The Power of Community

Bill & Sons, Trent and Trevor

Bill & Sons, Trent and Trevor

The Power of Community

This is the unofficial official last word on Sage Summit 2013. A lot of positives have been written about this year’s conference. I’ve heard very little negative and its success is due to the work of the entire Event team. As of this writing they’re already meeting to plan for next year’s invasion of Sin City, Las Vegas!

Even though the doctors have told me not to plan out that far it’s my goal to be in Las Vegas next year enjoying what has long become my favorite conference. As my doctor told me she’s been wrong 100% of the time, there is something to be said for consistency.

It was very evident to me this past Summit that the group that I started in May of 2008 passed the group status and now sits comfortably on its own as a community. The difference you ask?

The first point is that groups are managed while communities are nurtured.
A ‘group’ has a connotation of people being put together, where a ‘community’ has a connotation that individuals have come togetheron their own.
Is your group perceived as a benefit to its members?
Does your group keep your members engaged and interested?

Let me give you a couple of examples why I think the LinkedIn Group is a community.

Because of my cancer I haven’t been able to earn what I need to cover my monthly expenses, so I had made the decision not to attend. Summit. In May I received an email from Joe Noll, ‎President at RKL eSolutions LLC in Lancaster PA. In his email he offered to pay for my registration, airfare and hotel costs. I have never communicated with Joe in any form. I was dumbfounded. When I asked him why he was doing this his answer “for all that I’ve done and continue to do for the Sage Community”

My registration was covered by Sage, thanks Ed Kless and to top things off Dave Knorr, Renee Knorr & Cheryl Masseth sent me a check for consulting services that were marginal at best.Bill Sean Tess BorosBill Diana Peter

All the “best of health” wishes, kind words, hugs, finally meeting Sarah Michel, who is the impetus behind this blog; Joe Ward, spending time with Wayne Schulz, Robert Wood, Diana Waterman and many others.

A community band together in times of need helps those that need the help. I’m sure there are other stories out there like mine. The truth is, I had too much pride to publicize my situation and I know I’m not the only one. How can people help if they don’t know? There is a community all around you know that will help. Use it when need and more important help those that need your help.

My only wish for this community after I’m gone is that it retains its sense of a community and continues to grow by attracting quality members.
Pascal Bill Cannons
Hope to see you all In Las Vegas

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Make the Most of Sage Summit in D.C.

Written By: Joe Langner EVP, General Manager Sage Mid-Market Solutions

Over the last year, we’ve gone from being product-line focused to a customer- and market-led organization. At last year’s Sage Summit, we laid the foundation and infrastructure for the future and prioritized our portfolio to enable us to increase investments in areas, such as cloud and mobility. Last year’s conference was a huge success, and based on your valuable feedback and the considerable progress we’ve made, Sage Summit 2013 will be our biggest, and should prove to be our best event ever. The largest education and networking event for Sage customers and partners, we expect 4,000 members from the Sage community to attend.

In his opening keynote, Sage North America CEO Pascal Houillon will discuss the Sage vision, what’s new and what’s coming, new cloud service offerings, and more.

The partner portion of the conference will bring you the latest information on strategy and products. Like no other conference, Sage Summit will help you become more productive, push the envelope, hear what’s working for others, and bring a new energy to your workplace. Sage Summit 2013 offers many different ways to learn—from scheduled breakouts to hands-on labs to the innovative new Idea Xchange sessions. Regardless of which product you use or what field of work you’re in, the topics are certain to be relevant and interesting to you.

At the Sage Marketplace Live Expo, you will get a hands-on look at specific applications and be able to talk with software developers who are as committed to your success as we are.

The innovative concept of Sage City builds on the networking aspect of the conference and facilitates business discussions and alliances. We are excited about the opportunity this provides to customers to meet like-minded peers, share ideas, and overcome similar business challenges.

On Monday, July 22, Sage executives and thought leaders will lead Super Sessions that offer deeper insight into topics from customer experience to the future of Sage products:

  • Understanding the Sage Product and Technology Strategy
  • How to Map the Customer Experience
  • Growing Your Business Through Solutions-Based Selling—Greg Hammermaster, president, Sage Payment Solutions, and I are leading this session.
  • Fundamentals of High-Performing Firms—How to Get (and Keep) a Competitive Edge

Then on Monday night, July 22, let loose and have some fun at our not-to-be-missed annual partner party! This year’s event is all about good times in The District, with themed hangouts and locally inspired eats. Plus enjoy games, activities, and even a table tennis tournament. But mostly, come by to enjoy the open bar, live music from partner bands, and a chance to greet old friends and make some new ones.

