31. minis his inc - part 2

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31. minis his inc - part 2

  1. 1. “ H.I.S.-tory ” by Vince Ciotti © 2011 H.I.S. Professionals, LLC Episode # 31: HIS, Inc. Part 2 DIES!
  2. 2. Now Where Were We… <ul><li>We left off last week with HIS Inc. in Brooklyn, NY, searching for a Director of Marketing who could lead them into the huge IBM mainframe market. Someone: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>well-connected, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>technically savvy, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>with lots of street smarts, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>tons of sales & marketing experience, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>well-spoken and </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>highly intelligent. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Unable to find anyone that fit the bill, they hired this idiot instead: </li></ul>
  3. 3. Actually… <ul><li>I had one great advantage: I had worked with the best sales and marketing guys in the business at both SMS and McAuto, so I recruited them to HIS, and matched them to their “native” territory </li></ul>Bert Hochstein HIS Inc’s own NY native, for the Northeast region Brain Fitzpatrick One of SMS’s best reps ever, for the Rocky Mtn states Jud Foreman An IBM & SMS superstar, for the Western region Roland Thibault An SMS & McAuto vet & ex-CFO, for the Mid-Atlantic Dick Schopp A old McAuto pro & sales superstar, for the Midwest Mike Crabtree Ex-Mac sales support maven Larry Evans Ex-McAuto sales support guru, also designed HIS’ clinical apps. Don Trammell Ex-SMS and McAuto sales superstar, for his native South. Some jerk from Philly who got off the wrong subway stop in Brooklyn…
  4. 4. Fly In The Ointment <ul><li>There was one minor challenge to selling HIS Inc: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The system didn’t exist! </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Although Heshy’s team were programming their proverbial pants off, there would be no demonstrable code for some time until the translation program was done and Basic code morphed into PL/1. </li></ul><ul><li>Actually, a minor problem! I had seen how SMS, McAuto and many other vendors were able to “sell systems before their time” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(a practice that happily has ceased in this modern age…) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>But just in case you moderns wonder how we ancients were ever so dumb (should I add - immoral?) as to sell a system before it was ready, here’s the recipe, just in case this terrible practice ever sees the light of day in these technologically advanced & far more enlightened times: </li></ul>
  5. 5. How To Sell “Vision-ware” <ul><li>1. Super Sales Team – a team of elite sales pros who: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A. Sell themselves with total credibility, evangelizing their strong internal belief in their company & its product vision. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>B. “ Closers ” – able to make businessmen commit with pen in hand both their personal and their organization’s future. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>C. Proven track record – having made quota for many years and closed numerous deals in the past – no room for rookies! </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2. Marketing Mavens – Backed up by an HQ team of: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Media gurus for ads, brochures, & presentations (foils back then, ppt today) that refine the vision. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Sales support pros who can blow prospects minds either in 1-on-1 demos or in group presentations. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Proposal team that does not know the meaning of the word “no” when answering RFP feature checklists. </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Selling “Vision-ware,” cont’d <ul><li>3. Executive Commitment – the entire C-Suite willing to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Wine and dine with prospects’ executives & Boards making HQ visits, often involving weekday nights & weekends… </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Willing to order everyone in the company to drop whatever they’re doing and help in a sale, demo, site visit, RFP, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Willing to invest heavily in sales commissions and marketing budgets for ads, booths, T & E, and give-aways. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>4. Technical “Breakthrough” – the latest techie fad: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Far more modern than established “legacy” systems, which were mainly shared batch-processed systems. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>With hot buzzwords that caught the ear like: 4GL, on-line, real-time, Open, C/S, Cloud, thin client, SaaS, etc. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>5. Timing – to match your product vision with an intense market need (– like launching an E.H.R. in 2008!) </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. We Had It All! <ul><li>Whether luck or hard work, we filled all 5 criteria: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sales superstars Schopp, Foreman, Trammell, Hochstein & Fitzpatrick brought in 1-2 deals each , all large medical centers who wanted modern IBM mainframe software badly. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Lured in by a blizzard of marketing hype, sample of which follow, with absolutely brilliant images courtesy of Izzie Lifshutz, and demo’d into submission by Gershon & Dale Finklestein. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wined & dined by me and the reps all over NYC – was there ever a better place to lure prospects to? I think I saw Cats 12 times that year, and had a table in my name at Mama Leone’s! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Convinced by Heshie & his technical geniuses that a translation program would work, and yield an instant modern HIS for IBM mainframes, on-line, real-time, db, programmed in a 4GL! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>And all at a time when mainframe COBOL code and VSAM files were seeming hopelessly obsolete – time for change! </li></ul></ul>
  8. 8. Samples of Our “Shtick” <ul><li>Stunning 2-page ad in HFMA’s Journal, which got me an interesting letter from IBM’s attorneys for using their logo without permission… </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(sad to see the World Trade Center – we took countless prospects to dine at the Windows on the World…) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Some of the many give-aways from our booths at the AHA, HFMA, NEHA, Mid-Atlantic and IBM’s ECHO conventions - no HIMSS back then in 1982 – 1984, the years of our launch. </li></ul><ul><li>And on the following page, some great text from this brochure: </li></ul>
  9. 9. Brochure Text <ul><li>Summed up our whole story in 2 concise pages: </li></ul>
  10. 10. So What Went Wrong? <ul><li>Why didn’t HIS Inc. become as successful as Epic is today? Two things conspired circa 1984 (and not George Orwell!) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Late Programming – as brilliant and hard-working as they were, the programmers just kept taking longer and longer to finish and de-bug the translator code and resulting PL/1. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Competition – a number of other firms saw the need for modern software for IBM mainframes, and jumped in too: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>IBM announced their PCS/ADS/Patient Accounting at their ECHO conference, and the lemmings rushed to them… </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>SMS announced “ SURPAS ” ( S MS’ U ltimate P atient A ccounting P ackage), which never saw the light of day… </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Medicus spun off Medipac into a separate company named MediFlex, which started selling mainframes aggressively… </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Stay tuned next week for HIS Inc’s denouement, rebirth, and survival to this day in dozens of large NYC medical centers! </li></ul>

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