Enhance Your Business: Get 1:1 Advice from an Industry Genius

When it comes to building sales compensation plans, or marketing campaigns, or cyber strategies, wouldn’t it be great to ask a genius? Now you can at the CompTIA Communities & Councils Forum.

Enhance Your Business Get 11 Advice from an Industry Genius

When it comes to analyzing your team’s sales compensation plans, or figuring out where your latest marketing campaign went awry, or what new security tools could help you protect your clients, wouldn’t it be great to ask a genius? CompTIA members will get that chance again at the CompTIA Communities & Councils Forum and a CompTIA Community – UK & Ireland meeting in Manchester, UK.

CompTIA has recruited a cadre of experts in numerous fields (including sales, finance, leadership and strategy, MSP growth strategies and cybersecurity) to answer questions and give one-on-one advice in 25-minute sessions from 12:45-13:45 pm on 5 March in Manchester, UK, and March 12 from 1:00-3:30 pm at CCF in Chicago. The meetings have proven quite popular, so interested community members should schedule a session soon because space is limited.

Learn from Experienced Experts

Hannah Lloyd, vice president of channel sales at inSOC and CompTIA 2021-22 Member of the Year, said the knowledge shared between the geniuses and participants is a valuable benefit that can help a business plan for future growth or help solve a current business problem.

“I have always been humbled at those who have trusted me and valued my advice, especially those I have looked up to over my time in the industry,” said Lloyd, who served as a genius at previous events. “I have learnt so much from these conversations, and they have enabled me to become a better leader myself.”

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The Genius Café also creates an environment of trust—as both MSPs and vendors get a unique opportunity to speak openly, one that they may not normally get. “This inspires opens conversations and connections to be made for ongoing support,” she said.

Genius Café sessions provide non-bias, insightful content that connects directly to people looking to improve their businesses, said Adam Gittins, president of HTG, who will serve as a genius at CCF.

“Everyone has something that they are really good at, and spending some time with someone that is good at something is a great way to get better at it yourself.  By booking a session, you will have uninterrupted access to someone that has a background in a specific topic and can share what has worked for them.  It’s a great chance to take ideas away that can help in your business,” Gittins said.

David Carpenter, IT director at Weidenhammer, a Reading, Pa.-based service provider, met with a cybersecurity genius at CCF last year and walked away with actionable advice that he was able to implement quickly.

“We had a discussion about security priorities and it helped me to identify some gaps in services we provide as well as how we protect our own information,” Carpenter said. “Since then, we have partnered with a company who provides a managed detection and response solution and a security operations center as a service. This allows protection for our customers—and us—by providing 24x7 monitoring and alerting.”

Meeting with a genius allowed Paco Lebron, CEO and founder of ProdigyTeks, a Chicago-based MSP, to turn some operational issues and internal team miscommunications into an actionable plan for improvement.

“It was great to just speak my mind and have the genius help translate what I am asking into a much simpler set of problems to take on one step at a time,” Lebron said. “Not only were we able to leverage personality tests to better understand our team, it allowed us to ensure the culture of the business stood side by side with the client experience we were delivering. I would absolutely suggest MSPs take a moment to visit the cafe to really discuss some of the ideas/and fundamentals they need most.”

Come for the Advice, Stay for the Member Networking

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In many cases, the 1:1 sessions glean tips and insights that can start to be implemented into businesses almost immediately, said previous Genius Café participants

“I am excited to work one on one with MSPs, sharing ideas on how they can increase their revenue by understanding their part in their customer’s ecosystem, and how to identify and leverage partnerships and strategic alliances,” said Greg Plum, director, North America, at PartnerReady, who will serve as a genius at CCF. “While I enjoy facilitating classroom sessions, personal, customized strategy sessions are invariable more impactful for the MSP.”

MSPs scheduling a Genius Café session should come prepared with prioritized questions in order to maximize time, said Corey Kirkendoll, president and CEO of 5K Technical Services. “Just remember you get out what you put in. Have a plan and I assure you that you will not be disappointed,” he said. “I got great advice. It was that easy to do and relevant to help us succeed in a real-life marketing issue we were facing.”

The Genius Café is a valuable benefit for CompTIA Community members because it gives participants insights into both opportunities and challenges that they may not otherwise see or recognize.

“I would definitely recommend that other MSPs take advantage of this offering. It provides a great opportunity to sit one on one with someone to ask questions and get their perspective and feedback on your situation,” said Carpenter. “I have already signed up for a spot in this year’s Genius Café.”

The more honest you are with a genius, the better response you will get, Gittins said.

“I have enjoyed serving as a genius because I have sat on the other side of that table and listened to others help me get better at things that I wasn’t the best at and was able to get better,” he said. “For me, it’s a way to give back a little for the value I received listening to others. I also get good ideas out of it, because when you start a conversation with someone and share your ideas, you can listen to what they are doing and expand your own knowledge too.”

The Genius Café will be open from 12:45-13:45 on 5 March at the CompTIA Community - UK&I meeting in Manchester, UK, and from 1:00-3:30 pm on March 12 during the CompTIA Communities & Councils Forum in Chicago. For more information, contact [email protected].

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