than the one-and-done-and-on-to-the-next-one install, recurring revenue is like that mythical golden goose that just poops out stacks of money on a regular basis, while you just sit back at your desk, feet up, sipping some Macallan 30, watching all those hundos rolling in and thinking of all the ways to spend it.
By Heather L. Sidorowicz November 07, 2013
When a client calls, we always ask how they heard about us (well, maybe not always, but we mostly remember to ask). The answer from my last two estimates was that they had found us via the wonderful World Wide Web. This is not the most common response; word of mouth is.

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