Page 1

MAY 2017

VOLUME 24 NO. 5

Connecting People, Ideas and Products in the Document Imaging Industry since 1994

engage ‘n exchange

2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS

Leaders, Innovators, and Builders: The Difference Makers of the Document Imaging Industry

Employee and Customer Loyalty Fuel Imagine Technology Group’s Success in a Tough Market

rvice Exc Se

PLATINUM LEVEL

inner • dW

Selling IT Services: Does IT Work?

Office Technology Service Excellence Award

m Awar inu

ence Plat ell

Don’t Spend $25 on $5 Work: How to Make Your Labor More Efficient ENX Magazine

PO Box 2240 Suite 729 Toluca Lake, CA 91610-0240 USA tel: 818-505-0022 fax: 818-505-9972 email: enx@pacbell.net www.enxmag.com

We would like to thank those of you who have sent us address change information. HELP US CONSERVE NATURAL RESOURCES To correct or delete your address from our subscription list, please call, fax or email us.


ANNIVERSARY


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BUILD FOR TOMORROW “GreatAmerica is aligned with our long-term goals and helps us evolve. They are much more than just a leasing company to Da-Com.” Scott Shanafelt, Senior VP and GM Da-Com Corporation


In This Issue

16

DIFFERENCE MAKERS

Leaders, Innovators, and Builders: The Difference Makers of the Document Imaging Industry

54 DEALER SPOTLIGHT

Employee and Customer Loyalty Fuel Imagine Technology Group’s Success in a Tough Market By Michael Nadeau

58 MANAGED SERVICES

Selling IT Services: Does IT Work? By Charles Lamb

EXCELLENCE PLATINUM AWARD 60 SERVICE WINNER

High Efficiency, Tech Empowerment Keeps Service Quality High at The Office Advantage By Michael Nadeau

54

64 SERVICE MANAGEMENT

Don’t Spend $25 on $5 Work: How to Make Your Labor More Efficient By Ken Edmonds

66 PRINTER TECH TIP

HP Laserjet Pro M402, M403, M426mfp, M427mfp : Continuous ‘Load Paper’ Message By LaserPros

60 6

68 •

www.enxmag.com | May 2017

DISPLAY ADVERTISERS INDEX We Saw It In ENX Magazine


[ WE CALL IT THE WORKPLACE OF THE FUTURE ... TM

YOU CALL IT A GAME CHANGER ]

With Konica Minolta, it’s a whole new ballgame. Our portfolio of unified smart solutions is transforming the nature of work itself, allowing your employees to engage no matter where they are; and boosting productivity, efficiency and collaboration. Because work is not where you are; work is what you get done. #reshapework | reshapework.com KONICA MINOLTA BUSINESS SOLUTIONS U.S.A., INC. 100 Williams Drive, Ramsey, New Jersey 07446 © 2017 KONICA MINOLTA BUSINESS SOLUTIONS U.S.A., INC. All rights reserved. KONICA MINOLTA and the KONICA MINOLTA logo are registered trademarks or trademarks of KONICA MINOLTA, INC. “Workplace of the Future” is a trademark of Konica Minolta Business Solutions U.S.A., Inc. (Konica Minolta).


Impacting Our World

Staff

T

he editors of ENX are loathe to play favorites among its monthly children, but suffice to say the May issue holds a special place in our hearts. Each year, we spend months poring through nominations from the document imaging community to develop a large cadre of industry players who have left their mark as Difference Makers.

Susan Neimes Publisher & Managing Editor

The process is as exhausting as it is enlightening. For your consideration, we offer short bios from 64 game changers among the endless pool of dealers, suppliers, manufacturers, financial institutions, consultants and service providers. Some names will no doubt be quite familiar to you, others are among the industry’s best-kept secrets.

Erik Cagle

Not all of these Difference Makers are corner office executives, but each has done his/her part to advance the document imaging cause in a unique way that merits recognition.

Editorial Director

There are numerous common threads that span the quotes provided by the nominating participants. Descriptors such as innovative, visionary, leadership, responsive, enthusiasm, energetic, problem-solver, expertise, passion, honesty and integrity are sprinkled throughout. We personally thank all of those individuals who took the time to put pen to paper (or keyboard to email) to nominate this year’s difference makers. So sit back, relax and allow these testimonies to change the way you think about our vibrant and 2017 compelling industry. Take heart in THE knowing it is people such as these who will continue to drive its future.

Michael Nadeau

Congratulations to all of the honorees!

Ronelle Ingram

Erik Cagle

Contributing Editor

DIFFERENCE MAKERS

Contributing Editor

Editorial Director

Contributors Christina Kim

KEN EDMONDS is currently employed as a District Service Manager for a major copier manufacturer. He has an extensive background in the imaging business, having owned a successful dealership, serving as service manager for multiple dealerships, and as a Document Solutions Specialist for Sharp Electronics. He has more than 40 years of experience in the electronics and computer fields. For further information email him at Ken.Edmonds@CKE-Enterprises.biz.

Editor

engage ‘n ex engage ‘n exchange engage ‘n exchange

México & Latin America

La Revista del Distribuidor Dealer Source

engage ‘n exchange

CHARLES LAMB is the President and CEO of Mps&it Sales Consulting. His firm delivers proven methodologies and processes that assist dealer principals seeking a successful transformation into the managed services space. He’s created complementary solutions including Funnelmaker, Gatekeeper, and Shield IT services. For more info, call 888.823.0006, e-mail him at clamb@mpsandit.com, or visit www.mpsandit.com. 8

www.enxmag.com | May 2017

Corporate Office

Susan Neimes - susan@enxmag.com Erik Cagle - erik@enxmag.com 10153 1/2 Riverside Drive, Suite 729 Toluca Lake, CA 91602 tel. 818-505-0022 • fax. 818-505-9972 ENX Magazine is published monthly by Affinity Business Communications, Inc. Any inquiries should be sent to: enx@pacbell.net or mailed to the corporate office. Copyright ©2017 by ENX Magazine printed in the U.S.A. All reproduction in whole or part is prohibited without written permission. Cover photo from depositphotos.com

We Saw It In ENX Magazine


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NBS / ENX | May 2017


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Image Shown: FAXPHONE L190

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All supplies & Parts available for prompt delivery! ENX Magazine | www.enxmag.com

All prices, rebates, and availability are subject to change without notice. Please call us to confirm.

Nuworld is not responsible for typographical errors or inaccurate specifications. Registered trademarks are properties of their respective owners.


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NBS / ENX | May 2017


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2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

2017

Leaders, Innovators, and Builders:

THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

The Difference Makers of the Document Imaging Industry

F

or the past few months, ENX Magazine has been asking people in the document imaging industry to name individuals who they feel have made an impact on the industry. We call these individuals “difference makers,” and we honor them this month. Every segment of the document imaging ecosystem is represented in our selection: dealers, suppliers, manufacturers, financial institutions, consultants and service providers. These difference makers have earned this recognition in many different ways. Some are innovators, and others are leaders. A savvy business sense helps, too—many have built highly successful companies or steered companies through turbulent times. Many of them support the industry by serving in various organizations, or they act as good citizens by giving back to the communities they serve. A number of this year’s selections have also earned the difference maker recognition in the past. This is a reflection of their reputation and how the industry has valued their contributions throughout their careers. To everyone who has been recognized here as a difference maker, congratulations!

“Jerry is and has always been one of the thought leaders in our industry. His leadership has resulted in a unique company culture committed to the value they bring their customers. His style of inclusiveness makes for a staunchly dedicated and customer-focused organization.” ‒ Ed McLaughlin, Vice Chairman, Innovolt Jerry Blaine Founder, President, and CEO LDI Color Toolbox

Why Jerry Blaine is a difference maker:

Blaine has made his mark with more than 40 years of experience in the office technology industry. He has built LDI into a successful, diversified business, and has been generous sharing his time and experience as a member of various sales, networking, and industry organizations. Blaine holds leadership positions in national provider organizations representing the billion dollar digital office technology marketplace. He has also been recognized for his leadership at LDI as an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year finalist. Blaine has championed several causes, not-for-profit and charity organizations. He has actively volunteered with Big Brothers, acted as a trustee for the National Institute for People with Disabilities, and, for the past several years, served as chairman for The Corporate Source.

Lindsay Bohon Vice President and Managing Director of Sales, Office Equipment Group GreatAmerica Financial Services Corp.

Why Lindsay Bohon is a difference maker:

Since joining in 2005, Bohon has been an example of integrity and humility for GreatAmerica Financial Services. She has earned multiple company awards, including Appreciation and Excellence certificates and Six Sigma designations. She is committed to helping her customers improve their business in any way she can. Bohon brings energy and innovative ideas every time she enters the room. continued on page 17

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www.enxmag.com | May 2017

We Saw It In ENX Magazine


2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

“You meet certain people in your life who truly make a difference, and Lindsay is one of those people. She deeply cares about the long-lasting partnerships with her customers and will do anything to help them. As a working mom and wife, she does an outstanding job of balancing both aspects of her life and is an amazing example of integrity and humility. Always with a positive attitude and a bright cheery smile, she embraces the concept ‘What can I do to help you?’ Lindsay would be an outstanding winner of the ENX Difference Maker, without a doubt!” ‒ Roger King, President and COO, EO Johnson Business Technologies

David Brown Business Development Specialist PrintFleet

Why David Brown is a difference maker:

Having worked in various business development, leadership, and marketing roles in the office print space, Brown has been responsible for creating growth opportunities for partners across the industry. He is known for his use of new technologies, processes, and toolsets, as well as his practical problem-solving skills and partner engagement. Brown is also an excellent communicator, with a severe dislike for three-letter acronyms and buzzword jargon. “David Brown is a true gentleman. Always ready, willing and available to help with any aspect of PrintFleet and

MPS in general. I’ve had the opportunity to work with David as we explore the next generation of MPS so I can vouch for his insight and forward thinking.” – Aldo Spensieri, Vice President of MPS, Clover Imaging Group “David is a wonderful colleague and a joy to work with. He is an excellent collaborator, whether it’s just brain storming or completing a project. He brings a wealth of industry knowledge to both our team and our partners, having worked with Photizo Group and Commonwealth Technology prior to joining PrintFleet in a strategic business development role.” ‒ Elise McFarlane, Global Marketing Manager, PrintFleet

multiple times. She has been recognized by organizations such as the Channel Reseller Network (CRN) and NJPA. She has also received a TWIN Award (Tribute to Women and Industry). “Erica’s keen understanding of the needs of our members has produced an increased awareness, especially among K-12 schools. A major part of that is Erica’s ability to ‘tell the story’ connecting technology and education, and the leading-edge technology and solutions Sharp offers has made a difference in education across the country.” ‒ David Duhn, Contract Administrator, National Joint Power Alliance “Erica’s tenure with Sharp is invaluable. She is always available to help our dealership, whether it’s working a government bid or general marketing ideas. Erica is extremely knowledgeable, always responsive, and one of Sharp’s finest employees.” ‒ Joe Reeves, President, Smile

Erica Calise Director, Government and Corporate Marketing Sharp Imaging and Information Company of America

Why Erica Calise is a difference maker:

Calise joined Sharp in 1991, and in the past five years she has been leading the government and corporate marketing group responsible for Sharp’s single-source contract with the National Joint Power Alliance (NJPA). Sharp’s contract with the NJPA helps many resellers in the education market grow. Calise brings a high level of energy to her job. Her ability to lead, motivate others, and develop and implement strategic direction has earned her recognition We Saw It In ENX Magazine

Darren Cassidy President, US Channels, North America Operations Xerox Corporation

Why Darren Cassidy is a difference maker:

Cassidy has in-depth experience in all operational dimensions of the channel business. He is responsible for overseeing the growth of the US Channels Group by creating value for both Xerox partners and their clients. Cassidy focuses on determining what the future of work will look like as digital and paper

continued on page 18

May 2017 | www.enxmag.com

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2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

worlds converge—and how channel partners succeed by growing their businesses in this new world. His energetic and enthusiastic style fosters fellowship among team members, producing cohesive and solid results attributable to groups, not individuals. He uses his experiences from the sports domain to support and create a performance culture with a focus on structures, along with evolving skillsets and mindsets. Cassidy loves winning, and he places a major focus on clear and open communication. “Darren is a breath of fresh air that Xerox Agent Channel has sorely needed for five-plus years. In a short period of time, Darren has assimilated himself into a completely new role, in a new channel, in a new country, and has built real, meaningful relationships with Xerox business owners. Darren also possesses the industry knowledge, the intellect, and most importantly the courage, to tackle challenges head on. He wastes no time in addressing those challenges with positive business solutions, which will pay dividends for years to come.” ‒ Jeff R. Horn, President and CEO, Benchmark Business Solutions

Eddie Castillo Senior Director, Sales and Marketing Samsung Electronics America

Why Eddie Castillo is a difference maker:

After 22 years of supporting BTA dealers and IT resellers, Castillo has supported the industry in almost every way imaginable. He has touched every part of dealers’ operations, from service to sales, 18

www.enxmag.com | May 2017

and now distribution and marketing. Castillo has enabled one of the best marketing teams in the industry help Samsung make a difference. He has placed Samsung Print on the map, and he has aligned distribution and dealer programs to ensure a complete sell-through model. Over the last three years, Samsung’s MPS program has doubled in revenue, distribution has doubled its business, and channel partners have grown their margins. Castillo recently climbed one of the toughest mountains of his career: orchestrating what dealers say was a very successful, positive dealer meeting during a period of transition for the business. “Eddie Castillo has proven to be dedicated to the dealers’ development, always putting the dealer first. He is always readily available to guide and teach new programs and solutions to the Samsung partner base. I have seen Eddie work deep into the night with a program just to be 120 percent certain it rolls out properly. He is a wonderful family man, as well as serving our country in the armed forces. I have the utmost respect for this man and thank him for all his support in growing my dealership. Frankly, Samsung would not be the same without Eddie Castillo. Truly a difference maker!” – Ed Rubin, President, North Bay Copier “Stephen Covey wrote that ‘synergy is the habit of creative cooperation. It is teamwork, open-mindedness, and the adventure of finding new solutions to old problems. But it doesn’t just happen on its own. It’s a process, and through that process, people bring all their personal experience and expertise to the table.’ Having known Eddie for over 16 years, I can honestly say he has been a great asset of CBE’s. Covey’s definition reflects Eddie’s strong suit, one among many. He is deft at synergizing with all members of the team to help promote the product. He is able to present and advance concepts, with technical know-how, for the benefit of those in IT, while helping the sales team understand and market the idea/ product at hand. His expertise in bridg-

ing both sales and IT, along with his marketing prowess, have been of great benefit to CBE, and others as well.” – Tarek Hafiz, President, CBE Business Solutions “I had the pleasure of working with Eddie for the past 12 years with Samsung. Eddie has supported the industry in almost every way possible. I have known him to be excellent with our service managers, and also with our sales department. He has enabled one of the best marketing teams in the industry to help Samsung make a great difference. He’s gone beyond the call of duty, answering any questions our service and sales department had. Eddie had a great positive attitude and makes it very comfortable to go to him with any questions regarding service and sales aspects.” – Jerry Miceli, Owner, ABS, Inc.

