It’s Friday again! Welcome back to the Intelisys Weekly Roundup, our (mostly) weekly look at the week behind us. What did we get up to?
It’s Friday again! Welcome back to the Intelisys Weekly Roundup, our (mostly) weekly look at the week behind us. What did we get up to?
Intelisys Launches Mobile App
New App Provides Fast Access to Business-Building Tools from any Mobile-Enabled Device
Andrew Pryfogle, Intelysis’ Senior VP, Cloud Transformation, was interviewed at Channel Partners Conference & Expo in Las Vegas, NV, in March 2015. Watch him answer how to have the conversations necessary to uncover opportunities and close big deals in the Cloud space. Follow the link to watch the video or read the full transcript below.
Craig Galbraith: Hi everyone, Craig Galbraith here at the Spring 2015 Channel Partners Conference and Expo. Our own Kelly Teal and I had a chance to sit down with some industry leaders to talk about the big issues that you’re talking about, including Cloud, mobility, security, and much more.
Kelly Teal: Right now, I am with Intelisys’ Andrew Pryfogle. Thank you for being here, Andrew.
Andrew Pryfogle: You bet, glad to be here.
Kelly Teal: Absolutely. So tell me, Intelisys just released the second track of its Cloud Services University certification program.
Andrew Pryfogle: Yeah.
Kelly Teal: What’s the most important thing about this course that you want partners to know?
Andrew Pryfogle: The university we’ve been investing a lot of time and energy in … We believe this whole shift to an as-a-Service model requires a lot of education; frankly, on both the agent’s side and the IT solution provider’s side. Both channels trying to figure out how they converge around Cloud to re-tool their businesses – there’s an enormous opportunity there.
That’s what this University’s all about. It’s about not just teaching the bits and bytes of Cloud, the engineering side of it, although that’s important and there’s a lot of that in there. It’s mostly about how do you sell this stuff, how do you have the conversation, how do you ask the right questions, how do you uncover opportunities? So our first certification track that we launched on February 11th was the Telecom Solutions Professional Certification. We’ve had three hundred and fifty or so people already register for that, sales partners in our communities and other communities; it’s open to the entire industry. That’s been very, very well received.
We then just finished production on our second certification track, the Cloud Computing Solutions Professional. That goes even deeper into Cloud. If the first one gives you the introduction to Telecom, gives you the history of Telecom, the introduction to wide-area networking, into Data Center and Cloud and things like that—kind of a cursory level—this next certification track takes you even deeper, into things like virtual desktop and virtualization technologies, and public versus private versus hybrid. All the really important items on Cloud that you need to be versed in, but most importantly driven by. How do you have the conversation to uncover opportunities and close big deals on the Cloud?
Kelly Teal: In terms of Intelisys’ channel program for 2015, what are some things you have in store for partners?
Andrew Pryfogle: The next big thing for us is, how do we continue to drive growth and help our partners grow their businesses? The announcement yesterday that we made that we’re so, so jazzed about is "Drive for 5!" Literally, we set a goal out in roughly 2008 that said to our partner community, "If you hit a million dollars in billing, you’re going to achieve a Platinum-level status with Intelisys." It was a big, audacious goal. Some people didn’t think it was achievable in monthly billings, with a single master agent like us. Well, one partner hit it. In 2011, Tricia Ward and Brian Newman. They were the first to achieve it and since then, we’ve had five additional partners hit there. Six total partners that have gotten to this goal, which was, for some people, unreachable.
The next big deal is the first sales partner that builds their billing base to $5 million a month in recurring revenue, net new billing each month. Five million dollars? We’re going to write a million dollar check to that partner. A million dollar check. That’s unheard of, in our business. It’s something that we’ve been thinking a lot about. What fires us up as a business is how do we get the sales partner community, the best of the best, the top performers in this community, how do we get them really motivated to take their business to the next level? It’s humbling for us to be able to be a part of that. It’s very, very exciting.
Kelly Teal: Last question. What’s one key piece of advice you think partners should act on in 2015?
