Recorded Member Meetings

Community Meetings

Open to all current and prospective members.
Community meetings occur quarterly and are recorded and posted below.

Past Meetings

Skip to different videos in the playlist on the right.
Links and chat for each video are below.

Transcription

[00:00:01.510] – Amy Babinchak
We have the majority of our board members not in their normal nice office locations today in broadcasting from wherever the heck they are. So it may be an interesting meeting.

[00:00:53.410] – Speaker 2
Hi, everyone.

[00:00:56.230] – Amy Babinchak
Hello, Julie.

[00:02:08.130] – Amy Babinchak
All right. It is 12:00 p.m. On the eastern coast of the United States, so we are going to go ahead and get started with this meeting. Just to let you know, as we went through our pre conversation this morning, we realized that almost every board member is not in their home office. So we are all broadcasting from unusual places. So if there’s any Internet glitches, I apologize. I’m actually on my boat, which has decent Internet access at the dock here, but you never know when it decides to go haywire. So if anything happens, just have patience and we’ll get back to it as soon as possible if there’s a glitch. So let’s go ahead and get started with this meeting today. Well, welcome to the all member meeting for this quarter. Here’s what’s on our agenda today. I’m going to have a little thing we’ll tell you about in a few minutes. Then Karl will speak, unless he isn’t at his hotel yet. Karl is actually traveling in Scotland and there is a strike which has shut down all of the trains. And so he rented a car and he’s driving as fast as possible to get to Manchester, his next destination.

[00:03:32.910] – Amy Babinchak
And as soon as he arrives, he will join us. We do have committee reports and updates and an update on a project that the board has been working on. We’re going to talk about the local contest that’s going on, a little bit about discussions, and then, as usual at the end, we’ll have all the time you want for discussion and Q and a couple of notes. This meeting is open to the public. Anyone is able to join it. It is being recorded, as you should have zoom should have told you that when you logged in. So if you don’t want to be on the video and you don’t want to be on the audio recording, just turn those things off on your end and that will protect you. This meeting, like all of our meetings, is recorded and you’ll find them posted on our YouTube channel as well as on our website with the transcription. And those are shown in the menu there under Meetings, member meetings. So you can review those information. We just see a note in the chat that Karl’s is going to take a little bit longer since everyone is driving on the wrong side of the road.

[00:04:43.670] – Amy Babinchak
He’s in Manchester, England. Hopefully, Karl knows he’s supposed to be driving on the wrong side of the road. All right, so what we’ll do then is we’ll just move Karl down toward the end of the meeting where he’s able to join us and we’ll deal with the other content first. So, my turn. In July, we hit the first major milestone for the NSI. Itsp it’s our first anniversary. Can I get some yays into the chat? I mean we made it for a full year. This has been a real significant effort to get this organization off the ground to this point. So from zero we actually created something. An active order directors developed the founding philosophy of the organization, which is that because this is our industry membership society, that it should be grassroots driven and that equality should rain so that every member, regardless of size or type, has an equal opportunity to vote. Managed service. And from there we created the founding articles within corporation and with the expert assistance of our treasure, filed and received our 501 C Six designation. And we created bylaws we appointed a committee liaison, skilled in negotiations and problem resolution to make sure that our committees are able to communicate clearly with themselves and the board.

[00:06:04.860] – Amy Babinchak
We created the Mission Vision Value Statement for the organization under the expert guidance of one of our directors, who taught us all new ways to think about words and understanding the thinking of others. We created the Governance Committee, to whom in keeping with the overall philosophy, became in charge of creating functional committees in finance, marketing and legislation. They’ve also put a lot of thought into making sure that everything we do is going to scale as we grow. Each committee then created their own charter to measure their actions and accomplishments against going forward. All these documents, they’re all available on the website for members to view and find out more information about what all of the committees are up to, we hired an Executive director, Karl Palachuk, to do the work that falls outside of the purview of the rest of us. Karl has put in a lot of time and his own money and staff into launching the society, the website being the most visible of those activities. It has grown steadily throughout the year and we owe him all debt for his work and dedication for all of everything he’s been doing. If you’ve attended our quarterly member meetings this year, then you’ve seen us go through this process steadily, building an organization up from zero and putting into place all of the infrastructure necessary to carry out the mission of the organization.

[00:07:26.810] – Amy Babinchak
As this year closed, I began to call for committees to shift into action. Because of time. The issues that brought about the necessity for us to organize have not slowed. Now that we are organized, it’s time for us to claim our seat at the table. And for that to happen, we need the support of the vendor community. We need MSP and It provider, corporate members and we need professional members, we need more members. Period. When we started this organization, it looked like legislation was going to be our biggest hurdle. But now we’re seeing that the insurance industry is making decisions for us and effectively regulating us and the Department of Defense recently updated CMMC to say that federal defense contractors can only be served by It providers that are CMMC compliant themselves in states. They’re using existing departments to issue rules and gather information like the Texas Department of Banking’s requirements claim. Our seat at the table in all of these venues. It’s time to shift from organizing into action. And so now we’re going to hear from our committee chairs so they can tell you how we’re doing that. I’m going to jump ahead in the slides just a bit so that we would have had Karl, but let’s make a couple of announcements.

