After going to NSW University to study Computer Science, he went into hardware engineering. First at IBM on 80xx series mainframes. Then at Digital Equipment Corporation, where he won an Engineer of the Year award. This was also when he moved over to the faster pace of the software side of the computing industry.
With personal computing taking off, he joined Sourceware as a Product Manager. Tasked with looking after the Australian and New Zealand marketing and support for a range of software products including the Australian-made, Tracker – one of the first Contact Managers.
In 1987, PC Extras, which had just picked up distribution of a new Contact Manager called ACT!, asked Mike to take over the Product Management role for it and other products. In the first year, sales went from four seats of Act! in the first month to a thousand in the twelfth. Thus began three decades of Mike’s association with Act!. It was also at this time that Mike Muhney (one of the co-founders of Act!) called him, what soon became his internationally recognised title, “Act! Evangelist”
In 1991, Mike got the urge to put into practise many of the ideas he’d been teaching Act! users to do. He started his own business, GL Computing, which specialised in small to medium business computing. Through his business, his love and passion for Act! continued to grow.
As part of his dedication to helping small to medium businesses reach their potential, Mike developed and added a range of skills to his own portfolio. He has helped a huge number of Act! users make the most of their customer data through training and support services. In addition, he’s supported many the Act! Certified Consultants to improve their skills. Mike also assisted a number of the Act! add-on developers with design input, quality assurance and beta testing for their products that provide a range of solutions for act! users. A special focus of his has been with products that enable Act! users to be mobile with smart phones, tablets and web browser access to their data.
On a personal note, he is very passionate about his family, friends, Rugby Union (a Life Member of the NSW Waratahs) and Blues music … Not necessarily in that order!
You can find links to other various on-line profiles here: About Mike Lazarus of GL Computing
- One of the first ACCs to have a web site – 1995
- Selected to train Symantec’s technical staff when they purchased Contact Software International
- Served two terms on the Act! Advisory Board (the first member not from North America)
- Awarded the Community Contribution Award in 2002 – voted by all global ACCs
- Wrote the History of Act! and most of the content on Act! CRM Wikipedia page
- Is the most prolific Act! poster on on-line forums, since Symantec started them on CompuServe. This includes fourteen thousand posts on the Act! Community Site, alone
- Founded and administers the Act! Fanatics Group on LinkedIn, which has more members than the vendor's own group
Qualifications and Awards
- Swiftpage Act! Certified Consultant – 2014
- Certificate III in Micro Business Operations – 2014
- Experts-Exchange Certified ACT! Genius – 2012
- Sage – First ACT! Community Development Partner – 2011
- Experts-Exchange Titan Award – 2010
- Willy Award - Unsung CRM Hero – 2010
- Sage ACT! Community - Platinum Elite Contributor – 2010
- Experts-Exchange Titan Award – 2009
- itToolbox ACT! Top Contributor Gold Achievement – 2009
- itToolbox ACT! Enthusiast Gold Achievement – 2009
- Experts-Exchange Certified ACT! Sage – 2009
- Experts-Exchange Titan Award – 2008
- Sage ACT! Community Leader – 2008
- Experts-Exchange Certified ACT! Guru – 2008
- ACT! Certified Consultants - Community Contribution Award – 2002
- Symantec ACT! Certified Consultant – 1994
- Novell Certified Netware Engineer – 1994
- Contact Software International ACT! Authorised Trainer – 1992
- Digital Equipment Corp - Engineer of the Year 1986
Act! CRM Fanatic Links
If you’re interested, here are a few other Act! related feeds, forums and tools that I monitor:
- LinkedIn ACT! Fanatics - http://www.linkedin.com/groups/ACT-Fanatics-49896
- Twitter List - https://twitter.com/GLComputing/act-crm
- ACT! CRM Daily Paper - http://paper.li/GLComputing/actbysage
- Facebook Interest List - https://www.facebook.com/lists/10150654560093127
- Google+ ACT! Fanatics - https://plus.google.com/communities/109892208109008763279