Personnel changes at Faithlife

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This post has 237 Replies | 19 Followers

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mab | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 4:35 PM

Very tough call to make. Thanks for the update.

The mind of man is the mill of God, not to grind chaff, but wheat. Thomas Manton | Study hard, for the well is deep, and our brains are shallow. Richard Baxter

Posts 570
HansK | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 4:55 PM

@Bob Thanks for your openness. Very appreciated.

Hans

MacOS Sierra / Logos 7 Collector's Edition & All Base Packages / Logos Now

Posts 5252
Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 5:28 PM

fgh:

I don't think anyone has posted this yet: http://www.bellinghamherald.com/news/local/article53186915.html

Thanks for sharing....

The latest change is part of a plan for entering new growth areas that require a different business model, Pritchett said. This includes more subscription services to access a wide range of resources and information through tools like LogosCloud.com and ProclaimOnline.com. This business model means different capital and cash flow requirements, he said.

This seems rather ominous to me but will hope for the best and a still strong traditional Verbum / Logos development. -Dan
Posts 235
C M | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 6:06 PM

Dan Francis:

Pritchett said. This includes more subscription services to access a wide range of resources and information through tools like LogosCloud.com and ProclaimOnline.com. This business model means different capital and cash flow requirements, he said.

This seems rather ominous to me

Have I heard this before? More subscription services tools like LogosCloud.com and ProclaimOnline.com, does this sound like something I suggested last year sometimes about renting it all out or do a combination of ownership and rental? Check the threads and set me straight.

Better yet, Bob can define "more subscription services" in more detailed and concise language than I can at this point. I am in no way imposing upon the prerogatives of a CEO. Time is a revealer of truth and the removal of the string, "to let the cat out of the bag."

Posts 1691
LogosEmployee
Bob Pritchett | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 6:23 PM

Dan Francis:
This seems rather ominous to me

Ominous? Makes me want to cue up some organ-in-a-castle music...  :-)

Software businesses are moving to SaaS models, and I do see more of that in our future. It's not a threat to our current product lines, but our growth areas (Proclaim, Proclaim Pro Media, Logos Cloud, and even new things like Faithlife TV) will probably all be primarily subscription models. That takes more cash up front, and slows revenue down, but ultimately works out over time -- if people value the service.

Don't worry, though -- we (still!) don't want to do anything to mess with the wonderful relationship we have with existing customers who like the 'I bought it, it's mine' transaction model.

Posts 2353
Ronald Quick | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 6:37 PM

Bob Pritchett:
Don't worry, though -- we (still!) don't want to do anything to mess with the wonderful relationship we have with existing customers who like the 'I bought it, it's mine' transaction model.

That's me. 

I think it's great that Faithlife is offering different subscription based services.  I'm just the type of person who just prefers to own my resources.

Posts 5252
Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 6:50 PM

I too appreciate the possibilities that the subscription opens up to bring the resources in a more affordable way to others.... I like you am one who prefers an ownership model... foreboding would likely have been a better word, as it is only mild apprehension.  

-Dan

Posts 3135
SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 7:09 PM

Dan Francis:
I like you am one who prefers an ownership model... foreboding would likely have been a better word, as it is only mild apprehension.  

Let's go back to basics: Bob's job is to make revenues exceed expenses. Lots of people give FL lots of money in return for ownership of FL-produced resources. The buy-it-and-own-it model will stick around as long as it keeps bringing in revenues meaningfully in excess of expenses.

Posts 3938
abondservant | Forum Activity | Replied: Wed, Jan 6 2016 11:09 PM

This whole thread needs a dislike button.

First Rusty, then Mark, now Dave. Seems like as soon as I pick a new sales person they quit or are fired.

Maybe thats a sign I need to reign in my spending for a while ;)

Maybe in a couple years I'll consider a new BP.

L2 lvl4, L3 Scholars, L4 Scholars, L5 Platinum,  L6 Collectors. L7 Baptist Portfolio. L8 Baptist Platinum.

Posts 1029
EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 7:00 AM

SineNomine:

Dan Francis:
I like you am one who prefers an ownership model... foreboding would likely have been a better word, as it is only mild apprehension.  