[00:08:48.270] – Amy Babinchak
The next meeting that we’re going to have is November 9, the second Wednesday of the second month each quarter. And you may have gotten a few messages from Karl on correcting the zoom invitations. We should be good on that now. And then be sure to join us on social media and we’ll get those loops into the chat for you as well. A couple of updates. We have a logo contest going on. We have not had a logo. We just had words on the page. And so we thought it would be a good way to raise a little bit of visibility and give some members a chance to submit their drawings and get some things going. So be sure to vote for that. Now you can do that up on the website, and we need you to file for candidacy for elections. So if you go also to the website, there’s a place for you to do that. Now, it’s a two step process. So first you will fill out some real basic information in the form, name, email address, position that you want to run for and such. And then you have to go back in and edit that information.

[00:10:04.080] – Amy Babinchak
And you’ll be presented into your dashboard page where you’re going to upload your photo, give a candidate statement, answer a few questions, and all of that actually builds a page for you. Then to promote your candidacy with. We have waived for the actual voting purposes. We have currently the board voted to waive the requirement for professional members to have two letters of reference. We got a lot of pushback on the requirement, and the governance committee is revisiting other ways that we can use to verify professional membership. So for this election, that requirement is waived, which means that all professional members will be able to vote in the election. So, Larry, we’re going to let you speak now. So Larry has worked with us on our Mission Vision values that I mentioned earlier, and he’s currently working with us on developing a code of ethics. So Larry, I’m going to let you come off the mute and talk about those projects.

[00:11:19.810] – Larry Mandelberg
Thank you, Amy. I want to start we’re going to talk first about the mission Vision and values we approach this. I want everybody to understand how the board approached the development of these three statements to begin with. We think of them as our purpose statements. We think of them as how we define why we exist. And there’s really three groups, if you will. There’s the values, there’s the vision and there’s the mission. And each one has a very specific role. The values define our culture. We hear culture talked about a lot in organizations. And it’s very important to us that we create the right kind of culture for ourselves so that we can serve you, our members, as effectively as possible. And those values define the boundaries for our culture. For example, the first one talks about professionalism and integrity of our industry, which is our passion and why we’re doing this. The second one talks about our communication and how that’s how we maintain our integrity. The third one talks about open and honest communications, both with colleagues, clients and members. The fourth one talks about recognizing that the world is changing and we need to continue to be educated so that we can continue to deliver our clients and serve the industry properly.

[00:12:54.230] – Larry Mandelberg
And the last one talks about a member driven organization or commitment to a member driven organization. And if you believe in those five value statements, then you’re going to be aligned with the culture that we want to develop for ourselves as the organization and for you as members. The vision statement is looked at by us as our commitment as an organization to our internal stakeholders. Now, it gets a little interesting when we talk about membership groups like this, but our vision is what we’re trying to ultimately become. It’s not what we are today, it’s what we want to become. And our vision statement is that we are the voice of the industry defining the standards for professionalism It services. We know we’re not there yet, but that’s our future state goal. That’s our vision, that’s our internal commitment. And our external commitment to all of our members and stakeholders is what our mission is. Our mission is the value that we want to deliver to you and the manner in which we want to deliver it. So our mission is to provide pathways to establish high standards and ethics and to improve the perception and credibility of the It profession through actions driven by member engagement.

[00:14:21.110] – Larry Mandelberg
It’s a very inclusive statement, it’s a very large statement, it’s a lofty statement, but it’s what we’re trying to do. Now, we presented these to you six months ago and said if anyone has any questions or comments or edits, let us know. Either people weren’t interested or they were very pleased with what we did. And I’m going to go with the very pleased because we haven’t gotten any feedback other than positive feedback, no changes or suggestions. So thank you all for that. These are going to be formalized at our next board meeting and of course they’re always open to edits if appropriate. But these are our purpose statements now I want to touch on the code of ethics, because the code of ethics is a very interesting and complex area. Just understanding what ethics means was a challenge. The first thing the task force had to do was come together on why are we even creating a code of ethics and what is Essex mean? It was an interesting launch to the process, and we’re not done yet, but we’re making great progress. And what I want to report to you today is that we will have clarity for you on what we see ethics as being, how we look at ethics, just like I went through with you on the purpose, we’re going to have that for you.

[00:15:46.710] – Larry Mandelberg
And our ethics statements are going to be broken down into various areas of behavior or various areas of responsibility. Where we are today is we have three of those areas defined. The first one is competence. The second one is conflict of interest, and the third one is confidentiality. So I want to let you know two things. The first thing is that our code of ethics is in no way an effort to tell any of our members how to behave or how to run their business. This is a document that’s designed to help our members understand the most ethical approach to being a member of a professional organization that delivers it services to clients. MSPs there are no laws or rules making you follow it. And ethics are not something that are legally binding. They’re not something that’s legal or illegal. One example is, under confidence, we will always represent our skills and abilities accurately under conflict of interest, one of our statements is, members shall not knowingly make recommendations or provide advice that serves the member and not the recipient. And under confidentiality, one of the bullet points each one of these has multiple bullet points.

[00:17:19.640] – Larry Mandelberg
The one under confidentiality is, we treat all client information as confidential unless we know it is not. So that’s a taste of our code of ethics and what’s coming. We’ll do the same with that, as we did with these purpose statements. We’ll present it to you, look for some feedback, and be grateful for anything we hear back from you. I’m going to stop there, Amy. I don’t know if anyone has any questions, but I’ll stop and hand it back to you. Thank you.

