Test Your Future Tech IQ: How Do You Stack Up Against Your Competitors?

Published: 2016-02-26

While several positive trends emerged from CI‘s 2016 State of the Industry report, which is based in part on CI and NSCA‘s annual Business Outlook Survey, the red flags probably leave more lasting impressions.

Our analysis focused on a trend by which some AV integration firms are increasingly being called out by manufacturers as not being the best ambassadors for their innovative, mobility-friendly, remote manageable and software-centric solutions.

“What I’m seeing is a level of sophistication that is going to rapidly be upon us and the expectation is that channel partners or system integrators be ready to be a value-added piece of that transition,” said NSCA executive director Chuck Wilson in the State of the Industry Report. “If we’re not, we have to do some soul searching. If we’re not relevant in the new technology economy, what the hell will we be left doing?”

NSCA is resolved not to sit back and watch too many AV integration firms get left in the dust. Its Strategic Planning Facilitation program, part of its consultation services, is already available and perhaps never as relevant as it will be entering NSCA‘s 2016 Business and Leadership Conference, taking place this week in Dallas.


The concept, which involves NSCA conducting intense research including interviews with key personnel to take the pulse of particular firms’ overall readiness in several critical technology categories, sprung from ideas addressed by a variety of BLC presenters over the years, according to general manager and VP of operations Katie Chism. “All sessions are conducted by [Wilson] due to his direct industry experience as a former owner of an integration company and his years of experience at the helm of NSCA,” she says.

The process is fairly intense and encompasses four basic steps:

  • Step 1: Planning meeting (via phone) to discuss goals/objectives and finalize customized agenda for on-site meeting
  • Step 2: Pre-meeting interviews with each participant (20-30 minutes each)
  • Step 3: On-site, two-day meeting reviewing findings from interviews, review of current performance levels, and development of goals, objectives and deadlines of a strategic plan
  • Step 4: Summary report provided, including the company’s rank against industry benchmarks and a strategic planning matrix

The process is very goal-based. Wilson helps the firm identify its unique goals. In the end, the company has specific steps to meet each goal including tactics for achieving it, who is responsible for each tactic, when it needs to be done, resources needed to execute it, what a good outcome looks like.

Firms don’t always walk away happy, but they walk away with a plan and scores in each category.

“They get to see how they rank against others that we’ve done research on,” Chism says. “Here’s where you are ahead of the game, here’s where you fall short. In that particular case, we give them a prescription of how to step by step move up and be more competitive in the market.”

Posted in: News

Tagged with: BLC, NSCA

B2B Marketing Exchange
B2B Marketing Exchange East