Let's go back to basics: Bob's job is to make revenues exceed expenses. Lots of people give FL lots of money in return for ownership of FL-produced resources. The buy-it-and-own-it model will stick around as long as it keeps bringing in revenues meaningfully in excess of expenses.

Let's hope so. I think the discomfort that some of us have expressed comes from the fact that Bob is talking about shifting FaithLife's focus to a product model that's different from the one we've bought into and have a personal preference for.  There's nothing wrong with a business making a decision like that, but it does present certain risks on both sides.  From the customer perspective, that over time we'll find that FaithLife's products are no longer a good fit for us.  From the business' side, that losses in their existing customer base will not be fully offset by gains in customers who prefer the new model. 

Can a corporation successfully operate two models at the same time?  Sure.  But some of the statements have struck me, at least, as suggesting that Bob may be viewing the ownership model more as a legacy product that has to be supported, but really isn't where the future of his business lies.  If that's not the case, then perhaps some reassurance on that point might be helpful.

Posts 1344
PL | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 7:18 AM

Hi Bob,

Will these changes slow down or impact the development of non-English editions of Logos and non-English resources such as Chinese? (In other words, is Philip Peng and his team still here?)

Thanks,

Peter

Posts 1691
LogosEmployee
Bob Pritchett | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 7:24 AM

We're still working on building Chinese products and other language packages.

Posts 600
Ted Weis | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 9:23 AM

SineNomine:
Let's go back to basics: Bob's job is to make revenues exceed expenses.

If 60 employees had an average salary of $60K, that's $3.6 million.

Posts 3135
SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 9:55 AM

EastTN:
Can a corporation successfully operate two models at the same time?  Sure.  But some of the statements have struck me, at least, as suggesting that Bob may be viewing the ownership model more as a legacy product that has to be supported, but really isn't where the future of his business lies.  If that's not the case, then perhaps some reassurance on that point might be helpful.

We have to remember that most of FL's products are books in electronic format. Most--probably all--publishers of physical and/or electronic books still sell books. As long as publishers keep selling books, potential and actual customers will keep expecting FL to sell books.

Posts 523
Fasil | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 10:19 AM

SineNomine:

EastTN:
Can a corporation successfully operate two models at the same time?  Sure.  But some of the statements have struck me, at least, as suggesting that Bob may be viewing the ownership model more as a legacy product that has to be supported, but really isn't where the future of his business lies.  If that's not the case, then perhaps some reassurance on that point might be helpful.

We have to remember that most of FL's products are books in electronic format. Most--probably all--publishers of physical and/or electronic books still sell books. As long as publishers keep selling books, potential and actual customers will keep expecting FL to sell books.

Yes Well said ! I spent a lot of money last year and I like owning books.

Posts 8967
RIP
Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 10:25 AM

Ted Weis:
If 60 employees had an average salary of $60K, that's $3.6 million.

That is a drop in the bucket compared to how much Faithlife could lose if they went to a subscription only model.

Logos 7 Collectors Edition

Posts 196
Stephen Terlizzi | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 10:28 AM

Ted Weis:

SineNomine:
Let's go back to basics: Bob's job is to make revenues exceed expenses.

If 60 employees had an average salary of $60K, that's $3.6 million.

Actually if we go back to the basics, we need to go back to the call to family, community, and participation and the pursuit of the Common Good. The base of society is the family and society must pursue economic justice to serve people, not the other way around. At the center of the personnel changes at Faithlife is the human dignity of the 60 or so families (~150-200 people) impacted by the changes. 

Faithlife contributes to the common good through the products it creates as well as the jobs that it creates that respect and uphold the dignity of its employees. My hope is that Bob's assessment was that this mission was at risk for the corporation as a whole and that in the interests of all the stakeholders, including the 320 families of the employees remaining employed at Faithlife, these actions were needed to be taken and were done with a compassion for those families impacted by the changes.

While profitable operations are clearly a requirement - Faithlife is not a non-profit, its business goals need to be more than simply revenue minus expenses equals profits. IMHO.