[00:17:55.950] – Amy Babinchak
So if you do have questions for Larry, go ahead and put them in the chat. The quote of ethics is an ongoing process. We’re not complete with that process yet. And just like we did with Mission Vision Values, our intention to have it available for comments before it becomes finalized. So let’s look forward on to the committee report. Heather is actually in the car with Karl in England and Scotland this week. We’ll let her introduce herself when she comes back to us. Meanwhile, I think we can move forward to the committee chair, so let’s go ahead and start with Finance. Tracy, if you want to come off of Mute and give us an update on the Finance Committee, please.

[00:18:51.250] – Tracy Hardin
Sure, Amy.

[00:18:52.010] – Amy Babinchak
Thanks.

[00:18:52.830] – Tracy Hardin
We actually don’t have a lot going on right now. I have recently emailed all the other community chairs and asked them to start preparing their budgets for next year. We actually get that process started so they have time to meet and discuss their budgets. And we have a deadline later this month that those have to be turned in, and then we ourselves, after that prepare the budget numbers, and we have to present those to the board in November. So right now, we’re kind of waiting on everybody to get back to us with their numbers. That’s where we’re at right now.

[00:19:30.950] – Amy Babinchak
Thank you, Tracy. Brett, would you like to give us a summary of what’s happening with the Governance Committee, please?

[00:19:37.580] – Bret Erickson
You got it. Thank you. So we’ve had a great quarter. We’ve transitioned formally from the Formation Committee into the Governance Committee. We are involved in the election guidelines and kind of helping put things together. And right now, we’re working on the details of the membership programs and just what lands where and how that’s all defined. And so we’ve had some great meetings surrounding that. I just want to thank everybody who’s on our committee, and I announced the names at the last couple of meetings. I’ll spare you this time, but certainly you can hop on the website and see who’s on the committee and shameless segway while you’re up there. Please register for elections in a position, and please vote when it comes up. We’d love to have you join us. We got a great crew. We have a lot of fun. We’re very efficient. We make progress, and a lot of creative people on the committee, and that’s what I got.

[00:20:36.510] – Amy Babinchak
All right, Dennis, give us an update, please, on the Legislative Committee activity.

[00:20:53.210] – Denis Wilson
Can you hear me now?

[00:20:54.330] – Karl Palachuk
Better?

[00:20:55.850] – Amy Babinchak
Yes. Very good.

[00:20:58.050] – Larry Mandelberg
Okay.

[00:20:59.750] – Denis Wilson
The first thing I want to do is to give thanks to my great committee. They’ve done a superb job. We’ve been meeting Biweekly for the last year, putting together what we think are a strong offering that will help our members move forward into self advocacy and the grassroots methodology. First, let me talk about the five goals. The committee has five goals set up that says that, for instance, we should be following the national and state legislature affecting our industry, any legislation that affecting our industry. The second one is to inform the membership of those findings. Third is to educate government and businesses on the value of our offering, service offering, and the effects of legislation on it. The fourth is to create materials to educate the members, to help small businesses understand the legislation affecting us, and lastly, to train members to become effective self advocates. Now, talking to the first area, we have resources to educate us all and to make it really available to our members, readily available to our members. We’re looking at several websites that contract this kind of information to their members and we should have a recommendation to the board as well as to Tracy as to what the cost is going to be and what we should do about that.

[00:22:53.830] – Denis Wilson
The second area, we’re looking at setting up a blogging through our own website so that we can really focus in on those areas of legislation that are going to be really affecting us and those that have been usually outlined by legislature in, for instance, California or Texas or New York. And we’ve got a sense that something’s going to happen there quickly and we want to make sure that we get that information out to the membership as quickly as possible. The third area, we want to working with the Marketing Committee on legislative and business oriented brochures and white papers so that you can use them as part of your discussion with those legislature or businesses. Fourth, we’re currently working on creating templates for videos to fill in the YouTube channel. We expect to put together five and ten minute question oriented videos. So we’ll deal with one question at a time, like what is it that legislators need to have for me? What is it they’re looking for? How should I talk to them? Each one of those individual questions will be talked about in the videos. We should have the first one in Alpha Test this week and we expect to have something in the range of three to five within the next several weeks that we can all take a look at, say, yeah, good, this isn’t so good, and we move forward on it.

[00:24:52.090] – Denis Wilson
And the fifth area is to create training materials as well as an advisory council from within our group that can work with the individual members who are working with self advocating to a legislature in Michigan or Washington or Florida. Everybody has a different style of legislating themselves and everybody has different issues. And what we have is a group that has been working in this area for years. And so we’re hoping that we can offer an advisory group, an advisory committee, not committee, but an advisory group that could help those members that are going forward and working with their local legislators and they just need some help, a bit of hand holding at all. So anyway, those five areas are what we’re working on to create self advocates in a grassroots methodology.

[00:26:21.130] – Amy Babinchak
Thanks, Dennis. I see that Karl has joined us. I don’t see Heather yet, but Karl, we can bounce up back up to your executive report here.

[00:26:34.580] – Karl Palachuk
Thank you. So thank you everybody, for your patience. There’s a train strike in the UK, and so we just finished a four hour drive from Glasgow, Manchester. Anyway, we got the perfect storm. We also have the perfect team, so they made this all come off without a hitch. So we have 203 professional members as of yesterday and 521 registered members. So that’s over 700, which is pretty darn good. We have 1673 on the constant contact list and so we have a good core. Part of what we need to do going forward in the fall is to get more people to go ahead and join and become a professional member. So that piece of it becomes the most active and strong piece of the organization in terms of finances. All of those 200 members represent some money. Some of the people have also donated money, so our revenue is slightly larger than that. At the end of July, we celebrated our first official year in existence. So congratulations to all of you. It’s pretty shocking how much we’ve done in a year and I know some people are frustrated with how slow things are going, but I assure you the board and the committee members have worked their tails off to get us where we are and it takes a ridiculous amount of effort to go from nothing to something in a year.

