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The conference in Washington D. C. last week was my third Microsoft Inspire (formerly Worldwide Partner Conference). It truly was inspiring to engage with so many talented people and advanced technologies. Here are some things I learned; follow the links to the resources if interested. 1. You meet partners well outside the SMB MSP space Roughly 70% of 10,000 partner attendees are from outside the U.S. Of the U.S. partners, roughly half are not MSPs. The good news is the solution, size, and geo diversity opens your eyes to new opportunities, while still offering an MSP audience roughly the size of IT Nation. 2. Microsoft made three key sales program ...
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Acquisitions don't have to be scary. We know you probably have a few questions about Carbonite's acquisition of   DoubleTake , but we want to assure you that we think this is a smart move. Here are a few reasons we think this acquisition is good for MSPs: #1 This isn't Carbonite's first rodeo The company's DoubleTake purchase is one in a long line of moves centered around delivering better data protection solutions. Last year, Carbonite acquired and integrated a DRaaS solution into their family of products. According to the company's CEO, Mohamad Ali, Carbonite's goal is to "become the undisputed leader in the data protection market for small and ...
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Business is migrating to the cloud at an astounding pace for several reasons—speed, flexibility, scalability, and security. With fears of yesteryear falling by the wayside and companies of all sizes launching strategic cloud initiatives, opportunities abound for smart managed service providers (MSPs). This year alone,   Gartner   expects public cloud services to grow 18% . And the biggest growth area within that double-digit increase is infrastructure as a service (   IaaS   ), which   is expected to grow nearly 37% in 2017 to reach almost $35 billion . As a born-in-the-cloud and cloud-dedicated distributor, we at Pax8 would be doing our ...
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Business is migrating to the cloud at an astounding pace for several reasons—speed, flexibility, scalability, and security. With fears of yesteryear falling by the wayside and companies of all sizes launching strategic cloud initiatives, opportunities abound for smart managed service providers (MSPs). This year alone,   Gartner   expects public cloud services to grow 18% . And the biggest growth area within that double-digit increase is infrastructure as a service (   IaaS   ), which   is expected to grow nearly 37% in 2017 to reach almost $35 billion . As a born-in-the-cloud and cloud-dedicated distributor, we at Pax8 would be doing our ...
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Extra, extra, read all about it –   Pax8 now FULLY integrates with ConnectWise . This means ConnectWise users can now purchase Pax8 cloud solutions, services, and licenses without ever leaving the ConnectWise portal. Whether you want to place orders, increase seat counts, update agreements, or import customer products, you can now conduct all this Pax8 business right inside your handy, dandy ConnectWise instance. Imagine how much time that could save you each day. No more tabbing back and forth between screens, just a seamless, in-portal experience that empowers you to give your customers what they need, much faster. Here's what one Pax8 and ConnectWise ...
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Last week, we introduced you to the concept of the Lean MSP , and talked a bit about the 8 Wastes of Lean in a general sense. If you’re serious about cutting waste in your MSP, you need to be familiar with all of them. By understanding the areas where lean philosophy can have the most impact, your team to get some quick wins and start to think lean. This is critical - lean is part philosophy, part system and part organizational culture. You have to believe in it at a core level. Learn all the Japanese terms , adopt the philosophy, and come to hold a deep-rooted loathing for waste in all its forms. Muda #1 - Waiting The first waste is waiting. For MSPs, ...
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Business owners don't understand the fundamental law of how new business development actually happens. If you're stuck in a mentality of looking only for opportunities that will close in the next 90 days not only is that shortsighted, but it's wildly expensive and wrong. What are you doing with the leads that aren't ready to do anything in 90 days? What do you do with the contacts that tell you, “I don't want to do anything this year but maybe I'll do something next year?” Do you throw them away? Do you think you'll come back to them at some point – maybe? Too often what really happens is – nothing. Because you're so busy looking for the opportunities ...
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In a relay race, the baton handoff is crucial for a win. The same is true in business. The handoff from your sales representative to your operations team is key for your success. If the transition does not go as planned, you can quickly lose clients, wasting time and putting your bottom line at risk. They may see your company as disorganized or unprofessional, or perhaps won’t feel like they’re truly being listened to. This is not the way you want to start with a new client. According to Bain & Company it costs  6 -7 times  as much to acquire a new client as to retain one. This should be huge incentive to keep your clients on your roster, as opposed to focusing ...
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When you hear the term ‘8 Wastes’, what springs to mind? Some inhospitable realm in a fantasy novel series? Maybe, but the 8 Wastes are actually a central element in lean management philosophy. And when you understand what the 8 Wastes are, and more important how to eliminate them, your MSP will also be leaner and more profitable. The Lean MSP series will provide a roadmap for how an MSP can adopt lean philosophy to achieve better operating results. The Origin Story The modern concept of lean management was created by Toyota, and initially gained popularity in the manufacturing environment. The concept has since been developed for services. Lean is especially ...
