Editor's Note: Seven Minutes with Vincent Bruno
Vincent Bruno, new CEO of CEDIA, is clearly a busy man, seeming to appear at every corner of Dallas’s Kay Bailey Hutchinson Convention Center show floor at once during this year’s Expo. It is to his credit that though he has managed a level of omnipresence, Bruno never actually seems hurried or harried—neither in his speech or body language. On the last day of Expo 2015, in the midst of rehearsing for what would later turn out to be a sleek, well-presented CEDIA Awards dinner, Bruno—who comes to the role of CEDIA CEO after serving as Crestron’s marketing director—sat down with HiddenWires to discuss his objectives as the new leader of the global organisation.
You are wrapping up your first CEDIA Expo as CEO. What was it like to experience the show from a leadership position?
It came as a big surprise, the amount of work the staff does to pull this all together. At Crestron I was responsible for our trade shows and we do so many trade shows all around the world that on average we were on a trade show floor every business day of the year. So, here we have a booth as big as any booth out there. It is a beautiful booth with new branding and great events taking place in there [including] CEDIA Talks that are great for community building; the other iniatives, the Global Connections reception, the Volunteer Reception. It was just all fabulous. And then you have the rest of the show floor and the relationship that we have with all of the other exhibitors [along with] all of the details, even like a room like this (a small meeting room reserved for CEDIA staff), the press room, the staff room, and so many activities and 42 CEDIA staff members mapping this all out. It was very impressive with the professionalism, the coolness with which they did it all. So that’s what it was like behind the scenes.
Will you be in charge of the show going forward?
I am the CEO. I have Debbie Antrim, she is the director of events, and what I do is facilitate her success.
CEDIA hasn’t had a CEO since Utz Baldwin (2008-2011). It is not a role that has remained consistent throughout CEDIA’s 26-year history. What is the significance of having a CEO now for the organisation?
Consider this. I am not just a CEO for this organisation. I am the CEO representing what will be a $60 billion global market. That is what the significance of the position is. I do lead our team, but I have to facilitate the success of all of our members, the member manufacturers, our member integrators, and then we have to identify other member groups like service providers to join us in collectively [being a head] of this booming market. That requires leadership skills that I believe that I have to make us successful.
What are your main objectives in this role?
There are multiple parts to that. Number one is our staff. I must make our staff technically proficient with the technology we represent. I have built experience centres and designed show rooms all over the world.
What I will do with our headquarters is I will partner with our manufacturers to build up our facilities using all of this technology. The manufacturers will be responsible to create the environments, build it out, commission it, teach our employees how to use it and further upgrade it when new technologies are available. So we are going to make our staff better. And make them very comfortable with the technology we represent.
From a manufacturer perspective, I have relationships with all our manufacturers, but with all of our manufacturer members we need to work together to get in front of the technology that’s on the horizon from our manufacturers. With that, we can develop curriculum in advance of the products or solutions that are being announced so that we have everything ready to go to educate the integrators that are delivering those exceptional experiences to our clients with those new technologies.
And then, very important is my relationship, partnership with our press. We have many great stories to tell, and until we deliver those stories and those messages, homeowners won’t be comfortable with the technology we provide.
Llanor Alleyne is the Editor of HiddenWires. You can find her on Twitter: @Llanortech.