Kennebec Valley Chamber

Serving the Kennebec Valley, Maine Region

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Friday Report ~ April 29, 2016

"Lightning Fast" - As a kid, I used to race electric cars on a racetrack. I thought these were the coolest things ever. What intrigued me the most were the little copper connectors on the bottom of the car that connected to the metal track. You could get the cars to go fast enough that they would fly off the track on the turn. To win, you had to reduce your speed approaching a turn to stay on the track. Often, the copper on the bottom of the car would get dirty. This would cause the car to slow and eventually, stop. The child scientist in me would take out a pencil eraser and clean the connections. That was one of my favorite things while racing these cars; finding newfound speed after cleaning the connections. Inevitably, however, the cars would slow down overtime and eventually come to a stop again.

For the last several weeks, our Internet has been doing the same thing. We have had moments in which all of our computers were failing to connect to the Internet. This was a mystery. It followed no pattern, occurring when various staff members were in the building, and at various times of the day. We were struggling to identify the cause of our occasional trip to the dark ages. My inner scientist was baffled. As with all problems, you get to a point where you know you need to ask for help. First we reached out to the cable company to identify the problem. Nope, all was good on their systems. Next, we reached to our IT provider, Maine Technology Group. We have been with Maine Technology Group for close to a year now. They were instrumental in the replacement of our computer systems last summer, and extremely helpful throughout our move process over the winter. One of their technicians, who became our primary point of contact, earned the name SeanSeth. He earned that name, because when I asked him how to spell Sean (SEAN or SHAWN), he informed me that his name was actually Seth (whoops).
 Faced with our strange, mystical Internet dilemmas, we called SeanSeth and described the problem. Through careful analysis, and some pretty spectacular troubleshooting, SeanSeth figured out that something was sporadically tying up our bandwidth. He even identified that it was happening on our guest Wi-Fi channel. We were instantly suspicious of someone poaching our signal, but, alas, that was not the case. One of our staff members had recently begun plugging in their iPhone during the day to charge. Unbeknown to her (or me in fact) an iPhone, when plugged in, will attempt to do a back up to the iCloud. Not being iPhone experts, we were not really sure how to solve this problem. Once again, SeanSeth to the rescue.  As he was in the area the following morning, he stopped in and showed our employee how to troubleshoot the backup issue. Two days later, our problem happened again. Oddly, it happened right after I plugged in my iPhone. Luckily, we had an answer for the problem and I simply unplugged my phone and shared my newfound discovery with SeanSeth, he again gave a tutorial to the technologically inept. Of course, I then had to go to the employee and let her know that she was not the only person capable of locking up our Internet.
The main reason you're hearing the story today is because last night, the Mid Maine Chamber of Commerce had its annual award ceremony. Although several businesses were highlighted and recognized, I was thrilled to see that SeanSeth had received the Customer Service Stardom Award. It's is great to see folks with that extra level of customer service being recognized.
           Our region is full of folks doing amazing work. Both Kim Lindlof at the Mid Maine Chamber and I are thrilled to be surrounded by such incredible companies and individuals. We often struggle with the reality that we can't recognize everyone at our awards dinners. That being said, I ask you to take a moment to identify the companies and individuals that you work with and thank them for the support you receive. Consider nominating them for our Kenney Awards, the deadline is today in case you didn't know (click here for nomination form). Success in business is a team effort and you need to make sure that the team you have knows how valuable they are. And if you happen to see SeanSeth, who goes by the real name Seth Rogers, congratulate him again. He's earned it.