Exciting Times in Huntsville
Here at the Westin Hotel, Huntsville, Alabama—close by our US headquarters—we’re into day two of the first ever Abaco Systems worldwide sales meeting. There’s over 100 of us here. If that seems like a large number of salespeople, Mark Wade, our VP of Global Sales, made the point that, in fact, if the job of sales is to serve and support our customers, then the whole organization is in sales—which means that about 600 of our salesforce aren’t with us.
Our CEO, Bernie Anger, kicked off the meeting yesterday by outlining our five goals for the session. The first is to learn. In a company that’s only existed since December 2015 (if you discount the 30+ years of history before then…) there’s a lot to learn about the huge accomplishments we’ve made in just five months, and our ambitious plans for the future.
The second goal is that we connect. As a worldwide organization, we don’t all get to meet face-to-face very often—so it’s a great opportunity to strengthen the relationships on which any business thrives. That "connecting" gives rise to the third goal for the meeting, which is to share—to exchange information about what we’ve been doing, and where we’re heading. The fourth goal follows on naturally: collaboration—exchanging ideas about how we can live up to our commitment to innovate, to deliver, and to create success for our customers.
The fifth goal is that we have fun executing on the first four goals—and, looking around the dinner table last night, fun was very much in evidence.
The sessions have all been in support of our objective for our business—to be one of the best companies in the world at what we do. As Bernie pointed out in his opening remarks: the transformation that’s currently taking place in our industry creates a significant growth opportunity—and if we execute our plans that see customers at the heart of everything we do, our business will grow as fast or faster.
So far, it’s been hugely energizing to hear the massive strides we’ve taken in just a few short months. We are, in effect, creating a brand new company from the ground up—like putting in place an entire, state-of-the-art IT infrastructure. We’re hiring people as fast as we can: we’ve onboarded 65 people since December, and still have plenty of positions we’re looking to fill. We’ve looked at pretty much every business process we used before December—and re-engineered it to better serve our customers.
But as well as looking back at what we’ve achieved, we’ve spent plenty of time looking at what we’re planning—and expecting—to achieve in the future. New product introductions. New technology innovations. New strategic alliances. New manufacturing capabilities. New marketing programs. New ways of measuring our business.
If I was one of our competitors, I’d be concerned—worried, even. On the other hand, however, there are 100+ people here in a conference room in the Westin Hotel who couldn’t be more excited. Right now, Abaco feels like a great place to be.