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60 Seconds: Karl Winkler, Lectrosonics

Q: What is your new position, and what does it entail?

Q: What is your new position, and what does it entail?

A: Vice president of Sales & Service at Lectrosonics, overseeing all sales and service activities for the company, including the field sales team, in-house sales, sales support, shipping and customer service. It’s a team of about 40 people altogether. The sales team itself reports directly to me, and fortunately, I’ve also got two great managers, Brenda Lyles and Cindy Blake, overseeing the customer support and service departments.

Q: How has your background prepared you for your new role?

A: I’ve been fortunate to have been given a variety of opportunities and responsibilities over the years, including in the US Air Force Band, as a crew supervisor; at Sennheiser, as a brand manager and director of marketing communications; and at Lectrosonics, as director of business development. I would say that managing a larger team like this certainly comes with some specific challenges, but I’m really enjoying the job so far and look forward to the opportunity to help further shape the company in the years to come.

Q: What new marketing initiatives are we likely to see from the company?

A: We’re planning to continue moving further along with the efforts started many years ago to reach into new markets with products we have been developing in the past couple of years. We have a global reach now, which wasn’t the case a few years ago, and we intend to continue expanding into Europe and Latin America in particular. We’ve had tremendous success in the Pacific Rim in the past couple of years, so we plan to keep growing there as well. There are plenty of challenges, but we’ve got the best team we’ve ever had from our engineering crew, our sales staff, the marketing department, and the dealers and distributors, so I’m really excited about the possibilities.

Q: What are your short- and long-term goals?

A: I would say that the short term goal is to get the sales team focused as much as possible on reaching new markets with the new products we’ve just introduced this fall. Longer term, I want to continue working closely with the engineering team to develop products that will see us through the next transition in the RF spectrum. In the past couple of years, we have already come up with some of the best products in our history, reaching new target markets in the process. The longer term goal is to keep up this kind of energy in development as we face the tough challenges ahead.

Q: What is the greatest challenge that you face?

A: The loss of RF spectrum is the big challenge all wireless microphone companies are facing in the next 3-4 years. Lectrosonics has got some fantastic core technologies, so now comes the work of putting them in play with competitive products that have the features and modern user interfaces that customers will need when the time comes. Form factors will change; setup and operation of these systems will be different as well. There will be the challenge of educating users not only to the problems ahead, but how to solve these problems with the tools at hand.