I had the pleasure of attending the recent CRN Sales and Marketing Awards at a swanky west London hotel, but was shocked to see a reseller exec half-inching some of the décor.
Though I must say, I had to admire the chutzpah of our channel tea-leaf. The easy pickings of candle holders, cushions, maybe even a bar stool, were not for him. This guy managed to waltz off with a 6' 6" corporate mascot kindly provided by one of the sponsors.
But, in a satisfying coda to this tale of lawlessness and larceny, the perpetrator returned the statue to its owners by bringing him along to a meeting as a surprise guest a few days later.
Unlike our light-fingered channel chum, I walked away from the event empty handed. I've still got no idea how we didn't win the award for the best reseller marketing campaign for my and Gordon's "Servers with a Smile" topless butler calendar.
Date with density
If you haven't seen any of CRN's Channel Catch-Up interview series, I can wholeheartedly recommend them. The video snippets feature a range of leading industry execs answering such light-hearted questions as "what's your favourite piece of technology?", "would you retire tomorrow if you could?", and "have you ever pulled a whitey?" (I think, I was only half paying attention.)
In a recent tête-à-tête with Redcentric big cheese Fraser Fisher, the former Maxima boss responded to the question "what has been your biggest mistake in business?" by revealing that he's made some bum personnel calls over the years.
Chief among them was his decision to hire a lusty young sales rep who quickly and vigorously tore into his new role by haring around the country, meeting prospects - and running up a not-inconsiderable expenses bill in the process.
When the contracts failed to roll in, his bosses began to wonder if there was something amiss with his sales technique. It turned out that the chap was actually pretty canny and persuasive after all. But unfortunately he had been using his wiles to meet women up and down the land via the medim of online dating sites. Well, he did say he was out there pressing the flesh.
Verse comes to worse
Regular reader(s) may remember my report from the recent Cisco partner summit, which saw a bunch of stiff-limbed channel execs swaying awkwardly as a house band played a turgid slice of dinner-party funk with lyrics about datacentres.
The cultural references at the NetApp reseller get-together last month were of a somewhat more cerebral bent, but sadly no less cringeworthy. The perennially overrated poem If by Rudyard Kipling is a mawkish and overwrought load of old bunkum at the best of times. And I can vouch for the fact that it certainly doesn't benefit from a dramatic reading by a storage exec, pausing occasionally to repeat the odd phrase, with words altered to include references to big data and hypervisors.
I would've tailored the verse to the channel audience by changing the words to something like: "If you can make one heap of all your winnings and risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss, you're probably an inveterate gambler who should not be in charge of a business and ought to seek professional help. And, what's more, your wife is probably going to kill you."
Imagine my ambivalence to learn this week that the UK economy is haemorrhaging £300m a year because of workers skipping breakfast (NB: this is patently untrue).
According to research (VESTED INTEREST ALERT!!!) from the good folk at Weetabix on the Go, the average worker loses 82 minutes' worth of productivity if they skip the first meal of the day (NB: also extremely untrue). Apparently Londoners have the worst breakfast strike rate, with the average cockney skipping it at least twice a week (NB: who cares?).
Funnily enough, I've done a bit of research into the breakfast sector myself recently. My shocking findings reveal that supermarket own-brand "wheat bisks" offer discounts of up to 50 per cent on the brand leader with a zero per cent reduction in taste. If everyone switches today, we'll make that £300m back in no time.
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