Example of a service candidate

May 26, 2012 Comments Off on Example of a service candidate

Recently, I described how service inventory blueprints are an important deliverable when performing service-oriented analysis and modeling. If you review the example I provided, you’ll notice that it contains a collection of service candidates. What’s a service candidate? According to SOAGlossary.com,

The service candidate term is used help distinguish a conceptualized service from an actual implemented service. This distinction is especially important when documenting service inventories as part of blueprint specifications or even when keeping track of a service’s progress via its service profile.

To give you a better idea of how one of these service candidates is documented, here’s a sample of this next level of detail. Contact me if you’d like the original Word file to use for your project.

Example of a service inventory blueprint

May 18, 2012 § 1 Comment

At WiseClouds, we design, implement, and maintain Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) initiatives for our customers. We’re big believers in the mainstream SOA methodology, and have found it to be very helpful. A major deliverable of the modeling and analysis phase is a service inventory blueprint:

…before any services are actually built, it is desirable to establish a conceptual blueprint of all the planned services for a given inventory. This perspective is documented in the service inventory blueprint.

Here’s a very simple example of what one of these blueprints look like. Contact me if you’d like the original Word file to use for your project.

Winning sales engineer trait #4: Confidence

May 8, 2012 § 1 Comment

Here’s an old technical sales joke for you:

Q: How many SEs does it take to screw in a light bulb?

A: I don’t know at the moment, but I’ll get back to you with an answer soon.

In this next installment of the 7 Habits of the Most Effective SEs, it’s time to see how a little confidence can go a long way. Many people think that confidence is like charisma: either you’re born with it, or you lack it your whole life. When it comes to being a capable SE, I don’t subscribe to that point of view. Instead, I’ve always felt that knowledge and experience breed certainty. Earlier in this series, I described how being technically skilled and inquisitive can pay big dividends, and confidence just happens to be one of those benefits.

Regardless of whether it’s in your DNA, or you gain it through the school of hard knocks, confidence is essential in technology sales. SEs will often find themselves in front of potentially hostile audiences, from scowling executives in dark suits to skeptical middle managers to jeering technical wizards. Each audience considers the SE to be an inferior:

  1. The executives view the SE as a peon attempting to extract large sums of money from the firm.
  2. The middle managers view the SE as a mere technician with no business sense.
  3. And the technical wizards view the SE as an impostor, incapable of understanding their unique technical requirements.

The SE must be able to overcome the natural instinct to flee in terror, instead relying on their confidence to gracefully face whatever challenges lie ahead. Prospects pick up on this self-assurance, too, which can help cement a winning sales cycle. Finally, it’s critical to remember that it isn’t necessary (or advisable) to answer every question on the spot, but they must be addressed promptly afterwards – just like the light bulb question I listed above.

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