Andrew Pryfogle: Yeah. For me, it’s not being afraid to have the conversations with your customers. The partners in our community that are really succeeding right now in Cloud, they’re stepping out kind of right through the face of fear and going in and asking the questions that they may not even know the answers to themselves. Digging into areas that they may not be super knowledgeable in yet. But with the goal that, "I’m just trying to uncover opportunities," and trusting that we’ve got their back. Partners that aren’t afraid to start having those conversations are winning really, really big right now. That would be my encouragement for the rest of the channel. If you’ve been nervous about going into this new area of Cloud communications and Cloud computing and Cloud infrastructure because you don’t feel like you’re expert in it, don’t worry. Don’t let that stop you. Step through that and have those conversations, it’ll pay off big time for you.
Kelly Teal: Excellent. Andrew, thanks for being here.
Andrew Pryfogle: You’re welcome. Thank you.
Kelly Teal: Absolutely.
Intelisys Cloud Services University Releases New Certification Track at Channel Partners Conference & Expo 2015
Intelisys, the nation’s leading Technology Services Distributor and creator of the only Cloud university built exclusively for Channel sales professionals, has released the second certification track from Intelisys Cloud Services University (iCSU), available from CloudServicesUniversity.com on Monday, March 16, 2015.
Timed to launch during Channel Partners Conference & Expo, the iCSU Cloud Computing Solutions Professional Certification Track will dive deeply into the Cloud technologies that are driving phenomenal growth within the Channel.
Since iCSU launched its first certification track for Telecom Solutions Professionals on February 16, 2015, more than 300 Channel sales professionals have registered for the course, with many of them already achieving that first certification.
The Cloud Computing Solutions Professional Certification is the natural progression, given the intense interest but common misconceptions around Cloud, in particular how to identify prospects, move them through the pipeline and close deals.
“This certification is the first of its kind,” commented Andrew Pryfogle, Senior Vice President, Cloud Transformation, for Intelisys. “The feedback we’ve been getting since launching Cloud Services University has been incredible. It’s inspiring new ideas and transformation among our Sales Partners, and I know I speak for everyone at Intelisys when I say I can’t wait to see what our Partners do with this latest certification track. Cloud is booming, and we want to enable our Sales Partners to engage successfully.”
Understanding the Cloud from every key angle is the focus of the certification course, which will cover Virtualization strategies, Big Data, Application Management, Desktop-as-a-Service, Data Migration strategies, and Cloud Storage architectures. Participants will learn about the different types of Cloud silos available, and what workloads make sense where, gaining the knowledge they need to be the voice of clarity for their customers.
“Knowing telco agents and VARs were on an accelerating path of convergence, I was looking to adapt and understand how we could take advantage of this unstoppable shift in the marketplace,” said Gary Keswick, President, Communications Management Group, about the training. “Intelisys Cloud Services University has provided a fast track educational process, helping us understand how we could recreate our agency and ultimately build a consulting practice around Cloud services and substantial contracted revenue we were previously not able to introduce, implement and support for our current and future customers.”
As part of iCSU, the Cloud Computing Solutions Professional Certification Track is self-paced and currently complementary to all IT and telecom professionals. Over the course of 2015, additional certification tracks will be released, including Advanced Data Networking Solutions Professional, UCaaS Solutions, Network & Data Security, and Advanced IT Management.
“I am most of all excited to have completed the Telecom Professional Certification Track,” said Brian Pinnock, Senior Technology Advisor for Intelligent Building Technologies, LLC. “As someone who is not originally from the telecom industry, this training has really given me the confidence to talk about the services that we offer. I have already set up some calls with some of my customers I was reluctant to speak with before because of my lack of knowledge, to talk about how we can be of value to their business.”
By earning an iCSU Certification in one or all of the six competencies, Channel professionals will be better positioned to demonstrate an understanding of the latest Cloud technologies; instill confidence in their clients who will be more trusting with their key Cloud initiatives; achieve a greater degree of success in closing Cloud deals; and gain recognition and a distinct edge in the competitive Cloud services market.
Jay Bradley has served as the President of Technology Services Distributor Intelisys Communications since January 2007, and has been with Intelisys since October of 2002. Jay has been in the telecommunications and related industries since joining MCI in June of 1985. You can reach him at: email@example.com or at 707-238-8107.
What Just Happened?