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Creating or redesigning a compensation plan for a sales team is one of the most challenging parts of owning a business. It requires all hands on tech, with contributions from HR, finance, a sales manager, and someone from the field to ensure it’s a plan that works for the entire company. There is no one way to design a compensation plan – every business is different and everyone has different goals and plans that work for them. As you determine how to move your business forward, follow these five best practices in developing your compensation plan. Have Clear Goals When you know what you want, it’s easier to get it. Understand where you want your company ...
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Did you know that it is six to seven times more expensive to acquire a new customer than it is to retain an existing one? As a managed services provider (MSP), you know this first hand. Finding and closing a new client deal takes time and money, and that’s before you’ve even factored in onboarding! Many businesses are under the impression that acquiring and adding new clients is what keeps them successful. While this is a factor, in reality, a long-term client is of much more value than a single-deal client. When you focus your attention on existing clients and retaining them for a longer lifecycle, you’ll be able to build a revenue foundation that is more ...
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I recently attended the two-day Big Omaha conference. My goal was to broaden my exposure to innovation, entrepreneurship, and influencers outside the IT and MSP space. Here are collections of quotes from seven of the presenters. "More and more the businesses that succeed are the ones that remove friction from the transaction. Consider the Balanced Scorecard - Align all goals and make sure they are measurable. For successful innovation, allocate budget to innovation resources. You need to be thinking 5 years from now…not today. You must protect the innovation budget.” Mitch Lowe , Co-Founder of Netflix; CEO of Moviepass "Diversity is like being ...
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One of the most unexpected challenges that small business owners must face is managing their employees, especially when they hire friends or family members. Without the traditional HR structure, or if you embrace the “everyone does everything” mindset, lines can quickly become blurred between boss and friend. Your first instinct might be to keep things casual, but this can actually inhibit the growth and profitability of the business. While of course you want to remain friendly and kind with your employees, it’s important to keep your role clear. Otherwise, it will be nearly impossible to deal with already tough decisions, such as salaries, promotions, and ...
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One of the biggest challenges in selling is trying to keep contacts engaged when you’re prospecting. Business owners and C-level executives often have too much going on, which causes delays in scheduling meetings and making decisions. Even the most high-priority projects can fall by the wayside. That means when you’re prospecting, your message has to be doubly compelling to catch their attention. So, what do most salespeople do? They try to lay out all their goodies to show the value in setting an appointment with them. But what does that accomplish? Silence. Suddenly you’re sending a company overview in an email attachment to give your prospect ...
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We’ve all been there. That sinking feeling you get when you delete something you shouldn’t have. The next stage is the panic you feel trying to get it back. We don’t ever want you to feel that, so IT Glue™ is introducing the Rapid Restore feature. It’s basically a get out of jail free card. Now, it’s just as easy to restore something as it is to delete it. What is it? Rapid Restore allows Administrators to restore organizations, assets and documents you've deleted in IT Glue. Instead of having something disappear forever when you delete it, this feature will help you to get it back easily. Simply  go back in time by looking in the activity logs and restore ...
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Email marketing is still one of the best ways to reach your customers with a 3,800 percent ROI and $38 made for every $1 spent, according to Constant Contact . It’s easy for messages to get missed on social media or traditional marketing, but in email, it’s always sitting in someone’s inbox, waiting to be read. So before you start complaining about your lack of customers from social media, maybe it’s time to put more effort into an email newsletter campaign. Creating a powerful newsletter that drives clicks and website visits can increase your sales and grow a customer base that’s looking forward to your news and content. Staying in contact with leads via ...
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Firing people sucks. But it’s part of business, and of course there's natural turnover as well. Regardless of how an employee exit comes to be, it creates vulnerability for businesses of all sizes.  An Intermedia survey of SMBs found that 49% of respondents had logged into a company account after leaving.  And a  2014 Lieberman Software survey found that among employers, almost 20% have no offboarding system in place to ensure that access to systems is shut down. Most employees will set up company accounts on their personal devices, creating vulnerability until those accounts are locked down.  As an MSP, your role as trusted cybersecurity advisor ...
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The majority of buyers report that they overwhelmingly trust word-of-mouth recommendations from peers and colleagues. These referrals drive purchasing decisions more than most other factors. You know that referrals are a great way to keep your pipeline filled with qualified leads , but when you ask, you strike out. “Sure, I’m happy to refer you – just as soon as I think of someone,” they reply without fully meeting your eyes when asked. Or, clients tell you they don’t know anybody to refer. Or, that nobody has mentioned to them that they have a problem. I even had one client tell me that she doesn’t socialize much because she’s an introvert, so she ...
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When you’re leading your employees along the path to success, are you getting the results you want? Are they open to your suggestions, engaged and giving it their all? Or, do they push back, miss the mark and second-guess your advice? Click here to read more about how you can correct managerial mistakes the destroy trust. http://www.insperity.com/blog/lack-of-trust-in-leadership
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