CompTIA’s ChannelCON nailed it!

CompTIA’s ChannelCON nailed it

Connection. If there’s one word that best sums up what CompTIA is all about, it’s “connection”. It connects the global IT community as we all learn, grow, and navigate this amazing channel. One of the best parts of CompTIA is that no matter what the goal is – from new and innovative certifications or trust marks to political lobby missions to conferences aimed at bringing vendors and partners together – CompTIA is all about building relationships.

And I’ve personally seen many of those relationships turn into true friendships.

CompTIA ChannelCON 2020

Once again, I had the pleasure of participating in CompTIA’s ChannelCON event this year. Of course this year, ChannelCON went virtual like many other events. I can imagine the burden the CompTIA team felt in trying to deliver the “relationship factor” and connection that we all love about their events. After all, that’s why we make ChannelCON a priority each year. We know our friends and colleagues will be there, and that we will make new friends and cherished memories for years to come.

I’m thrilled to say the CompTIA team nailed it! Even though we’re forced to stay home, somehow CompTIA managed to deliver the same relationship feeling without skipping a beat.

Conversations at ChannelCON

CompTIA’s event always leads to terrific conversations, and I had the pleasure of sitting on a panel to talk about “What’s Next for the Channel” with Tim Basa, VP Sales and Operations at AppSmart, and Juan Fernandez, VP Managed IT Services at ImageNet Consulting. You can watch that session here (starting at the 1:14:33 mark).

 

The primary conclusion to our lively discussion was that the channel has an opportunity to innovate ... and we are answering the call. We all saw how the entire world shifted to a remote work model in what felt like an instant. Some companies were well-positioned to make that transition, but many were not. So if there were such a thing as a modern superhero, it would be “your friendly, neighborhood” managed services provider.

The MSP Channel was poised perfectly to move workers from their offices to their homes, and they did it in record time. In many cases, MSPs worked selflessly 24x7 to get their clients safe and working from home.

Surviving financial hardships in the channel

We also talked a bit about what the last recession looked like for the channel, the lessons we learned, and how that might help predict what’s going to happen today. While we did see some of our channel brethren shut down, we also saw an influx of new channel partners who were ready, willing, and able to approach problems in a new and different way.

That was the key to success in the last recession and it just may well be the key to success today; being willing to change and to think and do differently is key to long term survival of any business.

Final thought

MSPs have always shown resilience through their recurring revenue model, and I believe that they will continue to do so. In fact, I would even go so far as to say that right now, we’re at a point in history that could be called the Age of the MSP.

Even after almost two decades into my career, I can easily say the MSP Channel is more relevant than ever before – especially when it comes to supporting the SMB segment. I’m sure there will be plenty of more lessons as MSPs keep those businesses safe and secure while working remotely.

And, as a result, we’ll have even more war stories to tell when we see each other in-person at the next CompTIA ChannelCON.