Agents have to learn the same thing as ISPs. This week I spent two days talking to agents about the shift from being a Bell-Head to being a Net-Head. That means that as AT&T makes the shift from the PSTN to an all-IP (unregulated) world, agents will have to learn how to sell differently (as a Trusted Advisor) and will have to learn a whole world of new products and services, like Cloud, Apps, SAAS and Managed Services.
Do you see the resemblance?
It's not just that the ILEC's are going to shut the spigot on your access revenue, it's that the whole landscape of IT and Telecom is changing. The IT and Telecom budgets are now one. You need to be thinking about ways to get more than the Total telecom Spend, but as much of the IT Budget spend as possible.
That means marketing and sales and strategic partnerships (because you can't do it all yourself). It means evaluating your in-house skills to see what you need to add and what you CAN offer with the resources available. It means networking and finding strategic partners you can trust.
Overall, a shift is happening, be ahead of it or get sucked up in it.