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Archive for April, 2012

For the past 1 ½ months I have been using MyFitnessPal.com along with friends from my Producers Club group. For a couple years, at least, I have been pretty disciplined in monitoring my exercise activity and weight on a daily basis. For a while I was even documenting the times I would go to bed and get up (thanks to my FitBit).

My consistent exercise has been on the treadmill. Time goes faster when I am watching a movie. Our little TV in the exercise area has the built-in VCR so I have been watching all of my movies on VHS. Yes, VHS still works. The Forrest Gump movie was one of my recently watched films. Some great one-liners come from that movie including “Life is like a box of chocolates; you never know what you’re gonna get.”

If this saying is true, then it is my responsibility to position myself to determine what kind of “chocolates” I want in my box and be open to surprises. I prefer milk and white chocolate treats, yet in most boxes there are dark chocolates and funny filled ones. During the month of April my “box” will be filled with a lovely variety of activities (or chocolates) including a family vacation to Washington, DC. There my family and I will learn more than I would ever imagine between the tours (guided and self-guided). Without a doubt, I’ll leave DC with an enhanced sense and pride of our American heritage and history. From DC I will fly to Nashville for Boot Camp where a “red box” of chocolates will await me.

This will be my third consecutive pilgrimage to Nashville for the Robin Robins Business and Marketing Boot Camp where I will be inspired by the speakers, share experiences with my peers including the Pitbulls (Grrrrr) and come away feeling like the fire hose was turned on and wouldn’t shut off. My Pitbulls accountability group members will all be there which will enable us to rise to the next level of performance in the year to come. Familiarity and shared goals enable groups like ours and like my CMIT Pacesetters group to collaborate better because our comfort level is heightened. Believe you me, we need a solid comfort level because each of us is destined for a hot seat when we
may not be following through or performing at the level to which we committed to ourselves and the group as a whole.

Last and very far from least in April Phil and I will be attending our 8th CMIT convention. I’m proud to say that we haven’t missed one yet. Hoping the weather is beautiful in Lake Tahoe even though I will be inside the majority of the time. The camaraderie with my CMIT peers and the nurturing of relationships with our strategic alliances who help my CMIT Denver operation grow and flourish is very rewarding. There will be more to say about this (“That’s all I have to say about this,” said Forrest.) in the May newsletter where I hope to share news of new accolades for our Denver office. It’s nice to be recognized for effort, success and collaboration by one’s peers and industry. And, to be quite honest, it doesn’t hurt to leverage this with my marketing.

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Video chat advance driven by consumer, not corporate applications

 

Consumer-grade, high definition video conferencing applications such as Skype, ooVoo, Apple’s FaceTime and iChat may seem like commonplace features now, about as exciting as email.

It’s easy to forget that just a few years ago, hi-def video conferencing was the province of corporations with their own systems costing thousands of dollars — a situation that tended to freeze out small business owners, who were driven back on the low-grade video conferencing options available up until the mid-2000s (or, more commonly, driven back to the tried-and-true, but obsolete, conference call).

The problem with conference calls, aside from their being as outdated as the Walkman, is that they’re just not as effective as video conferencing. People simply communicate better when they can see as well as hear each other, and video conferencing that’s spotty or lacks high-quality audio or video resolution gets in the way of effective communication.

That’s why, when providers began developing high-quality consumer-grade video conferencing a few years ago, IT companies serving the small business market recognized the potential for a massive shift in the way companies communicated with clients and each other.

What’s happening in the IT industry now is that innovations in the consumer realm are driving demand in the business sphere, whereas traditionally it’s been the other way around. It’s tremendously exciting for IT businesses that serve small businesses because devices like the iPad, on sale for reasonable prices for broad consumer use, create the expectation that businesses will use the devices, too — and that opens up the field for technology providers to offer all kinds of different packages that take advantage of this new market.

Take, for example, CMIT Solutions’ new visual collaboration package, CMIT Impression, which integrates not only new devices but new partners. CMIT Impression is a collaboration package that offers high-definition video conferencing, interactive presentations, virtual whiteboarding, document sharing and more via a conferencing “bridge” that can accommodate up to 12 users from anywhere in the world and makes full use of a 55-inch giant touchscreen tablet that operates as a big-screen television and fully operational PC.

CMIT Solutions partnered with InFocus, which developed the 55″ tablet, and Vidtel, which developed the conferencing bridge, to develop the package. The more consumers discover and master high-quality consumer-grade services, the more the business marketplace will drive demand for new services, and the more opportunities IT companies will have to market and sell them and cooperate with other providers to develop them. It’s a transformative time, and CMIT Solutions is at the forefront of the new movement.

Want to find out more about CMIT Impression? Check us out and ask for a Free consultation on CMIT Impression by clicking here.

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Upon returning from my annual IT Sales and Marketing Boot Camp in Nashville I had to pause and think about all the information, presentations and peer discussions that I had consumed over a four day period. The analogy of turning on the fire hose is so apropos for such an experience. There were superb speakers that were brought in and not all were focused on marketing. However, one common thread for many of our speakers was to find your passion and don’t let obstacles or fear get in the way of your own success and happiness and doing something great.

Dr. Nido Qubein, the CEO of High Point University and on the boards of many companies including Great Harvest Bread, came to the U.S. as a teenager with $50 to his name and 40 years later, he is an unequivocal success. At High Point the almost 5,000 students receive a great education and a magnificent life experience not to be surpassed by any Ivy League school. They even have a Director of WOW to ensure that there is high value at his institution and all the tiny irritants have been removed.

CMIT owners with Patrick

We heard from an Afterburner team member who is a Top Gun. Don’t tell me that fear, challenges and obstacles don’t fly in his face going at 9 times the speed of sound. Patrick “Lips” Houlahan spoke about flawless execution which does not equal perfection. Flawless execution includes looking at internal and external threats or obstacles that can affect us in reaching our goals. Having a “debrief” after every campaign or project is crucial and documenting your “lessons learned.” Before you embark upon a project, think about all the “What If’s” with the hope that you are ready for dealing with change in plans. By the way, the Afterburner team had an impact on the reigning Superbowl champion New York Giants.

Last Friday afternoon we had a surprise Super Hero appear to inspire us about overcoming challenges. Lou Ferrigno, former World bodybuilding champion and star of The Incredible Hulk tv show, shared with us how he was presented with an obstacle at a very early age – he became deaf from an ear infection. From the riducule from kids to literally learning how to speak and then at the age of 21 to become the world’s bodybuilding champion showed us his passion and desire to overcome and surpass any obstacles in his way.

Words of wisdom from my industry peers included my friend Peter Verlezza saying “Set a Goal, Take a Step, Do Something!” John Motazedi from Joplin, Missouri won the Better Your Best marketing contest in spite of the tornado devastation last May and said “You Have to Implement What You Learn.” Someone else said that “if you are getting the results you want, there is no need to change what you are doing. If you’re not getting the results you want, you need to change the system.”

A true takeaway for business as well as everyday life came from Robin Robins herself when she said “Never Complain About A
Blessing.” Two other golden nuggets from Robin that I will work on for my own improvement is that “Overwhelm is a choice” and “Stay Mentally and Physically Fit (like our super heroes to the left) To Keep Your Energy High.”

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