The ability to organize something that is in a state of chaos is an amazing talent; unfortunately it is one I do not possess. The ability to manage an AV system that is unorganized is a repercussion of poor design and or installation, and talent will only get you so far. Managing a network that is unorganized is impossible. If you want to deploy reliable and serviceable networks, you must begin with an organized architecture.
Take a look at your staff. How have their job duties changed in the last five years? Most of us have seen firsthand a shrinking of the workforce as dealers are forced to do more with less.
The post-CEDIA EXPO season reminds me of the time as a child shortly after Christmas when something you had looked forward to for so long is now over. I felt like this year's EXPO was a great one for me and our industry as a whole.
The A/V integration market is commonly broken down into two major categories—Residential and Commercial. This dichotomy helps people understand and appreciate the different topics and concerns that are appropriate for a given integration firm or individual project. It is not uncommon for an integrator to be asked what percentage of their business is residential and what percentage is commercial. This is the way we have traditionally broken down our businesses in our own minds. Well, I believe this is becoming a false dichotomy.
A friend of mine shared this piece of wisdom with me: “Caleb, in five years you will be the same person you are today, except for the places you go, the people you meet and the books you read.”
I just got back from InfoComm down in Orlando, Fla. It was a very busy show with great traffic and a lot of talk about how business is rebounding in the commercial space. There were several key takeaways that I noted as I walked the floor, so let me share them with you.
Irecently became a board member of the CEA TechHome Division. My first meeting was last month in Washington D.C. This trip turned out to be a great experience and one that I learned a lot from, so I thought I would recap some of the highlights in this month’s column. During my time in D.C., I attended CES Capitol Hill, our division’s board meeting, the Digital Patriots Dinner and I also met several members of Congress, including my own Congressman from Charleston, Tim Scott, during the CEA Lobby Day. T
Like some of you out there, I own each of the current generation gaming platforms...PS3, Xbox 360 and a Wii. On occasion I will jump online for a quick match. A couple of days this past week I was unable to join any games on the Playstation network because the entire PSN was down.
Once upon a time, you could sell A/V gear and make a decent return on investment. Projects fell from the trees and life was easy.
I am not prone to hyperbole, but if you have read much about the IPv4 (Internet Protocol version 4) address space availability issue lately, you might think the world is coming to an end. What does this really mean for our clients and our businesses? First, let me explain the issue and then I can explain the real-world implications ESCs will face.
Last month I wrote about my meeting with Rear Admiral Deets and two of my take-aways from that meeting—technology upgrades and bandwidth utilization. In this month's column, I will talk about the third key take-away from this same meeting—network security.
I was talking to an integrator at CEDIA EXPO, and he said something other integrators have said, “I only install the control system and A/V gear, not the network. Why should I care about security?”
If anyone doubted that networking and device monitoring has become extremely important to the integration market, they certainly have cause to reconsider after this year's CEDIA EXPO.
The buzz word of the year has got to be efficiency. Everywhere I go people are trying to figure out how to make their businesses more efficient. Efficiency is defined as achieving maximum productivity with minimum wasted effort or expense. This sounds great to me, but what does it mean for our integration businesses?
Have you read Dr. Spencer Johnson's bestseller, "Who Moved My Cheese?" The subtitle says it all: "An A-mazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work."
So, you get the Friday afternoon call from one of your best clients. The "so-and-so" isn't working, and there is an undertone of frustration and anger because this is not the first time he's had to make this phone call.