[00:28:19.150] – Karl Palachuk
Membership renewals will start automatically on August 24. That was the first enrollment paid enrollment and we’ll continue from there. So on your anniversary dates, you will get a renewal. The next all member meeting is going to be in actually, I think there’s another slide for this. Next all member meeting is November 9. We always do the second Wednesday of the second month of each quarter and so we’ll be putting that and I hope by then we’ll have a little extra few extra resources to commit to promoting these meetings and getting a lot of people registered sooner. And so make sure that you’ve got that in there. Also, if you go to our elections page right now we are in the midst of the season of filing for candidacy. So I believe legislative Committee has nine members, all the others have seven. And then we have the board of directors. So we have 32 positions open and I put the banner with the yellow at the top so you can see that if you click on the Learn More or you’re clicking on Get Involved and go to 2022 Elections, you will see the Elections page.

[00:29:42.040] – Karl Palachuk
It’s got a nice timeline that explains everything. There’s actually an intro video from a meeting that we all held about a month ago and once you begin to file for office, you can start it and come back and finish it later. But please do so because the next thing Jen is going to start bugging you about is to make sure you get that done. But we recommend that you just go ahead and write up all your information and copy and paste into your application and you can build quite a nice little page so that people know what office you’re looking for and your social media links and so forth and so on. So if you have any interest at all, there is some commitment. It does take time. And being the nature of our organization, we have people who sometimes can’t make a meeting. That happens, but we really want people who are actually committed to doing some work and taking the time and participating as a member of the community. So it’s really extremely important that we have these filled. And I think we have at least ten people have filed so far, but we need to get all those 32 slots filled and the application to run for the office is through the end of this month, but please don’t put it off.

[00:31:02.200] – Karl Palachuk
And then in the month of September we’ll have the first 15 days as to basically there’s forms for the elections and we’ll have people discuss whatever things they want to talk about and what they think the future of this organization should be. And then September 15 to I think the 23rd is the actual voting. So we’re trying to take it at pace and make sure that it’s organized and that people have time to do this with your very busy lives running a business. The other thing that’s going on is that the Logo Contest is underway and Andy could not be here, he had a client issue at the last minute, so he’s the chair of the marketing committee. But the Logo Contest voting is going on now, so there are three candidates and again, go to get involved and click on Logo Contest vote now. I think as of this morning that there were only 34 votes cast. So anyone who is a paid member, you do not have to have your letters of reference in for this you do not have to have your letters of reference in for running for office either. If you are a paid member, you should be able to access those pages both in the contest and run for election.

[00:32:21.970] – Karl Palachuk
If you have any issues with any of those things, send us an email through the site or just to me and we will figure out. Make sure that you have access to that, but don’t put it off. Make sure that you do it as quickly as possible and do vote in that contest. And if you have a particular design that you like so much more than the others, then encourage other people to vote your way with that as well. I think that’s all I had. Just as a side note, you may or may not have noticed, so due to some hosting issues at my company, we moved the PSA SPP domain to a standalone server. It is through cloudways using Linole servers. It has nothing else on that server except this. So the performance should be pretty snappy. I think that we average two or 3% CPU time, so it should be stable and it should not be interfered with by anything else going on anywhere else in the world. And of course we can upgrade from there if we need the resources. Unless I forgot something, that’s what I had. Amy, is there anything else before I introduced Larry?

[00:33:41.290] – Amy Babinchak
You already missed that part of the show. Karl got it. Larry has done his thing. We’ve heard from all the committees. We didn’t hear anything from the Marketing Committee because Andy’s not here. So I don’t know if you’re able to see. Heather is with us now if you’re able to provide any additional information about what’s happening in marketing or in general. We did hear from the other leaders.

[00:34:08.410] – Speaker 2
Sure. So absolutely. As Karl had mentioned, the Marketing committee is working on the logo contest that is kind of keeping their hands full at the moment, although I know they have a lot of other things that are going on as they work with other committees. One of the things that I wanted to say is I am Heather Johnson. I’m the vice president of the board and also I’m the committee liaison. So I want to give a little pep talk about you’ve heard a lot about making sure that you sign up to be a candidate to be voted on to one of these committees. I’ve had the honor of working with these committees throughout the year. They are so dedicated. But I wanted to make it very clear that you don’t have to be a financial guru or a marketing maven, just have some interest in it and want to make a difference. The other thing is when you hear the word committee oh, no, I don’t want to be on a committee. They actually are having a great time. So don’t just kind of think of this as well, maybe I’ll do it. You actually will make a lot of friends with a lot of other great MSP and it seems like and vendors as well.

[00:35:26.380] – Speaker 2
It seems like these meetings people are getting on the calls earlier and earlier because they want to catch up and chat when they stay on later and later. So it’s a really great way to make some other friends in the industry by joining the committee and making a difference at the same time. So if you’re on the fence about it and you feel like you don’t have enough background in it, just do it. It’s fun. You’ll have a great time with it. I promise that you won’t regret it. And also just to reiterate that you no longer need those two letters of references that’s being held off for now. So if that was something that was holding you back, make sure that you do that. I’d love to read everybody’s nominations and pages, so get them all up so we can start seeing them and getting ready to vote.

