Looking Back and a Little Ahead

By Peter Radizeski, RAD-INFO

It’s December and time to look back at 2007.

The FCC gave out an early holiday gift to CLECs and consumers by not giving Verizon its six-city forbearance.

COMPTEL ended the year by picking a CEO and president after Earl Comstock resigned back in May. Its board is now made up of fiber guys and VoIP players and two question marks (Covad who was bought by Platinum and EarthLink).

Speaking of EarthLink, 2007 saw the muni Wi-Fi balloon pop. EarthLink realized there wasn’t much ROI on the muni projects as they were structured. This took the pressure off AT&T, which backed out of a couple of deals too.

There was a flurry of mergers in 2007, which meant integration. As we have seen with Sprint Nextel and Level 3, integration is where the rubber meets the road. As Larry Bossidy writes, “Execution” is the process of taking the big thoughts and making them actions. Lack of execution will get you fired, ask Gary Forsee or Carly Fiorina (or soon Pat Russo).

Channel programs have taken a hit this year, including Intelliverse, Global Crossing, and especially Verizon. The other hit has been commissions. As prices have decreased, so too has the average agent income. While masters suggest that agents should add on TEM and asset management sales, that won’t always be the answer. VAR programs from the SAAS, VoIP, and hardware space are recruiting from telecom now. So that is an option.

Broadband and cellular penetration are flattening out. It seems everyone that wants a broadband connection has one; same with the cell phone, which is at 88 percent penetration.

I spend every December reviewing my client base to see how else I can serve them. (Is there another vendor that I can add to the mix?) To most agents, I would suggest that you determine what you want to sell or what market you want to sell to. Either way it will give you some focus on products, vendors, offerings and that all important marketing plan.

2008 will probably be just as crazy as 2007. The economy will tighten as we approach one zany presidential election. By March you will need a break, so plan now for Channel Partners Expo in Vegas.

Peter Radizeski is president of


. He can be reached at


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