Jim Cerkleski CEO Clover Holdings

Why Jim Cerkleski is a difference maker:

Clover Holdings has seen phenomenal growth since its founding in 1999, and that’s a tribute to Cerkleski’s leadership. Today, Clover is the global leader in aftermarket imaging supplies and recycling services. In the United States, no one even comes close to Clover Imaging Group. Cerkleski is a prototypical entrepreneur: the company has grown because Cerkleski and his team have been able to transform the company when needed. Clover is now known as much for its sustainability products and services as for its

We Saw It In ENX Magazine

continued on page 20


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2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

imaging offerings. Cerkleski continues to be responsible for Clover’s strategic vision as he oversees sales, business development, and strategic alliance initiatives. “I first learned about Jim and Clover after the company acquired Dataproducts from Ricoh in 2005. The move gave Clover extensive retail exposure and made it one of the fastest growing third-party supplies vendors in the United States. By continuing to make key acquisitions and diversifying Clover’s customer base to include OEMs along with large channel players, Jim has sustained the company’s growth for over a decade. Today, Clover has topped the $1 billion annual revenue mark and is one of the world’s largest remanufacturing and reverse-logistic companies.” ‒ Charles Brewer, President, Actionable Intelligence

Ed Crowley CEO Photizo Group

Why Ed Crowley is a difference maker:

A 30-plus-year veteran of the imaging industry, Crowley is known for bringing his foresight and dedication to managed print services. During a time with declining page volumes, finding areas for increased efficiency, additional cost savings, and opportunities for new revenue growth are critical. This is the challenge Crowley has taken on by bringing advanced analytics solutions to the imaging industry. He is an advisor to various global enterprises as they look

to optimize their print fleets and lower costs through outsourcing. Crowley founded the MPS Insights Journal, a daily news service and website for the MPS industry, and was one of the founding members of the Managed Print Services Association. “Ed has always been a visionary. About 10 years ago, he had a vision that it wasn’t going to be about hardware products anymore but about software services. He then founded Photizo and was a pioneer in the managed print services market, an area where today he is considered one of the most knowledgeable in the industry. About two years ago, Ed had a vision that predictive analytics were going to play a big role in the printing industry, and it is already accounting for a large and growing part of Photizo’s business. Converting these visions to reality is not easy and it takes a commitment at the top of an organization which is what Ed did for Photizo.” ‒ Ron Iversen, Vice President, Market Intelligence Service, Photizo Group “Ed has been a thought leader in the industry for many years and continues to force those of us in this business to examine our own views of the market and its needs. As a pioneer, Ed has helped many understand MPS, its evolution, and the need to be more than just print management. He definitely deserves to be named a difference maker.” ‒ Thomas O’Neill, Director, Product Marketing, Enterprise and Desktop Solutions Division, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “What sets Ed apart is his passion and innovative, in-depth thought toward improving executable strategies for our industry. I’m most impressed with his volunteerism in being one of the original founders of the Managed Print Services Association. His constant work on industry ideas, improvement, best practices, and go-forward analysis helps shape how many large and small channels adapt to future trends. This is one of the good guys in our business and I am happy to know and have worked with him.” ‒ Kevin DeYoung, President and CEO, QualPath, Inc.

Dana Cunningham Vice President of Sales New England Copy Specialists (NECS)

Why Dana Cunningham is a difference maker:

Courage and integrity define the leaders that make the biggest differences, and Cunningham is no exception. As the Vice President of sales for one of the largest imaging hardware dealers in the Northeast, Cunningham constantly evaluates market trends to identify new opportunities, and he is proud to have kept NECS on the cutting edge in the office technology industry. While many leaders stay in their comfort zones, Cunningham initiates changes that make a difference for his customers. For example, his work led to a partnership with another vendor that gave NECS the unique ability to offer artificial intelligence solutions. Because of his courage and integrity, NECS offers solutions that solve problems and bring results that reach the bottom line. “Companies that miss big trends don’t survive long. NECS has been in business more than 50 years, most of that time with Dana leading sales. His work with Digitech Systems demonstrates how tuned he is to important trends that impact his customers. While many shy away from change, Dana leads by example. The result is long-term business success and many employees who have made a career in the great environment at NECS.” ‒ Sean Morris, Director of Sales, Digitech Systems continued on page 22

20

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We Saw It In ENX Magazine


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DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

anarchy, since these are peculiarly successful elements of innovative creations.” ‒ Professor Mischa Dohler, Head of the 5G Tactile Internet Lab of the Centre for Telecommunications Research (CTR) at King’s College London

to authentication, sustainability, and enablement tools drive value and differentiation for channel partners and end users alike. “ ‒ Brad Roderick, Executive Vice President, InkCycle

Dennis Curry Senior Director of the Business Innovation and R&D Europe Konica Minolta, Inc.

Why Dennis Curry is a difference maker:

Companies that want to stay on the leading edge of technology need people like Curry. In his R&D role, Curry has helped Konica Minolta sustain its transformation process, heading the most innovative business developments from R&D Incubations to M&A strategy. His forward-looking strategy has been a catalyst for a number of creative and productive activities within the company. Curry’s vision embraces key areas such as artificial intelligence, cyber physical systems, and the internet of things—all technologies that will have a big impact on the workplace in the coming years. “Dennis’ deep knowledge, coupled with visionary capabilities, makes him one of the most creative and inspiring pioneers in industrial research and innovation contexts. Dennis used to say that, ‘Higher intelligence is a consequence of both increasing complexity and random mutations generated by the environment, exactly as disordered states of energy were produced within molecules and atoms, which then combined to create stars and then planets upon which life has evolved.’ Therefore, when working with Dennis you should never be concerned about creative disorder and disciplined

Chris Day CEO

Jordan Darragh CEO and Founder

IT Glue

PrintReleaf

Why Jordan Darragh is a difference maker:

Darragh has set the overall strategic vision for PrintReleaf as it aligns with product and market development. The company is providing an innovative service for dealers and customers for whom sustainability and the environment are important. His prior experience put him in a great position for his work with PrintReleaf. Darragh was an executive at LaserCycle Imaging, where he helped establish the business as one of the largest and most profitable MPS companies in the Western US. He also spent three years managing business development for EnerNOC, a leading public smartgrid company, and he was responsible for developing clean energy programs for utilities in the Western US. “By creating a resource that enables end-user organizations to track the reduction of their environmental footprint in a verified manner, Jordan deserves to be recognized as a top difference maker in our industry. His commitment

Why Chris Day is a difference maker:

Day is the driving force behind IT Glue, which has become the go-to documentation platform for IT providers. Day saw that IT service providers and MSPs were plagued with poor documentation, so he brought the IT Glue documentation platform to market in 2014. Since then, IT Glue has received a number of industry awards, especially for innovation. “Before IT Glue, when a staff member went on vacation it felt like a brain drain. Now each tech has all his or her customers documented, and when they go away or are helping other customers, any tech is able to dive right in and help. We looked at other documentation software, but they all required training. IT Glue requires no training and techs can jump in on day one to find and create documentation as required. Chris Day brought a great product to the market.” ‒ Jeffrey Bowles, ACT 360

continued on page 24 22

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DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

Karen Donnelly Director of Sales

Jim Dotter President

Supplies Network

Virginia Business Systems (VBS)

Why Karen Donnelly is a difference maker:

Donnelly began her Supplies Network career in 1984, joining now-Chairman Tom Fleming’s office products dealership as a sales representative. Many things have changed since then, but one thing has stayed the same: Donnelly’s collaborative approach and dedication to serving customers and building strong relationships. Today, she serves as Director of Sales, overseeing sales and account management related areas. Her innate ability to juggle multiple tasks—whether big-picture, major initiatives, day-to-day details, or anything in between—makes her an invaluable leader within the organization. “I’ve worked closely with the Supplies Network sales team for many years. One thing that has consistently impressed me is the thoroughness of the structure of the team that supports our business. Each person plays a critical role in helping us deliver the first-class customer experience needed to compete in today’s climate. Karen’s talents have always been key to the ongoing development of that support team and for that I will always be grateful.” ‒ Ben Harris, President, Harris Technologies

24

www.enxmag.com | May 2017

Why Jim Dotter is a difference maker:

Dotter has helped VBS become a leading, award-winning office technology company. Under his guidance, VBS has established a goal to be the best office technology company in the region. Dotter has overseen significant growth with the successful acquisition and implementation of five dealerships. He has also developed a leasing code of ethics for the document technology industry and served on dealer advisory councils for Xerox, US Bank, and Great America Finance. Dotter was especially proud when VBS was named one of the Best Places to Work in Virginia in 2016. Dotter also currently serves as the President of Select Dealer Group. “Jim is a forward-thinking, high-character executive and runs an exceptional business. I say this because VBS has invested in the Traction Entrepreneurial Operating System (EOS). This is a forward-thinking concept designed to help organizations break the ceilings and take their business to the next level. VBS is also a multi-vendor dealer who changed one of its primary vendors in the last year-plus, which is always difficult. Finally, VBS successfully utilizes the Johnson /Global model as a rudder to run its business.” ‒ Dean Swenson, President, The Swenson Group

Aaron Dyck Vice President CIG Solutions Clover Imaging Group (CIG)

Why Aaron Dyck is a difference maker:

Dyck’s philosophy in business and life is, “Play the game not to score. Do as much as you can, for as many people as you can, as often as you can, without expecting anything in return.” By staying true to those words, Dyck has been an effective partner, helping companies in Canada and the United States grow by improving their sales and marketing efforts. He sees his partners as teammates working toward the same goal, not just as customers. “Aaron represents a new breed of industry executive. He is young, aggressive, and dedicated to helping dealers grow their business. He combines leadership skills with hands-on sales and marketing experience that make him invaluable to the independent dealers. Aaron has been instrumental in helping dealers create and execute effective inbound marketing strategies to engage new opportunities and cross-sell into existing customers.” ‒ Jim George, President, Donnellon McCarthy Enterprises

We Saw It In ENX Magazine

continued on page 26


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2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

Richard Elixman Owner Business Systems Consulting

Sam Errigo Executive Vice President, Sales and Business Development Konica Minolta Business Solutions U.S.A, Inc.

Why Richard Elixman is a difference maker:

Elixman helps dealers in the office automation industry achieve operational excellence. His company provides services—such as building financial plans or outsourcing key operational roles— that dealers would not otherwise be able to afford. He has been successful because of the personal attention he gives his clients, helping to create individualized action plans as their chief implementation officer. Elixman’s career spans over 30 years of operations, service, and sales management for the office automation industry. Ten years ago, he founded Business Systems Consulting to assist organizations in creating their strategic vision. “Dick Elixman is definitely a difference maker for me and my dealership as well as for many others in our industry. I was referred to Dick Elixman and his company Business Systems Consultants 2011, when I took over as President and Owner of California Business Machines, and we have worked together since. Dick and his team, with their years of industry experience, have helped me and my team improve every area of my business.” ‒ Teri Brymer, President, California Business Machines

Why Sam Errigo is a difference maker:

Errigo was the driving force that led the acquisition strategy that netted two core new areas for Konica Minolta: All Covered and its Enterprise Content Management (ECM) business. He is responsible for Konica Minolta’s US sales strategy and execution. That includes leading the company’s dealer and direct sales, enterprise accounts, and government businesses. Earlier, Errigo led the Business Intelligence Services (BIS) organization, where he integrated and grew the company’s solutions business by partnering with third-party providers to complement Konica Minolta technology. “Sam is not only able to project-manage a technical development team to launch new applications and solutions to the market, but his customer-focused approach delivers true value to the end-user. Additionally, his sales experience and insight into the sales process has assisted in helping dealers to maneuver and land large major account opportunities. His calm demeanor and funny stories about his personal life instantly make you feel at ease. Sam is all about execution and delivering upon set goals and objectives. Sam has been instrumental in strengthening Konica Minolta’s position and is truly one of our industry leaders.” ‒ Kay Du Fernandez, Vice President, Marketing, Konica Minolta

Frank Gaspari Founder and CEO FlexPrint, Inc.