The Channel is rockin’ this industry … that’s what just happened and it’s happening right now, today! Three and a half short years ago in August 2011, I had the privilege of posting the inaugural blog to this site as Intelisys launched a new website, and began in earnest to tell our story and the stories of our Sales Partners through social media. We took a risk and disclosed for the first time our gross commissions of $36 million in 2011, setting forth a goal to become the first $100 million distributor in the Channel. We took the risk because we wanted to open a conversation around the possibilities and challenge everyone in our community to think big; and we’re glad we did.
Through the strength of the most accomplished Partner community ever assembled, 2015 Intelisys gross commissions will be $110 million on total net billed customer revenue of almost $600 million annually – and we still believe we have only scratched the surface of the enormous opportunity before us!
Back in 2011 we estimated the addressable market opportunity at $100 billion, putting Intelisys’ market share at around .2%. Stated in those terms we would now be at .6% market share, but we believe the addressable market share for Channel partners has grown even bigger. Our acquisition of the Cloud Services Coalition in May 2012 and the growth of Cloud offerings have ignited great new opportunities for our Sales Partners to look beyond traditional telecom services.
Where Do We Go From Here?
Well for starters, we say thank you and continue to celebrate our Partners’ successes every chance we get! Just as Intelisys celebrated its 20th anniversary last December, many of our Sales Partners are hitting growth milestones that several years ago they really didn’t know if they could achieve. Well they did, and they are; and it is very rewarding for us to be a part of.
And while Intelisys will certainly set new revenue growth targets for future years of $200 million and beyond, we tend these days to think of our most important goals being tied to the Sales Partner experience and our role in helping them achieve their goals. As our company grows, we have not lost sight that this is a relationship business – in fact, we’ve never been more committed to helping our Sales Partners build great businesses.
Coming into 2015, we now have three distinct operating regions where our Intelisys Colleagues and the Sales Partners they support share common values and experiences. We recognize deeply the importance of maintaining the intimacy we enjoy with all of our Sales and Supplier Partners, and we will never stray from that.
What we have learned so clearly over our 20 years in business is that we exist to support our Sales Partners, period. Every new Colleague, every new program and initiative goes to support that mission. Through our Partner Investment and Advanced Commissions Programs, Intelisys has provided almost $4 million in loans and working capital to support our Partners’ growth. Our regional Mindshare events and local Intelisys Colleagues are also critical parts of that strategy. The executive mentoring and coaching programs available to our Club TPC Members have grown dramatically in recent years, and are driving exceptional performance improvements for those who participate.
The Intelisys Club TPC Incentive Program and trip awards will continue to be the gathering place for the best of the best, where we can take a breath, have some fun and spend quality time together on a far away beach. And of course our October Channel Connect event in Napa, CA, where Sales and Supplier Partners from across the nation gather to celebrate the year’s successes, and develop new strategies and relationships for the future.
Cloud, VAR, Cable
Intelisys Sales Partners today deliver well over $1 million per month in new sales of traditional telecom services, and the business is solid and growing. In terms of growth opportunities, our operating mantra for the last couple of years has been “Cloud, VAR, Cable”. Three years ago our Cloud sales were under $25k per month. Today we are well over $100k per month, and fast approaching $200k per month. This is happening, folks! I’m not sure if we are even close to the tipping point yet, but this epic shift is real, and we encourage all of our Sales Partners to jump directly into the deep end and learn how to play in this exploding market.
Just last month Intelisys launched a new online Cloud Services University where Channel sales professionals can learn about all the new Cloud services offerings and earn certifications that will enhance their ability to market these services to their customers. Intelisys Cloud Services University is a game changer for our Partner community and we encourage everyone to be a part of it!
Another strong growth opportunity in recent years has been the shift for traditional IT Solutions Providers to recurring revenue models. We have positioned Intelisys in this community as an enabler, with all the knowledge, tools and resources to help them make this transition as they build new telecom and Cloud services practices. And make no mistake here, this convergence of the traditional agent and solutions provider/VAR Channels is a step-by-step, inch-by-inch process, but the rewards for those with the fortitude to stick it out can be great.
