When I think of a business with all of its moving parts, I think of a bucket with holes. The water pouring in is the money generated to keep the bucket filled. The holes are the deficiencies in the business leaking the money. Sometimes you can do some quick fixes to plug up a hole or two, but eventually it comes undone and leaks again.
What happens when there is not enough “water” left to pour in your bucket?
You need to find a way to plug the holes permanently or you may need a new bucket. It’s the only two options to keep your money from leaking and getting wasted!
If you keep with the bucket analogy, when the market is raining sales, then there is always enough revenue to keep filling up the bucket. You could maintain this for a long time, even with holes in your bucket. However, as the traditional IT revenues continue to dry up (and many indicators point to this), it’s going to get much harder to keep filling that bucket before it gets empty.
I am sure that most owners of VARs and MSPs know about the deficiencies in their business operations. Especially for the more visible parts. Why they never got around to fixing them is up for debate. Sometimes, they think they fixed a problem, but it was more like a band-aid solution. Sometimes they procrastinate. Sometimes they just don’t know what they do not know.
The data is showing that many VARs and MSPs have flat-line or decreasing revenues. I have seen estimates as high as 40% of the channel. Regardless of the number, lets assume that many are challenged to generate the same amount of revenues as they did in the past. Let us also assume that many have problems in their business operations that they should improve.
If either or both of these assumptions are true, then it certainly would not hurt to at least plug some of the holes. I know of very successful VARs and MSPs that are always looking fix their leaks. To them, it simply seems like the natural and prudent thing to do. To others, they do nothing, expecting a different result to happen.
Regardless of which bucket you belong to, consider taking a best business practice assessment test to measure your strengths and weaknesses in every area of your business. There is a free test that you can take at Best Managed IT Companies . It’s 200 questions, so it’s not quick to do. The average time to complete seems to be about 3 hours. Doing the test with your team and some beer and pizza, seems to work best! Of course, do not bother if you do not intend to answer the questions truthfully. There is no super AI built into the test to determine your truthfulness. So, garbage in – garbage out!
Just asking yourself these questions should give you a good idea of your strengths and weakness on best business practices. This is the easy and free first step. The next step will determine your success or failure. It will also require a significant investment in time, energy and money – and it will not be easy. Start by just picking one weakness and do something to improve it. Pick just one strength and exploit it a bit more. If you keep on down this path, before you know it, the holes in your bucket with stop leaking and will be overflowing with money!
Okay, so a big chunk of you will still not do it anyway because you have no time for that! You need someone to help you get it done. That someone can be a group of 8 of your peers with 6 business coaches to ensure you achieve success. It’s called a VARMastermind Elite 300 group. And, its all you need to get the job done right. To me, it’s the best way! Your business will improve, but so will your life!
There are about 30 moving parts to being a successful VAR or MSP. If you were to observe successful companies, it all becomes obvious. They know exactly what to do, but they are reluctant to share their secrets. I actually have a keynote that I do on the top 10 secrets of the most successful VARs and MSPs but you will need to attend one of my events to learn about this :o).
I certainly do not have to tell anyone about the importance of running their business efficiently. I know it’s something that every business owner wants to do. Unfortunately most of the IT folks simply lack this type of business skill. The great news is that help is available everywhere. Any good business coach can help do this job. It may simply be a matter of understanding the importance of best business practices to you future and making it a priority.
The bottom line is when your business runs on best practices, you save time, energy and money. Even the skeptics will agree that it’s the same three outcomes that just about everyone wants more of! I can also tell you that it makes you a lot happier! Maybe it’s time to start plugging those holes in your bucket!