MARY ANNE SCHAFER OF SMI CORPORATION: Fighting for her customers at all costs

Soft-selling, selling upstream, crushing it with colocation, and much more.

Mary Anne Schafer is an icon in the industry, starting her company SMI Corporation 28 years ago when the channel was still in its infancy. As the industry morphed numerous times, she evolved with it each step of the way with an efficiency that would make Darwin proud. That’s because she understands macro-technology trends at a deep level, and has an unrivaled innate sense of timing.

Mary Anne leveraged the training she received from the corporate world, and entered the wild west of the channel, before it had a name. She has focused on white glove service, allowing her to maintain some client relationships for the entire span of her 28 year career, while still managing to close large new clients.

In this episode we discuss her “anti-sales” approach, her mindset while talking with high-status clients, the right way to leverage carriers, hiring solutions engineers, the future of the industry, and much more.

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