#AskTheCEO How did you get here, who are your competitors, will landlines disappear, and how to handle a pressured phone call?

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How did you get here?  Why did you choose this particular business?

I have been in the telecom industry for over two decades.  Ten years ago, I started a business as a telecommunications consultant.  Basically, what that that means is, I was able to follow my passion, which is helping people, working with people, helping businesses, and being their trusted advisor.  Over the last year or so I noticed some trends shifting with regards to Cloud based solutions.  I noticed that there was a decline in sales in Premise-Based PBXs.  The vendors that I have been helping didn’t have as many PBX sales as they used to.  Google and Microsoft were coming out with their cloud based products and pushing them.  This past January, I sent out a simple 10 question survey to my client base asking for feedback on the service I have been providing.  One prominent customer sent back his survey which said, “You’re doing a great job and we like your service, but we’re going to be choosing a different provider – because we want a 100% cloud based service, which you don’t currently offer.  The interesting thing was, my first thought was that of gratitude.  I was so thankful that this customer was open and honest with me about his feelings, and felt comfortable enough to share them with me.  This was a real eye opener to me.  Right then and there I made a decision to go full out with Cloud.  I started to do research, produce content, and just immerse myself in the Cloud based technology, so that I can join the ranks of the leaders in the industry.  That’s why I chose this business, and that’s how I got to where I am today.

 

Who are your competitors?

I have a funny answer to this question.  There are two parts to this answer.  My response to this question is that I don’t have any competitors.  What I mean by that is, every business sells commodities.  The commodities may have competition but I don’t have competition.  The unique way we do business doesn’t have any competition. That’s an important thing to consider when talking to people about your business.  What is your differentiator? What sets you apart from other businesses.  I truly believe that the way we do business, the way we look out for our customers, the service that we provide, our unique prospective, the way we are trusted advisors to our clients, set us apart from the competition – from other businesses that sells similar commodities as we do.  It’s not about what we sell.  It’s not about the Cloud PBX, or the fiber optic internet service that we offer, or any of the other cool stuff that you’ll find on our website.  It’s about what can we do for the customer, what solution can we provide to you, which will make your life a whole lot easier.

The second part of the answer is, that the commodities have competition.  Therefore, our commodities’ competition, meaning the Cloud Based services that we provide, would be similar sized, small to medium businesses that provide Cloud Based services. So yes, the commodities have competition, but we as a business don’t have competition.

 

Will landlines ever disappear?

I think that they’re going to evolve.  Let’s take a look at the trends and let’s take a look at an example.

We’ve had landlines for many decades.  Then they evolved into VoIP lines, and mobile phones.  Now let’s take an example of a company that has evolved.  Verizon, a national phone carrier.  They were our local phone company which sold dial tone.  This was their bread and butter.  Due to the advent of the Internet and the proliferation of high speed broadband connections, all these little VoIP companies started popping up. They were basically competing with the telcos and selling VoIP services to replace people’s dial tones with cheaper alternatives.   This became very popular because it was saving people alot of money.  Verizon did two things:  (1) If you can’t beat them, join them, so they joined the bandwagon and started offering VoIP services as well.  (2) They realized that people were signing up for VoIP services that run over the Internet, so they started offering high speed Internet access as well!  They owned the cables up on the poles and under the ground.  If they are going to lose dial tone business to the Internet, they may as well join the party and sell Internet access!  So they started offering DSL, and now they’re selling fiber optic Internet Service.  What a brilliant idea that was!  What I’m getting at with this is that there is going to be some kind of evolution to the landline. Right now it’s presented as VoIP services which seems to be very popular in residential settings,  and even in business applications where we have SIP lines.

How do you handle a pressured phone call, such as when you call someone and he tells you “I only have two minutes for you”, and you know that you have only one shot at making it to the next level?

When you reach out to someone and he tells you “I only have 2 minutes for you”, and you know that this is your one shot chance to make an impression,  my feeling is, “Bring it on!” I get excited!  I actually had it happened to me twice yesterday.  When this happens, my reaction is, “That’s fine.  Whatever time you have, that’s all the time I need”.  What I do at this point is, I get strictly down to business.  I wrote an article couple weeks ago about handling phone anxiety.  You can read about it here: http://www.simiplex.com/2016/10/12/difficult-phone-call/.  In the article I listed four questions that you need to ask yourself – what, why, how, and who.  I’m going to summarize them here.  First – what do you want to accomplish? What’s the outcome?  Then, why are you doing it?  Engage the emotion.  How do you feel about it?  The third question is how are you going to do it?  Create possibilities.  Get into the heads of the people that you’re going to talk to, and try to understand it from their perspective.  Finally, who do you need to become in order to pull this off successfully?  In situations like this, you will need a lot of confidence. To build confidence, you have to go through the exercises as mentioned above.  What’s interesting is that I actually worked through all of this subconsciously as I was growing in business and in my role as an entrepreneur.  I spent a lot of time creating content.  I spent time talking to customers and talking to people, creating videos, and writing articles. All this help me solidify in my mind, what it is that I’m doing, so that I have a clear message for when I call somebody.  Most people are hard to reach.  You’re usually chasing after them for 2 weeks, and sometimes even for 2 months.  Then, you finally get them by accident and they answer the phone. Now an opportunity presents itself to show them what you’re made of.  What you need to do is to have a clear picture in your mind as to what this is all about. Why are you calling this person?  “I’m calling this person because I want to help him. I want to show him how I can help him.”  Right there, the goal has been solidified. You’re calling him because you want to help.  Next comes, “Why do I want to help him?”  Because this is what I do best. This is what I love to do, and I am knowledgeable in what I do. I’ve been in this business for decades and I know that I can help him.  How am I going to help him?  I have a list of possibilities ready.  I could provide him this solution if this is what his pain point is.  I have another solution if he has a different need.  I have so many different possibilities.  Then comes the “who”.  This part I work through and I solidify before I even pick up the phone. So by the time I get on the phone, and he gives me two minutes, I am so unbelievably grateful that he gave me two minutes of his time that I’m completely relaxed and can get right down to business.  it’s a complete game changer.  I’m just confident and in flow and can handle whatever gets thrown at me.

 

A little bit about SimiPlex.  SimiPlex Technologies helps businesses save time and money by ensuring they have the right technology in place to effectively optimize their business communications.  We are a one stop provider for all your communications needs.  Our vision is to help businesses, throughout the world, leverage the benefits of the latest in technology, while ensuring a simple and smooth transition throughout the entire process.  Our mission is to help businesses connect to the world with ease.  SimiPlex Technologies was founded on the premise of being completely customer focused.  Besides our expertise and proven state of the art product line, our entire focus is on you, the customer, and helping you solve your business problems.  We take the time to listen to your needs, and offer suggestions on how to assist you in fulfilling those needs.  We are not aligned with any specific vendor or carrier.  We suggest solutions that can fulfill your needs, from the vendor or carrier who is the best fit for your business.  Our premier concierge service will leave you feeling pampered and well taken care of.

The following statement sums up our differentiator:  Our value is NOT just in the manpower, or the Product Knowledge.  Our industry has many organizations who might provide it.  Our true value and differentiation is in our Time Proven World Class Methodology that provides consistent results, and removes the risk to you, our valued customer.  We are here to SERVE.  We are here to serve YOU!

As Steve Jobs once said, “Be a yardstick of quality.  Some people just aren’t used to an environment where excellence is expected.”

We, at SimiPlex Technologies, are the yardstick of quality.

Check us out today!  http://www.simiplex.com, or call us at (212) 372-9847.

 

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