We've talked for a while about the misconceptions, actions and process that has brought us to our current state of the media and it's been pretty damn depressing. But something is happening out there and I've struggled with how to transition from the doom and gloom of the previous posts to what is happening now. Amazingly enough, it happened at a meeting last night of the Electronic Design Automation Consortium (EDAC). And I have to thank Georgia Marzsalek of Valley PR for insisting that I go.
I've used the EDA industry as an example of bonehead marketing practices that take down an entire industry and the evidence of that was plenteous at this meeting. This is supposed to be the big meeting when the board gets elected for two year. In past meetings, this has been an SRO event with multiple CEO vying for a spot on the board. This year, EDAC was scrambling as late as 24 hours prior to the meeting to get enough CEOs to fill the 9 spots, and three of them came from companies that historically haven't even been considered part of the industry. There were so few people attending you could have tossed a live grenade into the room and had minimal injuries. But two of the board members made "acceptance" speeches that ignited hope in my mind for this faltering industry.
Sanjay Srivastava, president and CEO of Denali Software , got up and said, "We are in a unique moment. The fundamental structure of our industry where large companies have funded trade shows and media, and small companies benefitting from it, is changing. The emerging companies are going to have to step forward and take leadership." Sanjay is the sponsor of the emerging companies committee for EDAC. It was a stunning moment for me to have my words quoted back to me from an industry leader. And it was the beginning of hope that someone would figure this out.
Then Rajeev Madhavan, CEO of Magma stood at the podium and said that the industry "needs to learn communicate better to prove our value to Wall Street." Rajeev sponsors the communications committee and has put Milan Lazich (who I have called one of the last real marketers in the EDA industry) as the committee chair.
I had lunch today with Brian Fuller and shared my thoughts with him. His response:
Folks, not only is someone getting it, but they are putting their money where their mouth is.
I'm working on Part 8 this evening and hope to have it posted before you leave work tomorrow. It's a brave new world and it is actually looking pretty good.