Charity Archives - Cloud Genius Ltd
John supporting Winston’s Wish by getting his feet singed

John supporting Winston’s Wish by getting his feet singed

I have many clients who are charities.

I love working with charities as the world is a better place at the end of the day than it was at the beginning.

To that end, I am doing a bit of fund-raising for a charity.

I have chosen one which is not a client, as I didn’t want to pick a favourite among my lovely, lovely clients.

Here is the link to give through Just Giving.

https://bit.ly/JDfirewalk

A little about Winston’s Wish

I know what it is to lose someone as an adult. I cannot imagine what it is like to lose a parent while still a child.

To have the remaining parent coping on their own.

Perhaps the wage earner has gone.

The adults are valiantly trying to keep everything together.

The person I loved is gone.

I am lost.

I am bewildered.

Winston’s Wish are there to support children at this devastating time.

My firewalk is just to raise awareness… all the money will go to the to help the children they support.
If you can give any money, not only will you be holding my feet to the fire, you will also be supporting a blessed cause.

The Cloud (Genius) is expanding

The Cloud (Genius) is expanding

As we experience one of the hottest spells in recent history. A little bit more cloud might be a welcome thing.

Cloud Genius is now approaching its 10th birthday. It was founded in December 2011, but its first Salesforce Implementation at Voluntary Services Lewisham was a little before that, around now! That was in the days when I lived in Hither Green, within a short bus journey of VSL HQ.

The news at Cloud Genius is that in recent months we have taken on two extra folk. Sri and Keerthi help expand our ability to help our clients and do development work. They both have a list of qualifications as long as their arms and are making super-strides in progressing the development of our clients organisations. These include: Resource, Mitzvah Day, Institute of Welsh Affairs and many others.

Shortly we are to announce our new pre-sales engineer. He comes with an impressive line-up of charities that he has helped. Turning their admin nightmares into carefully honed machines… that let them get on with achieving the aims of their organisations.

So, the real question is, ‘How should we celebrate our 10th birthday in December?’

You can email birthday@cloud-genius.com with ideas.

Thanks!

Mind Your Language!

Mind Your Language!

It is a common misconception that in order to talk with technical people, you need to talk their language. It’s wrong and it’s dangerous and it’s expensive… let me explain.

This might feel painful, but you will understand more of the process at the end.

When you are talking to a (good) consultant they will have a breadth of knowledge about their specialist area. They also want to find the best solution for you within your budget. Let’s use cars as an analogy. Everyone knows about cars?!

You sit at home and you know that the ‘best’ electric car is a Tesla. 

You also know that you want to carry a lot of luggage, so you want a Tesla Cybertruck

You go to your car consultant and tell them to source you a Tesla Cybertruck in green. A friend down the pub/coffee shop/round the water cooler had told you that you wanted a green car.

You live in a difficult area, so you also want strong windows. (See this video if you want to see why this is a funny request.)

Your consultant explains to you that that Cybertruck only comes in bare metal and there are ‘issues’ with the windows.

At this point there are typically 4 responses. The potential customer:

1) Mutters about how useless the consultant is in not being able to source a green Cybertruck. Cost zero, but time wasted… which is money.

2) Splashes the cash for a Cybertruck ($70,000), and then paints it green. Cost >$70,000

3) NHS response: there are no products in the market that 100% fit the list of requirements, so employ a very expensive set of consultants to set up an Electric Vehicle research department, a manufacturing facility and end up with something way over budget, that doesn’t work and another NHS funding fiasco is born. (Thinking in a few years the NHS can achieve what it took Tesla 10 years to achieve.) Cost millions and millions and millions. Rinse and repeat. I worked in the NHS in the 80’s. They were doing it then, and they are still doing it in their IT systems.

4) Continue to engage with the consultant…

At this point, a consultant should ask.

WHY?

Why do you want a Tesla Cybertruck in green?

You start to explain that you want to be part of the ‘green revolution’. You discuss this further with the consultant and they explain it is about using energy responsibly and from renewable sources. You like the idea of this. They explain how by choosing the right car you can significantly reduce your running costs.

They ask you about the sort of trips you do. You tell them your driving is around the city. It is just you who ever uses the car. By ‘luggage’ space, you mean enough for 3 bags of groceries every week. So they are just about to suggest a Renault Twizy. A ‘car’ for 1.5 people with a very limited range. Job done… and you have exactly the WRONG car.

