If you’re reading this column right now, then you must be either stubborn or old (or maybe both). Haven’t you heard that print is dead? Thanks for reading this, you old rebel you.
I kid, of course, but it is, indeed, a challenging time for almost every business, particularly print magazines and newspapers whose publishers have been scrambling to keep up with their readers’ increasingly demanding work schedules and the lure of the Internet and, now, the Apple iPad.
We at Residential Systems recognize that your free time is scarce and your attention span is shorter than it used to be. In this month’s issue, we have re-imagined and refreshed our print publication with an eye toward the many online resources available to us, while recognizing your lack of free time to finding all of the tools that you need to run a successful business.
Each page of the magazine features a reference to additional multimedia content available to you online. But instead of sending you on a wild-goose chase to find it, we’re putting all of this bonus content on one landing page at residentialsystems.com/may10.
Each month we will integrate our online content with the magazine, yet we believe that our print articles will stand on their own as well, with insightful business leadership tips and beautiful photos of amazing products and projects.
Change is good, despite what inspires it. Take last month’s news that Nortek was eliminating its Escient and Snell brands, which came as a bit of a shock to all of us, as did the decision by Nortek’s Linear Group to combine its ELAN, Niles, and Xantech brands into one operating unit.
I say “shock,” but most of us could see the writing on the wall before either decision was announced. From a business perspective it always has been hard to understand how so many brands under the umbrellas of large parent companies could peacefully coexist with product lines that were so similar.
After the announcement, Xantech’s Graham Hallett told me in an e-mail that the hiring of Mark Terry to reorganize the three Linear brands was “a very timely, positive development” for several reasons, but primarily because it would help the brands achieve “economies and efficiencies of scale” that they “very much need.”
Hallett’s initial perspective was more upbeat than expected, perhaps due of his positive experience working with Terry at Harman, and because his brand had been a beneficiary of Linear’s Digi-5 platform. Xantech has witnessed the value in “trading technologies” firsthand, and Hallett says he expects more opportunities like that under Terry’s tutelage.
“Mark comes in with new perspectives but at the same time with a proven track-record in making a high-profile, multi-brand audio electronics corporate structure more agile and competitive while preserving the integrity and value of those brands,” he said.
I hope it works out well for all three brands, and serves the greater good of our industry.
Change is never easy, but with the right vision, it can be quite refreshing.