.. and I ain’t him.
Not a day goes by that I don’t talk or chat with someone that doesn’t say “I miss you doing ___”, fill in the blank for “saying it how it is”, “the SBS show”, “calling out Microsoft”, “how-to guides”, “video blogs” and so on. To be completely honest, I miss doing those things as well but every time I even think about doing those things again for even a second I remember the hell that people put me through when I was doing them. When is the new show coming out? Can I use your videos for my presentation? Do you think you can help me with this guide? Can you write about this? Can you believe Microsoft did that? … so on and so forth … but I think what finally broke the camels back is that people were under this impression that I was being compensated for it all, community = profit, kickbacks and whatnot, so the public had the right to demand and expect these commercial benefits even though it wasn’t willing to do anything for me. You hear the “Oh, we do business with your competitors, but why aren’t you doing all your freebies anymore, my employees really got a lot out of it” a few hundred times and the passion kind of burns up. Not to mention that in a very big way, Microsoft has worked very hard over the years to address the problems I’ve had with them – SBSC is pretty much the crown jewel of the partner program, Action Pack distribution is being controlled, piracy is less and less of an option, patching has gotten a hell of a lot better in just the past year and SPFs are being eliminated through certification requirements for software, logos, freebie programs and events. So from the purely self-interested point of view, I am quite content – I am not getting the abuse or unnecessary stress and my largest partner got its s… together making me more profitable.
So I’m good. Thanks!
There is a problem though, there is a need for a new messiah of SMB, someone that is going to yell about the SMB problems without regard for relationships, feelings and consequences to make this a better place for everyone. Oh, and s/he must not make any money or work for any organization or in any way commercially benefit (sellout). The angry masses need a voice damnit, are you interested? Here is a brief description of job requirements:
1. Must be fearless
You need to relentlessly offer the opinion of your constituency with complete disregard for what your words and actions do to the others. No thinking about the job you might not get because of being critical, not thinking about the role you may not get to talk to until they are promoted out of it, no consideration at all how you will dilute the potentially important issues because you’re bringing up every little insignificant one.
2. Must be independant
You must do this of your own free will and on your dime. No associations, no company sponsorships, no company behind you. This is an honor, not an opportunity.
3. Must not ever make any money. Ever. Sellout!
You must never take money, from anyone, because that would make this a job and if its your job to voice my opinions I feel no need to have any respect for you or support anything you do because after all, it’s your job.
4. Must be influential
You must be influential, as in, you must be seen everywhere, with everyone, quoted for everything and offering your opinion when nobody asked for it.
5. Must handle stress
When people kick you in the balls, you must smile at them. God forbid you say something negative about them, you will be criticized, derided and beaten up in public.
For a more detailed job description of the SMB messiah please email sbradcpa@pac.. 🙂
Now, I’m sure you’re thinking of some choice four letter words about all of the above so I’m guessing that role is going to be vacant for a very long time. Sure, you could pay your way into an association and live under the impression that its executives aren’t just selling you to the highest bidder. You could also push the local user group leader to the edge and frustrate him/her to the point that they blow up on someone at Microsoft / LPI / Dell, etc..
Maybe, just maybe.. Nah. You wouldn’t be interested. It’s far too risky. Nah. Ok, Ok, you beat it out of me. Maybe, just maybe… you could grow a pair of balls and voice your concern out loud? No no, not to me – I meant out loud. Like.. I dunno. A web page of some sort. That you could easilly update? That you could tie back to your identity or company or whatever person/organization is actually being affected enough to bring this opinion into the open? What’s that thing called… You know, when you have something on your mind, something you’re dying to say, something you wish could affect the people… That feeling like you could make a difference? Involvement? Nah.. Courage? Nah..
V O I C E
So say it out loud, or shut the fuck up. Your call.