COMPTEL: What now?

By Peter Radizeski, RAD-INFO

Well, COMPTEL is searching for a new President and CEO.

Earl Comstock’s resignation as CEO on May 30 should be marked as the end of the regulatory fight for COMPTEL. As one CLEC legal guy stated, “Millions of dollars and hundreds of lawyers have not worked.”

The next phase for COMPTEL should be innovation, marketing and cooperation.

Innovation: Besides the Integrated T1, what unique offerings have you been able to implement? I pick on XO for poor execution but they have at least tried a few different things including teaming with Jamcracker. The shining star would have to go to Cbeyond for its FMC offering. But these are things that need to be done to stop competing directly with the Bells.

Marketing: Without going into a diatribe, most CLEC’s need marketing help – positioning, USP and differentiation. It would help the direct account executives as well as the channel.

Cooperation: As often as possible, COMPTEL members need to be buying resources and assets from each other instead of the ILECs. In addition, the sooner ENUM and VoIP exchanges are in place, the faster inter-carrier compensation bills decline. Cooperation should be the key focus of COMPTEL.

These three keys can only be implemented by a non-lawyer. The last three execs have been lawyers. This time around you need a networker. Someone who can listen to a problem and put the right person in contact to solve it.

COMPTEL’s events showed some genius with the scheduler and attendee lists, but the content and the follow up need to improve as well.

While the Bells are busy integrating their business and focused on cable, now is the time to solidify your market position. It’s time COMPTEL became more than just a lobbying group. It should be an organization that helps its members do business.

(Am I lobbying for the open slot? You bet ya!)

Peter Radizeski is president of RAD-INFO. He can be reached at

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