Hey Cancer; I Made to the New Year!!

Help Cure Liver Cancer
Happy New Year! I sincerely hope that each of you has a prosperous & happy year. How many of you will be or have already made New Year’s Eve resolutions? How many people actually follow through?

I only have 4 resolutions. The first is to make it back to Sage Summit and the other is to make it to 2015. Are those doable? Sure, why not. It’s not like I’m doing much else and my main goal(s) requires me doing my part to not let this cancer get me into states of depression, sadness and self pity. The 4th resolution is that I continue to building a positive image for my sons.

Moores Cancer Center

Moores Cancer Center

My palliative care psychologist suggested that I leave the house every morning, visit with people, continue to get my affairs in order,  I’m also working on a picture album for each of the boys. We’ve had a lot of good memories with more  (I hope) to come. I have over 3,500 photographs to sift through.

My condition? Doctors still say that I’m stable. been experiencing some great days since about two weeks ago when the pain was so bad and I spent most of the day at UCSD while they ran the usual battery of tests.

Cancer has a perverted sense of humor but it’s not funny. I could have 10 brilliant days consecutively, wake up on the 11th in pain and end up UCSD for the next 24-48 hours. I normally don’t tell anyone about it, I’m not sure why I don’t and yet can be so transparent about everything else.

I have made it known that I want to volunteer and do whatever I can to lend a hand with the hospital’s cancer patients. I would like to work with the children. I want to set an example to my sons that you can receive so much just by helping someone who needs it. Children shouldn’t have to deal with terminal diseases and I believe that its our responsibility to take care of them.

I asked my doctors to schedule my appointments between 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. and the main reason for that is traffic on the 5, both north and south. I like to get there at least 1 hour before my scheduled appointment so I can grab a cup of coffee and go people watch in the main lobby of the Moores Cancer Center. The parade of cancer patients is endless, some look like they’ve given up, some who still fight cancer when they have the strength. The final profile are patients like me. I try to carry happiness and laughter with me wherever I go but I’m most conscience of how I carry myself when I’m in the Cancer Center. I feel fortunate, that for now I feel good however I am aware that there will be a time that feeling good will be nothing more than a distant memory.

But right now lets all have a Happy New Year & find it in your heart to help support as researchers continue to work on wiping cancer from this earth.  I know that it’s too late for me but I have children whom it may help and your children too.

Haloween 2013

Haloween 2013

Laughter & Sense of Humor Fight Cancer

Peter Bill Wayne
As I slide, not always gracefully, into the 8th month of my Terminal Liver Cancer Diagnosis its clear to me that I have more to say about how I finish this part of my journey than I originally thought.hope, faith liver logo

One of the comments I got from one of my doctors went some thing like this. “Bill, we always look forward to your visits because you have us laughing and we some times forget the severity of why you’re here.”

To me that sounds like a complement. I look forward to my weekly visits. I have gotten friendly with everyone from the parking lot attendant to the highest rated doctors that work each and every day with cancer patients who are near the end of their time here on Earth.It’s sad to see so many people that are so sick that they just sit and stare into space. A lot of them look like they’ve just given up.

Bill Diana Peter

I’m too stupid to know what quit means, giving up is just not in my DNA. About 4 weeks ago I woke up with a strange & foreign feeling. It was depression and because it was foreign to me I didn’t know what to do with it. My doctors knew what it was asked me how I felt about seeing a psychologist, I was willing to do anything, so I started seeing one and in a short time I have come to treasure that weekly hour. I contemplated talking about this but if it’s going to keep me alive longer then I’m all for it and I’m not too proud to talk about it.

Bill Sean Tess Boros
I just broke up with someone whom I treasured, I just didn’t know it She was my rock at doctor’s visits. Her being a Nurse Practioner I always felt better when she was there. She could de-cipher “Doctor Talk.”She arranged my weekly pills (20 per day) and my boys loved her. I stopped by the house earlier this morning to pick up some stray items and all I could do was stare at this wonderful woman that was put in my life. We’ll stay friends and I guess I’ll need to be happy with that.

I’m getting back on track with my blogging. I realized that to be moving ahead I must stay moving. I didn’t take any naps this past week and thats a big deal.

Thanks to each of you who reached out, it helps keep me stable and centered.

A blog from me wouldn’t be complete without a photo of my sons. Trevor just turned 13 and stands 6 foot tall.

Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays & Mele Kalikimaka

Bill Kizer
williamkizer52@gmail.com
760.518.2493

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Never Ask a Cancer Patient This……….

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I’ve heard strange questions or statements from people about being diagnosed with cancer. The following statement takes the “Heres Your Sign” Award for September. Let me know if you heard something better.

I ran into a friend at the grocery store a couple of weeks ago who I’ve haven’t seen in a couple of years. He said that he had heard that I had terminal cancer, I confirmed the rumor to which he replied “So when are you going to die?”

I think that this question falls under the heading of ignorant. I’m still stable & kicking.

Remember that no matter how Peter Bill Waynebad your life may seem at the       time there is always someone else who’s life is worse and your life will get better

the doctors continue to tell me that I’m stable

.

