Thursday, January 14, 2010

Filming a Zenith Partner Profile

KPEnterprises was honored this week with a couple of special guests. Jim Milliron from Zenith Infotech and Lynette Bohanan from CommCentric Solutions dropped by to follow us around and see how things tick at KPEnterprises.

The project is roughly described as "A Day in The Life of Karl Palachuk." But you know what they say about science experiments: When you observe something, the fact that you're observing it has an effect on what you observe.

You might think that having a film crew setting up lights and rearranging your bookshelves (tilting every book so it's straight to the camera) would be disruptive. In fact, it was quite the opposite. As each staff member took turns being interviewed it added a little excitement (and some trepidation) to their day. There was a great energy in the office, and a bit of fun.

I only heard bits and pieces of some interviews, but it's very odd to have people talking about you while you're standing right there. It is humbling to hear people talk about how they perceive you. I did get the sense that my staff enjoys our environment. At a minimum I don't think there's a mutiny brewing.

At times it felt like a eulogy. I'm reminded of Monty Python. "I'm not dead yet!"

It's also nice to hear clients and business partners talk about how they rely on us. One of my clients knows way more about me than I thought he did. Of course we've been doing business for nine years and there may have been more than one lunch in that time. But it's interesting to hear someone tell another person about you.

Zenith TV

In case you haven't seen the great stuff being produced by Zenith Infotech, check out

This will be the third "A Day in The Life" video. We were asked to do it earlier, but the production would have required us to be coordinating during my busiest time of year, so we put it off.

Expected release date: February 17th. Bookmark that site.

Previous videos include
- A Day in the Life of: Arlin Sorenson
- A Day In The Life of Mike Cooch

Notice that this page has all kinds of additional information on

- Business Continuity videos

- Channel Pro Success Stories (in conjunction with Channel Pro Magazine

- Xpert Cast videos

- Industry Perspective videos

- Business Solutions Lunch and Learn Webinars

- Partner Perspective videos (I think I've got one in there somewhere)

- Partner Testimonial videos

- Podcasts

- Special Events

And More!

Vendors Training Consultants

As you browse through everything at you'll be stunned by how much high-quality video is produced by Zenith Infotech. I visited their studio awhile back and was impressed. I learned from Jim yesterday that they've expanded it since then.

Why would a vendor spend so much time, effort, and money producing materials for partners? A lot of this stuff is simply "best practices" information.

The answer is pretty simple: Train your partners to be better business people and they'll be more successful. One measure of that success is that you'll sell more product! Duh.

Of course MOST vendors don't put out this much effort.

I think the first time I saw a vendor put out massive effort to train partners and raise the professionalism of the entire industry was with Microsoft and Intel. In different ways they spent huge amounts of time and money to provide materials that helped their partners be successful. And they still do, of course.

The first time I noticed this in the SMB / MSP space it was with ConnectWise and Autotask. While I've never talked to Arnie or Bob about this directly, it's clear that their philosophy for getting their product adopted in small consulting companies had to involve education. Why would someone pay bunches of money to buy tools that help you run your business unless they understood the big picture?

And the big picture for a professional consulting company is very different than it is for a sole entrepreneur who's just trying to get a client or two.

The problem with this emphasis on education is that it can become overwhelming. Look at that list of audio and video trainings from Zenith. It grows every day. Then add all the trainings from Microsoft, Intel, HP, ConnectWise, Autotask, Belkin, Cisco, SonicWall, Xerox, and a hundred other vendors. I'll bet more than 24 hours worth of GOOD information is pumped into our community every day!

I am grateful to Zenith for this opportunity to spotlight our little company. We're certainly not the largest partner they have.

I'm also grateful to Zenith for all the other great information they put out on a regular basis. It is very impressive and represents a real commitment to educating the partners.

Stay tuned here and we'll let you know when the video goes live.


Now Available:
Introduction to Zero Downtime Migrations
Seminar on MP3 Download

1 comment:

  1. Small business

    1. Often we forget the little guy, the SMB, in our discussions of the comings and goings of the Internet marketing industry. Sure there are times like this when a report surfaces talking about their issues and concerns but, for the most part, we like to talk about big brands and how they do the Internet marketing thing well or not so well.

    2. The Center for Media Research has released a study by Vertical Response that shows just where many of these ‘Main Street’ players are going with their online dollars. The big winners: e-mail and social media. With only 3.8% of small business folks NOT planning on using e-mail marketing and with social media carrying the perception of being free (which they so rudely discover it is far from free) this should make some in the banner and search crowd a little wary…….


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