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Virtual Realities

Simple can be great, but sometimes

the desire to keep things simple leads to

the risk of oversimplifying something that

shouldn’t be. That risk definitely exists in

the technology world, where customers so

often wish that every solution would come

in a shrink-wrapped box – prepackaged and

ready to simply plug and play. That expec-

tation may be appropriate for plugging in a

desk phone at a new employee’s desk. You

expect that phone to work and immediately

hear a ring tone. The difficulty comes when

customers want every IT solution to come

in a one-size-fits-all package. This is when

simplicity crosses over the border into over-

simplification, and nothing good happens to

customers or their channel partners in the

land of oversimplification.

Oversimplification is particularly se-

ductive to mid-market customers, which

are caught in the gap between the small

business market (that truly does have

plug-and-play solutions for so many IT

challenges) and the large enterprise mar-

ket (where deep pockets can simply throw

money at IT needs to get where they want

to go). Mid-sized companies look long-

ingly at their smaller cousins and much

bigger cousins and naturally wish their life

was that simple in terms of IT. It’s hard to

look at the consumer-style, plug-and-play

IT solutions that are available to small

businesses and not be a bit jealous if

you are a mid-sized company with much

more complex IT needs. And it’s also hard

to look at how large enterprises simplify

the heck out of complex IT projects by

spending seemingly limitless budgets on

outside vendors that carry the burden

managing their IT solutions.

No one can blame mid-sized com-

panies for wanting simplicity. They look

around and see everyone else eating

warm-to-the-touch bread with butter and

nibbling berries with cream, and they

want the same thing. I get it. But all too




Keep it (Not-So) Simple


imple can be great. Simple can be better than great,

actually. Fresh-baked bread plus butter equals simple

and beyond great. Fresh blackberries still warm from

the sun plus homemade whipped cream is simple

and greater than great. I’m first in line for that. Pinot noir plus

glass plus sunset … you get the picture.







July - August, 2017