Finally, on the strategic growth front, is the truly awe inspiring cable opportunity that has changed our business forever at Intelisys. In August of 2011 our total net monthly billings in cable were under $200k; today they are over $5.5 million monthly and growing! The whole crazy concept of delivering billion dollar brands through the Channel for the first time appeared to us, early on, to be a once in a lifetime opportunity, and we embraced it. Probably no other growth engine has been shouted from the rooftops more by Intelisys Colleagues in recent years than the opportunity in cable, and we believe this will continue for many years to come.
To Our Supplier Partners
Thank you for everything you do, and for making our business possible! Like most of us in the services delivery business, you tend to hear the negative way more than you hear the positive – kinda goes with the territory, I guess. But on this post, on this day, we say thank you on behalf of our entire Sales Partner community for all of the opportunities you afford us. It’s really a pretty cool business, and the friendships we share with many of you make the hard work fun.
A very smart consultant friend of ours once described a true partnership as one where the partners share the risk – otherwise it’s just a vendor/customer relationship. That hit home with us and reinforced a long standing philosophy at Intelisys that the most productive partnerships are those that eliminate adversarial posturing and communications. We believe in the spirit of true partnership, and that we are all in this together to deliver the best product to our Sales Partners and their customers. This is one of the things that Intelisys is most proud of.
We also understand that many of you were not happy with the FCC’s recent decision on Net Neutrality, and we get it. None of us knows how this will play out in the coming years; and Intelisys has learned how to adapt to changing industry circumstances many times before, and we will here again. What we can commit to is continued top performance as you deal with the large political challenges of the day.
Community, Culture and Genuine Humility
I was playing a round of golf recently with one of our Sales Partners and he asked me in a very serious way, “What is the secret to Intelisys’ success?” I immediately thought of the quality of our Partner community, our very talented Colleagues, a clear mission that folks believe in – but I could tell he wanted more. So I noodled on it for a couple more holes and arrived at a one-word answer: culture!
Culture, not just in the sense of what Intelisys Colleagues stand for, but culture in the sense of what our entire Partner community stands for. What are we all doing here, and why is it important? Are we bringing professionalism and integrity to everything we do? Are we always doing the right thing for our customers? If you have honorable answers to these questions each and every day, then success will find you wherever you are.
Finally, and on behalf of all Intelisys Colleagues, I want to express our deepest gratitude and humbleness to everyone who has been a part of this incredible 20-year journey. We, along with so many of our Sales Partners and competitors, have experienced some of our greatest successes in recent years, and we all have much to be thankful for! I have been playfully accused by some over the years of over playing the gratitude and humility cards, but I respectfully beg to differ.
A couple of years ago I read a great article in the Harvard Business Review that defined the two most critical traits of effective leadership in today’s world – humility and determination. I couldn’t agree more, especially in an environment of growth and success, where we are adjusting to what we call the new normal with each new year. So with that, I am proud to announce a brand new incentive for the Intelisys Sales Partner Community …
Announcing Intelisys Drive for 5! The Million Dollar Prize!!
If there is a single common thread that all of our top Sales Partners share, it is competitiveness! Top Performers love to win, and they really love to win big. As our community has grown over the last several years, and as Intelisys has announced many new Platinum Sales Partners (those billing in excess of $1 million monthly) I am often asked what the next big target is. Today I am completely energized to report that Intelisys is announcing a brand new promotion called Drive for 5!
This promotion will award One Million Dollars to the first Intelisys Sales Partner to reach $5 million in monthly net customer billings. Intelisys will be launching the promotion on April 1, 2015, and it will run until one of our Sales Partners reaches that goal.
There it is Top Performers, a new target to hit along with one million reasons to be the first to get there! Keep an eye out for details on how to participate in this exciting promotion.
What to Remember, What to Do?
One of my favorite Mark Twain quotes is, “The two most important days in your life are the day you are born and the day you find out why.” At the risk of being overly dramatic, I believe one of the reasons I am spinning around the universe on this pale blue dot is to be right here, right now, with all of you. We continue to have an awe inspiring opportunity to shape an entire industry, and we want all of you to be a part of it!
As I said in 2011, our mission is nothing short of a crusade – to enable Top Performing Partners to grow faster, to live better, and to change the landscape of our industry. Right in front of us is an amazing opportunity to grow this Channel by multiples that may seem a little crazy, but it is well within our grasp if we all work together to make it happen.
Thank you again for taking the time to read my post. As I approach my 30th year in this industry, I feel like a kid all over again. How lucky we all are to be able to build great companies and do good work. Helping to build a great future for our Partners, our Colleagues, and our families is what Intelisys is all about. We welcome you to join us!
To read Jay’s 2011 blog, Awe Inspiring Opportunities, click here.
To watch Jay talk more about the new Drive for Five!, click on the video below:
To watch Jay talk more about the new Drive for Five!, click on the video below:
Drive for 5! with Jay Bradley
Drive for 5! with Jay Bradley
Intelisys is honored to win the Telecom Association’s 2014 Award for Best Overall Master Agency. For the first time in many years, TA restructured how they measured the best Master Agency in the industry. The results were overwhelming. We are honored and humbled and can’t thank our top producing Sales Partners enough, as they truly are the best in the industry. Read the Telecom Association press release below for more information.
“Partner’s Choice” Award Showcases Intelisys’ Ongoing Industry Leadership
Intelisys, a seasoned technology services distributor, won the distinction as the Best Overall Master Agency in the industry as determined by validated 2014 reviews from the 3,800 members of Telecom Association, a professional membership organization of telecom and technology consultants, agents, brokers and sales partners founded in 1996.
Selection as a “Partner’s Choice” Award winner showcases Intelisys’ 20 year commitment to supporting their Sales Partners in growing their businesses and achieving their goals.
“Our association members are heavily experienced technology industry consultants and channel sales partners that have compared all the best and affordable vendors against one another before recommending one or two to their business clients who view them as trusted advisors”, stated Telecom Association’s Executive Director, Dan Baldwin. “They know which vendors to watch out for and which ones to recommend so having them review Intelisys as the ‘Best Overall Master Agency’ means Intelisys is both trusted and proven as the top technology services distributor by their Sales Partners, the top producers in the industry.”
It’s not by chance that Intelisys won this category in 2014. While business end users are exacting in their technology solution requirements, the independent Sales Partners, and reviewing members of Telecom Association, are even more so.
“For 20 years, Intelisys has focused exclusively on the nation’s top producing Sales Partners,” said Andrew Pryfogle, Intelisys’ Senior Vice President of Cloud Transformation. “The ‘best of the best’ are extremely demanding, so we’re constantly evolving with new programs and processes to meet and exceed their demands, whether through our diverse supplier portfolio, our presales engineering, our Cloud Services University, or by building the largest and most responsive back office in the industry. We are deeply humbled and grateful to win this award, and sincerely thank our Sales Partners for honoring us with this award.”
Smith Takes the Helm as VP of Partner Sales and Business Development, Central Region
Intelisys today announced the promotion of Brandon Smith to Vice President, Partner Sales and Business Development of the Central Region. Smith, previously the Director of Partner Sales for the region, will now report directly to President Jay Bradley.
In his new role, Smith will leverage his 15-plus years experience in telecom to support Intelisys’ top-performing Sales Partners in the Central Region, which includes TX, OK, LA, AR, KS, MS, MO, NE, IA, IL, IN, MI, WI, MN, ND, OH, and SD. Specifically, Smith will help Sales Partners grow their businesses, create and execute strategic initiatives, and penetrate new markets. In addition, Smith will lead new Sales Partner recruitment efforts in the region and will be responsible for all aspects of sales and sales management.
“Intelisys has one goal – to consistently meet the demands of the country’s top producing Sales Partners,” said Intelisys President Jay Bradley. “Brandon’s promotion is a testament to the fact that he has consistently exceeded their expectations and ours. I couldn’t be more thrilled to welcome Brandon to the senior management team.”
Smith’s new role was created to serve the rapidly growing Sales Partner community in the Central Region, which he has supported since joining the Intelisys team in June of 2012. In October 2014 one of Smith’s newest Sales Partners, BroadReach, was named the “Top Growth West” award winner for Intelisys.