[00:36:22.750] – Karl Palachuk
All right, so with that, we will go to the open Q and A and actually Andrew put the first question and you’re welcome to just ask open your mic and talk if you wish, or just put it in the chat. So Andrew says. I was going to join a committee? Well, there’s two ways. The first one is if you run in the election, you want to join a committee. So if you want to be in Finance and Finance is a great example of you don’t have to have financial background that’s really a policy committee because what gets funded gets done right so that committee doesn’t sit around and talk about spreadsheets and balancing the checkbook and so forth. But if you want to be on the Finance committee, for example, you go to file for candidacy and you just pick that from the list. You can run for one office and the top four vote getters will serve a two year term, the next three vote getters will serve one year term and then everybody starting next year, all terms will be for two years. So it’s just a way for us to kickstart. Roughly half of the committee is chosen each year.

[00:37:34.230] – Karl Palachuk
The other way that you could be on a committee is if there’s a committee vacancy, the committee chooses, they filled their own vacancies. So let’s say halfway through the year somebody decides to move to another business or whatever. If they choose to quit a committee, then there’s a vacancy and that committee chooses its own member so they would choose another replacement who would then serve until the next election.

[00:38:07.850] – Denis Wilson
Can I make a mention? Karl? Sure, you do a great job so far, but there’s one thing that I didn’t understand and I’m sure that there’s other people in the society that don’t understand as well. You can simply attend a committee. You don’t have to be a voting member, which is what we’re voting on is the voting members in the committee. You can come in any time.

[00:38:38.130] – Larry Mandelberg
Especially.

[00:38:38.720] – Denis Wilson
As far as I know. All the committees are open to having other folks there who want to come by and understand what’s going on with the committee and then if it turns out that we have membership issue with someone who can’t spend more time with us. Then we normally go to those people who have been coming to the committee meeting as informal members and look for them to come on board then as a formal member.

[00:39:14.350] – Karl Palachuk
That’s a good point and we need money so we can get more staff time. But one of the things that I’m hoping to do soon, if not very soon, is to begin printing up a calendar online on the site so that you can all know when committees are going to meet and that way you can choose to attend. If you are a paid member, it doesn’t mean you can vote but the reality is if there’s eight people there and you join in the conversation, you will have some influence even if you’re not an official voting member on the committee. So Eric has a question. So is the primary focus of this organization MSPs? I’m not an MSP, I’m a field engineer. And that’s a great question, Eric, and I’m glad that you asked it. This is for everybody in this industry as far as I’m concerned. And so the membership program is being revamped by the governance committee they’re looking at. If you are let’s say you’re an employee of intel, you could be a member of this organization because you are a professional in It services. If you just focus on home offices or you just do a break fix or on demand support, you are still a professional in the It services industry, and we want you to be a member.

[00:40:38.850] – Karl Palachuk
If you’re a small company, we want you to join as a company, and you get one vote per company. If you It big company, we want you to join as a company. You still only get one vote. But we want every organization that does it to be here because there’s kind of two major focuses that we’ve been looking at, and one is we need to protect the reputation of this industry because right now something goes wrong and legislators and others look at us and say, what are those people up to? Why do they use such dangerous tools? Right? And the other thing is, we need to we’re mature enough, it’s been, whatever, 50, 60 years that this kind of It company has existed. We need to hold each other accountable to a code of conduct and a code of ethics and to be able to say, hey, that is not the right way to do business. And I actually thought about we should have a blog post called the Reddit Post of the Week, because there’s always something on Reddit about, should I be paid for my overtime because my boss doesn’t pay me right?

[00:41:44.580] – Karl Palachuk
Or we call ourselves a managed service provider, but we don’t actually sign contracts or do preventive maintenance. Are we really an MSP? Right? All those kinds of things are things that our industry should be talking about, and it’s important to talk about what tools are you using? But that’s not the core of why this organization exists. This is about us holding each other accountable and making sure that the rest of the world knows that we’re holding each other accountable. And Amy mentioned that the code of conduct is an agenda for the future. We’ve been working on it. Other comments, questions? And again, you’re welcome to open up your mic. Do we need to leave the slide up or should we just have a free for all? I’m easy. Look at all those happy faces. Comments? Questions?

[00:42:46.750] – Amy Babinchak
Well, Keith has an excellent item for thought, I guess, in this question here. Have we forged relationships with other It organizations since we cover a gap not addressed in those memberships? As an example, a group within Tech Tribe where we can engage and encourage conversations about It legislation pending and insurance requirements. I would love to see that happen. What we would have to do in order to make that happen is really an outreach program to those organizations. In my mind. I think that would be something that the marketing committee may be able to lead. But it would require we definitely have to have a volunteer in those organizations in order to sort of be the point person that would lead that. Because certainly. One. We don’t have any employees in this organization yet. So there’s no one we can say.

[00:43:53.230] – Karl Palachuk
Yeah.

[00:43:53.470] – Amy Babinchak
You need to go into each of the communities around the It industry and make sure that the forum is up to date and comment on it. But if we had volunteer who would do that in their community that they’re very active in, I think that would be of great value.