Bill

How To Tell Your Sons You Have Cancer

TTK Halloween

Help Find A Cure For Liver Cancer

Help Find A Cure For Liver Cancer

First, my doctors and I both believe that telling your children that you have a terminal disease is important. No matter how difficult or uncomfortable it may be its nothing to how your children would feel when a loved one dies without telling them that they’re even sick.

I was diagnosed with liver cancer on 4/15 of this year. A procedure called T.A.B.E. was unsuccessful so I was scheduled to meet the Palliative Care team. Prior to cancer I had never heard the term “Palliative” nor had I ever used it in a conversation. I should have had a clue because of its locale in The Moore’s Cancer Center at the Thornton Campus in La Jolla.

In just a few minutes my life changed and reality came crashing down around me. The head physician told me that my cancer was going end my life in about a year or any period before a year or sometime after a year. Really, that was the time frame that he gave me. I don’t pay any attention to the time frame as it’s just an estimate based on historical data. The one factor missing in their equation is me, the patient & it doesn’t show how much I want to live.

Needless to say I was shocked which quickly turned to anger. I was now standing in the corner of the room trying to estimate how many steps it was to him and whether to hit him with a front kick, side kick or just smack the smile off his face.

After a lot of thinking I realized that he was doing his job & I’m sure that he doesn’t take any pleasure from it. He & I have become a working team & I actually like him & respect the work that he does for those in the same position as myself. All it took was two words from me; “I’m sorry.”

My first concern was how do I tell my sons. My ideas ran the gamut from absurd to grandiose. Fortunately the Palliative team includes a clinical social work who worked with me on everything from timing to delivery.

The day arrived and I looked at Marti and she gave me the signal that meant this was as good a time as any. I asked if I could talk to them. I kept it short and simple and after telling them that I had cancer I asked if they had any questions.

Trevor (age almost 13): Asked if we could produce a Cancer Television Commercial
Trent (just turned 11):   Asked if was contagious

They had no more questions & they quickly went back to building Lego pieces. Per the social workers suggestion I had kept it simple & I kept my emotions in check.

I had a different version in my head, one that included uncontrollable sobbing, which goes to show I don’t have a clue about some things. So, the once dreaded responsibility wasn’t so difficult after all and is now behind me.

NOTE: Recently I had an MRI & biopsy & my cancer is stable which means it hasn’t gotten better but it hasn’t hasn’t gotten any worse. Some days thats all you’re going to get and you just have to be happy with that.

My thanks to the entire palliative team at UCSD.
BK Fav - Copy

Tweet This…….

sage summit 2013Bill Diana Peter

Now that Sage Summit has come and gone, blogs have been written, speeches given, hundreds of Tweets sent and received, keynotes given, sessions attended, planes caught, some not; some were delayed due to weather and were bumpy, others were as smooth as a baby’s bottom.

Going back to the Twitter subject, one day during Summit I received 1,100+ Tweets, isn’t that a bit much? I say yes, how much noise is the human brain able to assimilate? I can’t speak for yours but everything going on around me at Summit the last thing I need Is 1,100 Tweets. I’m not sure of the exact number that I’m no longer assimilating but rather I’m just deleting groups of 10 – 20 Tweets but I do know what the number isn’t and that’s 1,100

Summit was my first experience with social media when I wanted to grind my Galaxy Note 2 into small pieces, get a home phone without an answering machine, no pager. If I answered the phone it meant I was home, if not I wasn’t there, you’d have to call back.

This doesn’t mean that I dislike Twitter; it just means that I don’t need 1,100 Tweets per day so slow your Twitter roll and if you tweeted during Summit and I didn’t get back now you know why.

Take Care

Bill & Sons, Trent and Trevor

How did you catch cancer?

Help Find A Cure For Liver Cancer

Help Find A Cure For Liver Cancer

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This list contains some of the questions that I’ve heard from a lot of well-meaning people. It’s not meant to be mean or malicious, just an observation.

Are you dying?
How did you catch cancer?
Is it contagious?
How long do you have to live?
What stage is it in?
Where is the cancer located? (Body part)
You’re only given what you can handle.
All you need to do is think positive
Half the battle is the mindset. Be determined to beat cancer and you will
I know how you feel (unless you’ve had cancer, you don’t know)
By the way I’m feeling fine; I get fatigued easily but that’s a combination of the cancer and all
the medication I have to take daily.

I think that the best thing someone  can say to a cancer patient is “How’s your health” “How are you feeling today?”

Don’t stop asking as it’s appreciated and gives me more reason to fight this bout with cancer

The Power of Community

Bill & Sons, Trent and Trevor

Bill & Sons, Trent and Trevor

The Power of Community

This is the unofficial official last word on Sage Summit 2013. A lot of positives have been written about this year’s conference. I’ve heard very little negative and its success is due to the work of the entire Event team. As of this writing they’re already meeting to plan for next year’s invasion of Sin City, Las Vegas!

Even though the doctors have told me not to plan out that far it’s my goal to be in Las Vegas next year enjoying what has long become my favorite conference. As my doctor told me she’s been wrong 100% of the time, there is something to be said for consistency.

It was very evident to me this past Summit that the group that I started in May of 2008 passed the group status and now sits comfortably on its own as a community. The difference you ask?