Why Frank Gaspari is a difference maker:

Gaspari is a 30-year document technology veteran who founded FlexPrint in 2005 with the vision of creating a national service-led MPS business model. That model leveraged information management to create a more flexible approach. Today, FlexPrint is the largest privately held MPS provider in the country, thanks in part to an aggressive and methodical acquisition strategy. It has won six consecutive Inc. 500|5000 awards and nine “Best Places to Work” awards. That recognition is a testament to Gaspari’s leadership. “In a consolidating hardcopy dealer market, Frank is taking a slightly different approach by acquiring companies and applying his established services-led strategy and approach to delivering MPS to midmarket customers. And he has the backing of a strong financial partner to fund a series of acquisitions. FlexPrint has the potential to establish a new benchmark in terms of both channel consolidation and MPS delivery.” –Industry Consultant

continued on page 28 26

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office technology industry. He is a steadfast champion of the dealer channel.” ‒ Brent Hoskins, Executive Director, BTA

Kindness. Vision. Leadership. Luke Goldberg has it all in spades and the office equipment industry will thank him soon enough for doing MORE than his part in ensuring we have an exciting and profitable future.” ‒ West McDonald, Vice President of Business Development, Print Audit

Bob Goldberg General Counsel Business Technology Association (BTA)

Why Bob Goldberg is a difference maker:

General counsel for the BTA since 1977, Goldberg has earned the trust and respect of its members. You need only read the many testimonials praising his services and contributions on the BTA website. The office equipment industry is constantly dealing with legal issues, everything from liability to contracts to employment. He has helped many BTA members navigate them all. “While Bob has assisted countless dealers individually through the BTA’s Legal Hotline since 1977, I am not sure that all dealers realize what he has done to assist the dealer channel as a whole through the years. He has prevailed before judges and arbitrators many times on behalf of the dealer channel. He has ensured — in our contract-based industry — that an ever-growing number of legal agreements are fair and equitable to the independent dealer. He has also rallied dealers and manufacturers alike to confront challenges we face. Consider, for example, his leadership in recent years as the industry successfully confronted the threat of patent trolls and educated end users about ensuring that MFP hard drives are wiped clean before MFPs leave their offices. Bob is respected by all who know him for the many ways he has made a difference within the 28

www.enxmag.com | May 2017

Luke Goldberg Executive Vice President Global Sales and Marketing

Ted Gruener Director of Business Development

Clover Imaging Group

Supplies Network

Why Luke Goldberg is a difference maker:

Goldberg is the kind of senior leader whose title, though impressive, doesn’t define who he is. He stands as an example to everybody that works under him that it’s okay to embrace and promote change, that it’s the only way to stay on the pole position, to be number one. Goldberg’s extensive industry knowledge and expertise in sales and marketing techniques, industry trends and developments, market analysis and sales channel development make him an in-demand speaker at global trade shows and contributor to industry trade magazines. “I can think of nobody in this industry more deserving of being recognized as a difference maker. Luke Goldberg represents likely the largest manufacturer and distributor of compatible toner products in our industry, and he has had the vision to give dealers a wholesale option for SBB (seat-based billing). For the first time in history, a distributor is giving dealers an option beyond traditional cartridge sales and CPP, and without Luke’s vision this wouldn’t be possible. The enormity of this vision won’t really be understood at first, but just wait and see as 2017 progresses. Intelligence.

Why Ted Gruener is a difference maker:

Gruener joined Supplies Network in 2016, bringing 25 years of national account experience from the office products industry. He has already made a big impact. He is responsible for providing oversight and direction to a business development team that serves as the primary interface to major accounts, providing comprehensive product, service, and solutions support. Under Gruener’s leadership, this group had a highly successful 2016 and that momentum has carried well into 2017. “When it’s sunny and 70 degrees, it’s easy to have a great attitude. Things are going your way. But when difficult challenges arise, it is attitude that becomes the difference maker. Ted Gruener naturally inspires an attitude with his team, inside and outside of work, to be their best version; to reach, to elevate and to create the momentum that propels people and companies forward.” ‒ Kate Dougherty, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, Office Essentials

We Saw It In ENX Magazine

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the standard warranty from one to three years for our products.” ‒ Robert Esquivel, Business Development Manager, Commercial Sales, Epson America, Inc.

Grace Hellmold Director of Marketing Communications and Events

Sean Gunduz Senior Product Manager, Scanners Epson America, Inc.

Why Sean Gunduz is a difference maker:

With 20-plus-years in product marketing, Gunduz has built a proven track record for increasing market shares and visibility for Epson’s document scanner team. Prior to joining Epson’s professional imaging team last July, Gunduz managed the company’s large venue projectors for six years. In that position, he orchestrated a unit market share increase from just 3.4 percent to the number one position, with 19.4 percent. Gunduz has brought excitement to the professional imaging team and channel partners. His team has developed a three-year strategic plan with Seiko Epson Corporation’s buy-in, in addition to executing an ISV partnership program, a health care campaign, and vertical promotions. One of his most notable accomplishments since joining the team has been winning a 10,000-unit deal with a major pharmacy chain. “Sean Gunduz has been an exceptional asset to Epson’s document scanner team. Sean’s background in product marketing and experience working with Epson’s projector team provided the tools to help him launch new products and further expose document scanners in the commercial market. On top of that, Sean has launched several successful programs, such as an aggressive program benefiting channel partners, and a pricing program where he increased

Sharp Imaging and Information Company of America

Jim Hawkins Vice President - Americas Toshiba America Business Solutions

Why Jim Hawkins is a difference maker:

Hawkins is a respected leader in the industry. People in his organization know they can turn to him for trusted guidance when the chips are down. In addition to being widely viewed as a leader, Hawkins is seen as a creative problem solver who delivers results by rolling up his sleeves and demonstrating a desire to work with his team, while still understanding the requirements of a multinational corporation. He easily masters the details of complex projects, leading to consistently excellent results. “Working with Jim always proves to be results-oriented. His candor and ability to cut to the chase are strong traits that make it easy for colleagues to ‘get what they see’ with Jim. His industry experience gives him a balanced approach when dealing with challenging situations, as well as organizational dynamics needed in the office equipment segment. Toshiba has a seasoned veteran in Jim, and someone with the skill to make a difference.” ‒Mike Johnson, Vice President, Worldwide Channel and OEM, Lexmark International

Why Grace Hellmold is a difference maker:

More than 25 years ago, Hellmold began her career at Sharp in the marketing and communications department. She leads the communications and events teams, which keep dealers, customers, and the press updated on news at Sharp. She is the force behind many of Sharp’s most spectacular events, such as the bi-annual dealer meeting, as well as elite-dealer luxury excursions to exotic locations such as Lanai and Necker Island. Hellmold’s team also provides marketing support for the many trade shows that Sharp attends. Over the years, she has forged many close relationships with Sharp’s dealer community, and has been a strong advocate for them. Hellmold’s tireless dedication to Sharp and to excellence in everything she does makes her a difference maker. “Grace is an individual with an extraordinary attention to detail who really cares about the little things that matter. I have met few people who follow up on things as quickly and efficiently as she does. She is a people person who is excellent at building and maintaining multi-generational relationships.” ‒ Troy Olson, President, Les Olson Company continued on page 31

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2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

Josie Heskje Director of Strategic Marketing, Office Equipment Group GreatAmerica Financial Services Corp.

Why Josie Heskje is a difference maker:

As chair of the Managed Print Services Association Marketing & Communications Committee, Josie Heskje has worked tirelessly on communicating the MPSA’s industry education, definitions, and best practices for the association’s channel members. Her efforts and passion have led to the effective communication of industry educational outputs in assessments, MPS and enterprise execution strategies, and industry benchmarks. Heskje has played a key role in industry discussions regarding the evolving business models that comprise MPS, managed services, and workflow solutions. “Josie’s volunteer work throughout the years within the MPSA has furthered the overall channel’s ability to execute sound business strategies, best-in-class execution, and ethical business practices, while provoking thought in business transactional models. Josie’s efforts show why she is a great example of the good people that reside in our business.” ‒ Kevin DeYoung, President, Qualpath, Inc.

John Hey Partner and Founder

“John is one of the most likeable and experienced people in the industry today. He is a trusted advisor to many business owners. He trains people in leadership, sales management skills, the benchmark model, acquisitions, and more. He knows what good looks like because he’s done it himself and is happy to share his knowledge. He’s a gentleman and a mentor on top of it all.” ‒ Todd Johnson, Partner, Strategic Business Associates

Strategic Business Associates

Why John Hey is a difference maker:

Hey is well respected in the document technology industry. Prior to his role as an industry consultant, Hey was a successful corporate executive and independent office imaging dealer. As president of DC Hey Company, he was responsible for tremendous sales growth with more than 1,250 employees under his leadership. In addition, he has completed more than a dozen acquisitions. Hey is one of the founders and partners of Strategic Business Associates. His company helps entrepreneurs and leaders in the office imaging industry analyze their business and hone leadership/management skills to allow for growth and profitability. “In my opinion, John is a difference maker in the document technology industry. He is well known and respected by me and my peers within this industry. He has had incredible success as an independent dealer, corporate executive, and now as an industry consultant. He coaches independent dealers to a new level of success. In our five years working with John, he has helped professionalize our team, grow our business, and increase our bottom line. He speaks with wisdom and poise. My team and I are grateful for his advice and expertise. He has made a tremendous difference as our consultant at Southwest Office Systems.” ‒ Vince Puente, President, Sales and Marketing, Southwest Office Systems, Inc.

Doug Johnson Chief Strategy Officer LMI Solutions

Why Doug Johnson is a difference maker:

Johnson is an undisputed thought leader in managed print and document imaging, with more than 30 years of senior level management and marketing experience. He has the unique capability of being able to convert big picture strategy into field-level execution—an ability that brings value to LMI, their dealers, and their end-user customers. Johnson is a noted industry speaker and futurist. He is responsible for shaping LMI’s strategic direction and ensuring the company continues to build upon its 20-year growth trajectory. “Doug is one of few industry thought leaders who really understands how to leverage innovative technologies and platforms to deliver efficiency gains and business improvement at all levels of an imaging go-to-market strategy.” ‒ Rick Lambert, President, in2communications.com continued on page 32

We Saw It In ENX Magazine

May 2017 | www.enxmag.com

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2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS magazine

excellence, achieving sales targets and boosting customer satisfaction. In all of these efforts, she applies a customer-first mentality. With the customer as her North Star, she is a great leader not only for Xerox, but for our industry.” ‒ Kevin Warren, Chief Commercial Officer, Xerox Corp.

need and turned out to be an increase in efficiency for both the dealer and the vendor, making a true difference for both sides.” – Laryssa Alexander, President of Field Services Division, ECi Software Solutions

Tracey Koziol Senior Vice President of Workplace Solutions Xerox Corp.

Why Tracey Koziol is a difference maker:

Koziol has been a difference maker in the mobile and imaging industries for nearly three decades. She leads the Xerox Workplace Solutions Business, which accounts for $8 billion in annual sales—roughly 73 percent of Xerox’s overall annual revenues ($11 billion). Koziol is now leading the largest product introduction in Xerox history: 29 new ConnectKey-enabled devices that employ apps to extend the functionality of multifunction printers (MFPs). In leading this effort, Koziol draws upon her experience leading mobile innovation initiatives at Dell and Motorola. In 20 years at Motorola, she rose to Corporate Vice President and General Manager of Motorola Mobile Devices. Later, at Dell, she was Vice President of Global Mobility Solutions, responsible for planning the mobile portfolio and taking it to market. “Tracey has a rare combination of skills, passion, and experience that make her the right person to lead the ongoing transformation of the connected office. She’s a good listener, a clear thinker, and a decisive leader who thrives in leading cross-functional teams and in developing strategies to succeed in fast-paced, technology-driven markets. Over the years, she has consistently delivered on key corporate targets, such as reducing time to market, improving quality processes, lowering the costs involved in achieving 32

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Charles Lamb Founder and CEO

Kip Kugler Director of Sales, Field Services Division

MPS & IT

ECi Software Solutions

Why Kip Kugler is a difference maker:

Kugler is a problem-solver who works hard to find solutions for customers, sometimes working to create one when no off-the-shelf option exists. Listening to an e-automate customer’s needs, for example, Kugler worked with Xerox to develop an AP Invoice Utility spreadsheet that saves thousands of dollars a year in lost productivity and is now available to e-automate’s Xerox dealers. This is an example of Kugler’s ability connecting people in the industry with their customers in new ways, sometimes creating new revenue streams for them and ECi. “Kip is a great example of what it takes to be successful, not only as Director of Sales but as a leader for the company overall. He truly cares about our customers and their success in a highly competitive climate and helps to find ways to deliver more automation. This is exactly what was accomplished with the recent AP integration with Xerox. It started out simply meeting a dealer’s