“Brandon has been nothing short of amazing to work with. His relentless focus on Sales Partner success has helped us achieve our most aggressive goals,” said BroadReach Owner Tom McKeown. “He always puts his Sales Partners first and has been a critical resource for our success.”
“The Central Region is growing at unprecedented levels and I’m proud to be in the middle of it all,” Smith said. “I’m especially excited about this new role at Intelisys because it enables me to go deeper and support even more Sales Partners in achieving their goals. It’s going to be an exciting 2015.”
Join Intelisys’ top-producing partner community as they converge for three jam-packed days at an exclusive location in Northern California. You’ll be surrounded by the top minds in the Cloud and telecommunications industry as we converge to mastermind business best practices and to celebrate the success of the industry’s top performers. Learn More Here.
Thanks to everyone who has reached out to us after the Napa Valley earthquake over the weekend. While some colleagues had some pretty extensive home damage, no one was seriously injured. We’re extremely grateful for that.
For all those asking, Channel Connect on October 8 is still very much ON. It’ll take more than an Earthquake to sidetrack the Channel’s premier networking event.
The Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa has recently been remodeled and they were very prepared structurally for such an event. More on that from their website here:
Thanks again for all your phone calls, emails, and texts. It’s times like these that make us appreciate the things we have now more than ever. Most of all, we’re particularly grateful that everyone is safe and we can continue serving the top producing Sales Partners in the world.
We can’t wait to meet up with all of you in Napa Valley at Channel Connect.
If you are a current Sales Partner and need more information or haven’t RSVP’d yet, please email us ASAP at ChannelConnect@Intelisys.com or contact your Channel Manager.
If you are not a Sales Partner right now, but are interested contact us at Info@intelisys.com for more information.
The "unofficial" official agenda for CLOUD LIVE! has been released. We’ve got a really great set of speakers and participants joining us on Thursday, August 14. The event is scheduled to take place during the following time period:
8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. PST
If you haven’t signed up yet, you can do so right here.
8:30 – 9 a.m. PST: Keynote
9:30 – 10:30 a.m. PST: Panel 1: The Cloud Eco-System
More and more cloud solutions require multiple parties. Platform vendors, software vendors, hardware vendors, integration partners…all needing to come together to deliver a complete and seamless solution to the customer. What role does the sales partner play in this? Is there a need for a Cloud GC (general contractor) that quarterbacks the deal, that marshals all the necessary parties? What are the dangers/pitfalls of that approach and how do you avoid them? Is this danger or differentiator?
11:00 – 12:00 p.m. PST: Panel 2: Having the Cloud Business Conversation
Cloud can be a very technical sale and having the technical prowess is key. However, too often we overlook the critical business drivers that are behind the Cloud decision. Being able to position the right business outcomes with C-level executives can separate you from other technical sales people who are pigeon-holed in the world of bits and bytes. You can lead a horse to water AND you can make him drink…if you know the right levers to pull. In this panel, we’ll discuss the hidden conversations that must be had with senior executives in order for any Cloud transition to get traction.
12:30 – 1:30 p.m. PST: Panel 3: Voice to Compute
Many sales partners are very comfortable with the voice conversation, whether it be legacy telco or next gen SIP or Hosted IP. We know the decision makers involved and the issues driving deals forward. We’re comfortable with the TCO arguments and the overall financial model. However, moving from this conversation to compute can be dicey. The vocabulary is different. The decision makers/influencers may change. The selling process changes as I may need to engage supplier resources earlier and rely on them more heavily. Does the pivot require a different skill set? Do I learn it, or partner for it? Moving from voice to compute can blow open opportunities, but can also blow up deals. How do you do the former without the latter?
2:00 – 3:00 p.m. PST: Panel 4: Vertical Selling: Healthcare, Finance, and Hyper Growth Companies
The better you can speak someone’s language, the more likely they’ll assume you know how to solve their problems. Vertical selling is all about knowing the common issues, priorities, and drivers behind technology decisions. Whether it be knowing how to speak to senior level executives in regulation-rich verticals like healthcare and finance, or understanding what is driving hyper growth companies and the unique challenges they face, there are common and predictable patterns you can leverage. In this session, we’ll discuss exactly the terminology, technology, objections and drivers that will help you win time and time again.