The first point is that groups are managed while communities are nurtured.
A ‘group’ has a connotation of people being put together, where a ‘community’ has a connotation that individuals have come togetheron their own.
Is your group perceived as a benefit to its members?
Does your group keep your members engaged and interested?

Let me give you a couple of examples why I think the LinkedIn Group is a community.

Because of my cancer I haven’t been able to earn what I need to cover my monthly expenses, so I had made the decision not to attend. Summit. In May I received an email from Joe Noll, ‎President at RKL eSolutions LLC in Lancaster PA. In his email he offered to pay for my registration, airfare and hotel costs. I have never communicated with Joe in any form. I was dumbfounded. When I asked him why he was doing this his answer “for all that I’ve done and continue to do for the Sage Community”

My registration was covered by Sage, thanks Ed Kless and to top things off Dave Knorr, Renee Knorr & Cheryl Masseth sent me a check for consulting services that were marginal at best.Bill Sean Tess BorosBill Diana Peter

All the “best of health” wishes, kind words, hugs, finally meeting Sarah Michel, who is the impetus behind this blog; Joe Ward, spending time with Wayne Schulz, Robert Wood, Diana Waterman and many others.

A community band together in times of need helps those that need the help. I’m sure there are other stories out there like mine. The truth is, I had too much pride to publicize my situation and I know I’m not the only one. How can people help if they don’t know? There is a community all around you know that will help. Use it when need and more important help those that need your help.

My only wish for this community after I’m gone is that it retains its sense of a community and continues to grow by attracting quality members.
Pascal Bill Cannons
Hope to see you all In Las Vegas

I Could Have Missed It All…..

Fathers  Day 2013 6This past week was the annual Sage Summit Partner/Customer Conference  which was held in Washington D.C. at the Gaylord Conference Center and Resort.

I have been to every Sage Summit since its inception and more than a few when  it was Insights.Bill Bo Paul

This Summit was a special one for me and if the doctors are right it will be my  last so it was important for me to attend. Sage gave me the opportunity to say thanks to the Sage Community and also to tell the attendees what’s going on with my health.
Bill Hugh SeanBill Sean Tess BorosPascal Driving BusPascal Bill CannonsWalking At Summit 2Bill Bo PaulPeter Bill Wayne

Joe Noll of Lancaster, PA showed me what an incredible human being he is, as  did Dave & Cheryl from LDK Consulting. The love that the Sage community showed me was overwhelming. An example of this was when I was talking to Diana Waterman, an incredible human being and one of my favorite Sage employees, a  gentleman walked up to us that I’ve never met and introduced himself as Pramod Gandhi  from Dubai. In a very humble manner he asked about my health and then he said, “Bill, we are  praying for you in Dubai.” You could have bowled Diana and myself over  with a feather. It was then that I finally understood the global reach that my  LinkedIn Group had accomplished. The entire week was like that for me from Sage executives to partners like Pramod.

I had to conserve my energy so I didn’t go out to the parties. Today I’m wiped  out and know that I will fall asleep right after takeoff but no matter I will take these memories with me on whatever journey I embark on.

Thank you to the following ( I apologize if I’ve left your name off, it’s no  reflection of you, but rather a reflection of my crappy memory)

Joo Sohn / Kevin Rooker / LDK Consulting / Joe Langer / Diana Waterman / Sophie  Leguillette / Himanshu Palsule  /Tammy Mathews/ Connie Certusi /Pascal Houllion / Wayne Schulz/ Lori Schultz / Pramod Gandhi / Danielle Cote / Robert Wood/ Joe Ward / Suzanne Spear / Joe Noll  and of course Marti Wolfson

I do hope and pray that my doctors are wrong in their prognosis because I do want to live longer and spend more time with my sons and I sure don’t want to miss Sage Summit 2014 in Vegas. Please don’t stop being who you are. What I’ve found going through this process is that it doesn’t take much effort to make someone’s day just a little bit better as you did mine.

I have been given money for the purpose of adding to my son’s college fund and also for liver cancer research. I hope this doesn’t come off as pandering but both are great places to donate money.

My mailing address is:
1025 Stratton Drive
Vista, CA. 92083

BK Fav - Copy

Remember The Good Old Days?

Help Find A Cure For Liver Cancer

Do you remember the days when Sage sales consultants would sell 3 to 5 new ERP systems  weekly just by answering the phone? Do you recall the times when end users would not complain (too much) about the total cost of product and implementation because you had  prepared your resellers and customers in advance? Proper preparation would often eliminate any surprises for you and your client when total cost would become a point of discussion.

What happened to the good old days when new system sales were easier to land? What I believe has happened is that software sales consultants have not prepared their prospects for the ultimate presentation; you know, the one that includes the total cost, including the price of the product, maintenance, deployment and training.

Further, a practice seldom used by sales consultants today is the ability to upsell to existing  customers. For example, vertical-specific enhancements that integrate seamlessly with Sage 100 ERP (formerly known as MAS 90/200)

One of the major reasons why potential enhancement solutions often turn into missed upselling opportunities is because many software sales consultants fail to make an effort to study the industry in which their prospect or customer work.

This is why conducting a complete business analysis is so critical. In addition to learning about your clients and their respective industries, inquiring about the responsibilities of each employee within a company’s structure is vital, especially in terms of listening to your customer’s specific requirements and asking the right follow-up questions. Asking constructive questions and offering a wide range of enhancement solutions, tailored to fit the needs of the prospect, are strong suits of most Sage Resellers.