Why Charles Lamb is a difference maker:

Lamb has helped many dealers go from zero to hero with their managed print and managed IT offerings. What makes Lamb a difference maker is his unique outside-of-the-box thinking that helps land deals for the dealers. He has developed a very successful and comprehensive transformation process for office technology dealers wanting to move to MITOS (Managed IT and Output Services). In addition, Lamb has the unique ability to transfer his vast knowledge into understandable concepts for a sales team. Although he is a founder and CEO of his firm, he faithfully serves his clients and has a “ride or die” philosophy in helping his clients to be successful. A regular contributor to ENX magazine, Lamb provides some of the best professional sales training in the industry. “Charles has the ability to see the whole picture of a deal and know whether it is a winnable, profitable deal or a deal that should be left alone. Charles truly helps dealers understand the whole sales process from marketing to closing. Charles has mastered the skill of continued on page 34

We Saw It In ENX Magazine


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teaching dealers how to market, sell, and close MPS and managed IT deals.” ‒ Collin Mitchell, CEO, Monster Technology LLC “Charles was a speaker at a reseller-sponsored MPS training event. He was only given 30 minutes to speak and he was able to explain the entire process of moving from transactional sales to MPS clearly and concisely. That 30 minutes changed my business. Charles is a tremendous asset and consultant and has helped my company land accounts we never dreamed possible.” ‒ Steve Mounce, President, US Laser, Inc. “Charles has worked with my consulting company as a team partner. I have brought him into several of my clients when they were desperate to turn their sales around, and his services have been the critical success factor. As a result, I have been able to help my clients grow by as much as 40 percent to 100 percent per year.” ‒ Gaylord Neal, CEO, Higher Dimension Business Development Consulting LLC “Charles delivered on every promise he made to our organization and then some. He is so very passionate and knowledgeable that it was impossible to fail by simply following his instructions. With his guidance, we developed the most profitable division of our company within two years and only lost one contract opportunity out of all the engagements we entered into.” ‒ Tom Walter, President, Smart Office Services

CONGRATULATIONS TO 2017 THE

DIFFERENCE MAKERS

Glenn Laverty President and CEO

Bernie Lepore Vice President of Worldwide Partner Alliance

Ricoh Canada, Inc. (RCI)

Senior Vice President Ricoh Americas Marketing

EFI

Ricoh

Why Glenn Laverty is a difference maker:

Laverty is responsible for transforming RCI from a company known for its office imaging equipment into a services-led organization. This means enabling workers at organizations of all sizes to access the information they need to make critical business decisions. An early architect in defining Ricoh as a technology and thought leader, Laverty’s vision for Ricoh’s growth in the services arena has been a rallying point for the organization as a whole, and is part of the transformation of Ricoh globally. Always ready to lend his business experience generously, Laverty serves on numerous Canadian boards and committees including the Board of Directors of Excellence Canada, and the advisory board of The Learning Partnership. “Glenn has quietly led the Ricoh Canada organization to become one of the finest in the entire Ricoh organization. His understanding of account-based marketing and sales process has resulted in deep account development and penetration. His services approach creates a compelling platform for account retention and growth. Ricoh is now recognizing that by assigning him SVP of Ricoh Americas Marketing.” ‒ Ed McLaughlin, Vice Chairman, Innovolt

Why Bernie Lepore is a difference maker:

Lepore has been at the foreground of driving new leading-edge workflow technology for production and enterprise solutions. His extensive industry experience, as well as his understanding of customer needs and applications, has helped EFI develop many new solutions for high growth production printing markets. His interaction and support of both manufacturers and dealers has been outstanding. Lepore goes the extra mile to follow up and ensures you get the support and information you need from his team, regardless of what part of the world he may be traveling to on business. He clearly understands our industry and provides great insight into future needs and trends. “Bernie has been a real difference maker for me in achieving growth and success in the production print market. With the development and introduction of new EFI technology, we’ve developed new customer solutions that are rapidly changing and impacting our industry. Bernie’s leadership and focus on customers establishes the benchmark for the entire EFI organization.” ‒ Denis Griff, Senior Director, Production Print, Canon Solutions America

continued on page 36 34

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Rick Lingon Vice President of Sales and Marketing

John Lowery President

Mark Mathews Vice President of North American Commercial Marketing

Applied Imaging

Virginia Business Systems

Epson America

Why Rick Lingon is a difference maker:

Lingon is an outstanding professional, mentor, and colleague. For almost 20 years, he has been among the most visible proponents of development and betterment at Virginia Business Systems and in the document management industry. Lingon has helped take VBS from a small company selling copiers to a statewide organization leading the way in software, hardware, and IT services. He is a dynamic leader who is passionate about the people he works with and their professional development. He has led by being the finest example of a true professional in the industry. He has served as an extraordinary role model to senior professionals, as well as an inspiration to sales staff at the beginning of their careers. “Rick’s enthusiastic approach to life and business is evident in the success his sales teams deliver at Virginia Business Systems. A work-hard attitude‒coupled with a fun approach to document management and solutions sales‒fosters an environment to make the most out of every day and to continue developing sales relationships with current and prospective clients. His attitude is contagious— positive leadership!” ‒ Dina Brandt, Channel Business Manager, Xerox

Why John Lowery is a difference maker:

Lowery has been a difference maker for both his customers and employees. He’s consistently invested in organic growth, while making strategic acquisitions that have positioned his company as a single source for office technology products and services throughout Michigan. Applied Imaging’s customer testimonial advertising campaign supports the many ways customers benefit from partnering with Michigan’s premier office technology provider. More impressive, though, is the difference Lowery has made in the lives of his employees. Applied Chemistry, the name given to Applied Imaging’s corporate culture, has provided daily focus and improved the quality of life for many of his employees and their families. Applied Chemistry has 12 Elements, including Fun, Dream, Integrity, Community and Family, to name a few. “In today’s business environment when many feel guilty or threatened by taking time off for family or medical issues, John has encouraged Applied Imaging’s employees to put family first and foremost. The result is that Applied Imaging has a string of Best Places to Work awards from publications in both western Michigan and the Detroit metro.” ‒ Ian Crockett, President, ICE Advertising

Why Mark Mathews is a difference maker:

When Epson brought Mathews on board in March, the company knew it was getting a capable marketing, sales and operations executive to drive key product lines. Mathews is responsible for Epson’s product and marketing strategies for projector, point-of-sale, business inkjet printer, and robotics divisions. He also leads Epson’s Canada-based technical support and development team, which is focused on point-of-sale solutions. Most recently, Mathews was president of 3D printer company Airwolf 3D, where he created a successful multi-tiered, global distribution model. Previously, Mathews led all sales, marketing, service, operations, dealer training programs, and corporate functions in the document imaging and professional services market as President and CEO of Toshiba America Business Solutions. This B2B experience is why Epson has tasked him with enhancing its commercial reseller program and strengthening the company’s strategic direction for commercial business solutions. “Mark has a long and well-respected history of leadership in the office imaging market, primarily from his years at Toshiba America Business Systems. Mark has recently joined Epson America to spearhead that company’s interesting and innovative push into the continued on page 38

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higher-end A3 color MFP market and the office equipment dealer channel with a game-changing inkjet device, and there is the promise of more Epson inkjet MFPs for this channel coming in the future. Mark brings instant credibility to Epson’s efforts in this market.” ‒ Industry Consultant

ciplined, competitive organization that makes a difference for their customers.” ‒ Ed McLaughlin, Vice-Chairman, Innovolt.

to have a beer with West because he’s a great guy and because he is a positive force in driving our business forward. You can’t teach what West has in spades; he’s an exceptionally bright guy that never comes across as the proverbial know-it-all.” ‒ Luke Goldberg, Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Clover Imaging Group

West McDonald Vice President of Business Development Hunter McCarty Chief Operating Officer

Print Audit

Owner FocusMPS

Ed McLaughlin Vice Chairman

RJ Young

Why Hunter McCarty is a difference maker:

Not many people in the office equipment business can say they’ve been with the same company for nearly 40 years; fewer still, with McCarty’s level of success. He joined RJ Young in 1978 as a sales representative. In a few years, he rose to management roles in sales. Eventually, he became Vice President of both Sales and Marketing. McCarty is credited with playing a major role in RJ Young’s unprecedented growth; they have become one of the largest office equipment dealers in the Southeast. McCarty has also been involved in professional organizations and his Nashville community. He served as both a member and president of the Board of Sales and Marketing Executives, and he is a board member of the Copier Dealer Association, the Printfleet Advisory Board, and the Lexmark Advisory Board. “Hunter McCarty as the COO of RJ Young Company has led the development of a $100+ million powerhouse in the Southeast. His attention to detail and focused approach has led to a well-dis-

Innovolt

Why West McDonald is a difference maker:

As a long-time advocate of SBB for MPS programs, McDonald is a true change agent in the document imaging industry. Now, his efforts are starting to get the notice of dealers looking for alternatives to declining fees from costper-page business. His 15 years in the MPS business lends credibility to his views among the dealer community. McDonald is always looking for “near future” opportunities and strategies to help partners adapt to the changing market landscape. “I have known West for the last 10 years, but we have had occasion to work very closely together as part of our seatbased billing program and our partnership with Print Audit. People too loosely use the term ‘thought leader’ but to me West personifies that. In a completely non-pedantic way, West is one of the most forward thinking people I have met in my 26 years in this business. He was an early believer in the seat-based model for MPS billing and with the force of his will and belief, it’s now a reality that we are honored to share in. You want

President and CEO Valderus

Why Ed McLaughlin is a difference maker:

A lot of people would have felt proud and satisfied if they could retire with half of the accomplishments that McLaughlin has had in his career. Rather than leave the industry after stepping down as president of Sharp Imaging and Information Company of America, he launched Valderus, through which he shared his knowledge and experience with the office equipment community. Innovolt saw him as someone who could help make connections in the industry and, as a member of its board of advisors, he has helped Continuum become a leader as a managed IT services platform provider. “Ed is a pillar for not only the office technology industry, but also for Innovolt. With Ed as Innovolt’s vice chairman, he has led us to many successes, including building relationships with key contacts and strongly evangelizing Innovolt’s power protection and analytics continued on page 40

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What do 55% of the Top Elite Dealers for 2016 have in common?

“Sherpa has improved my effectiveness and skills as a Sales Manager. My team and I have greater accountability, time management skills, marketplace awareness, and provide better communication with the customers we serve. Sherpa has been instrumental in our achieving double digit growth for FY2016!�

800.295.0411

Justin Chancellor Sales Manager

compasscontact.net sales@compasscontact.net


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solutions across many platforms. With Ed’s deep knowledge, he takes Innovolt’s proven solutions and creates magnificent emphasis in ways that only someone with his stature can achieve. Ed is warm and friendly and has been an invaluable resource for me.” ‒ Amy Hoang, Director of Marketing, Innovolt

the client deliver on a critical strategic imperative that would result in reducing expense and increasing revenue. The speed at which Bill assembled the support of over 100 people to contribute to the creation of this important business case exhibited to me the quality of his leadership skills.” ‒ Tom Nix, CEO, Scala, Inc. “Bill is an innovator with both feet firmly planted in today while he executes on plans to position TABS for tomorrow. Whether it was MPS, a national account program, or digital displays, Bill is always ahead of the curve.” ‒ Tom Callinan, President, Strategy Development

Bill Melo Chief Marketing Executive Toshiba America Business Solutions

Why Bill Melo is a difference maker:

Melo is a visionary leader who has led the Toshiba team and partner community into the future of communication solutions that impact all organizations across all verticals. Melo’s ability to recognize the impact of mobility and workflow optimization—in a field where large companies are slow to adopt technological changes—has been unique. Melo handles most challenges with a team approach, enrolling not only key stakeholders within Toshiba’s corporate entities, but also major business partners and customers. Melo brings a fresh set of eyes to every discussion. His unique ability to view the industry landscape from a ground-level perspective, in addition to seeing the larger context, has consistently delivered impressive results. “I worked closely with Bill on providing a holistic customer engagement solution to one of the world’s largest grocery retailers. Bill was the catalyst to assemble a best-in-breed toolset to help 40

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“Having worked with Bill for more than eight years, I can attest to his conviction about Toshiba’s products, offerings, and services. A true pioneer in managed print services and software delivery, Bill knows how to gather support for new directions when challenging the status quo. Bill has a passion for marketing, and has demonstrated that he is one of the best in the game, time and time again. Making a difference is what he does every day.” ‒ Mike Johnson, Vice President Worldwide Channel and OEM, Lexmark International “Bill works tirelessly on behalf of Toshiba and our technology community to push the envelope with technology innovations and programs for the betterment of our industry.” ‒ David Ramos, Director, Keypoint Intelligence/InfoTrends

THANK YOU This special issue would not have been possible without the input of the many individuals who took the time to respond to our requests for recommendations and comments about this year's difference makers. We would like to thank everybody who participated over the past several months to help put this issue together.

