I figured it would be at least a little bit necessary to write about the work I’m doing over here. After all, that is key reason this whole thing came together, it was a work trip that got exploded out into a monster family vacation. 🙂
The sales teams in all the cities I’ve been to have been very diligent in keeping me busy with customers and our partners/resellers. Whether doing simple overviews of our solutions for them or doing deeper technical dives with our more advanced customers, every meeting is a micro-adventure in itself. I’ve mostly met with banks of various flavors, with some hospitals, broadcast (think DirecTV/Dish), and various government agencies (tax, education, corrections) thrown in for good measure.
There are definitely some different trends and emphasis in this region compared to the U.S. One that has caught me a bit off-guard is the clear direction of banks to move things (in some cases, everything) into the “cloud”… aka Amazon Web Services. Banks in the U.S. will likely be the very last of the big cloud adopters due to perceived privacy & security concerns with it. I met with a bank today who has a corporate goal of putting everything in AWS. Weird.
Another oddity is that many customers have zero budget to buy our equipment. If this sounds like a challenge, you would be correct. The saving-grace is that, apparently, while they don’t have any money for capital expenditures, they have a budget for OpEx and can consume our product through managed services from our resellers. So, in many cases, when we’re pitching new solutions and features, we really are selling the idea to the customer and the reality to the partner so they actually decide to resell the service. Again, this is pretty much opposite from how things work in the U.S.
All that said, while we haven’t proven whether the toilets flush in the opposite direction (they have a more aggressive system without opportunity to monitor water-spin-direction) they definitely do things a bit differently here down-under. Having the exposure to this region (and hopefully others in the future) has definitely been beneficial for me to understand how customers use our product and what they are looking for.
So, all that said, the work time has been fun and engaging for me as much as the exploring off-hours with the rest of the fam!