Don’t forget to visit relevant vendors and partners at Sage Summit 2013 (July 21-26) in Washington, D.C.

Sage, Sage 100 ERP, Sage 500 ERP, Sage CRM and Sage Software are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sage. All other trademarks and registered trademarks mentioned herein are the property of their respective owners. This article may be freely reprinted or distributed in its entirety in any e-zine, newsletter, blog, or web and social media site. The author’s name, bio and website links must remain intact and be included with every reproduction.

Bill is recognized as a top performing senior level executive with multiple years of proven success in sales, management & business development

He’s considered a leader in Sage Software ERP solutions, business-to-business direct sales and business development.  He’s developed successful sales teams & is adept at analyzing growth opportunities & managing operations to meet corporate objectives. He’s also been successful in building an online Sage LinkedIn Community with 8,200+ members.

Contact: Bill Kizer
760.518.2493
williamkizer52@gmail.com

Sage Summit 2013

Sage Summit 2013

http://www.billkizer.com

Are You A Digital Addict?

Help Find A Cure For Liver Cancer

Help Find A Cure For Liver Cancer

How many Days This Week have you…..
1. Checked Twitter & Facebook before getting out of bed?
2. Had 5 minutes of Internet activity turn into more than 30 minutes?
3. Texted while driving?
4. Texted while walking across the street?
5. Posted a Facebook photo of your dinner or a neat trick that your pet just learned?

How many times today have you…..
a. Said, “Just a second, I have to check my email, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.?
b. Checked in to the same Starbucks, etc. on Four Square?
c. Reach for your smart phone during a meeting, just for comfort?
d. Realized you left your smartphone at home, and when you’ve gone back and retrieved it breathed a little easier.
e. Panicked because a co-worker caught you playing Solitaire, Words With Friends or your favorite game?
f. Nearly walked into someone or something while checking your phone?
g. Tweeted or answered an e-mail from the toilet?

Now add your score enter 2 points for every activity you’ve indulged in, now come on let’s be honest.

0-10: Don’t change a thing. This tongue in cheek blog was written for your eyes.
11 + 19; Turn your cell phone off for a few hours just to see how that feels.
20 +; I’m not saying you have a problem but your boss or significant other may think you have a problem.

Recently I watched a TV show that took 5 coeds who typically rely on their smartphone and the producers asked them if they’d be interested in participating in this week long experiment. This being Southern California, the breeding  grounds for reality shows and endless reality “stars.”  What coed wouldn’t join in? The results were interesting. One of the girls became a stark raving bitch (her description) after just one day. On the other end of the spectrum one of the coeds didn’t really mind and the other two were in the middle. Scientific? No, but it was interesting to watch Coed #1 lose her marbles.

There are hundreds of similar studies being conducted to determine how our daily activity has changed; what that means, if anything at all. Can we actually be addicted to the activity and time spent with our gadgets?

When will the first case of LSAS (Lost Smartphone Absence Syndrome pop up in front of a judge? Which ambulance chasing lawyer use it as a defense?

One more time and then I’m walking away from this laptop for the day. I was watching a couple at my favorite nearby restaurant, sit and play with their phones while completely ignoring their dinner mate. They continued this way even after their food was delivered to them. They didn’t say 10 words to each other. This is the type of addiction that I’m referring to.

Sage Summit 2013

Sage Summit 2013

See you at Sage Summit 2013
July 21-26
National Harbor Gaylord Resort and Conference Center.

Bill Kizer
760.518.2493
San Diego, CA. 92083
williamkizer52@gmail.com 

Bill is recognized as a top performing senior level executive with multiple years of proven success in sales, management and business development

He’s considered a leader in Sage Software ERP solutions, business-to-business direct sales and business development. He’s developed successful sales teams. He’s adept at analyzing growth opportunities to meet corporate objectives. He’s also been successful in building an online Sage LinkedIn Community with 8,300+ World Wide members.

Even The Social Media Newbie Needs Tips, Especially The Newbie…..

Liver Cancer Pin

Be Yourself: Social media is just that. It’s social.  People want to see who you are and what you stand for.  Join the conversation; show some of your personality. But don’t try to sell your readers. One of the biggest turnoffs is being sold to.
Be Humble: Those just starting out in social media often try to establish themselves as experts or gurus within their field. Like in real life, no one likes a know-it-all. It’s crucial that you learn how to engage your readers fans without alienating them.
Find Your Niche: Facebook, Twitter and Google+ are not the only social networking platforms out there. When creating your social media strategy, it is more important to find out where your clients and customers are than it is to have a presence on Facebook or Twitter that may not get you the conversion rates you seek.
Follow Interesting People: Everyone needs a mentor, someone who is experienced in their field and who is willing to share their knowledge.  Asking questions is a great way to gain knowledge.  And remembering to pay it forward is also key.
Don’t annoy your followers: A good social media goal is to be helpful first. Trying to shamelessly promote your brand or business is a sure way to annoy and alienate your followers.  Remember, engagement comes first, then sales will follow.
Numbers aren’t everything: Social Media isn’t about the number of followers you have or how many fans. It’s about creating a conversation with your audience that will hopefully lead to the creation of loyal, repeat customers for your business. Don’t be discouraged by your number of followers or about one rude person you encounter in cyberspace.  Focus on creating good content, establishing real relationships and being helpful
Share The Love: Great content is meant to be shared. Posting, re-tweeting and +1 are all way to say to your followers that you value what they are doing.  And you’ll likely find that the more you do for others, the more they’ll do for you.Give Credit Where Credit is Due: When you borrow someone else’s stuff, give them credit. Plagiarism is still plagiarism, even in the cyber-world.
Follow Back: No explanation necessary.  It’s just the nice thing to do!
Know when to turn it off: When all is said and done in this 24/7 world of social media, sometimes you have to know when it’s time to shut it down. It will still be there when you wake up.