Sean Mummert President The Office People

Why Sean Mummert is a difference maker:

Mummert has made The Office People a leading example of the modern office equipment and services dealership. Rather than try to squeeze more from the declining print volume model, The Office People now focuses on taking costs out of companies’ infrastructure by automating their workplace with document security, data management, workplace planning, and managed print services. Under Mummert, The Office People was the first company to do digital copiers/ printers and 3D printers through its MPS division. With an IT division that offers audio/visual solutions, digital signage, document management, wireless solutions, and software solutions, Mummert has built a business that is truly a onestop technology shop for its customers. “Sean is an incredible business person and has built his business from scratch and grown it exponentially. What makes him unique is his open minded approach to the business, which allows him to branch out and sell adjacent products to drive net new customers. There’s no limit to his energy and drive for success.” ‒ Laura Blackmer, Senior Vice President of Sales, Sharp Electronics

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John Murabito President

Jane O’Brien Co-founder

RE Online

Q2 LLC

Why John Murabito is a difference maker:

Given his background, Murabito’s success in the office equipment industry should come as no surprise. He started working in the business while still in high school at a local dealership, working his way up from service tech to sales. That experience gave him the confidence and knowledge to launch Ribbons Express in 1988 with $1,000 he borrowed from his parents. Now RE Business Solutions, that company has become a regional powerhouse, selling hardware, supplies, and services. Murabito is known for developing strong business relationships with customers and vendors, which have contributed to his success. “Industry knowledge isn’t enough to run a successful business. Leaders must know how to operate a business, and there’s nobody better than John. Beyond understanding the underlying numbers of his business, John has successfully sensed the shifts in the industry and adjusted his business to take full advantage of those opportunities. Over the past 30 years, John has transformed Ribbons Express from his garage into RE Online, one of the largest and most successful MPS providers along the East Coast. Quietly humble, highly respected, and with a real passion for his customers and employees, John most certainly fits the profile of a difference maker.” ‒ Brian Stevenson, President, Footprint, and Director of Technology and Managed Services, TriMega 42

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when she has 10,000 other things on her plate. She has a personal relationship with so many customers. She makes them all feel like they are our most important customer. She has a heart of gold. She’s concerned about all of her employees like family. She is wicked smart-intuitive, almost can foretell the future. And she’s fun on top of it all. She never passes up a happy hour or a chocolate cupcake.” ‒ Liz Schramm, Vice President of Marketing, Q2 LLC

Why Jane O’Brien is a difference maker:

Ten years ago, O’Brien co-founded Q2 LLC, with the goal of providing the office imaging industry with a trusted supplier of quality compatible and OEM parts and supplies. She was instrumental in creating a company that puts customers first and works hard to give them the best experience through a solid product offering at fair pricing, along with people who are positive and responsive to work with. In addition, O’Brien provides all Q2 employees with a challenging and rewarding environment, where everyone works hard but takes time to have fun, too. O’Brien and her two co-founders continue to meet those goals, and then some. “I have worked with Jane both as a customer and as executive director of IBPI. She has always provided me with outstanding service, no matter the importance of the issue. Jane knows her stuff and gives me the confidence that I have called the right person when she picks up the phone. She is genuine, down to earth, and one of the nicest people I know. Jane always greets you with a smile and it is always a pleasure to talk with her.” ‒ Mark Grice, Executive Director, IBPI “I’ve known Jane for most of her office imaging career. She is genuinely interested in both her customers and her employees having the best experience possible. Points that amaze me about Jane are her attention to detail, even

Troy Olson President Les Olson Company

Why Troy Olson is a difference maker:

Olson is third-generation management for a dominant company in the Utah market. He continues to make improvements in the organization rather than live off of the past. The company’s market share in the Salt Lake City market is an amazing 25 percent. It is Sharp’s largest dealer, even though Salt Lake City is just marginally a top-25 market. Olson is truly capturing that account penetration that so many seek. “Troy and the entire third-generation management team fully execute their grandfather’s idea of excellent service, customer first, and learning the business from the ground up. The result is they are Sharp’s largest dealer in a just marginally top-25 BPI market. Its account retention and penetration is the goal of everyone in the business.” ‒ Ed McLaughlin, Vice Chairman, Innovolt

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confident his marketing acumen, coupled with his managed services insights, will help to further drive our services-led transformation.” ‒ Kay Du Fernandez, Vice President, Marketing, Konica Minolta

heavily in communication, not just about products and processes, but in the philosophy of their customer-first, value-added approach to business.” ‒ Ed McLaughlin, Vice Chairman, Innovolt

Nick Pegley Vice President, Solutions and Services Business Development Konica Minolta Business Solutions USA

Why Nick Pegley is a difference maker:

Doug Pitassi President

Southwest Office Systems (SOS)

Pacific Office Automation (POA)

Historically, Pegley has performed a veritable Swiss Army knife of duties. Pegley has managed Konica Minolta’s well-regarded All Covered services portfolio, but he’s also been instrumental in identifying market opportunities to continue the company’s aggressive growth strategy. Pegley initiated partnerships with The Channel Company, where All Covered has been well represented as an industry leader on their MSP500 list. He has helped numerous dealerships develop and grow their managed IT services business. In his new role at Konica Minolta, he is now leading vertical market program development and a deeper integration of services across the entire Konica Minolta product and solutions portfolio. His in-depth knowledge of managed services and cloud computing will help the company deliver a platform for customers to evolve their businesses to support the Workplace of the Future. “Nick has played an integral role leading marketing and growing the All Covered portfolio and revenue in the past 11 years that he’s been with the company. He is easy going, smart and a pleasure to work with. He’s not afraid to ask hard questions and push his team(s) to consider all possible options to make the best decision for the company. I am

Buddy Puente President Operations and Finance

Why Doug Pitassi is a difference maker:

Few dealerships can rival the growth of POA over the last few years. Since Pitassi became the President in 2007 after joining POA in 1989 as Sales Manager, the company has opened dozens of new offices across the country, many through a well-thought-out acquisition strategy. This has made POA the largest and fastest growing independent dealer in the country. With over 30 years of industry experience, Pitassi has been a part of the company growing to over 1,000 employees with a run rate of over $310 million in revenue in 2017. Rapid growth carries the risk of losing touch with your customers, but Pitassi has made it a priority to ensure that each customer gets the right level of attention. “Doug has engineered an organization that is rapidly becoming one of the largest dealer organizations in the country. However, what really sets them apart from many of the others is his ability to instill the POA way of doing business as a part of every expansion. POA invests

Vince Puente President Sales and Marketing Southwest Office Systems (SOS)

Why Buddy and Vince Puente are difference makers:

Buddy and Vince Puente have led SOS to become a premier business within the document technology industry. They have put clients first, and they have created a culture that is wholesome, professional, and instills pride in team members. Buddy and Vince are difference makers because of the unique role each plays in the company. Many companies consider sales the most important portion of business, while the infrastructure behind and after the sale gets lost. As President of Operations and Finance, Buddy is all about relationships with team members, technology, and service to customers. He has shaped a team of managers who meet customers’ continued on page 44

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needs while maintaining company goals. As president of sales and marketing, Vince developed the marketing strategy, “Where High-Tech Meets High-Touch.” Both serve on several community boards, and they encourage team members to be involved in the community. “I have known the Puente brothers, Vince and Buddy, for over 20 years, and during that time have seen how extremely connected and invested they are in the Dallas/Fort Worth community. They have served and continue to serve on several community and charitable organizations boards as directors, lending their time, business expertise, and treasure to the mission of the organization. They have grown the SOS brand to a market leader in the metroplex, building a wonderful customer-focused organization with highly trained professionals in all aspects of the imaging business. Outside of their business operations, they are first and foremost men of faith, with a commitment to family first and helping the less fortunate, either through monetary donations or by being mentors to students and fellow business owners. They are always sharing because they truly care about their fellow man and woman. They know that in giving freely of themselves they are being rewarded tenfold in the love and respect they receive from their employees, friends and industry peers.” ‒ Bill Wysoski, Director of Operations, Mastercraft “I can’t nominate one without nominating the other. Buddy and Vince are a team and they support a team. I personally appreciate all the ways in which Buddy and Vince support the culture of customer service and teamwork. In addition, their personal commitment to the community of Fort Worth and the state of Texas is outstanding. While working at SOS, I continue to be impressed with how these two men balance running a company (debt-free!) with family and community service. In my book, they make a positive difference in many people’s lives every day and in many different ways.” ‒ Laura Austin, Executive Assistant, Southwest Office Systems 44

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Colin Regina Vice President of Technical Services Group

Rob Richardson President and Founder Allied Document Solutions and Services (ads-s)

Sharp Imaging and Information Company of America

Why Colin Regina is a difference maker:

Thirty-two years ago, Regina started working for Sharp as a technician. Through hard work and not a little technical ingenuity, he has risen through the ranks, holding multiple positions in a variety of departments within the company, from dealer technical support to education and media services. Currently, Regina presides over the quality assurance, Sharp hotline, web services, training and education, and media creation teams. These diverse groups have one objective: to take good care of the customer, whether by providing quality training, customer service, or clear and concise messaging. The group also promotes innovative programming such as MICAS, a self-help system that collects machine data via remote email diagnostics and generates a detailed report on the condition of a dealer’s customer’s fleet. “Colin is extremely innovative and talented at what he does. He has a demonstrable passion for technology as well as a deep intelligence. Colin is very well liked among his peers and colleagues alike!” ‒ Troy Olson, President, Les Olson Company

Why Rob Richardson is a difference maker:

Richardson has led ads-s for its entire 22-year existence. During that time, the company has earned the trust and respect of its primary partner, HP Inc., and is authorized for all supplies, hardware, and service offerings. By achieving elite status with HP, Richardson has put ads-s in a position to be one of a few dealers nationally to sell HP’s new line of A3 devices, which will further differentiate the dealership from its competitors. Richardson is known for building a strong team and strong partnerships. He recently agreed to a strategic partnership with Intellinetics, which will allow ads-s to expand its offerings to include scanning, storage, retrieval, archiving, and workflow solutions for clients. “Rob joined the BTA in 2008 with the goal of better understanding the MFP industry and the associated business model due to the fact that, at the time, he didn’t have much experience in the product category. His company, Allied Document Solutions and Services, located in Swedesboro, New Jersey, was more of a printer-centric dealership. Of course, he has done more than just gain a better understanding of the MFP industry business model. Rob has served as an active BTA volunteer for several years, currently as the association’s National President. He has been very instrumental in guiding the association to help fur-

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ther advance its efforts to serve as a key resource to the dealer channel, through its district educational and networking events, educational workshops, etcetera. Rob has made a difference in many ways to the benefit of the dealer channel—all with an eye on helping his fellow BTA members further advance their dealerships.” ‒ Brent Hoskins, Executive Director, BTA

Anthony Sci Senior Vice President, Direct Sales Sharp Business Systems (SBS)

Ray Stasieczko Owner Ray Stasieczko Consulting

Sharp USA

Why Anthony Sci is a difference maker: Paul Scarlett Director, Asset Management and Life Cycle Management Ricoh USA, Inc.

Why Paul Scarlett is a difference maker:

Scarlett constantly re-invents himself as well as the remarketing programs that benefit all parties involved. He always places the utmost emphasis on leading by example and conveying teamwork above all else. He’s the “gold standard” in the copier remarketing industry, with an exemplary track record of profitable ventures, all the while maintaining a moral and ethical compass for all to emulate. “I’ve had the pleasure of working with Paul for the last 10 years, and I’d be hard pressed to find a better natural leader than him. I consider Paul a great business associate, a better friend and the best leader I know.” ‒ Brad Stammer, Vice President, Sales, All Leasing Services

Sci and his team at SBS have blazed a new trail with a unique approach to how equipment manufacturers enter the Managed Networks Services space. For Sharp Business Services, there was a charge to deliver a simple answer to the question, “What’s best for the customer?” Sci constructed a go-to-market plan that included both technical Sharp SBS team members and best-in-class industry partners to deliver a Managed Network Services platform that provides the customer an affordable and highly effective offering to handle the daily challenge of managing mission-critical IT infrastructures for its customers. “Anthony embodies the definition of a difference maker. His mindset is to first deliver on making a difference to his valued customer base, but also to make a difference to his network of Sharp SBS offices across the US, to ensure they stay on the fore of technology solutions and remain relevant to today’s customer demands for vendor excellence and innovation.” ‒ Michael Amiri, Director of Dealer Services, Continuum

Why Ray Stasieczko is a difference maker:

Stasieczko knows almost everyone in the imaging channel, having more than 15,000 contacts on Linkedin alone. With wisdom and wit, he writes insightful posts on everything from work ethic, to change, to human nature. His articles on running a dealership and building an IT business are ground-breaking. He is a non-traditionalist who has proven methodologies that help differentiate himself and the companies he has worked with. “Ray is a true visionary with many years of experience working with the imaging channel. His success at ImageQuest in transforming it into a true managed IT organization is an industry success story. In working with Ray, he brings a whole new perspective to building not only an IT company, but a traditional imaging company, too. There are a lot of companies telling the imaging channel what to do in IT. Ray goes against almost all of them with a proven method, and he has the vision to see what is coming down the road so his vision continues to evolve with industry changes.” ‒ Joel Smith, President, Business World

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Chris Strammiello Vice President of Global Alliances and Strategic Marketing, Document Imaging Division

Greg VanDeWalker Senior Vice President of IT Channel and Services

Tom Walter Vice President of Distribution and Aftermarket Sales

Great America Financial and Collabrance, LLC

Toshiba America Business Solutions

Nuance

Why Chris Strammiello is a difference maker:

Strammiello’s leadership is credited with transforming Nuance’s Document Imaging Division from a desktop software focus to the document imaging industry’s most complete product portfolio of desktop, enterprise, and OEM offerings. He has been instrumental in developing acquisition and integration strategies that have resulted in Nuance adding eCopy, XSolutions, and Equitrac. As a result, Strammiello’s division has quadrupled its annual revenue. “Chris is a veteran of the MFP solutions market, having moved up the ranks, first at Xerox and then at Nuance. He is a leading thinker and doer in the market for MFP-related print managed and document capture solutions, as well as OCR and desktop imaging software. He has helped make Nuance the leading independent purveyor of cross-vendor applications in the MFP and printer business. In addition, Chris has helped drive Nuance’s aggressive series of acquisitions and its strategic alignment with nearly all of the key hardcopy device vendors.’ – Industry Consultant

Why Greg VanDeWalker is a difference maker:

Why Tom Walter is a difference maker:

“Greg is very committed to developing strong channel partnerships and is helping PERRY proTECH achieve greater success. His approach aligns with the way everyone at GreatAmerica has always treated us.” ‒ Barry Clark, CEO, PERRY proTECH

“I have known and worked with Tom for the past 10 years. He is true professional that has always acted with the highest level of integrity. He has always treated ACM not just as a customer for Toshiba products, but as a true partner to work together with to expand both our market shares. His intelligence, work ethic, and knowledge of the industry has been a true asset to ACM and the industry.” ‒ Ben Lin, Executive Vice President, ACM Technologies, Inc.

