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POV: A Message from the President

May 1, 2006 12:00 PM, By Randy Pagnan


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As one of my first acts as president of InfoComm International, I'd like to tell you a little about the experience of being a board member, provide you with an update on InfoComm's plans for 2006, and encourage you to become involved in your AV association.

As you may know, every member of the board of governors has followed a different path to becoming a leader in the AV industry. In drafting this article, I began to reminisce about the journey that brought me from accountant to InfoComm president in such a dynamic high-tech field.

We are all volunteers — and while the definition of a volunteer is “an unpaid helper, giving of one's time with no compensation or return,” I have to admit there's a tremendous satisfaction we derive from serving as executive committee members, board members, or council/committee chairs. Whether you volunteer of your own accord or needed a bit of urging or coercion, as the old saying goes, “You get out of something what you choose to put into it.” Hundreds of association volunteers know their involvement with InfoComm is good for the industry, and, therefore, good for their company — and by default, themselves.

The board of governors represents a cross section of the industry. Included on the board are manufacturers, integrators, design consultants, staging and presentation experts, technology managers, independent programmers, and engineers. Even my own roots as a Canadian accountant, salesman, dealer, and now U.S.-based manufacturer are part of the mix. We reflect InfoComm International's global presence through council representation from around the world, as well.

Yet with all our differences, what we share is something of unparalleled importance: a commitment and a belief. The commitment is to further professionalize the AV industry. The belief is in InfoComm's unique ability to spur the advancement of its members. The fact that we represent a cross section of the industry makes InfoComm different from any other trade association, and this broad representation promotes communication and enables the association to be more fully responsive to the members' business and professional needs.

Our industry has experienced explosive growth, and we have caught the eye and interest of other industries and their members. Unlike many associations, InfoComm International is one that embraces change and the opportunities presented by change. Our view is that we aim to lead change and enable our members to fully prepare for it, rather than seek protection from it. We are not an endangered species.

To position our association well for the future, the board has provided our staff with strategic direction and input. I would like to share with you just a few of those objectives:

Number one worldwide tradeshow offerings

  • Provide the best international and regional show offerings to our membership
  • Endorse various AV disciplines
  • Broaden our technology appeal beyond traditional display

Education

  • Increase professional recognition of CTS
  • Develop executive education program
  • Increase focus on project management course offerings

Increased industry professionalism

  • Adopt AV best practices
  • Develop government relationship programs
  • Provide tools for recruitment of new people to our industry
  • Develop first-rate web portal

Right now, the industry is thriving. And those of us who currently earn a living in the AV communications marketplace have an obligation to leave this business better than we found it. It's interesting: If you plug in the word “steward” into Microsoft Office Word, the suggested alternatives are “warden” or “park ranger.” How appropriate that as “park rangers” we look after the AV zoo and the AV animals inside. InfoComm is committed to this endeavor.

If you or your company has been involved with InfoComm, on behalf of your fellow AV park rangers — thank you. If you or your company has not been involved with InfoComm, we invite you to get involved in 2006 — and help free the AV animal within.


Randy J. Pagnan is principal of rp Visual Solutions, a company dedicated to providing visual display recommendations and products to the AV dealer, integrator, and consultant communities. He is currently serving as president of InfoComm International.



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