Bill Kizer
760.518.2493
San Diego, CA. 92083
williamkizer52@gmail.com

sage summit 2013

Bill is recognized as a top performing senior level executive with multiple years of proven success in sales, management and business development

He’s considered a leader in Sage Software ERP solutions, business-to-business direct sales and business development. He’s developed successful sales teams. He’s adept at analyzing growth opportunities to meet corporate objectives. He’s also been successful in building an online Sage LinkedIn Community with 8,200+ World Wide members.

Another Blog On How To Write a Blog?

Liver Cancer Pin

I enjoy writing, or in this case blogging. While getting readers is a factor it’s not my ultimate goal.

My goal is to write an informative blog that interests readers and makes them return to see my next blog.

Along the way I’ve picked up some tips that I think may be helpful to future writers and companies that are considering either writing their own blog or hiring a ghost writer.

1. Be patient, building readers and ultimately customers or prospects takes time. One of the first items I go over with a blog prospect is not to expect thousands or ever hundreds of readers overnight

2. Numbers aren’t everything: Blogging isn’t about the number of followers you have or how many fans. It’s about creating a conversation with your audience that will hopefully lead to the creation of loyal, repeat customers for your business.

3. Don’t get discouraged by your number of readers or one rude comment that someone makes. Focus on creating good content, establishing real relationships and being helpful.

4. Don’t rant; don’t use your blog as your personal “bitch” session, unless this is the format for your blog.  It isn’t a good business decision to constantly complain, especially if you’re not offering a positive solution.

5. Stay positive; you’ll always get and keep readers if people don’t think of you as a crazed dog.

See You All at Sage Summit 2013 at Gaylord National Resort; Washington D.C. July 21 – 26

Fathers  Day 2013 6

Bill Kizer is a Social Media Consultant based in San Diego, CA. He has spent many years as a Sage Software Value Added Re-Seller. Currently he works with Sage VAR’s to help them build a Social Media base for their companies. To contact Bill either e-mail; williamkizer52@gmail.com  / blog; http://billkizer.com / 760-518-2493  

Should Your Company Blog? Mostly “Yes” Sometimes “No”

I love my job

I spend a lot of time extolling the overall virtues of a blog but it’s important to remember that it has to be done well to be of benefit.

Done badly, a blog can make you and your company look unprofessional, spammy and a poorly educated staff.

A bad blog is not better than no blog at all. In fact, you’d be better off forgetting the whole thing if you don’t have the resources to do it well.

So, here are the most common mistakes and issues that I see on corporate blogs:

Sales pitches instead of useful, informative articles.

Irrelevant or useless content.

Attention-grabbing or alarmist headlines that aren’t backed up by the content.

Errors in spelling and grammar.

Rare or inconsistent posting so the blog looks uncared for.

Going To Sage Summit 2013?

sage summit 2013 square logo
The timing for this blog isn’t an accident. I wrote it specifically to be finished around Sage Summit 2013.

If you have questions about products and services and which Partners provide the best, look around while you’re at Summit. You’ll find enough quality VAR’s to answer any questions you might have. If you’re a customer attending and you don’t have a Sage VAR that you’re currently working with here’s your opportunity to find the best. They’ll be easy to spot; they’re usually the ones standing in booths, attending lots of sessions and you’ll usually find them between sessions talking with other VARs about software.

What factors make you want to return to a retail store, a vendor or a service provider? Is it price? Is it location or is it something even more?

One of my favorite quotations was written by Benjamin Franklin; “The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten?”

What does that mean to you as a consumer or should it mean anything at all to you? My answer is “Yes it should.”

Saving money doesn’t mean buying the lowest priced products or services. It means buying products or services that offer the best value. This can be stripped down to 3 words, Focus on Value.

Traits to Look For In Your Sage Software Partner….

Do they have integrity, passion, & honesty? Or do you have to check and re-check every invoice they send you knowing that you’re going to have a less than pleasant conversation with them about the “Holy Cow” additional costs that you hadn’t anticipated?

Do you hear from them regularly to tell you about new updates, versions or maybe just an offer to go to lunch? Or, do they call just to remind you that your annual maintenance and support fees are due?

Do you recommend them to friends or business associates who are looking for ERP software?

If your “VAR” isn’t providing you with quality service like the ones that have been mentioned then maybe what you have is a Re-Seller, not a VAR.