As the person responsible for the strategic vision and performance of Collabrance and the GreatAmerica IT and Unified Communication Financing business units, VanDeWalker is in a position to help many office equipment dealers develop and sell managed IT services offerings. He has a firm grounding in both the services and financial sides of the business. Although VanDeWalker began his career on the financial side, he has consistently been recognized for his leadership in the IT channel. He was honored by CRN in 2016 as Channel Chief, and was named on the “100 People You Don’t Know But Should” list in 2015. Greg has also served as chair of the inaugural Managed Print Services Community of CompTIA, and has helped various advisory boards in the IT, Telephony and Office Equipment channels.

A 30-year veteran of the imaging industry, Walter has experienced all the ups and down that our industry has to offer. Through it all, he has continued to build strong relationships and partnerships with all those he has worked with. He has helped to greatly expand Toshiba’s product distribution, as well as develop one of the earliest and most successful MPS programs (Encompass) to be offered by an OEM. His knowledge and experience both with OEM and aftermarket supplies make him a unique resource in this ever-changing environment. Walter is a difference maker because he is action-oriented and not afraid to push the envelope in the best interest of his partners and end customers. He always has his ear to the ground about new offerings which meet emerging and customer demand.

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“I’ve known Tom for a number of years and always enjoyed hearing his perspective on the future direction of our industry. His ideas are routinely one step ahead and this unlocks success for Toshiba, its dealers, and its customers.” ‒ Jordan Darragh, CEO, PrintReleaf “Our industry has benefited from Tom Walter’s influence for a number of years. Tom is a shrewd yet fair negotiator who is passionate about the success of the reseller community he supports and consistently brings focus and dedication to the success of all organizations in which he serves.” ‒ Barney Kister, Senior Vice President of Strategic Relationships, Supplies Network

of inkjet cartridge chips. I followed Apex as he expanded its business in the laser chip market and the firm emerged as a global player. Jason then grew Apex to be the replacement chip industry’s market leader with the 2015 acquisition of Static Control Components. Heading a group of investors last year, Jason led one of the office imaging industry’s most notable acquisitions with the purchase of Lexmark International, a move that transformed Apex and its Ninestar affiliate, where Jason is now the General Manager, into a leading hardware manufacturer.“ – Charles Brewer, President, Actionable Intelligence “Jason helped build APEX from an in-house chip solution for Ninestar’s ink cartridges into a global powerhouse that now dominates the global aftermarket chip business.” – Aaron Leon, Founder and CEO, LD Products, Inc.

himself available for coaching, mentoring, and additional instruction to any student/client he has ever instructed. He might have trained more sellers, managers, and leaders in the office technology space than anyone. His true value has been in his 20-plus-years of dedication to the clients and friends he has acquired and helped along the way. “Kim D. Ward is a ‘difference maker!’ He’s trained thousands of sellers, managers, and leaders in the office technology space. His desire to help, his competency as a problem solver and trainer and his commitment to bring to the table what is proven to work now has made him a uniquely differentiated value giver to everyone he has ever trained and coached. I’ve called on him many times over the last 20-plus-years and he’s always willing and able to help and at no charge to me or my company. Because of Kim I’m a better seller and person!” ‒ James Roffman, Key Account Executive, Applied Concepts

Jason Wang Senior Vice President Apex Technology

General Manager Ninestar

Why Jason Wang is a difference maker:

Wang’s unique industry insight and professional expertise have been a key reason why Apex Microelectronics— with its thousands of first-to-market products—has consecutively won the Best Market Performance Prize for five years running. That recognized performance played a big part in the Apex and Ninestar group’s ability to acquire Static Control Components and complete the merger with Lexmark. “I first met Jason in Shanghai in 2007 when he was establishing Apex Microelectronics as China’s leading producer 50

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Kim D. Ward Director of Training and Development

Dale Wedge President

Learning Outsource Group

Why Kim Ward is a difference maker: Ward is a consummate professional who cares deeply for anyone he has ever trained and coached. He possesses the unique ability to understand why business and selling challenges occur, and he can relate his research, best practices, and experience to help solve just about any sales or business problem. Long after class is over, Ward continues to make

Sharp Business Systems of Southern California

Why Dale Wedge is a difference maker:

Wedge has achieved significant growth at Sharp Business Systems of California by leveraging his great experience and treating both employees and clients like family. He got his start in the office technology early, in 1978 with MacTaggart-Hoffman Company in Michigan. Five years later and after college, Wedge took a ser-

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vice technician job with Aztec Business Machines, eventually working his way into a very successful sales representative role where he won the company’s “Sales Representative of the Year” award from 1987 thru 1997. That reign ended when he was promoted to Vice President and Partner, and then in 2002 to President. In that role, Wedge was intimately involved in the negotiations that resulted in the sale of Aztec Imaging to Sharp Electronics in 2007. He has served as the President of Sharp Business Systems of Southern California since the acquisition. Sharp Business Systems of Southern of California has since thrived thanks to Wedge’s leadership and example. “Dale has developed Sharp Business Systems of Southern California to be the kind of account-centric organization that we all want to achieve. Not only does he conduct his business with an unprecedented degree of integrity, he instills the same in his people. Over the last few years, he has doubled the size of his organization through true account development.” ‒ Ed McLaughlin, Vice Chairman, Innovolt

spent 15 years in enterprise IT infrastructure as a system engineer and account executive at Cisco. He leveraged this experience to build PrinterLogic into one of the most important technology companies in the office equipment space. He started at PrinterLogic as president and COO, energized by the chance to solve the long-neglected printer management piece of the IT infrastructure puzzle. “Under Ryan’s direction, PrinterLogic is emerging as one of the more innovative and disruptive software companies addressing the market for economical management of networked MFPs and printers. The company’s mantra of eliminating dedicated print servers, with either its on-premises server or its new cloud solution, addresses a part of the market that mostly complements rather than competes with other software vendors in the MPS tools business. And while PrinterLogic does not yet have the name recognition or channel coverage of some other print management software developers, it is aggressive in its approach to the business and increasingly making a name for itself.” – Industry Consultant

ahead of office technology trends and keeping a keen focus on customer-first service—a big reason for its more than 20,000 clients whose business Atlantic, Tomorrow’s Office has earned. Weiss also recognized the need to change the way the company was managed as it grew, forming an executive management team in 2013 to develop strategic plans for growth. The company has grown based on a working model of collaboration and intelligent productivity. On a personal note, Weiss is proud of his contributions on behalf of his company to many worthy organizations, including the Rockland Business Association, the National Kidney Foundation, and the Fresh Air Fund. “Larry Weiss has quietly built up one of the most formidable organization in the New-York-area market. His disciplined approach has put together one of the most impressive management teams in the country, hitting all aspects of the business and executing on all counts.” ‒ Ed McLaughlin, Vice Chairman, Innovolt

Greg Welchans President and CMO Ryan Wedig CEO PrinterLogic

Why Ryan Wedig is a difference maker:

In just a few short years, Wedig took PrinterLogic from a single employee (himself) to more than 100. That’s the result of year over year triple-digit gains in both revenue and market share. Wedig 52

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Distribution Management/ Supplies Network

Larry Weiss President and CEO Atlantic, Tomorrow’s Office

Why Larry Weiss is a difference maker:

Weiss has built Atlantic, Tomorrow’s Office from a bankrupt five-person business he bought in 1982 to a $110 million-plus powerhouse that today employs 400 people. He has done this by staying

Why Greg Welchans is a difference maker:

With more than 30 years of experience in the imaging and office products industries, Welchans brings a wealth of knowledge and leadership to his current role. He has been instrumental in the development of nearly every aspect of Supplies Network, with overall responsibilities for

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all sales and marketing-related functions, including ongoing refinement of its product and services portfolio. In addition, he has played a critical role in the company’s diversification strategies, specifically with the success of its omni-channel fulfillment division, DM Fulfillment. “Lexmark and Supplies Network have had a very strong relationship and partnership for many, many years. Greg’s leadership and insight into the marketplace has allowed Supplies Network to bring creative and innovative ideas to a rapidly evolving marketplace to assist in further positioning Lexmark as a premier supplier in the print solutions and services market.” ‒ Mike Johnson, Vice President, Worldwide Channels and OEM, Lexmark International

“I have known Larry for a number of years and I consider him a good friend who is a true leader and business professional. When someone asks about Toshiba and their Dealer business, Larry White immediately comes to mind. Larry is always looking ahead for how he can help grow his dealers’ businesses. He is always available and makes everyone around him better. At the end of the day Larry is an all-around good guy.” ‒ Hans Zahrbock, National Program Manager, US Bank, Office Equipment Vendor Services

are fulfilled through the reseller partner community down to the end user. Monte is also a steadfast leader in the fight against Type 1 diabetes and a staunch supporter of the City of Hope.” ‒ Pete Klauck, Sales Director, PPSA US Supplies Distribution, HP

Derrick Wilson President and CEO The WIlson Group

Monte White Vice President of Product Marketing Supplies Network

Larry White Senior Vice President of Sales, Americas Toshiba America Business Solutions

Why Larry White is a difference maker:

White is a get-it-done type of guy and is certainly a difference maker in anything and everything he does. His positive attitude is contagious and it rubs off on every person he interacts with. His outstanding leadership and ability to deliver results have impacted both the Toshiba Dealer Channel, as well as the direction of Toshiba overall. White certainly makes Toshiba’s business relationships better because of who he is.

Why Monte White is a difference maker:

White’s industry experience began in 1989 with Daisytek. Since that time, he has held several positions in different companies, with roles including operations, procurement, and sales management. He joined Supplies Network in 2009 and currently serves as VP of product marketing, overseeing all vendor engagements and buying functions. He’s well known as a tough, artful negotiator, seeking a win-win for all involved. His leadership and focus have been key in the development of the company’s value-proposition through a comprehensive product offering. “Monte is a veteran of the industry who has a tremendous comprehension of the go-to-market strategies for contractual print and supplies (MPS) that We Saw It In ENX Magazine

Why Derrick Wilson is a difference maker:

Wilson started his career in the office equipment business by doing it the old-fashioned way. As an account executive at ComDoc, he pushed a copier cart down the street and did cold calling. Along the way he learned that six “no’s” equal one “yes.” Wilson eventually rose to the executive level as Vice President of Sales at AMCOM/Xerox. In 2012, Wilson launched The Wilson Group, an MBE-owned company with a completely decentralized business model that caters to the goals of business partners while streamlining their processes, increasing employee productivity, and decreasing hard/soft costs. “Derrick is one of the most amazing people I know. He built his business from the ground up all the way to becoming a Hyakuman Kai Elite Dealer within only five years. Not only does the Wilson Group have an exemplary relationship with their community, they are also one of the best customer-focused organizations I’ve ever seen.” ‒ Laura Blackmer, Senior Vice President of Sales, Sharp Electronics ♦ May 2017 | www.enxmag.com

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DealerBriefing Spotlight News

Employee and Customer Loyalty Fuel Imagine Technology Group’s Success in a Tough Market

I

magine Technology Group (ITG) turned six years old in April, but its roots go back much further. The company was born from a group of employees who worked together at a previous dealership and wanted to be able to provide the type of customer service than they were able to in that past life. With the help of the former owner, they got the backing to start what would become ITG in 2011. The company started as a Sharp dealership and then added Toshiba and Lexmark in the next three years. VOIP and network services were added in 2014. ITG has grown rapidly, with expectations to reach about $9 million in revenue this year. That growth is fueled by the same passion for customer service that drove those employees to start the business. All those employees are still with ITG, which is currently led by Managing Partner Mary Ellen Franz. She is the wife of Bob Franz, previous owner of Copier Brothers, who helped the employees start the dealership.

ENX spoke with Franz about the history of ITG and why employee loyalty, customer service, and a total solutions approach make it a success in the highly competitive Arizona market. ITG has an interesting backstory. Can you tell us about it? FRANZ: My husband owned a copier dealership in the 80s and 90s, a Toshiba dealership in both the Tucson and Phoenix markets. He sold the dealership, but after his non-compete expired, a group of his employees and previous customers contacted him to get back in the business. The employees were not happy with the way they were able to take care of their customers with the current companies they worked for, and the customers were not happy with the type of support that they were getting. Both groups appreciated the customer-focused approach Copier Brothers had. We had no interest in going back into the business at the time, but we were willing to support the employee base in Tucson. About five years later, we had the same opportunity in

Mary Ellen Franz, Managing Partner

Phoenix, where some of our previous employees had heard about the success we were having in Tucson and wanted to start a business in the Phoenix market. When I came in to help, there was a core group of previous Copier Brothers employees. In the last few years we have grown from five people to about 37. Many of these additions worked together, either at Copier Brothers or other companies in the industry. I didn’t know the people very well because I was never involved in the original business. Our kids were little and I was doing stay-at-home mom stuff. I just knew my husband had a lot of respect for the employees. It’s worked out beautifully. They’ve been incredibly welcoming. I’ve been impressed with their willingness to listen to what I have to say and to take direction. It’s mutual. I have a world of respect for them and their patience with me learning the business. continued on page 55

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What is the one thing that ITG prides itself on? FRANZ: Absolutely customer service. We have employees who have worked together for such a long time. They had been working for different companies, and when they found out we were starting this organization, they chose to work together because of the experience they had in the past. I pride myself on taking care of the employees and making sure I’m doing the best I can do. It also reflects in their ability to take care of the customers. They have a lot of flexibility to do what they think is right. They don’t have to get a lot of approval. Our decision making is right here in our office. ITG is a relatively new company, yet you’ve seen good growth. What’s the secret? FRANZ: We’re expecting about 25 percent growth this year. We had about 600 percent growth from 2012, which was our first full year of business, to 2015. From 2015 to 2016 we saw 15 percent growth. About 75 percent is hardware and MPS, about 25 percent is managed IT and other services. This year we’re expecting 25 percent growth, and the majority of that is expected to come from additional IT services. We have a few other major accounts that we’ve identified and are comfortable that we will be able to win this year. When looking at a three-year comparison, we show impressive growth. We were one of American Express’s 50 Fastest Growing Women-Owned/ Led Companies in 2015 and a runner up for 2016. ITG is a unique environment, not your typical start-up. While ITG is a young company, a lot of our employees have been working

together for close to 20 years. This type of history provides a very cohesive group which is able to rely on each other and allows for quick decision making and a “got your back” mentality. When looking to add new employees, we’ve had great success with hiring people whom we’ve had positive previous experience with and inviting them to join our team. We offer a lot more than the standard copier dealership. When we went back into this business we knew that the copier business itself was not as profitable as we had experienced in the past. That’s why we offer more variety of office technology. In addition to multiple copier lines, we do VOIP phone systems, managed network services, document management, and IT solutions. Our growth will be more in the additional services we offer instead of just the copiers going forward. Phoenix is a unique market. I’ve been told by the manufacturers that it is a very competitive market, more so than a lot of other places. We have every direct office here in the valley as well as some of the major dealers. It’s incredibly difficult to sell commercial with an up-anddown-the-street approach. We look for more medium to large corporations, and we’ve had great success in winning some national accounts, which has contributed to our growth. Is your growth coming primarily from new accounts? FRANZ: Yes. Most of our contracts are for multiple machines. I would say 60 percent are for multiple locations, and I think we do well with that because of our approach to customer service. Our customers have had other providers in the past and weren’t

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Employee and Customer Loyalty Fuel Imagine Technology Group’s Success in a Tough Market happy with them. We’ve done a really good job of winning those accounts and keeping the customer happy. It takes the price point out of the equation. Are you looking at other areas of business to add? FRANZ: We’re focusing on expanding our IT services. ITG recently hired a vice president of information technology, who was previously with the University of Phoenix Apollo Group. His focus is to identify specific products to take to our customer base which will allow us to expand our IT service offerings. IT offerings in the copier world are kind of new, and everyone’s trying to get into it. We find it difficult if someone looks at us as a copier vendor. They may not trust us with IT services because they don’t have that experience with us. When we introduce our VP of IT early in the sales process, his credentials bring more credibility to what we offer. From the beginning, ITG is represented as a technology solutions provider, not a copier company, which allows us the opportunity to discuss multiple strategies where we can help the customer.

ITG Team

Whether we lead with copiers or service depends on the customer. If we’re in a new situation with a new prospect, we prefer to open with the technology side and then bring copiers into the offering as we learn more about their business. What was your biggest accomplishment of the past year? FRANZ: 2016 was crazy. We had a lot of changes in 2016. We started the year by moving to a new facility. We moved from about 4,800 square feet to a facility with almost 18,000 square feet. The extra space has allowed us to make some modifications to expand our service and setup area. In July we switched our ERP system, moving to MWA Forza. We did it in 99 days. I was pleased with the transition, and the support we got from MWA was excellent. Because they are local, they spent a couple of weeks here at our facility and sat down with our employees to understand the processes. I know we got a lot of extra hand-holding because of our location, which made the transition easier. The SAP Business One product is abso-

lutely phenomenal. My director of finance came from an SAP background and she has been thrilled with the Forza product. On the backend, the warehouse and logistics pieces went well, too. Everything is automated. One of my employees continues to delve into the system and finds new ways to do new things and improve our processes. Again, showing how critical our employees are to ITG’s success. By far our biggest sale last year was the contract for Northern Arizona Healthcare, in Flagstaff, Arizona. We took over the contract for approximately 1,200 units including printers and copiers. Because of the deal, we opened a new office in Flagstaff, which allowed us to expand our territory to Northern Arizona. We also won a school district last summer, about 80 different copiers and multiple printers. Why do you think you won the hospital and school contracts? FRANZ: I believe that the relationship was important to both of them and that we could truly show them some cost savings. The hospital was unhappy with its current provider, which they felt was not working with them to help lower cost. They had put some objectives in front of the provider, but the vendor was not willing to renegotiate and modify the service contracts. We came in with the approach that we were going to work with the users and cut back on the number of units in the facility. We also made a standard MPS effort to look at where the print is going and how to make it more efficient. The hospital from the top down is really working with us because it’s important to their future. They want to cut costs, and we showed them a plan to get them to their expected cost savings during the next few years. The school district was a unique situation. The person we worked with there had recently won a grant to place iPads throughout the school district from Apple. She also had no email backup system and no firewall in place. continued on page 57

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We went in originally to look at their managed print contract, but by the time we finished, we had taken over IT services, implemented Microsoft 365, replaced the district walk-up fleet as well as provided them a managed print contract. Then we installed Papercut in the units in the field so that she could control the users’ printing from the iPads. It was a multi-phase approach, and that’s why we were successful. By offering more than copiers, we were able to look at the district’s entire spend between IT services, copiers, labor to provide managed network, and printing. We were able to save money and provide more service than the district was currently receiving. It involved about 10 different ITG employees. What do you look for in an employee? FRANZ: The most important thing I’m looking for is loyalty. I’m looking for someone who appreciates that we have a unique environment and we’re not looking for somebody who’s going to job skip--what we call “retreads.” I’m looking for someone who is willing to make the investment to learn our business and help both themselves and the company grow. Where do you find them? FRANZ: Good question. I wish I could find them easier. One of the biggest challenges we have is finding employees. Phoenix is an incredibly hot market. The employment rate is one of the lowest in the country. The majority of the people we’ve hired recently have been through relationships with our employees. They like working here, tell their friends about it, and then their friends want to work here. They are cautious about who they recommend because they don’t want anyone who’s going to be a negative employee.

What other challenges have you had in the past year? FRANZ: Cash flow. We are a young company, and our typical deal is much larger than a standard copier deal. What changes in the industry do you think could most affect your business? FRANZ: We’ve all seen the decrease in paper, and I think the biggest impact in our future is becoming more of a one-source solution for all of our customers. We need to provide them with all of the office technology that they need: from their phones, to their output devices, to managing their network to helping them with IT solutions. Even with larger corporations, we find that we can do specific projects to help them and offload some of their IT services. Being a bigger-picture provider will help us offset some of the print decrease we see in the industry. What excites you the most about the work you do? FRANZ: I really like our employees. I think they are a great group of people. I do enjoy meeting and working with the customers, or learning about the industry from our dealer network and manufacturers, but what I’m most excited about each day is just coming in and watching this group of people take ownership of what they are doing and make the company better. I absolutely love going to work, being around the people, and seeing what’s next for ITG. What do you like to do for fun? FRANZ: I like to ride my bike, and I enjoy cooking very much. My daughter is a senior at the University of Arizona, so every Sunday night she typically shows up with a car-full or two of her friends for a home-cooked dinner. That’s a big highlight for my week. ♦ We Saw It In ENX Magazine

May 2017 | www.enxmag.com

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Charles Lamb

Managed Services News Briefing

Selling IT Services: Does IT Work?

S

Here is the greatest value proposition you can deliver: educating a strategic leader into making the right decisions, to improve their current position or direction, using you and your company.

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elling technology successfully doesn’t happen by accident. There are a lot of philosophies out there on how to get it done. Before designing an effective go-to market strategy, you must consider the type of organization you are, what technological capabilities you possess, and what you want to be in the future. The IT space is an extremely competitive environment, not to mention the enormous responsibility you take on when you’re responsible for the successful execution and uptime of one’s infrastructure. Building a plan to sell IT services can be as challenging as IT itself. Just think for a moment of all of the possible entry points and products/services you could offer, not to mention the many intense situations you could throw your company into. You must be prepared. As an MFP dealer, if a copier goes down, it might be an interruption for the client, but it’s seldom catastrophic. As an IT dealer, though not every infrastructure problem is a down situation, you do have to be ready for everything! Selling IT services isn’t just another item thrown in the sales bag, either. Although MPS and MFP providers work around the network, they don’t carry the same “mission critical” burden as the IT services dealer. Your plan must define HOW you’re going to go to market, and what execution and implementation look like, in detail. New clients often ask me to evaluate their sales processes, especially when they want to add new service offerings. In many cases, they’re doing this

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because sales results are lacking and they think more products or services will help. To get a handle on the skillset of the sales organization, I’ll start by asking their sales reps a series of questions. One such question is, “What do you sell, exactly?” If I get clean, concise answers, I can focus more on the product development vs. the sales team. If I get less concise answers, then it’s a full court press to improve both. In a recent IT project with a manufacturer, I was tasked with developing a first appointment presentation for their dealers and resellers. To get a handle on the project, I asked them to set up some interviews with rock solid, tenured sales reps who were able to present their company’s products or services well. They provided 12 reps and each were asked to give their best presentation. I gave each of them an entire day to prepare.

Value Before Solution

Because all of the presentations happened one right after another, I noticed a particular pattern I might not of otherwise. What I noticed was this: the sales reps had so many different capabilities within their solution set, they had a hard time zeroing in on a value proposition that would interest a strategic-minded C-Level. These sales reps were geek to a non-geek target. Without a focused, appropriate value proposition, they were just throwing darts and hoping one would hit. They felt like they could handle any technology issue. That’s great, but here it actually worked against them, as they wandered all over the place. We Saw It In ENX Magazine

The Right DNA

Second, if I hear “what’s your budget?” one more time, I’m going to be sick. You ask about the budget to an IT person who’s already diagnosed the situation and is simply looking for the parts they can’t do themselves. By asking that question, the sales reps put themselves in the position of a commodity vendor. Now, they have little action they can take, other than begging for the business. Instead, they should show what the value of a sale would be to a strategic leader. Almost 5 out of the 12 sales reps had a network tech’s DNA, rather than a sales rep’s DNA. Even though their technical knowledge and skillsets were unquestionably superior, their sales skills were lacking, and in some cases frankly missing. I see few successful sales reps that possess both the technical and sales DNA. Which profile do you want building your sales pipeline?

The Right Target

On a recent first appointment, I accompanied a dealer’s sales rep to a law firm in California, where we met with the CFO and the Managing Partner. Both of them carried a strategic role in the firm, and neither one had an aptitude for technology. When the conversation began, they said, “We trust our internal IT team and trust that everything is great, technology wise.” Staying at a strategic level, I asked them “How do really know that everything is ok with your infrastructure?” They answered again, “We trust our IT team!” Very courteously, I asked again: “But how do you really continued on page 59


know?” They looked at each other, laughing just a bit, and said, “I guess we really don’t know that everything is OK!” Do you think if we were talking with their IT team they would have shared that information? We continued asking about the firm’s strategic objectives and they opened up and shared their concerns about how far behind their IT team was. Amazingly enough, we ultimately got clearance to assess their network, and I can’t tell you how many critical issues we found! Some say that 85 percent of the networks out there harbor serious issues that no one is discussing. Here is the greatest value proposition you can deliver: educating a strategic leader into making the right decisions, to improve their current position or direction, using you and your company. Some say that managed IT is THE destination to drive your future. Some say it’s flex technology programs, where clients get what they need and the program grows or shrinks as the client’s

needs change. Regardless, someone has to sell those services. Your sales organization needs to understand strategic concerns. If they don’t, they’ll not do as well as those who do.

