Tag: Technology

Jim Estill – Zero to $2 Billion

Jim EstillJim Estill – Zero to $2 Billion

Jim Estill was CEO of Synnex Canada at the time of this interview (June 2008). Synnex Canada with sales of about $2 billion is a distributer of computer and electrical products. Jim started EMJ Data from the trunk of his car in 1979 and grew sales to $375 million 25 years later when he sold to Synnex Canada and became the CEO.

Interesting facts about Jim Estill

  • Started a painting business while in high school
  • Author of the book, Time Leadership
  • Started his CEO blog in May 2005
  • Marathon runner

Insights from this interview

Started selling from the trunk of his car because that’s what he had at the time

A growth maniac – set and revised sales goals at $100M to $200M to $500M

There is a right business opportunity for everybody of every size

For selling – “no” means “not now”

Every strength is a weakness and every weakness is a strength

Being healthy is a good time management tool

Hire for cultural fit and integrity

Seek out successful people to learn from them

Start, do it, build momentum.  Success breeds success

Fail often, fail fast, fail cheap.  I want to have failures because it means I’m stretching

Links

CEO Blog: Time Leadership

TEDx Talk

Forbes Article about CEO blogging

Computer Dealer News on Jim’s departure from Synnex

Jim Estill at CanRock Ventures

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Alan McLaren, Infinity Communications

Alan McLarenInterview with Alan McLaren, Co-CEO of Infinity Communications

Who is Infinity Communications?

Infinity is a full service communications agency specializing in public relations, branding and social media strategies.  We help our clients “Get Noticed and Stay Noticed”, through focused communication programs designed to build brand awareness and drive revenue growth.

One of the best ways to reach your target audiences is to use a combination of traditional public relations strategies offline, while leveraging social media and web strategies online.

We are living in a connected world and it is important to bridge the conversation both online and offline.

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Insights and excerpts from this interview with Alan McLaren of Infinity Communications

Purpose of marketing is building the brand to be top of mind.

Common mistake on the web is not connecting the dots.

Key question is, does more traffic mean more business? That is the bottom line.

Marketing is not scientific. One plus one does not equal two.

Half the time, we turn prospective clients away because the fit is not right.

Red Flag Deals was one of our proud success stories.

I hate doing the numbers – but you need to do that.

As Co-CEOs we each have our strengths and defined roles.

Interview on Business in Motion with radio show host George Torok

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Mike Pley, COM DEV

Mike Pley COM DEV
Mike Pley Com Dev

Interview with Mike Pley, COO of COM DEV International.

Space – the final frontier!

COM DEV produces electronics for satellites. A Canadian company and world leader in satellite technology, based in Cambridge, Ontario and employing over 1,000 people.

Mike Pley is an Engineering graduate of McMaster University.

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Insights & excerpts from this interview with Mike Pley.

We have to build something that will be super dependable for 15 years.

You can’t make repair calls in space.

Our equipment is on 80% of the over 650 satellites up there.

We don’t go after the low cost world where price is king.

We want to encourage the next generation to become astronauts and engineers.

The next big project we are working on is the James Webb Telescope which is scheduled to launch in 2014. It will see far more than the Hubble. The James Webb Telescope is seeking to see first light – the beginning of galaxies.

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COM DEV

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Ray Simmons

Interview with Ray Simmons, President of CableTest Systems Inc.

CableTest Systems tests the wiring systems of military jets, high speed trains and the Space Shuttle (the exterior fuel tank has 8,000 connenctions). They provide a complex version of an electritian’s multi meter.

Ray Simmons has been the president and owner of CableTest Systems for the past nine years. Previously he was President of CRS Robotics. After a two year “retirement” he got edgy and longed to get back into business so he bought CableTest Systems.

Insights from this interview with Ray Simmons:

“Going public with CRS … was not me. That’s why I retired.”

“Retirement was quite challenging. I felt like I was disconnected.”

“55% of our business last year was in Europe. Asia is our next frontier. We like India.”

“Regrets? Two…”

“I think that in a technologly company a president that is totally focussed on technology is dangerous.”

“We’re on Facebook, Linkedin and Twitter.”

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Howard Shearer, Hitachi

Howard Shearer
Howard Shearer

Interview with Howard Shearer, President and CEO of Hitachi Canada. He is the first non-Japanese to be president of the company. He seems to thrive on cultural diversity. He is orginally from Jamaica. He is also a people person. The two characteristics probably go hand-in-hand.

Howard has worked at Hitachi for over 25 years.

Hitachi globally employs over 300,000 people.

Hitachi is a strong technology company that operates in several markets including: consumer electronics, automotive electronics, computer storage, energy, medical, biotechnology, and high speed trains.

Insights from this interview with Howard Schearer:

 
“We’re in the business of serving customers.”

“There is no Hitachi car, but we are a major component in cars.”

“Business in all about relatioinships and that’s not done with products.”

“I don’t screen my calls. If it’s good news I want to hear it. If it’s bad news I want to hear it first.”

“I’m happy when it’s Monday.”

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Hitachi Canada

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