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RE: Training question



Dear P2 Tech:

This has been a very interesting discussion. My perspective is from that of a 
government vendor/consultant/contractor. I agree that the most important 
factor is knowing that you can trust the vendor to meet the goals of the 
training/workshop, and not abuse the opportunity by self-promoting.

However, like trust, mistrust should have to be earned. Often I encounter the 
odd attitude from government employees (both state and federal) that because 
I am in the business world, my P2 credibility is automatically suspect. I 
know when dealing with government employees, contractors and consultants are 
very often assumed to have a self-serving commercial bias that makes their 
statements and loyalties immediately suspect. I get the impression that some 
believe to be a p2 "purist" you have to work for a non-profit or government 
agency. I think this is unfortunate, because P2 will live or die by how well 
it integrates into the business world, not because of government regulations 
or the strong beliefs of P2 proponents and purists. In my case, I was 
formerly employed by a state environmental/regulatory program, a federal 
facility, several private businesses, and I now support (as a consultant) a 
federal agency HQ in Washington, DC. If anything, I think this broad 
experience often makes a P2 presentation by someone in my position more 
valuable in certain instances than that of a career government employee with 
experience of depth but perhaps limited breadth. Similarly, a presentation by 
a vendor with a P2 history in state or local government is perhaps more 
valuable than that of a lifelong businessperson with a sales kit that happens 
to include P2 products. Someone said it. It is a balance.

The other thing to remember is that some of us are in P2 because we believe 
in it. I know in my professional circles (including P2Tech), a documentable 
history of past dedication to P2 is an accepted, credible set of credentials 
that you carry with you regardless of where you work. Many individual vendors 
feel the same way. They look to promote P2 through their products and 
services, not to promote their products and services through P2. It's an 
important distinction, because in the first case you are on the same team, 
and in the second case you are only a potential customer.

Do I want your business? Sure. But ultimately I want to cut waste generation 
and lower toxic emissions, not to blindly promote myself or my company. And 
in the long run that attitude is better for my clients, and for you, and for 
me.

So heck yes, I can (and do) participate in training sessions, workshops, and 
conferences all the time where the name or services of my company are never 
mentioned (like in this note, for example!). And I give regular, 
uncompensated presentations to elementary and high schools where I have no 
chance of potential customers, even if I did mention the company name.

I agree that this kind of support can be obtained from vendors and 
consultants. We are out there.


Mark Boylan
General Manager
WASTREN-Maryland
22 Executive Park Court
Germantown  MD  20874
301/540-5403
(f) 301/540-0088
wastemin@aol.com