Kevin Neal Life Update, 10/30/2017

Since the end of last month when I sustained my ankle injury, life has been challenging. While I’m very grateful and fortunate because the injury could have been so much more worse, the truth of the matter is that I’m not a very patient person and the disruption to my normal routine has been difficult, to say the least.

I’m very fired up for this upcoming week! Let me start with the highlights first.

I have taken my downtime over the past few days, and weeks, to organize some meetings that I am so much looking forward to this week. Some of these meetings are professional but some are also very personal. I’m looking forward to each of them with equal excitement, yet for extremely different reasons. Most of all I’m so pleased that Brandee will participate in each of them.

Whether by fate, destiny or divine intervention, I have had to lean on Brandee for so many things due to my ankle injury last month. Right now, I cannot do many of the normal things I used to do. Or even if I can do them, it’s at a much slower pace than usual. She just has this uncanny ability to jump right in and get things done without me even asking, or realizing that I needed help in the first place.

In addition to our meetings this week I’ve been doing a lot of educating myself in various disciplines. I’ve always felt that my professional business value, to be very honest, is not that I am necessarily an expert at any one thing in particular.  Rather I have a well-rounded professional background where I can relate to others in a sincere manner. I have professional experience in sales, marketing, customer service, business management, account management, product management, technical and other skills rather than just one particular job responsibility throughout my business career. I have

been very fortunate for this and I’ll never forget some very wise advice Dave Wood gave me many, many years ago. He said, “Kevin, even if you continue working at the same Company, do something different within the company.” I could not agree any more strongly than I could with this great advice from such a terrific person as Dave.

An area of particular focus recently has been digging deep into the setup, configuration and usage of ‘cloud services’. This is a very daunting task as the information is overwhelming, the terminology and services offered are different for each provider and the learning is typically on-your-own instead of some formal classroom style course. This is good and bad. It’s good because you can move at your own pace, which I’m finding really beneficial. However, the learning-curve just to get started is a bit overwhelming. Overall, technology is something I’ve always been interested in so my thirst to learn is genuine and natural.  I’m glad I can apply this to my professional career. This learning I’ve been doing recently should be of great benefit to myself, but most important our partners and clients, in this current era of technology convergence between traditional/on-premise and cloud computing services.

Another thing that has me really fired up is that after several weeks of uncertainty with not knowing about my mobility (or ability to work at all), having to juggle my calendar to re-schedule so many planned activities and having to level-set my personal business strategy; for the first time in weeks, I feel that I have a solid schedule to follow this week. I spent the end of last week, as well as this past weekend, preparing a lot of documentation and discussion materials that should be very useful in our upcoming business meetings this week to have positive and productive outcomes.

Lastly, and most importantly, and I’ll say it once again, I am so grateful for the compassion and kindness of all of you. I have such incredible faith in the decency of humanity. So many of you have been so incredibly supportive of Brandee and I dealing with my injury that we cannot thank you enough. Your kind words, thoughts and prayers are absolutely felt and appreciated. We can only hope to do what little we can to reciprocate for you and your family in some fashion, manner or capacity. At certain times in life you must slow down, reflect, appreciate, regroup and then move-forward, stronger and better than ever.


When life gives you lemons, make lemonade!

The Fujitsu Imaging Products Group (IPG) Demo and Education Lab

This was a self-imposed project that I was very proud of. In 2007 while working at Fujitsu I took the initiative, and was gratefully given the authority, to organize, prepare and build what I called the “Fujitsu Imaging Products Group (IPG) Demo Lab”. The concept was to setup various solutions that utilized our document scanning technologies for educational purposes.

The project was really great because people were really interested in learning about emerging technologies. I didn’t have to spend any money on building this Demo Lab. All the equipment was excess. We created an internal web portal that people could log on and follow the easy instructions to understand, and try for themselves, the different technologies.

Much of our Demo Lab was dedicated to network-attach solutions so we had many networking hardware products such as Kofax DSS, Axis or Silex but we also had network software solutions such as Network ISIS and RemoteScan TWAIN. It was really great to share this knowledge with others and get such great feedback.

fujitsu-ipg-lab-interface fujitsu-ipg-lab5 fujitsu-ipg-lab4 fujitsu-ipg-lab3 fujitsu-ipg-lab2 fujitsu-ipg-lab1


LinkedIn Endorsements – Love ‘em or Hate ‘em?

Whether you love them or hate them, I think LinkedIn Endorsements are a fairly good gauge of your professional skills, and especially your online professional persona.  I promised myself that after my personal LinkedIn profile achieved 99+ (99+) Endorsements in any particular category then I would share some of my honest observations on the topic of LinkedIn Endorsements.

I checked a few of my LinkedIn contacts at random and viewed their Endorsements.  Knowing all these persons in various capacities whether it be only virtually, in-person or a mixture of both, I can say that most of these persons highly ranked Endorsements personified their professional skills fairly decently.  In other words, LinkedIn Endorsements might not deserve the harsh criticism they received when initially launched about one year ago.

Are Skills Perception or Reality? (…and does it matter as long as it is accurate)
linkedin reqs 011016Let’s dig a bit deeper and see if LinkedIn Endorsements are truly representative of one’s professional skills.  As a reference, my personal LinkedIn Skills & Endorsements screen print as of 1/10/16 is listed to the left.  As you can see the three Skills for which I have 99+ Endorsements are ‘SaaS’, ‘Enterprise Software’ and ‘Cloud Computing’.

With over 100 of my professional contacts ‘endorsing’ me for each skill, (without asking or any sort of encouragement) anyone that didn’t know me personally would think that my entire career might have been in the solutions and software business.

Au contraire! (On the contrary)

I have never worked one minute for a ‘SaaS’ (as-a-Service) company.  Never have I received a paycheck ever from any ‘Cloud Computing’ organization.  Nor have I been a part of an ‘Enterprise Software’, until the past few years.  So what does this mean exactly?  Are all my Endorsements bogus, or is it misguided individuals or is it blatant propaganda?  None of this – let me explain.


Where there is smoke, there is (professional) fire!

Passion for work, industry and others is I’m sure where my Endorsements came from.  People know Kevin Neal as an extremely passionate professional about the topics of SaaS, Enterprise Software and Cloud Computing.  I don’t hide this passion; in fact I embrace it and wish to share experiences with others with such interests.

* I am a proud Professional Member of AIIM ( – A nonprofit educational organization of the topic of Information Management

* I am honored to be a ‘Expert Blogger’ on the topic of ‘Capture’ for AIIM’s web communities

* I genuinely enjoy using my personal time sharing my knowledge freely with others and with no expectations in-turn.  A few examples are below:

    • SaaS:  saas
    • Enterprise Software:  enterprise
    • Cloud Computing:  cloud

In summary, my professional life is an open book which I am glad to share with others.  I feel it is a pay-it-forward type attitude for those that have helped me so much in my personal career.  I can’t thank them enough and I would just encourage others to do the same.  Share your experiences, express your thoughts and have an opinion.

A trip down Elementary and High School lane

A celebrity post by Brandee —

Kevin and I had a wonderful day. We drove all over and he showed me where he went to school from preschool up to graduation; his entire newspaper route, which was totally impressive; friends homes and the neighborhood he grew up in.

We stopped and grabbed a little bite then headed for the barn. Perfect day in my book.

gunderson high school sign