Agape,

Steve

Posts 1029
EastTN | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 10:28 AM

SineNomine:

EastTN:
Can a corporation successfully operate two models at the same time?  Sure.  But some of the statements have struck me, at least, as suggesting that Bob may be viewing the ownership model more as a legacy product that has to be supported, but really isn't where the future of his business lies.  If that's not the case, then perhaps some reassurance on that point might be helpful.

We have to remember that most of FL's products are books in electronic format. Most--probably all--publishers of physical and/or electronic books still sell books. As long as publishers keep selling books, potential and actual customers will keep expecting FL to sell books.

I hope you're right.  To be clear, I'm not trying to undermine FaithLife.  But I do think it's of value to them for those of us who have concerns to express them clearly.  I work in an industry where it's routine for companies to subscribe to information services that are only available on a rental basis.  Granted, the reason is that they need access to things - such as state or federal laws and regulations - that are continually being updated.  But it makes it easier for me to imagine resources moving to a rental only basis.  Beyond whether particular resources are available, there's also a question of usability.  If an increasing number of features were only available on a rental basis, or if FaithLife slowed development of the user interface for ownership products, then it would make them less attractive.

Again, this is not intended as an attack on anyone or anything.  I'm just trying to express why I might feel some discomfort when the company that provides a product that I'm heavily invested in begins consistently talking about shifting it's emphasis away from that business model to a fundamentally different one.  For many people, the new model may in fact be better.  But I'm neither a full time minister nor a full time academic, so I don't have a subsidized book budget.  Buying what I can, when I can, makes more sense than taking on an ongoing subscription fee.  It's a lot easier to tell my spouse that I had some extra money this month so I bought some books than it is to say that I signed up for yet another recurring monthly bill.

Posts 5252
Dan Francis | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 11:09 AM

abondservant:

This whole thread needs a dislike button.

First Rusty, then Mark, now Dave. Seems like as soon as I pick a new sales person they quit or are fired.

Maybe thats a sign I need to reign in my spending for a while ;)

Maybe in a couple years I'll consider a new BP.

I agree with you.... although my reigning in has to do with the fact that I need to get my plan paid off as it got inflated just before the changes... I do not own or run FL... from the very little I know these decisions may not have been the ones i would have choose, but that doesn't mean they were wrong ones... Going out of the forum to the news paper story comment section, one lady makes it sound more drastic than we have been told including a 15% wage cuts. I am not in Bob's shoes to know what he does or see what is best for his company. I look forward to using FL products for many more years, and can only trust that Bob's actions  will help make that possible.

-Dan

Posts 3195
Whyndell Grizzard | Forum Activity | Replied: Thu, Jan 7 2016 11:31 AM

Dan Francis:

abondservant:

This whole thread needs a dislike button.

First Rusty, then Mark, now Dave. Seems like as soon as I pick a new sales person they quit or are fired.

Maybe thats a sign I need to reign in my spending for a while ;)

Maybe in a couple years I'll consider a new BP.

I agree with you.... although my reigning in has to do with the fact that I need to get my plan paid off as it got inflated just before the changes... I do not own or run FL... from the very little I know these decisions may not have been the ones i would have choose, but that doesn't mean they were wrong ones... Going out of the forum to the news paper story comment section, one lady makes it sound more drastic than we have been told including a 15% wage cuts. I am not in Bob's shoes to know what he does or see what is best for his company. I look forward to using FL products for many more years, and can only trust that Bob's actions  will help make that possible.

-Dan

It is not only the article that has me concerned, but the Glassdoor remarks- the overall problem that raised its head time after time- poor management techniques - even though this is family owned- I get the impression the lack of a qualified management team may be the issue. Maybe its time to let someone else run the ship, I get this not only from articles but from watching FL now for 2 yrs. to be honest I have some major concerns.

What's at stake- my investment of more than $50,000.00 that has been used on FL products. It is my concern- what Bob and his team do this year will determine where I spend my future resources. This not a threat or condemnation of anyone- but as Bob says he has to be concerned about the sustainability of FL- I have to be just as judicious regarding my investments. Faithlife could never have achieved its success without "our" purchases- don't forget that.

Anyone can tell you anything on the internet- remember everything on the internet is true- right? My grandfather use to sayb"If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck- I don't want to take the pan out of the oven, remove the lid and find a opossum laying there." Let your yes be yes and your no be no.

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