[00:44:11.670] – Karl Palachuk
And I am in regular contact with folks at the Tech tribe. I happen to be on a little three day extravaganza in the UK. With Richard Tubb, and Nigel Moore and I are super good friends for a long time, so we’re in contact all the time. And Amy and I were just add comp tia, and we’re sort of directed, hey, we need you to go meet with these people. And we’re like, okay, but those conversations are taking place, and they will someday be a little more formal, but we are trying to do exactly what you suggest, Keith. And there’s lots and lots of organizations, but most of them, they’re pretty focused on a specific goal, and they don’t have a lot to cooperate on. CompTIA is probably the biggest one that we have a lot in common and a lot to cooperate on. They have a huge agenda and a huge budget, but they also have some big gaps where they basically said, we’re not going to be in this part of the discussion. But they’ve started the conversation with us, too, for example, in lobbying to say, okay, well, let’s begin the process. We’re trying to figure out whether we have issues in common and then begin the process of saying, okay, how might one figure out what our stand is on those things?

[00:45:36.670] – Karl Palachuk
And that’s something that I sent a note to Dennis and poor Dennis on the legislative committee. They have such a gargantuan agenda. But I’m like it wouldn’t hurt to start having this conversation of just sort of on the side. What kinds of issues might come up. Right to repair is the most obvious one. But as small business people, we would be interested in things that affect taxes for small business, licensing for small business, insurance for small business, contract legislation, so forth and so on. There’s many issues that affect us, and part of it is we’re also what Dennis is doing, what that committee is doing is beginning the work of beginning to create outbound communications that are to basically introduce us so that when it’s time for us to sit down at the table. We’ve built some relationships, and it all takes time the only reason I brought.

[00:46:38.130] – Speaker 8
It up is being 187. People think I know something after all those years and see how you got. I told you actually, because of some background I have in legislation and preparing curriculum, I’ve been asked a lot about that in forums and I just didn’t know if it was right to represent the legislative committee or the organization or just talk as an individual. People are asking, what do I see in my purported crystal ball? Because they are getting nervous. And the other thing I was thinking, since you’re over in the UK, and I don’t mind putting work on your plate, UK is probably being more aggressive governance wise. And it always fears me that some of those things our legislators will look at and say, hey, that worked over there.

[00:47:35.870] – Karl Palachuk
It’s also a case not just the UK, but all of Europe GDPR and other things. Europe has no problem saying these are the rules and if you don’t like it, the fines are ridiculously high. If you do business with people who do business in Europe, you become legislated by them whether you want to or not.

[00:47:58.490] – Speaker 8
Yeah, I thought that’d be good to tighten, get some stuff from Richard while you’re up there, while you’re out there or really show this is what can happen if we don’t act. And what’s happening in Europe I’m sorry I just gave UK off Europe, but is concerning, especially how they like to hold people financially responsible in big fine numbers.

[00:48:27.770] – Karl Palachuk
Yes. Let’s see. Oh, Josh might volunteer to be a trip three way lays on. So Michael asks, do you have a goal when it comes to state level oversight? I’m not sure exactly what you mean by oversight. Eventually we’re going to have to have somebody, some kind of organization in each state or somebody centrally who monitors the legislation in each state. For the most part, the federal government has sort of taken on privacy because when data moves across state lines, they can in the Commerce Clause legislate directly almost everything else that we deal with. With regard to two organizations, you and your customers, having a contract has to happen at the state level. There’s no federal authority for that to happen. So a lot of the things with monitoring organizations like ours or companies like ours is going to be state by state by state. And I think that eventually, whether people like it or not, I think we are going to be involved in creating some model legislation. Because if Florida or California or Texas or New York passes a law, it will become model legislation for the rest of the country, period. It just will.

[00:49:59.930] – Karl Palachuk
And we need to be in that conversation as quick as possible.

[00:50:06.290] – Speaker 9
Yes, Karl, if I can add to that. And the reason I asked about the state level is Vermont a lot of times looks at Massachusetts. So whenever Massachusetts makes a move, whether it’s in law or some similar aspect. Somehow the state looks at it too. So we don’t have any professional level in our industry in Vermont. But I do know that the state is starting to think about it. And one of the major reasons why I like what we’re doing here is to kind of help promote that level. Within reason.

[00:50:46.010] – Karl Palachuk
Right. Well, it’s funny. Six months ago, I would have said we really should have started this five years ago. Now I think we should have started it 20 years ago because it’s such a gargantuan effort. And again, all the committee members can take a nod for this one, the effort to get us where we are. And then I think about how would we start 50 state organizations? Right. We need to start getting the national level going and head in the right direction. And we need some vendors to chip in and to join the cause. We need a lot more members to join. Heather and I are having a discussion about how many MSPs are there in the world. Right. Oh, well, there’s all kinds of different numbers, but I can tell you it’s tens or maybe even hundreds of thousands more than we have now. So we have nothing but growth ahead of us. But part of that is that will bring enough money to have a dedicated person to make sure that all the things that we’re trying to do now get done, and then all the things we do in the future get done.

[00:51:58.430] – Karl Palachuk
It takes human bodies to do that. And we can call for volunteers, but quite realistically, we can’t ask people who are running a business to also then dedicate 20 or 30 hours a week to this organization. It’s just at some point, we have to have staff.

[00:52:17.750] – Tracy Hardin
Hey, Karl. This is Eric Lorenz. I’ve got another quick question.

[00:52:20.900] – Karl Palachuk
Yes, sir.