Strategic Relationships

This is the key—help your sales team focus on a value proposition that ultimately sells strategic value to a strategic target. What do I mean? On an initial appointment, if you speak about a specific product or service, even if it’s the greatest available, you’re limited to the features and benefits of that solution and whether or not it’s a current need. But, if your value proposition and solutions drive a more “successful business” value, there are no limitations. Your job is to educate business leaders on the poor and/or critical conditions your team finds 85 percent of the time when reviewing a new client’s infrastructure, regardless of whether their IT team is internal or outsourced. Some say they prefer to use a features, advantages and benefits selling We Saw It In ENX Magazine

process. In IT sales, if you’re talking to the right target, my experience is that you have two significant thresholds to overcome. First, YOUR CREDIBILITY and EXPERTISE, especially when they don’t know you and you want to put your hands on their infrastructure. Second, what they care about most is the success of the business. The strategic leaders likely aren’t geeks, so speak their language. They believe if they did have a pressing technology issue; their IT team would have already brought it to their attention. Wrong! One thing that works in your favor—that 85 percent statistic is real. If there is something lacking within their infrastructure, regardless of what it is, they’ll seldom hear about it in a proactive discussion. And that’s where you come in. Getting into the IT services space can be hard work. But if you follow this approach—selling your strategic value to strategic leaders—you’ll find it a lot easier than it could be. IT works! ♦ May 2017 | www.enxmag.com

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Service Excellence Platinum Award Winner News Briefing

Office Technology Service Excellence Award

PLATINUM LEVEL

High Efficiency, Tech Empowerment Keeps Service Quality High at The Office Advantage

W Mark Van Den Hoek, Owner

hen you do business in a large, sparsely populated geographic area, service-call efficiency takes on a much higher level of importance. No one—whether management or the service techs—wants a second 300-mile round-trip service call, just because the right part wasn’t on the truck the first time. The Office Advantage does business in just that kind of area. Based in the small town of Mitchell, South Dakota (population 17,000), this Xerox dealer serves a wide area that includes eastern South Dakota, southwest Minnesota, northwest Iowa, and northeast Nebraska. That represents a radius of about 200 miles from Sioux Falls, South Dakota, where The Office Advantage opened an office in 2005. Owner Mark Van Den Hoek called 2016 a “banner year” for The Office Advantage and expects to grow more this year. “Based on what we have in the hopper, 2017 is going to be significantly better than 2016. Most of that is because of managed print accounts, acquisitions, and growing our service base,” he said. “We’re lean, very lean and everyone wears a couple of hats,” said Van Den Hoek. “We’re flexible; we’re small enough that we can react quickly. We work really hard to assemble a team that is

able to do the right thing. Flexible might mean flexible enough to take care of the client and flexible enough to respond to what the market is doing.” To be lean and flexible, while still effectively providing service to a large area, is a big accomplishment. For that reason, The Office Advantage has won this month’s BEI/ENX Service Excellence Platinum Award. The Office Advantage started as a Xerox authorized sales agency in 1993. Today, it is a Xerox authorized partner. The company serves mostly small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs), but has some major accounts as well. About 20 percent of its revenue is in production and enterprise accounts. Most of the company’s growth is coming from its SMB business. Production and enterprise are growing several percentage points slower, according to Van Den Hoek: “As hospitals, insurance companies, and other verticals move more and more toward a digital dissemination of information, production print volumes go down.” The Office Advantage sells production print systems for data-driven applications such as policy prints for insurance companies. Van Den Hoek recently hired a production-print systems analyst to help build that business.

Service Is About Empowerment

“Service is our mainstay,” said Van Den Hoek. “I come from a service background in other industries, so I’ve seen some unfortunate things happen in service. We work hard to grow, but it has to be profitable and with the right client base.” Working hard at service means focusing on every aspect from the time help desk answers a call to when a follow-up call is made to make sure everything went as the client had anticipated. “Without good service, we’re just another company,” said Van Den Hoek. The biggest service challenge for Van Den Hoek is maintaining service consistency, regardless of who does the service. “The client should expect to receive the same level of service always,” he said. “If you’re not trained, you ain’t going [on the call].” The consistency of service that The Office Advantage service technicians provide gives Van Den Hoek the confidence to let his team make their own decisions in the field. “We empower our people to do the right thing at all levels. That empowerment is evident at all levels and channels of our business,” he said. Van Den Hoek is concerned about those decisions affecting profitability, and that’s why he’s careful to provide counseling and coaching for his service technicians. “Sometimes those decisions haven’t been in the company’s best interests, but if you empower people to do the right thing and do it immediately, your phone doesn’t ring much on the continued on page 62

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High Efficiency, Tech Empowerment Keeps Service Quality High at The Office Advantage service side with people being upset.” He believes those times when a decision was not in the company’s best interest were outweighed “tenfold” by the advantages of empowering his technicians. When a service technician makes a decision that Van Den Hoek does not like, he treats it as a teaching opportunity. “I try to leave the ropes loose enough that they’re empowered to make those decisions, and sometimes it’s just ‘we’ll talk about it later.’ After awhile, [the sense of empowerment] becomes the culture of the business.”

Good Before, Better Now

Van Den Hoek was confident that The Office Advantage was doing well managing its service operations before the company implemented the BEI program. There is always room for improvement, he believed, and it would be good to know how The Office Advantage stacked up against other dealerships. “We’ve only been a dealer for 10 years. We hoped that by engaging BEI early on, we would avoid some of the mistakes others have made,” he said. The Office Advantage is using BEI to monitor hold-for-parts and call-back performance. This is a logical approach, considering that it’s not uncommon for their clients to be 150 miles away. “We had a few tweaks to make, but it was rewarding to know that we were already doing a good job,” said Van Den Hoek. BEI has also provided a means to build a rewards program for The Office Advantage’s technicians. “We hadn’t found a good model to do that. If the technicians do a good job, we want an efficient and effective tool to measure that,” said Van Den Hoek. Van Den Hoek also likes that he can use the data from BEI to not only measure performance internally, but compare The Office Advantage with the industry averages. “We’re kind of data freaks here because of our background. It’s always good to have industry data to benchmark yourself against,” he said. Van Den Hoek found that The Office Advantage was already performing well, but he has been able to use the BEI data to improve performance even more. The improved performance includes better car 62

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stock inventory efficiency and fewer holdfor-parts calls. ‘We’re getting the technicians to do a complete call versus a ‘we’ll fix it and go home’ kind of thing. The holes we found in our original assessments have been filled really well,” he said. He credits the improvements to two factors. The first is the reward incentives for the technicians, and the second is the coaching opportunities provided by the monthly BEI data. It took a few months for the technicians to get comfortable with the program, but the improvements began once they understood the program and how it benefitted them. For example, BEI allowed the technicians to be better prepared to do a complete service call and avoid going back for a problem that could have been addressed earlier. “We don’t like emergencies,” said Van Den Hoek. “BEI gave us data to reinforce what we were already doing,” said Van Den Hoek. “It gave us a good feeling from the executive level all the way down to the technicians. That’s been manifested by comparing ourselves to the rest of the world.” The next step for The Office Advantage with BEI is to assess contract profitability. “Contract profitability is huge,” said Van Den Hoek. “Now that we’re getting everybody dispatched in good shape with all the right parts, the next big thing is determining which of these contracts are profitable and which aren’t.”

Looking Ahead

Van Den Hoek continues to look for ways to improve The Office Advantage’s service operations. One way is to train help desk and dispatch personnel to recognize calls that may not need an on-site technician. “Without irritating the client, help desk will ask a few questions to determine if it’s a break/fix situation or something we might be able to do remotely,” he said, adding that the company is also enhancing its remote capabilities. “If we can avoid 3 to 4 percent of our calls, the clients are going to be happier and we’re going to spend less money dispatching technicians.” Given the success of the rewards program for service technicians, Van Den Hoek would like to improve on it and extend it to everyone on his team. “If employees are happy and content,

keeping the clients satisfied is easy. If they feel empowered and know they have something to look forward to from a rewards perspective, taking care of the client is second nature,” he said. Other dealers that have had The Office Advantage’s level of success might not put the same effort into continuous improvement. But Van Den Hoek believes he has no choice. “If you don’t evolve, they’ll put up a for-sale sign [on your business]. This industry is mirroring the computer and server industry where the hardware has been commoditized years ago,” he said. “We’re continually surprised at how quickly new ideas or technologies have become commoditized as dealers look for new revenue sources to offset the losses in print revenue,” said Van Den Hoek. “Six or eight years ago, it took a couple of years for a new idea to be commoditized. Now it’s commoditized in six to eight months. That evolution continues to surprise us.” Eventually, that might require dealers to rethink their service offerings and pricing model, Van Den Hoek believes. “To follow the managed IT business, the industry is going to evolve to a total seatbased business at some point. I really see that happening where you’re going to provide desktop services, but you can also provide printing output and scanning services for a fixed price-per-user,” he said. ♦

About the Dealership • Owner: Mark Van Den Hoek • Director of Service: Michael Kaffar • Number of Techs: 4 Why The Office Advantage Is a Platinum Award Winner • First-Call Effectiveness: 61% • Call-Back Rate: 32% • Hold-for-Parts Rate: 7% • Ranking: 16th overall of the 185+ dealers

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Ken Edmonds

Service Management News Briefing

Don’t Spend $25 on $5 Work: How to Make Your Labor More Efficient

E

arly on in my career as a district service manager visiting dealers, I made a scheduled visit to see a service manager. When I walked in to the dealership, the service manager told me that he did not have time to meet—he had to go run service calls. I have seen this misuse of time, in various forms, over and over in my career.

Value Categories of Labor

In each dealership, there are different levels of talent and responsibility, and I categorize them by assigning a numerical value to each one. The numbers are not necessarily what a person at that level earns. Instead, the number represent the relative value of his or her time. $25 Labor The highest value labor in each department or company is the most senior management. They need to focus their time and energy on tasks that only they can solve. $20 Labor The next highest value of labor is that of service supervisors. They need to focus their time on the teams they lead. They spend their time in the field solving customer and technician issues. $15 Labor These are your top technicians. They have the ability to solve most problems. $10 Labor This would represent the average trained technician. He or she is capable of handling most service calls. This level might also include technicians with minimal network skills. $5 Labor This category includes entry-level technicians, shop technicians, delivery drivers, and helpers.

Value Categories of Work

$25 Work This category of work is primarily associated with managing 64

www.enxmag.com | May 2017

the department. It includes planning for future growth, as well as overseeing training needs and budgets. This work would also include analyzing profitability and identifying where the department fails to meet the target. This category also involves managing customer relations and coordinating with the sales department in identifying opportunities, as well as ensuring proper equipment usage. $20 Work This category includes providing hands-on training for technicians, as well as spending time inspecting the technician’s quality of work. It also includes addressing customer complaints and identifying the underlying causes of those complaints. The supervisor is responsible for communicating guidance from the service manager to the team, and he or she also lets the team know about bulletins and updates from the manufacturer. The supervisor identifies the training his team needs and provides or arranges for that training. $15 Work This category includes the handling of more difficult service problems, ones which the average technician does not have the skills to resolve. In fact, the average technician probably made the initial call on the equipment. The technician’s ability was exhausted and the problem is still not resolved, so a more skilled or experienced colleague was called in. This category probably includes service calls involving production print equipment, as well as specialty products such as wide format. $10 Work This is your everyday service call. The jobs are routine and the average technician has the needed skill-set to handle the issue. We Saw It In ENX Magazine

$5 Work This category includes all other basic tasks that do not fall into one of the other categories. It would include entry level tasks such as assisting with setups and deliveries, keeping the shop clean, and assisting more qualified individuals when needed.

Proper Allocation of Resources

Going back to the service manager I mentioned at the beginning of the article, on my next visit, he and I discussed this concept. I explained that as his company grew he would need to focus more and more of his time on the bigger issues, and that eventually he would spend his time driving a desk. This is not to say that a service manager or supervisor should never perform a service call, but it would be an exceptional situation for them to do so on their own. If they need to visit equipment, it should normally include taking a technician with them. Why? It provides a learning opportunity for that technician. It also allows the supervisor or manager to observe the technician on-site and see what training may be necessary. Managers and supervisors need to look at what they spend their time on and ask themselves “Who can I delegate this task to?” If there is no one with the needed skills, then it is their task to perform. If they see someone that they can delegate the task to, they should delegate it. Think of this as the difference between firefighting and fire prevention. If the higher dollar talent is out doing the firefighting, the situation will never get better. They need to focus on fire prevention and delegate the firefighting to their team. continued on page 65


✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ ✓ Result

When service departments and managers understand and apply this principle, the result is a team that is constantly evolving and improving. Service profitability will normally improve, and the workload will typically go down. Technicians’ skill levels improve and they become better able to resolve their own problems. Customer satisfaction will improve because response time decreases and their equipment is repaired more effectively. The last time I visited the service manager in this article, he was sitting at his desk analyzing the data on his department’s performance. The average monthly copy-volume-per-technician had more than doubled. The service department’s response time was excellent, and his costper-copy was significantly better than the national average. ♦

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Continuous “LOAD PAPER” message on control panel with cassette loaded. There has been an increase in occurrences where the actual “paper out” flag in the tray 2 cavity has broken – resulting in a continuous “LOAD PAPER” message on the control panel, even though paper is in the tray. The flag is shown below in proper form. The original service manual does not list a part number for this, but a service bulletin was released showing the repair procedure and part number for the flag RM25375. ♦ This Printer Tech Tip is contributed by LaserPros (www.laserpros.com). Email any questions to marketing@laserpros.com We Saw It In ENX Magazine


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