If your software partner doesn’t appear to offer much beyond the ability to sell software I would refer to them as a Re-Seller. A Re-Seller doesn’t offer additional services, usually doesn’t have the resources to provide those services and generally has to charge you more because they have to pay an outside resource to provide those services.

Our clients deserve the best service that’s available. They trust that they’re getting the best service. It’s incumbent upon us to provide an extraordinary customer experience each and every time that we have a dialogue with them. It’s time that our clients are treated as something other than a quick buck.

If you’re losing more than your fair share of clients for “undetermined” reasons then it’s time to re-examine your business practices. Maybe it’s time to re-evaluate why you’re in business & if it’s just to make money then you’re probably in business for the wrong reasons.

However if providing an extraordinary customer experience for your clients is your number one goal, congratulations, you “get it” and not surprisingly so do your clients. Welcome to the World of VARs

Have Fun At Sage Summit 2013
July 21 – 26

http://na.sage/sagesummit.com

Bill Kizer

Bill Kizer

Bill’s 4th Annual Booths Not TO Miss While At Sage Summit 2013

sage summit 2013
It’s that time of the year again & that means my list of booths not to miss is ready for publication. This year’s list has some repeats but there are some newbies. They’re not listed in any order.

1. Information Integration Group; Booth 1096 Visit Alec & Gary to check out their Add On Solutions like Advanced Distribution Bundle, Material Planning & Production Mgmt, Service Maestro, Rental Maestro, Apparel Maestro, among others.

2. Altec; Booth 858 The Altec Team will be in Booth 858. Stop by to see what’s new in document management

3. Azamba/TechnoTropicBooth: 721. Come see the strides that Peter Wolf & his team are making with 3rd party applications & productivity enhancements to SageCRM         

4. I Business Net: Booth 444. If you want to meet one of Sage’s Top VARs come by & say hi to Gary Feldman

5. Website Pipeline; Booth 491 Come by & see what Brian Seidel & Brian Nunes have to offer in the latest eCommerce solutions.

6. Suntico, Booths 671, 680  Stop by & meet the team of Derek Stewart & Hugh Johnson  & see what’s new in online CRM and private social network that links to your accounts software.

7. TaskCentre; Booth 408  Stop by & let Paul Cannon & Nicole Laurier show you TaskCentre v4.5, a powerful suite of Business Process Management (BPM) technologies that ‘loosely couples’ business applications enabling organizations to automate virtually any employee-driven business process

8. xkzero; Booths 1208, 1209  Paul Ziliak & his team have developed Sage 100 ERP GetX Search & iSales 100 provide Universal Search for the Sage portfolio.

9. Net@Work; Booths 802, 803  Meet the Solomon Brothers & see what a full service business consultancy & technology solutions provider looks like. Their expertise goes beyond network solutions & across all areas of business, including accounting/ERP, CRM, manufacturing/distribution, HRMS,  eCommerce, & enterprise/ document management

10. Enbu Consulting; Booth 673 are experts in Sage CRM software. Companies  have been choosing Enbu to deliver CRM based solutions, address key business processes, including sales, marketing &  customer service.

Have Fun!

Sage Summit 2013 – Are You In Or Are You Out?

Gaylord National Harbor Resort

Gaylord National Harbor Resort

There has been much discussion about the value of attending Sage Summit 2013 Partner & Customer Conference, which is being held in Washington D.C. July 21 – 26 at the Gaylord National Harbor Resort.

This is my favorite Gaylord because it’s easy to navigate (Not like the Opryland Human Maze), it’s close to some outside restaurants and clubs, (Again not like Opryland which is a $25 Cab ride downtown Nashville)

But I won’t miss it and neither should you!  I’ve have found that Summit provides me with great value and relevant information. Our industry changes daily and there’s no way to stay on top of these changes if we don’t talk to the source(s). You can find the source(s) and other partners who have utilized those changes successfully by attending Sage Summit 2013. 

Most of the real interesting conversations are those that you find in the hallways between sessions and keynotes. If you want to watch a partner who is adept at deciphering what is said and more importantly what’s not said, find Wayne Schulz and ask him if it’s okay to tag along, he’ll probably say “no” but go anyway. It’s how he and I became friends.

Its eye opening, informational and very rarely is his take on things wrong. I talk to Wayne 3-5 times a week and the conversation is always lively. You can catch Wayne on his daily morning walks at 6:00 a.m. along with other partners like Robert Wood, Peter Wolf & I swear I’m going to get up at Zero Dark 30 to walk with them.

If sessions are your thing then go park yourself in every Ed Kless session that has an open seat. You won’t leave disappointed. I have sat in many of his sessions, taken the week long Consulting Academy, gone to conferences just to hear him speak and rate Ed as one of the top speakers in our industry.

Look at the business partners and vendors who consistently attend Summit.  If you want the keys to success they’re the people to see. Go to their booths and see what they’re doing that you’re not. It’s probably a safe wager that they’ve been involved in Summit for many years.

“It has always been MY rule that if I am serious about selling Sage products I need to attend Summit. I need to “breathe” the air, sense the mood of the Sage community, and get enough inspiration to see me through another year.” Arlie Skory; Managing Partner at Skory Employer Solutions LLC 

There is a long term value of creating lasting relationships with other colleagues who will share their knowledge with you. I’ve spent many hours talking with them about the direction that our industry is headed.