On Wednesday, July 24, Sage presents A Night at the Smithsonian for customers, exhibitors, and business partners with a six-day pass. This private party is unlike any other you’ve ever experienced. For one night, the Sage community will take over the Smithsonian Institute’s National Museum of American History: Journey through some of the most important American stories; get a firsthand look at the Old Glory Flag; check out Dorothy’s ruby slippers and other American icons. Plus enjoy great food, fun games, and great company.

Sage Summit week marks a new beginning for Sage in North America as we prepare to move to the second stage of our journey, which is accelerating to the cloud.

In addition to coming to the Partner Days of Sage Summit 2013, I encourage you to reinforce the value proposition that we deliver to customers, by attending the Customer Days of the conference with your customers, as well. Thank you to all our Sage business partners who are investing your time and money to attend. We appreciate your commitment and loyalty.

I look forward to seeing you at the conference. If we’ve not yet met, please introduce yourself to me, and if we have, be sure to come by and say hello.
JoeLangner_mini

Warmest regards,

Joe Langner EVP, General Manager Sage Mid-Market Solutions

Sage Summit 2013

Sage Summit 2013

Even The Social Media Newbie Needs Tips, Especially The Newbie…..

Liver Cancer Pin

Be Yourself: Social media is just that. It’s social.  People want to see who you are and what you stand for.  Join the conversation; show some of your personality. But don’t try to sell your readers. One of the biggest turnoffs is being sold to.
Be Humble: Those just starting out in social media often try to establish themselves as experts or gurus within their field. Like in real life, no one likes a know-it-all. It’s crucial that you learn how to engage your readers fans without alienating them.
Find Your Niche: Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are not the only social networking platforms out there. When creating your social media strategy, it is more important to find out where your clients and customers are than it is to have a presence on Facebook or Twitter that may not get you the conversion rates you seek.
Follow Interesting People: Everyone needs a mentor, someone who is experienced in their field and who is willing to share their knowledge.  Asking questions is a great way to gain knowledge.  And remembering to pay it forward is also key.
Don’t annoy your followers: A good social media goal is to be helpful first. Trying to shamelessly promote your brand or business is a sure way to annoy and alienate your followers.  Remember, engagement comes first, then sales will follow.
Numbers aren’t everything: Social Media isn’t about the number of followers you have or how many fans. It’s about creating a conversation with your audience that will hopefully lead to the creation of loyal, repeat customers for your business. Don’t be discouraged by your number of followers or about one rude person you encounter in cyberspace.  Focus on creating good content, establishing real relationships and being helpful
Share The Love: Great content is meant to be shared. Posting, re-tweeting and +1 are all way to say to your followers that you value what they are doing.  And you’ll likely find that the more you do for others, the more they’ll do for you.Give Credit Where Credit is Due: When you borrow someone else’s stuff, give them credit. Plagiarism is still plagiarism, even in the cyber-world.
Follow Back: No explanation necessary.  It’s just the nice thing to do!
Know when to turn it off: When all is said and done in this 24/7 world of social media, sometimes you have to know when it’s time to shut it down. It will still be there when you wake up.

Bill Kizer
760.518.2493
San Diego, CA. 92083
williamkizer52@gmail.com

sage summit 2013

Bill is recognized as a top performing senior level executive with multiple years of proven success in sales, management and business development

He’s considered a leader in Sage Software ERP solutions, business-to-business direct sales and business development. He’s developed successful sales teams. He’s adept at analyzing growth opportunities to meet corporate objectives. He’s also been successful in building an online Sage LinkedIn Community with 8,200+ World Wide members.

Going To Sage Summit 2013?

sage summit 2013 square logo
The timing for this blog isn’t an accident. I wrote it specifically to be finished around Sage Summit 2013.

If you have questions about products and services and which Partners provide the best, look around while you’re at Summit. You’ll find enough quality VAR’s to answer any questions you might have. If you’re a customer attending and you don’t have a Sage VAR that you’re currently working with here’s your opportunity to find the best. They’ll be easy to spot; they’re usually the ones standing in booths, attending lots of sessions and you’ll usually find them between sessions talking with other VARs about software.