[00:52:21.750] – Tracy Hardin
And I guess this would be for I forget which committee it was concerning the proposed code of ethics. I’ve been part of other professional organizations in the past who have had code of ethics, and I want to make sure I didn’t misunderstand what was being talked about. But it sounded to me like what was being said. Well, we’re going to have this code of epics, but we’re not going to require you to subscribe to them. And you don’t have to sound it like you don’t have to follow them. And if not, that’s okay. For most of the time when I’ve been in organizations, by joining that organization, they’re saying that you agree with our code of ethics and you agree to follow and abide by them. And maybe if you don’t agree with them, maybe this isn’t the organization for you. And I didn’t hear that, or maybe I heard incorrectly. I just wanted to get a clarification on that because obviously you can have a code of ethics, but if nobody’s necessarily following it, then what good is it?

[00:53:33.150] – Karl Palachuk
Mary?

[00:53:35.610] – Larry Mandelberg
Yeah, I’m right.

[00:53:37.520] – Karl Palachuk
Here.

[00:53:37.750] – Larry Mandelberg
Just a second, I’m getting to where it’s quiet. Sorry.

[00:53:40.690] – Karl Palachuk
Yeah. And part of it, Eric, is just a preference until Larry can get settled up. We’re going to tiptoe into this the same as we did with Mission Vision and Values. We’re going to put something out there and say, okay, is that the right fit? And then part of what we’re doing in terms of professionalizing the industry is saying, okay, now we’re doing this. And then I can see the next thing we’re going to do is this. And the next thing we’re going to do is this. And the next thing we’re going to do is this.

[00:54:10.030] – Larry Mandelberg
So I think the noise is abated enough that I can talk without being too disrespectful.

[00:54:16.520] – Karl Palachuk
Yeah, we can hear you fine.

[00:54:19.870] – Larry Mandelberg
And I got cars moving around me. I really apologize for this. It’s the beauty and the ugly side of being so mobile with technology. So the thing that I want to say about that is there are a number of what I’m going to label loose ends. And two of those loose ends are enforcement, which includes monitoring, and the other is what do I want to call it? How binding they are. And both of those are items that we have discussed as a task force at great length. And it’s become very clear that we have to put more thought into it before we put our stake in the ground. It’s a suite of very complicated, detailed tactical issues and there’s some conflicting components. For example, we want this to be member driven. Well, we don’t want to be the power up on high, dictating what members can and cannot do. That’s not being member driven. And to your point, I was involved in an international organization who you had to agree to conform to their code of ethics and they actually had an enforcement division and I was involved in the testing. You have to be tested to be a professional member and pass the certification.

[00:56:06.550] – Larry Mandelberg
And I was involved in the development of the re certification process because it wasn’t a one time certification for people who had the higher levels of certification in ethics. So this is very complicated and I want everyone on the call to be aware that we are really approaching this with a great small biz thoughts and care to make sure we bring you something that is valuable and will help us achieve our vision while delivering on our mission and operating within the boundaries of our values. And there’s an example of where you see those purpose statements coming into play. I’m going to stop there and see if anyone else has any questions.

[00:56:58.810] – Speaker 8
Yeah, I do have a comment.

[00:57:00.650] – Karl Palachuk
Really?

[00:57:01.040] – Speaker 8
I headed the board of ethics in our city and then was asked to headed for the state and we had judicial backing. However, it was not effective until I changed the theory from being punitive to being a learning experience. And I think sometimes ethics panels or ethics reviews can be considered punitive, and then you’re causing the old act react where I think we really want to be more of a learning and making our community better and approaching what may be perceived as ethics violations or gray actions, as learning experiences versus administrative action. I think if we kind of fit it that way, we’ll have better acceptance and people will be more apt to.

[00:57:53.990] – Larry Mandelberg
Listen to us, right? So, Keith, don’t take this the wrong way, but if I was there, I would hug you and kiss you, and I am vaccinated, so you could not be more right on target. This is about not about penalizing people. It’s about helping people understand what those ethical guidelines are. Now, I don’t have it handy, but we developed a statement for answering the question, why do we have a code of ethics? And it speaks to this very issue. I’d give it to you if I was home on my computer, because I could look it up. But if you want to shoot me an email, my email is in the chat. Shoot me an email and I’ll send it to you, and we’ll get it posted so the rest of the members can understand our task forces statement on why we’re creating a code of ethics. But yes, we are not trying to be punitive. And this is where the purpose statements I’m going to go back to those purpose statements because they are I’ve been doing this for almost 40 years, and I’ve been in technology since 73. Having this clarity of vision, mission, and values allows us to say, hey, if you don’t want to play in our space, go away.

[00:59:10.120] – Larry Mandelberg
If you don’t want to achieve the goals we want to achieve and do it the way we want to do it, go find someone else to play with. It’s not that we don’t want you here, it’s that why would you be here if you don’t want to do it the way we want to do it? It’s about being crystal clear and communicating about where we’re going, how we’re getting there, and what our boundaries are. And when you go there, what you find is that the people who are either intentionally disruptive or intentionally try to take advantage find that the culture and the organization tends to be so strong that it’s too much work for them to cheat and steal. And the people who don’t know will appreciate learning and being a part of something bigger than themselves.

[00:59:54.970] – Tracy Hardin
Just to be clear, I wasn’t necessarily thinking along the lines of being punitive in the way of dropping 100 pound ambles on people who didn’t follow things according to the letter of the ethics. At the same time, and I’m guessing, as I understand this being a new organization, this will come with time. That other organization I referred was for 15 years, I was a professional photographer, and I was a member of the professional photographers of America and they had a code of ethics. And kind of the way that worked was what would happen is if a studio did something that was really shady or didn’t come out right, their customer would probably end up at the doorstep of the PPA and saying, hey, this happened to me. Then they had a committee that would come back to that photographer and have a process where they’d say, hey, this happened. What’s going on? And it would either be cleared up or they would gently be told that we’re probably no longer interested in having you as a member if you’re not willing to correct this action. Right?