What price tag do you put on the information you receive at Summit? How about face time with Sage executives, visiting with 3rd party providers? I don’t think you can put a tag on these. The sessions alone that Sage offers are topic rich.

We get caught up on doing work as we’ve always have not aware there are better ways to streamline our businesses & become more cost effective. If we don’t go to Summit & feed off the synergy then we’re going to stay in that same rut getting the same results.

There are BP’s who have concerns that they don’t write any new business at Summit. They’ve bought booth space, & brought a large group. Is it worth the expenditure? Can I justify the costs? How much business will I miss out on while I’m at Summit? These are valid questions. The answer is simple….How much effort are you willing to exert while you’re there.

If you’re going to Summit with the sole intent of closing deals you will be disappointed. It’s like going to the circus expecting Shakespeare; this is an unrealistic expectation. A lot of companies look at expenditures that don’t provide immediate return as worthless. I think of attending conferences the same as Spring Training, The chances of a productive year increase exponentially with a successful Spring Training.

If you’re still not sold, here are 3 questions to ask yourself.

►By not going am I adding or taking away value from the success of my business?

► What new technology can I find at Summit that I can add to my product portfolio?

►Am I the problem or am I the solution?

Come to D.C. & see what’s going on at Sage. You will go back to your business with new tools, ideas & a new attitude.

See you in Washington D.C.
Bill Kizer
http://na.sage.com/sage-summit/
http://billkizer.com

What Not to Say to a Social Media Strategist…

Kim Garst Head Shot

Kim Garst

Written By Kim Garst @kimgarst / CEO, Entrepreneur, Social Media & Personal Branding Strategist & Mentor to Business Owners. Forbes TOP 50 Social Media Influencer

1. They pay you to do that? I thought social media was free! 

Well yes, it’s free to have an account on every social media platform. Some of the tools to increase efficiency in social media aren’t free. And that doesn’t even get into the issue of whether it’s cost effective to put yourself through the learning curve required to use social media effectively – posting fresh content regularly, writing at least 2 blog posts per week, and creating videos just to name a few. To use social media well takes time and a consistent strategy. I haven’t even mentioned marketing knowledge yet!

2. I know how to use Facebook! How do I start?

I think developing a social media marketing business is a great way for people to break out of traditional work environments – especially people like stay at home moms, retirees, etc. However, just because you use Facebook doesn’t mean you are ready to hang out your shingle and call yourself an expert! There are many other social media platforms, not to mention running a website or a blog. Plus, the endless hours of learning online marketing strategies – which are very different than standard marketing strategies.

3. You just play on social media all day? What kind of a job is that?

Honestly, while there are certain activities that go into every social media marketing campaign, every day and every client has unique needs. So while I know what kinds of activities I’ll be doing regularly, there are many days that I never know what is going to happen by the day’s end! (But I can assure you, it’s not just “playing” on any platform, be it Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn or the rest!)

4. Pinterest and Twitter for business? I thought that was just for housewives or college kids!

Marketing is about providing your message to your ideal customers, wherever they are. Social media and content marketing takes that one step further and provides valuable information across multiple channels that helps you find, then develop relationships with the people most likely to be interested in the services or products you offer. Where is your ideal client? Chances are,  they’re on Twitter and Pinterest!

5. Social media is just a fad!

As Gary Vaynerchuk puts it, betting against social media now is like betting against the Internet. Six years ago, what was developing into social media was called “Web 2.0″ It was where the internet was going, and developers knew it. While social media platforms may continue to evolve, the likelihood that social networking will cease to be part of people’s everyday lives is as high as the likelihood that movies or television will stop existing all together. They may be made and distributed differently, but they’re not going away. Neither is the need for businesses to engage with their customers online.

6. Since we’re friends, can you help me out for FREE?

Unless you would also ask every friend to provide professional services  for free (and if you would, let’s talk about professional manners! you should also expect to pay for the professional services of someone handling your social media strategy. Besides the cost of access to tools that a professional social media strategist incurs, if he or she is serious about business, he or she also has invested a great deal of time and money learning the skills of the profession, just like any other professional. And one last thought…do you work for free?

7. My granddaughter is into computers; I’ll just have her do that for me

It’s important to understand that social media isn’t about the technology. It’s about understanding that whoever is providing your social media updates, designing a Facebook contest that doesn’t break the Facebook Terms of Service (TOS) and creates fresh blog content regularly is the face and the voice of your company to anyone who reads your content. It takes work and a strong strategy to provide a voice that indeed sounds like someone from your company. Building your brand as a company takes time – and it only takes one misinformed Tweet to ruin it for a long time to come.

8. Twitter? Do People Really Use That For Business?

Yes Twitter is used for business.  I can’t begin to tell you how many paid clients have first connected with me through Twitter or as a result of content I’ve shared via Twitter. You would be amazed at the power of 140 characters to make or break your brand.

Saying goodbye to Tom Miller – or – what do you do when Superman retires? by Peter Wolf on February 6, 2013

Tom Miller @ Sage Summit

Tom Miller @ Sage Summit

Tom Miller has announced that he will retire from Sage North America on March 29, 2013.

This is not new news – it’s been out there for a while now. It took me a while to figure out what I would like to say.

I would like to use this space and honor his legacy.

Personally I’ve always been the type of guy that likes to sharpen the saw by reading smart ideas by smart people presented in new and interesting ways. Yet, while reading these sources of information and inspiration, I’m always reminded of the classics – Zig Ziglar, Dale Carnegie, Peter Drucker, Napoleon Hill – which, to me, are the fundamental sources upon which most other business philosophies are built upon.

I am not going out too far on a limb to say: Tom Miller is the embodiment of these fundamental sources of business inspiration.

He’s a living, breathing example of those classics.

I would challenge anyone to name a time where they interacted with Tom and didn’t come away richer for the experience. Whether it’s direct advice or, more likely than not, you walking away thinking you came up with a great idea even though he skillfully planted it, fed and watered it and helped it grow.

Tom has mastered the unbelievably difficult skill of helping others reach their potential. He’s not in the fish-handing-out business, he’s in the teaching-people-to-fish business.

He embodies the positive thinking, get ‘er done, 1 + 1 can equal 3 mentality that I aspire to maintain. Tom doesn’t see obstacles and problems, he sees opportunities and exciting challenges. Tom believes in the power of free enterprise and the ability of sharp business owners to find ways to create value for their customers, their partners and themselves.

And, as a software reseller, you can rest easy knowing that Tom has walked a mile (or two) in your shoes. He understands what it means to hump for sales and to motivate teams and to struggle to find talent and to keep customers happy.

He’s been there and done that. He knows your pain and, when he commiserates with you, you believe it and you feel it.

As such a staunch channel advocate, he has overseen a very difficult transition as Sage has made controversial (some would say necessary) moves to a more aggressive and more self-deterministic future that has changed the Sage channel dynamic. During this period, he has continued to advocate for Sage and the future of Sage while also continuing to provide a rich and deep set of partner services to help Sage channel partners transition to become Firms of the Future and learn self-sustaining skills in the Sales, Marketing and Consulting Academies.

Partners that have taken advantage of these – and other – programs provided by Tom’s team have come away stronger for the experience. I know that my company has.

Tom is also sharp as a tack. He understands the big picture and can dive down into the details when necessary. Present him with a problem that has been plaguing you for a while and he can distill it to its essence in a single conversation.

And he’ll have you walking away thinking you solved it on your own and the two of you just had a nice long chat.

I have only known Tom for a few brief years and – mostly due to his personal charisma and style – I consider him a teacher, a mentor and a friend. I feel fortunate to have met him, to know him and to see such a class act firsthand.

Tom epitomizes the ability of one man to create a cascading positive influence in the world.

If you’d like to leave a comment on Peter’s LinkedIn Post please click on this link  http://linkd.in/VOmvZN

Thank you, Tom.

PGA Tour + Peter Ripa + Happy Fan = “I’ll Be Back”

Mr. Peter Ripa, PGA Tour, Tournament Director Farmers Insurance Open

farmers insurance open banners

Last year I attended the Farmers Insurance Open at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, CA. Golf courses are known for their beauty & pristine conditions but Torrey Pines is a standout on the PGA Tour. The backdrop is the blue Pacific Ocean & in the afternoons the surrounding sky is dotted with hang gliders. Have you ever watched Tiger Woods gaze as the hang gliders come within several hundred feet of the fairways & I can’t help but think that he would enjoy strapping himself into the harness & glide through the sky over the place that we get to call home.  Hang Gliders over Torrey Pines

But I digress because this blog is about something & someone else.

At the 2012 Open I was disappointed that so many top tier players had chosen to bypass the Farmers Open so they play in Abu Dhabi where large player appearance fees are paid. The PGA doesn’t allow appearance fees to be paid and I’m not sure paying a player just to show up is a good policy. Our method avoids the occasional player who might commit to a tournament just for appearance fees & then mail in his performance.

Torrey Pines Ocean View
I sent an email to the PGA to voice my concerns over the cost of attending & not getting to see Tiger & Top 20 players in the field. They directed my email to Mr. Peter Ripa, who is the PGA Tour Tournament Director of the Farmers Open who in turn contacted me. We scheduled a call & talked for approx. 30 minutes; he understood & empathized & asked if it would be okay if he sent me passes to this year’s event. Of course I accepted his offer but was not anticipating passes for everyday of the tournament. Peter & his staff went way over my expectations.

Please understand that two key events came to pass as a result of my email.

1. The PGA didn’t just read my concerns & put my email in the trash file, they sent it to the right person to read.

2. Mr. Ripa, understands that one unhappy fan will tell at least 25 people who will then tell another 25 and so on and the tide begins to shift against all the hard work that goes into promoting an event of this magnitude. There is no stronger voice than word of mouth & I’ve always found it interesting that most people are eager to tell someone when they’re unhappy with something or someone but will very rarely tell others when they’re had a great experience.

I’m taking this opportunity to say that Peter Ripa & the rest of his staff and the people at the PGA offices are doing an incredible job. To them I simply say thank you. Thank you for listening to a disgruntled fan with an open mind. You now have a loyal fan that is committed to the Farmers Insurance Open, Torrey Pines Golf Course & the PGA brand(s)

Congratulations to Tiger, the PGA & Peter Ripa on a job well done! See you next year!