In a flash of honesty, you also explain that you also like to make trips of around 200 miles on these trips you need to comfortably fit 2 adults and 2 children in the car. A Twizy would not have been right, at all! In this case the consultant might suggest a Renault Zoe – a car with great range and good seating. You decide that now you have a green car, you would like the paint job to be black.

(When the consultant asked the question, ‘Do you EVER do long trips?’ the temptation is to say ‘no’ in order to save money. In this case, it would have been a costly mistake that the consultant would probably have been blamed for. Try to answer honestly. If you do long trips, but rarely, the answer might be to buy a Twizy and use the money saved to hire a vehicle for the rare times you do very long trips. See how variations in your answers can vary the proposed solution.)

Oh, and that problem with the ‘difficult’ area… you still have room in your budget for an armoured garage and security system 😉 On the other hand, it might be cheaper to move.

That all said, I have no associations with Tesla or Renault. My expertise is in Salesforce… I love it when people tell me what they are trying to achieve, and their budget. I can often save them money and get them something better than they asked for.

When a proposal comes through, the temptation is to scrimp on the section that says, ‘training’. Your people will pick it up. (Like they still don’t know how to use styles in their word processor, after 25 years?) Would you really want to be driving around in a car with an unlicensed driver? Oh! The stories I could tell.

Talking of training… we have some free training coming up… see our front page for details.

Help! What is a CRM and how do I choose one?

Help! What is a CRM and how do I choose one?

One of the bigger, if not the biggest business decision is purchasing a new CRM system. (Customer Relationship Management system)

This information is not Salesforce specific!!!

While I do consult on Salesforce, this guide is deliberately about what a CRM can do for your business or charity. It is not about Salesforce!

So, grab a cuppa, sit back and watch the video. It’s about 20 minutes long.
At the end you should know what to consider before looking for a CRM system.

Good luck!

Training on Salesforce for free?

Training on Salesforce for free?

On of the advantages of the current crisis is that it has allowed us to meet virtually, at a moment’s notice.

No travel time. Distance is no longer an object.

It is a tiny sop, out of a global crisis.. but it is very real.
Running on cloud-based technology, my clients have been all around the world. When I spoke of learning, everyone thought of a classroom.

One of the side-effects of the crisis is that people are much more familiar with Zoom. So, now we can bring everyone together in a new and wonderful way. Rather than having to hire a classroom, have everyone travel to the same place AND put on food we can just spend some time together.

I was able to experience this at the first Cloud Genius ‘Lunch and Learn’ event on 11th March.

So, it set my mind thinking… perhaps we could have more of this.

What I am proposing is a monthly Lunch and Learn, where we look at different aspects of Salesforce and learn together.

Expect details to be posted here, soon.

Together, we can make amazing things happen.

The Training Club – business improvement for entrepreneurs

So, here it is… at long last

When I moved the business to The Beacon Centre, my main reason was to be able to  deliver high quality training to give an advantage to local businesses. At long last it is now a reality.

The Club is going to be kicking off The Training Club on 21st August 2018.

It is for business decision makers who are ready to:

  • Grow
  • Develop the potential in their business
  • Increase their high quality business relationships
  • Work with higher quality clients
  • Meet the challenges of being in business
Already we have a line-up of high-quality speakers who are enthusiastic to impart their wisdom and knowledge. I will release more information over the coming weeks
At the first meeting on 21st August, our headline speaker is Sarah Owen.

Sarah Owen – Referral Marketing Guru

Sarah is the first accredited trainer to deliver Asentiv (formerly Referral Institute) material outside the USA. She is considered one of the leading experts in Europe in this niche topic, combined with DISC the leading behavioural styles tool, she has worked with thousands of businesses and employees of large companies increasing their business through personal recommendation.
I know how she has helped me transform my business. There is nowhere that you will get this material at a better price.
So, you can dip in with one-off tickets (£25 ex VAT) or you can join and save a lot of money (£10 ex. VAT per month).

Format

  • Start at 9am
  • One hour talk
  • Break for networking
  • One hour talk on another topic
  • Finish by noon.
You can purchase tickets or find out about our membership packages here: