Giving a presentation that had more views on slideshare in it's first week than any other OSCON presentation had in 12 years.
At Portero we had an issue with our network.
I know enough about networking to understand the basics. I actually used to work on the IOS back during the dawn of the internet. Though things have changed since then, the biggest issue is I don’t remember enough to fix network configuration issues on the router level.
Before I took the post at Portero, we had a company we contracted to configure all of our Cisco equipment. They sold us the equipment and peformed the original installation. Unfortunately they had some issues that they were never able to solve. Despite going up the ladder to the executive level, they still were unable to properly configure a VPN connection for us. More shocked than anything at their inability to perform a core function of the companies competence, I terminated our contract with them and began a search for a replacement.
My search took me to a number of places, some familar, like google, and some new, like twitter.
I performed a search on twitter for Cisco and came across @blindhog, a CNA with his own blog about Cisco Network configuration. Though we hadn’t previously met, since I read his blog and followed him on twitter, it wasn’t a ‘cold call’. I went into our first encounter knowing two things.
- This guy knows what he is talking about. His blog completely demonstrated not only someone that had learned what he needed to to pass the CNA exam, but someone passionet about his work. He is definately qualified to resolve our issue.
- Since I had read his writing, I knew a bit about him, his personality and glimpse into his character.
After a brief correspondence I hired him to perform the maintence on our network. What the previous company couldn’t solve in 20+ hours of trying, @blindhog solved in less than 2 hours. The testing proved that the connection was fixed. Not only was @blindhog‘s rate at a competitive price, but he finished the project in substantially less time.
Thanks to twitter and @blindhog, I was able to find the resolution to our problems and with the additional benefit of saving time and money.