by: O’Ryan Johnson
After 20 years, thousands of news stories, and more nights spent shivering at house fires and police tape than I’d like to recall, I decided that people have probably heard enough from me, so I am hanging up my notebook.
My last day at CRN, the nation’s leading source for channel news was Friday. I completely lucked out three years ago when I left the Boston Herald and landed at CRN. Jen Follett and Steve Burke are simply two of the best editors and bosses anywhere. The newsroom there is as talented, and aggressive as any that I have worked in, and better than most. They have a great leader in Blaine Raddon, and I can’t wait to see them all at the next in-person XChange.
To wit, I am more than a little excited to announce that I have started a sales career with CrushBank, the IBM Watson-enabled IT Help Desk solution.
The excellent team CrushBank has assembled — Evan Leonard as CEO, David Tan as CTO, and Brian Mullaney as CRO — is already one of the premier C-suites in the software vendor space with decades of real experience leading MSPs — which they have now put to work solving problems for MSPs.
CrushBank’s mission is similar to what I have tried to do my entire career, which is to make sense out of too much information. The difference is that instead of having me try to figure out what is going on and tell that to readers, CrushBank gives every user IBM’s Watson to find the answers they are looking for.
However, I would not be here if it weren’t for the hours spent talking to some truly great MSPs about the work they do for customers, the challenges they have with vendors, the push-and-pull relationship they have with distribution. Learning about their businesses, directly from them is an education that simply can’t be bought.
These folks are fighting every day to give more to their customers, while also putting food on the table for their families. Additionally, over the last year, MSPs had to meet the nation’s demand for work at-home solutions with one hand, while fending off nation-state sponsored ransomware attacks with the other.
There is a book waiting to be written on this remarkable achievement, and perhaps someday I will be able to write it, but for now I’m thrilled that I get to stay in this MSP-facing environment. It simply has the best people in the country, solving the most difficult technology problems for businesses — from Main Street to Wall Street.
I look forward to learning a lot more in the weeks and months to come, and to staying in touch with the MSPs I have met and who have guided me to this point. You’ll be hearing from me soon. If you read this far, look me up at the next XChange and I’ll make sure to get you some CrushBank swag.