[01:01:10.210] – Larry Mandelberg
In the interest of time, let me just say this. I agree with everything you said. The way I think about it is we’re here to let you know that you’re not fitting in with the way we want this organization to run. And if you want to be part of it, we want to help you. And if you’re don’t know why you’d want to be here, you won’t enjoy yourself. But again, this is a much bigger conversation, and I would invite you and anyone else that’s interested, please reach out to me directly and we will get you involved one way or another in this conversation as it goes forward, because it’s a big conversation and it’s barely just begun.

[01:01:50.170] – Tracy Hardin
Fair enough.

[01:01:52.330] – Karl Palachuk
The other thing is, Brian said in the notes, if we can’t dictate something as simple as that, people should be honest. There’s no point in doing any of this. And I agree with you, but part of it is we can’t dictate, right? That what we can do. And Larry, I’m just going to post your email in the chat just for fun. What we can do is we start out and say, look, these are recommended code of ethics. And once we’re sure that after a few months or whatever, that we actually believe that we got it right. This is the code of ethics. You can have more, you can have less, but this is the place to start. And then we can move to saying that the next level of the next go round of the partner program is you must accept our code of ethics. And then it’ll be like perhaps even a check box when you join. And then from there again, keep raising the requirements, perhaps having continuing education credits and so forth. So our goal is to not only improve the industry, but then also improve its reputation more broadly. And that’s why the logo contest seems trivial to some people.

[01:03:05.020] – Karl Palachuk
But I got to tell you, once we have a logo that we say, this is our logo for at least so many years, then we can take it, put it on our emails, put it on our website, talk to our clients and say, Guess what? I do. I belong to this professional organization. And here’s what we’re doing right? This is what we stand for. And so it begins there. And I really think that it’s somewhat telling that we had so many people, a couple of thousand people interested in this, in large part because we are having a discussion about ethics in this industry and nobody else is.

[01:03:45.070] – Larry Mandelberg
Karl, I need to just cut in. I have got to go. I’ve got a client waiting for me. So I’m going to say thank you very much. Please reach out to me if you have any questions or comments.

[01:03:55.510] – Tracy Hardin
Thank you for addressing it. I appreciate it. And you too, Karl.

[01:04:01.870] – Karl Palachuk
And I’ll just publicly say we would not be anywhere as far as we are with regard to the mission, vision, values, and the code of ethics if Larry was not helping us on those task forces. See, Chris got his thumbs up there. Other comments, questions? Eric?

[01:04:22.710] – Bret Erickson
I was just going to mention governance committee wise, I’ve got the draft of one of the drafts of the membership stuff. And right here, professional member, the very last bullet currently says adhere to the itsp code of ethics. So it’s definitely on the road.

[01:04:40.290] – Karl Palachuk
MSP. And now you too can join the race, file for candidacy, and help have that whole entire discussion, other topics, or anybody who has not had something addressed that they have on their mind.

[01:04:59.570] – Amy Babinchak
The whole discussion that had is really important. And it’s part of our challenge as a new organization of figuring out how do we start? We have that conversation so many times. We want everybody in this industry to start to be nice people and be good for their clients and stop doing stupid things. How do we start? And literally everything we do has that same challenge over and over again. We are starting at all of the things. And because our industry hasn’t had any guidance, those of us that are here and are volunteering and our members of this organization and most of us in this position have many years of experience, we’re bringing that forward, and we’re figuring out how do we start and then how do we make this industry better? We know where we want to go. We know we want to be. We just have to get the roadmap together to do it. And that’s a large portion of our work right there.

[01:06:14.710] – Karl Palachuk
Let’s see. Probably not active in a committee this year. I’m already a volunteer leadership advisor. All right. Be an active member. Yes. Again, as soon as we can figure out how to have a nice little somewhat automated system for having the meeting schedules go live and members can attend, that would be great. If you’re on this call and you are listening to a recording and you are not a paid member, please. It is the most minimal thing that you can do. And I know $100 doesn’t sound like a lot of money, but it adds up and it does help. And all the little things help lots of people who have donated money as well or donated time. But as we begin to grow those memberships matter, it also helps us with numbers. If we had 1000 members, it makes it much easier to go to somebody and say, hey, look, we’re a real organization and we know we have thousands of people who are interested in this. We just need them to go ahead and join because it matters whether you like it or not. Yes, we’re doing the right thing. But if you got 1000 members and you’re doing the right thing, you get more people to pay attention to you.

[01:07:35.600] – Karl Palachuk
If you go to a state legislature and you say, hey, wow, there’s like over 200 of us, they’re like, oh, that’s really nice. Yeah, very good job. So we need numbers matter, other comments or questions already then? Well, if that’s it, people are beginning to drop like flies. It’s five after, six after. Thank you for your attendance. Thank you for your support. If you have any comments or questions, send them to me, Amy, or anybody that you’ve seen on the call today. We’re going to get this recording up. It’s always available on the website. There’s a meeting tab and we post up the meetings there in reverse chronological order. So this meeting will be at the top of that list and we’ll get a transcript.

 

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