Keep On Truckin -

Keep On Truckin

Publish date:

Nobody wants to be compared to a tortoise. Despite the virtuous moral behind the tale of the tortoise and the hare— ”slow and steady wins the race”—it’s still kind of awkward to call someone a slow, aged beast and hope they feel good about it.

But right about now, the tortoises of the AV world are breaking through that finish line and carrying home a trophy. No one’s calling any consultants or integrators “slow”, but the business ethics of this industry should be commended right about now. Those companies that kept their heads down, focused on their niches throughout the ups and downs of the past decade—or decades—are still profitable right now. And more than likely,

Image placeholder title

 they’re growing.

It’s likely you can name a competitor who in recent years chased after a big money-maker that didn’t mesh well with their business plan, and now they’re floundering a bit. They were the hare in this scenario, trying make a shortcut, and they ended up paying the price.

All name-calling aside, it probably feels pretty good to be the “little guy” right about now. This is one of those rare times when the focus shifts from the big guys who are trying to move into our industry to the little guys who are actually making things happen within it.

Over the years, I have had countless conversations about the uniqueness of this industry. It was founded on passion, and it continues to be built by those who worked for and against each other in different capacities within this self-contained galaxy surrounded by a universe of exploding stars.

Even while the headlines in the mainstream media are enough to turn stomachs, the news in these pages continues to reflect growth and profit. It goes beyond the people, products, and projects that are still evolving as an ecosystem that supports us all. Last month InfoComm conducted a survey of its membership, and the results are reported in the association’s news on page 22 of this issue. Among the data points is the fact that more than twothirds of AV systems integrators are doing better financially than they were six months ago.

The InfoComm survey also reinforces an understanding that comforts many business owners in this market. When one business segment is down, another one inevitably picks up. Eventhose companies that service corporate clients are seeing increased demand for videoconferencing. Watch these pages for more news on the vitality of our industry now and in the future.

The fact is, expertise is always in demand. For a while, everyone was talking about diversification. But now we are seeing evidence of the merits in specialization. That is what the designers and integrators in our industry sell. And so, while we continue to plod along toward the finish line, picking up training and experience along the way, we can be proud to be the tortoise.


Image placeholder title

Conversion Factor

The next time you find yourself stranded in the toothpaste aisle at the grocery store, trying to make a selection from the seemingly endless array of options, don’t feel bad.

Image placeholder title

Dot Matrix

You can call a spade a spade, but until there’s a market-researched name attached to it, it’s not really a spade.

Image placeholder title

Silver Mining

“Always look for the silver lining,” sings Chet Baker in an indefatigable tone, “whenever a cloud appears in the blue.”

Image placeholder title

Companion Animals

The 1970s phenomenon of the Pet Rock remains today an important event on the timeline of imbuing inanimate objects with our innermost desires for affection and understanding.

Image placeholder title

Still Standing

The scientific studies and tech blogs are abuzz with the theory that standing is the new ergonomic chair. Apparently people who stand at work are healthier and burn more calories than those who sit. The benefits also extend to the creative mind, which seems to more freely produce ideas when the body escapes the confines of a chair.