By David Gracey

I’m fortunate to be surrounded by good, successful people who look out for me: clients, employees, business colleagues, service providers, friends and family.  A recent key addition to Network 1 gives me an opportunity to thank some of these people right now.

Thank you Linda Gabbard, my Vistage chair for the last 3+ years: your advice and counsel has helped me in so many ways.  Thank you for referring me to Gwen Clarke – a management consultant especially adept at helping companies attract, develop and retain high-performance sales people and blend their individual talents into a most effective team.  And thank you Gwen for referring me to Tony Rushin when you recognized that what I really needed was a sales and lead-generation strategy.

Network 1 has grown every year over our 12-year history (yes, even in 2009). We’ve invested in technology (remote monitoring, support desk, network operations center), added senior engineers, and developed processes and teams that enable us to deliver our brand of managed IT services – Worry Free IT™ – at a high level to our 53 monthly clients.  Once I proved to myself that we had the tools, people and processes in place to scale – while continuing to deliver high-level services to our clients – it was time to focus on accelerating our sales.

Tony states: “I started working with David in April as a growth-strategy consultant with Harvest Business Advisors.  After delivering a 1-year sales strategy, David asked me to stay on as a consultant to implement the 90-day roadmap I had recommended.  David and his team have built a strong foundation throughout the organization – including sales and marketing with Richard Stokes as the Director of Sales. 90% of their new clients have come via referrals – which tells you everything you need to know about the quality of their IT services.  I’m excited to join Network 1 full-time as the vice president of sales & marketing and work closely with David and Richard so more metro Atlanta small- and mid-sized businesses can experience the benefits of Worry Free IT™.”

Tony is the first executive I’ve hired at Network 1.  I hadn’t planned on hiring an executive this year but I do believe in working with experienced people.  After working closely with Tony as a consultant over the summer it became clear to me that Network 1 – plus our current and future clients – would benefit from Tony’s experience.  Most importantly, his philosophy fits perfectly with Network 1’s culture: high integrity; client-centric service orientation; a blend of autonomy and teamwork; and flexibility.  Tony’s engineering background, IBM new business sales success, outsourcing experience, and – over the last 16 years – his work growing small- and mid-sized businesses in Atlanta are also appreciated.  Join me in welcoming Tony to Network 1!

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