What factors make you want to return to a retail store, a vendor or a service provider? Is it price? Is it location or is it something even more?

One of my favorite quotations was written by Benjamin Franklin; “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten?”

What does that mean to you as a consumer or should it mean anything at all to you? My answer is “Yes it should.”

Saving money doesn’t mean buying the lowest priced products or services. It means buying products or services that offer the best value. This can be stripped down to 3 words, Focus on Value.

Traits to Look For In Your Sage Software Partner….

Do they have integrity, passion, & honesty? Or do you have to check and re-check every invoice they send you knowing that you’re going to have a less than pleasant conversation with them about the “Holy Cow” additional costs that you hadn’t anticipated?

Do you hear from them regularly to tell you about new updates, versions or maybe just an offer to go to lunch? Or, do they call just to remind you that your annual maintenance and support fees are due?

Do you recommend them to friends or business associates who are looking for ERP software?

If your “VAR” isn’t providing you with quality service like the ones that have been mentioned then maybe what you have is a Re-Seller, not a VAR.

If your software partner doesn’t appear to offer much beyond the ability to sell software I would refer to them as a Re-Seller. A Re-Seller doesn’t offer additional services, usually doesn’t have the resources to provide those services and generally has to charge you more because they have to pay an outside resource to provide those services.

Our clients deserve the best service that’s available. They trust that they’re getting the best service. It’s incumbent upon us to provide an extraordinary customer experience each and every time that we have a dialogue with them. It’s time that our clients are treated as something other than a quick buck.

If you’re losing more than your fair share of clients for “undetermined” reasons then it’s time to re-examine your business practices. Maybe it’s time to re-evaluate why you’re in business & if it’s just to make money then you’re probably in business for the wrong reasons.

However if providing an extraordinary customer experience for your clients is your number one goal, congratulations, you “get it” and not surprisingly so do your clients. Welcome to the World of VARs

Have Fun At Sage Summit 2013
July 21 – 26

http://na.sage/sagesummit.com

Bill Kizer

Bill Kizer

Bill’s 4th Annual Booths Not TO Miss While At Sage Summit 2013

sage summit 2013
It’s that time of the year again & that means my list of booths not to miss is ready for publication. This year’s list has some repeats but there are some newbies. They’re not listed in any order.

1. Information Integration Group; Booth 1096 Visit Alec & Gary to check out their Add On Solutions like Advanced Distribution Bundle, Material Planning & Production Mgmt, Service Maestro, Rental Maestro, Apparel Maestro, among others.

2. Altec; Booth 858 The Altec Team will be in Booth 858. Stop by to see what’s new in document management

3. Azamba/TechnoTropicBooth: 721. Come see the strides that Peter Wolf & his team are making with 3rd party applications & productivity enhancements to SageCRM         

4. I Business Net: Booth 444. If you want to meet one of Sage’s Top VARs come by & say hi to Gary Feldman

5. Website Pipeline; Booth 491 Come by & see what Brian Seidel & Brian Nunes have to offer in the latest eCommerce solutions.

6. Suntico, Booths 671, 680  Stop by & meet the team of Derek Stewart & Hugh Johnson  & see what’s new in online CRM and private social network that links to your accounts software.

7. TaskCentre; Booth 408  Stop by & let Paul Cannon & Nicole Laurier show you TaskCentre v4.5, a powerful suite of Business Process Management (BPM) technologies that ‘loosely couples’ business applications enabling organizations to automate virtually any employee-driven business process

8. xkzero; Booths 1208, 1209  Paul Ziliak & his team have developed Sage 100 ERP GetX Search & iSales 100 provide Universal Search for the Sage portfolio.

9. Net@Work; Booths 802, 803  Meet the Solomon Brothers & see what a full service business consultancy & technology solutions provider looks like. Their expertise goes beyond network solutions & across all areas of business, including accounting/ERP, CRM, manufacturing/distribution, HRMS,  eCommerce, & enterprise/ document management

10. Enbu Consulting; Booth 673 are experts in Sage CRM software. Companies  have been choosing Enbu to deliver CRM based solutions, address key business processes, including sales, marketing &  customer service.

Have Fun!