Some days this industry makes me shake my head. It seems no one thinks long term. It is why the current state of the telecom industry is one big huge cluster. No Long Term Thinking.
Over the years, I have watched most carrier channel programs play the accordion. By that I mean, they start stringent – we will accept only 10-12 masters. Then two years later, everyone is direct with that carrier. And one day, the carrier says, “Oh, time to go back to a dozen.”
The carriers do NOT understand the term PARTNER. If you have an agreement with master agencies, why would you steal their subs? Seriously? Why? How does it help anyone?
I sat right next to a Director for a data center company who told agents they could go direct with him. We were at a master agent show!
How do you do business with people who only value the current deal?
This is and always has been a relationship business.
People play musical chairs all the time. Eventually you will have to deal with someone that screwed you (or that you screwed) once again. Karma is a nasty ex-girlfriend!
It isn’t just the carriers or vendors either!
For the Agents, VARs, MSPs and other channel partners, I don’t understand how you skirt the master agency to go direct on bigger deals. For a couple of points? Really? That says something about your value system.
On bigger deals, you need the extra help that the master can provide. On bigger deals, you can negotiate a one-off percentage. On bigger deals, staying with the master makes you both stronger.
Everyone wants to be a master agent today – direct with the carrier. Everyone wants that extra point. It is so short sighted.
For years, we have heard speakers at shows talk about partners working together. That’s hard to do when one (or both) is short-sighted and/or greedy.
Truthfully, it is hard to work with someone who is short-sighted. You know that at some point they will push you aside – or throw you under the bus – or screw you on a deal.
Integrity is like a balloon. One prick and it is gone.
I have had a discussion like this with customers, peers and vendors: Every action, cheating at a charity golf tournament or being rude to wait staff or how you treat your wife, reflect on your values and who you are as a person. It’s one balloon; not a bunch of balloons. You can say you have character and integrity EXCEPT for that or that. Keep that in mind as you do business, because people WILL show you who they are.