Lee Distad

Lee Distad

Lee Distad is a rAVe columnist and freelance writer covering topics from CE to global business and finance in both print and online. Reach him at lee@ravepubs.com

Editorial Dealing With RFQs, Part 2

Editorial Dealing With RFQs, Part 2

In the prior installment, I had begun detailing the Request For Quote process, and my observations on them. And by “observations on them,” what I …

Dealing With RFQs

Dealing With RFQs

Anybody who sells into commercial, industrial or institutional channels has to deal with Requests For Quotes. A request for quotation (abbreviated as RFQ) is …

The Importance Of Being Apologetic

The Importance Of Being Apologetic

There are some things that you just don’t see very often any more. Wooly mammoths or dodo birds are good examples. There’s something else you don’t see …

Going Your Own Way

Going Your Own Way

It’s not uncommon after years working for other people to decide that now is the time to strike out on your own. In fact, it’s extremely common, part of …

Strange ReTales: White Van Speakers

Strange ReTales: White Van Speakers

Last week I stumbled upon a fun essay at Audiophile Review in which the author used the notorious White Van Speakers as a jumping off point to rail at his …

Vendor Support For Dealer Show Booths

Vendor Support For Dealer Show Booths

One of the marketing efforts that AV firms engage in to reach more clients is exhibiting at promotional shows: Buying a booth at the show to promote their …

Lord Of The Dance

Lord Of The Dance

Apophenia is the tendency to see patterns of meaning in things. When unchecked it can be a disorder, but in and of itself, it’s a handy mental tool for …

Best Practices And Efficiency

Best Practices And Efficiency

I have a tendency to get hung up on best practices. My excuse for being so centered on them is that best practices are, by definition, the best way to do …

Strange ReTales: Ring The Alarm

Strange ReTales: Ring The Alarm

The best laid plans, they say, often go awry. That was actually Scottish poet Robert Burns who wrote that, but that’s neither here nor there. Years ago, I …

Client Management Is Just the Beginning 

Client Management Is Just the Beginning 

At a typical AV company, the sales designers and sometimes the project managers are the front office people that the clients know and work with. They’re the …

Closing Ratios

Closing Ratios

Sometimes it feels like I’ve spent my whole professional life being ruled by metrics. Top line. Bottom line. Gross. Net. And of course all the derivative …

The Next Big Thing 

The Next Big Thing 

There’s that aphorism that if you always do what you always did, you’ll always get what you always got. But that’s not really true in this business. In …

Losing An Appendage

Losing An Appendage

Last week I was away on business. Starting on Monday my iPhone 6 started to present battery issues: rapid power drain, and, for unknown reasons, the battery …

So You Have a Recall

So You Have a Recall

Late last year, I got to have a front row seat for a major product recall from one of the world’s largest electronics manufacturers. Well, maybe it’s not …

Quality Still Matters

Quality Still Matters

A new coffee shop opened up on the corner near my house. It’s one-off, and locally owned. I got a double espresso, to go. It was three bucks, and, I found …

Strange ReTales: Time Sensitive Offer

Strange ReTales: Time Sensitive Offer

I know I’ve talked in the past about the various characters who wandered in and out of the stores I worked in. There were the tire kickers, the be-backs, the …

Why Certifications Matter

Why Certifications Matter

Professional AV companies have a selection of certifications they can qualify for, from industry trade associations like InfoComm and CEDIA, to product …

Team Building

Team Building

The first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs is drawing to a close, which makes these reminiscences timely. Let me just say that I’m not a gambler. Like, at …

Strange ReTales The Force Field

Strange ReTales The Force Field

The business news this past week has been abuzz with stories about retailer bankruptcies, increasingly vacant shopping malls, and the looming threat of an …

Staying in Control

Staying in Control

AV install professionals like to see themselves as completely different from the mass-market consumer electronics retailers. Exterior details may vary from …

Strange ReTales Sales Contests And Fraud

Strange ReTales Sales Contests And Fraud

People who haven’t worked in retail seldom have a grasp of how pernicious fraud is. Proactively countering it, and retroactively uncovering it is a Sisyphean …

Strange ReTales: Rude, Unhappy People

Strange ReTales: Rude, Unhappy People

Previously I’d been reminiscing about the various people who walked through the doors of the stereo shops I worked at, from Tire Kickers to the Whales. Of …

Apologies and Responsibility

Apologies and Responsibility

When faced with a challenging situation there are two actions that can be taken which can go a long way towards defusing the situation and moving towards a …

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