Monday, 30 January 2012

Classic interior design and high quality IT – a tribute to value, my value

“Compared to buying cheap you only cry once when buying quality!”

Can you compare classic interior design and IT? It might not be the most natural comparison ever done since classic interior design should last for decades and IT you normally don’t want to get old. But yes if you compare in quality, support and last but not least value and this is what this post is about.

No beat around the bush; I love good quality interior design – classics, vintage. I also love good reliable IT – high quality IT. Normally I’m not looking for and loving the latest. To me it’s more important to find the greatest, because I can rely on it and have a support or money back guarantee if it fails, doesn’t fit the purpose or maybe even if the flavor doesn’t "taste" well enough.

Is price, high or low, equal to good or bad quality? No, definitely not.

Are reputation, support and value, no matter the price, equal to good quality? Yes, because reputation will give you quality, well rumored companies can’t afford bad reputation – if bad quality; it will be replaced or updated. Support will give you trust if you meet problems with the product or service. Value is what the product or service brings to you, the quality and support should be a stake holder to bring value, otherwise – replace!

Why the ‘no matter the price’? Because price doesn’t matter, it can be high or low, the money that matters is the value you get for the money – value is the core of all things that matter.

Classic interior design is to me something you know is worth paying for or can predict to rise in value, it’s like art. Nevertheless interior design compared to art should be able to use – f r e q u e n t l y. Both should be able to fit in different environments, because you sometimes move and mix them with different styles. They should be nice to look at. And of course interior design should, in a reasonable era, be timeless. Piracy might be a problem if you aren’t careful, but normally no one copies it correct – it takes to much effort and costs too much. You know what? Some will even be delivered with a serial number so you know if they are ok or not.

PK22 by Poul Kjærholm, Fritz Hansen

Used Classic interior design, more known as vintage not second hand, can be traded to about half of the price you would pay for a new one. If you have a numbered from a certain edition (normally the first edition/’s) you can trade it for more than the price for a new.

So, don’t I love Ikea? Yes, I do love Ikea but Ikea furniture’s are with some really lovely exceptions are normally not created with the best touch, often they are some inches to high or low, wide or thin. (I’ve noticed some things are produced thinner on purpose to not fit in to common standards, might be a patent issue behind this... Oh, the server doesn’t fit the standard rack…) They are not produced to last for ages. And please, do try to take Ikea furniture’s a part or move them. I promise quite many of them won’t look the same. They are renowned, have excellent support and bring value, but - Ikea creates furniture’s, not timeless classic interior design. (Sorry but when writing; I’m starting to think about public clouds…)

Mirror originally by Jacques Adnet w Hermes and now for Gubi (Not a public cloud…) Delivered with a suitable screw so it will be a complete and nice solution - value.

Classic interior design is an investment in quality and value, my type of value in life. When tired of it I can trade it away without a big loss. Classic interior design is like a reliable IT environment delivered by a trusted vendor; if something fails I know I can call to get support or the thing replaced. It can be a long relationship where versions will be replaced (trading) to fulfill value to your core business over time.

I once, back in the days, got a question from a client; “Why do you want 1 000SEK (approx. $150) a month to store data when I can buy a single hard disk for 500SEK (approx. $75)?” “Well…first you need to put it in a server (before NAS’s), because I hope it is a server you want to use it with. Is it compatible with the server?...” This was really an easy one to kill…and really not qualified to be qualified as quality or not… The hard ones to kill are if you find something that really is comparable in function but the price differs. You should never talk bad about others products, even if it’s hard sometimes... So how do you motivate a more expensive product? Well, you shouldn’t motivate a higher price. Never. Remember; price isn’t equal to quality. You should motivate your solution, product or service by the higher value it brings compared to the other one. If the chair leg brakes after six month the chair surely didn’t bring the value you expected. If the only single power supply on the server hosting your business system brakes it surely didn’t bring the value you expected, it might even be a true loss to your business. Well, you might say “blame yourself for not buying two power supplies to build a redundant solution”. Well, “I was told this was a power supply who never would fail”. (Of course the salesman or service provider should have advised you differently.) Or; you started as a 20 user company, now when you are expanding and becomes 45 or even 145 users you are not able to upgrade or make a switch because of policies or maybe even a restriction in the solution.

So why do companies like Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix, VMware, EMC, HP, IBM and others succeed in high quality IT solutions; on-premise, at MSP’s or as part of a cloud? Because of the high price? No, even if it sometimes might be high, it is because of the design, support and value they provide. It’s designed to work well in large environments. If it doesn’t work they have support organizations to support, re-develop or replace faulty products, parts or code. These are all characteristics of quality IT. No matter the price; IT should be reliable, replaceable and scalable and bring value to your business. And you should have someone to contact if the "shit hits the fan".

(CH24) by
Hans J. Wegner, Carl Hansen & Søn

Quote from Taschen’s 1000 Chairs by Charlotte & Peter Fiell:
Wegner has been described as the “chair-maker of chair-makers” and certainly few other designers have consistently produced such high-quality designs. The “Y” chair, sometimes known as the “Wishbone”, is Wegner’s most commercially successful design.”


There is no such thing as shortcut’s to bring good quality and value. You earn it by satisfied customers and good reputation.

You might say snobbish. I say; awareness. You should choose wisely when choosing your IT solution, products and services.

You might say greasy. I say; give good vendors and service providers a big thank you for once in a while – they're worth it. Thank you Cisco, Microsoft, Citrix, VMware, EMC, HP, IBM and all other who bring joy and value to my mind and life.

Like a colleague of mine once said: “Compared to buying cheap you only cry once when buying quality!

What’s value to you? I'm quite sure you have something that brings value to you and that you want it to work more than just ok.

Be aware and sit nice.


  1. We offer three kinds of service:
    Good – Cheap – Fast.

    You can pick any two:
    Good service cheap won’t be fast.
    Good service fast won’t be cheap.
    Fast service cheap won’t be good.

    1. Actually; couldn't agree more.

      Quality is a result of the materials cost and time - basic management! It's not always necessary with the best service but you sleep better at night.