Widgets Magazine

What Legacy Will You Leave?

At the 2016 NSCA BLC there was a session on The Investor’s Workshop. In it Michael Hester lays out recurring revenue models, valuation, and equity. It was interesting because Hester had just recently gone through a transition in which he had successfully sold his business and is now, mostly, retired. In talking with him he used terms like “long term sustainability” and “future-proofing.”
Mr. Hester had spent the last few years creating a team in his integration firm that could run the company without him. That is, he purposely hired, trained, and put people into positions of power within his organization with the sole idea that he would not be needed. Then he let them run the company for two years without being intimately involved with the company. He directly credits this approach to the valuation he ultimately received when looking for a company to buy his firm. Imagine that; someone working themselves out of a job.
Whether you are a first level tech or the CEO of a major integration company, what are you doing to work yourself out of a job? What sort of legacy are you leaving? Not only to your current employer but to the industry as a whole? A great deal of energy, column space, and time has been spent talking about how to get the next generation tooled with working in this industry. “How do we entice these young people?” is often asked. One way is to train them, pour into them, the way someone poured into you. InfoComm, NSCA, CEDIA, and others have some great programs but they do little good if not put into place… by you. It is the idea that we have something to give that keeps us employed but also what keeps some of these young people from even attempting to breach what, at times, feels like a daunting wall.
You are most likely really great at what you do. You didn’t get that way in a vacuum though. Someone taught you, a lot of someones. They saw in you the potential to be better than you were at the moment they met you and gave you the knowledge and some skills to move ahead. Where you are right now is not where you should end up. We all should strive to be better in life and in our careers. We do this by learning from each other and our experiences. Then we pass along all we have learned to someone else. In that, we leave a legacy of excellence.
At AVNation we are currently working toward that on our own. Currently I host four programs. Plans have been put into motion to remove me from two of these in the short term. Eventually I will not host any. Why? Because this network is not about one person, it’s about a community. The community of AV must thrive, learn, adapt, and excel to survive. If not, if those of us ahead chose to hold on tightly to those reigns of knowledge and power they will slip through our grasp sooner or later. If we make the concious decision to pass on we create a lasting impact on our organizations and our industry. If not, we will watch this industry fade into obscurity with a few tired old holding on to the remnants of what once was.
Thanks for taking the time to read my  blog. Go out and find someone to pour into. Have a great week.

About Author

Tim Albright is the founder of AVNation and is the driving force behind the AVNation network. He carries the InfoComm CTS, a B.S. from Greenville College and is pursuing an M.S. in Mass Communications from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville. When not steering the AVNation ship, Tim has spent his career designing systems for churches both large and small, Fortune 500 companies, and education facilities.

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