Angus: Another day, another excuse

Yesterday’s argument started when the partner called the platform “the AS/400” and when I challenged them, they said “well, that’s what the customer uses”. The chart – from the customer – actually said “iSeries i5” and the customer continued to call the platform “iSeries”.

In their second defense, the business partner told me “well, it’s just easier to use what they are familiar with”. It took me back. All I did was say “IBM i” throughout the call. And no one objected, no one misunderstood. So, using the correct branding was “hard”? Not a single moment did the customer have a difficult time understanding my use of the current branding. They know what it is. They just have not stepped up yet. Using the “it’s easier” excuse is just – in my opinion- being lazy.

Now, if YOU were a business partner to an IBM i customer, wouldn’t you want them to know that they have a strong partner? A leader in the industry? The right recommendations for the future? By using the current branding, you show your leadership. You show how you are the true “partner” for the customer, that you have their company’s best interests at heart. And you cannot do this by making excuses and using old branding.

And what if another vendor or business partner turned up and used “IBM i” for everything. The moment you are compared to the “leader”, you are going to look rather out of date and obsolete. The customer will question whether or not you actually know the industry, whether you know the branding, whether you know the platform.

The irony was, the customer actually has a Power 6+ server, running IBM i 7.1. Yet their documents continue to say “iSeries i5” (an actual nonexistent platform) and the partner says “AS/400”. Confusing to everyone, it is truly an insult to call IBM i 7.1 by a name that is for an old piece of hardware. You are, at least, 9 years out of date with “iSeries” and 15 years out of date with “AS/400”.

Do you want to be recognized as a leader? Do you want to be a valued business partner for your customers. Do you want to show that you are up to date and representing the platform in the best interests of your customer?

It’s IBM i, dammit!

1 Comment

Scott HolmbeckOctober 8th, 2015 at 10:14 am

It boggle the mind that some people would rather sell an old machine instead of a shiny new one.

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