Microsoft Collaboration, CTO viewpoint, and New York

The blog for Office 365, Power Apps, Flow, SharePoint, cloud, ….. plus a little NYC

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Four Questions To Ask Before Hiring Your Next Tech Salesperson

This was an article that I wrote for Forbes:

Being one of the owners of SoHo Dragon, a software application development company, I’m somewhat involved on the sales side of the business, and we have been interviewing a few salespeople to help grow the sales pipeline.

One secret that every tech company should know is that members of the technical staff should be a part of the interview process with a salesperson so that IT feels appreciated and truly understands how its output can be sold.

Read full article

What is it like becoming a Microsoft Value Added Reseller

Today there are over 300,000+ Microsoft partners reselling the Microsoft shiny stuff like CRM, ERP and document management tools and as any MS partner will tell you, there has been good, great, and wobbly years, but as any sales person will tell you, the growth curve is not always a straight line.

I would not say becoming a Microsoft Partner was the best career move I ever made, but it was certainly up there in the top 3 decisions I have made in my 25-year career.

Recently I was featured on the podcast series Life Skills That Matter, hosted
by Stephen Warley, where I explained the value-added reseller concept and the Microsoft partner model. He was a bit surprised that this existed with Microsoft and that partners where required to install and deploy its software. Microsoft does exist beyond Word and Excel.

The podcast: Creating a Value Added Reseller (VAR) Business With Peter Ward

Are you familiar with a business model called Value Added Reseller or VAR? If you aren’t, it’s another interesting self-employment option I’m excited to introduce you to!

Peter Ward is the co-owner of SohoDragon, a Microsoft partner or VAR based in New York City.

Useful Links

To become a Microsoft VAR

Business Jargon

Well I read this article on the BBC web site, and somewhat cinched as I hear this language all the time, by co workers and clients on conference calls.

Reading the literature from any software company, it do question, who writes the stuff.

But like all Microsoft consultants, it’s important that we are all on the same page, for a helicopter view of the issues, so we can leverage your existing technology, to hit the ball out of the ball park. 🙂

Business 2.0: 50 People who matter

Business 2.0: 50 People who matter.

Interesting is that Ray Ozzie- CTO of Microsoft aurgubly the biggest software company in the whole world, is only listed at 10.

While Marc Benioff (CEO, is listed at 11 and Stewart Butterfield and Caterina Fake (Co-founders, Flickr) is listed at 13.

Do salesforce and Flickr really matter that much?

Gates is listed at 21

Not sure how these figures are compiled.

Has off shoring gone off track?

I was talking to a friend a mine who owns a company that has a development off shoring division in Africa and is closing down this part of her business. She didn’t go into the reasons, but most people get out of a business venture when they aren’t making any money.

IT development off shoring sounds like a good business to be in: No health costs, easy hire and fire policy, and rather cheap labor and communications…a bargain. Right?? Well I remain to be convinced. On a long term perspective and think this market is going to be tough. The problem I see with this trade is that it seems that every country from Guatemala to Greece is entering this line of business, and is competing on one thing…….yes wait for it- PRICE.

I may be brand loyal the quality of Scottish salmon, Belgian beer, German engineering and of course British sports cars, but Pakistani PERL coders, or Siberian SharePoint administrators don’t really put my hand on my wallet.

I feel this is a case of déjà vu of the 70’s when the World Bank convinced most of the 3rd world to adopt an agriculture policy to grow certain crops. To everyone’s surprise there was an over supply problem, with a lot of these countries literature betting the farm on this economic theory. And as Bono will tell you, it’s still being felt today.

One of the problems with off sourcing, particularly of IT to English speaking countries is that it’s difficult to differentiate yourself with your neighboring country who’s doing exactly the same thing.

Yes I know Israel have perhaps better encryption software than Iceland, and India has a reputation of tech support for your desktop screen saver, but these are only 2 countries of the emerging (BRIC) world.

If coding is going to be commoditized like wheat, or steel, then it’s difficult to add value to the product.

Some may say the world is flat, but in some cases so will the profit.