3 min read

Your web conference setup sucks (and how to fix it)

By Adam Walter on May 5, 2020

In today’s distributed workforce everyone is settling into a routine. Many, however,  haven't really put objective thought into how their presence is viewed by their clients. We are still playing by old rules: dress nice, speak clearly, have a predefined agenda. This is no longer the case, and it takes a back seat to web presence. So, for those of you who don’t want to read this whole thing, here are the 3 things you need to know.

  1. Your web setup is too casual and unprofessional.
  2. Your current setup will cost you customers in the long run.
  3. For less than the cost of a new outfit you can distinguish yourself.
Topics: vCIO IT Consultative Sales IT Client Engagement Adam Walter
15 min read

How to craft a perfect QBR Process

By Denes Purnhauser on Apr 23, 2020

 

Quarterly Business Reviews are tricky. Some clients are not engaged with your QBRs and require a different approach, some clients don't justify the time spent on a QBR every quarter, and some clients are more mature and need different reports, even some demanding complete technology roadmaps and updates...do you need a custom QBR template for each client?! If there's no one fit-for-all QBR process or template it seems that scaling Account Management and vCIO is going to be near impossible, since every client is different.

In this article we show you a method to assess the complexity of your QBR needs and the time you can afford to run those meetings. Then we introduce three different types of QBRs with all the major agenda points, and we'll show you how those QBRs look in an example.

Topics: vCIO Managed Services Providers MSP IT Account Management IT Client Engagement QBR Quarterly Business Review
4 min read

How to help executives make strategic decisions in the bathroom

By Denes Purnhauser on Apr 15, 2020

The two most prevalent trends in client engagement are the increased frequency and remote delivery of meetings. We see, however, another trend that may surprise you, and its impact is as significant in your client meetings as in your sales meetings.

The power of the traditional printed collaterals, pdf reports, and personal influence is fading from future decision-making processes. This trend shows that your client executives and prospects might be making strategic decisions sitting on the toilet….

I do not want to bury the lead. Our tool is used to prepare, deliver and follow up important client meetings. We measure engagement with shared reports and we’ve just found out that the majority of follow-up items from client meetings such as QBR Reports, Strategy Reports, and Sales Proposals are opened on mobile devices. 

This shows not just a surprising shift in engagement, attention span, information processing and decision making in general, but should send a wake-up call for every client-facing employee: the way to win deals, approve projects and upgrade contracts is not just doing the same thing in zoom.

Every account manager, vCIO and sales executive should rethink how their processes can help them succeed not just in the next 30-60 days but the years to come.

Here are 6 quick tips to think about in this new era of decision making:

Topics: vCIO IT Account Management IT Client Engagement QBR Managed Services Platform
4 min read

5 Steps to Run Effective Client Meetings Remotely!

By Myles Olson on Mar 31, 2020

Without the ability to meet in person and present your ideas, it may be difficult to keep your clients engaged in IT support services. Spending on IT may not be seen as essential when your clients are struggling. But when has technology ever been more relevant to the success of business and the economy?

How will you communicate your value and the relevance of your services or are you prepared to risk losing MRR right now?

In speaking to our members we have learned what makes a client meeting engaging while working remotely. I put together a quick guide for you outlining the most effective features they have been using in remote client meetings.

Topics: IT Client Engagement
3 min read

How We Predict the IT Industry Will Adapt to a New Crisis

By Adam Walter on Mar 25, 2020

One of the best things about IT is that we thrive on change.  Even when the world is on fire, we are at our best — we have come through for society several times over within the last 20 years alone. Our resilience and adaptability are what make our industry so valuable.  

Topics: vCIO IT Client Engagement Technical Account Manager Adam Walter
3 min read

How to transition to High-Value Business Partners during the recession

By Denes Purnhauser on Mar 25, 2020

The narrative is about to change now. With the recession coming only high-value and proven partnerships are going to last. All fat is going to be on the chopping block. High-value strategic relationships with technology providers will be critical for all organizations. In this blog I teamed up with Rich Anderson to probe some thoughts on the opportunities and conduct a practical walkthrough with inspiration on how to actually do it.

Topics: IT Client Engagement Strategic Leadership Win New Clients Technical Account Manager
2 min read

Remote Work Readiness Insights from MSPs

By Myles Olson on Mar 18, 2020

Thoughts from our Covid-19 Remote Work Readiness Webinars

We're certainly living in unprecedented times right now. With many businesses looking to stay productive while sending staff home to work, there's never been a time when technology has been so crucial to the economy. Now is the time for MSPs and IT Solutions Providers to leadership with technology solutions that will save their clients

Topics: IT Client Engagement Win New Clients
6 min read

Why the better MSPs work the less perceived value they have

By Denes Purnhauser on Mar 10, 2020

For a while after our session with Sea-Level something was bugging me. We pondered a conundrum in this seminar: why can’t MSPs not become the victim of their own success? Why does a smooth service have to lead to disengaged clients? How can the MSP remain the hero not justhen the client has problems in their day-to-day operation but even when those problems are gone and the technology just works, and they stop noticing the value of the services? 

After many 1-1 discussions we came up with an answer. The issue comes into clear view from a distant overhead, as does the solution. Now having been able to create a model that explains the problems, the solution is far less difficult to manage.

We are going to break down the problem into 3 stages each with a brief explanation.

Topics: vCIO IT Account Management IT Client Engagement Technical Account Manager
4 min read

5 Practical Ways MSPs Can Prevent Churn

By Denes Purnhauser on Feb 25, 2020

We asked last week during our webinar with Sea-Level Operations: What are the symptoms of Account Management debt? Low perceived value,  communication breakdown, and churn were included in 100% of the responses. Most interestingly 77% of the time churn was mentioned without prompting. During the session we analyzed this situation and identified the crucial methods to prevent potential churn. We are going to highlight the 5 major activities Account Managers can do to accomplish this.

Topics: IT Client Engagement Sea-Level Operations
3 min read

How to build client rapport under pressure & limited time

By Denes Purnhauser on Feb 19, 2020

A new customer of Managed Services Platform called us the other day: “Guys, I have a concerned client and risk going into a meeting completely unprepared. I want to do it professionally so they see I am fully organized on their needs, that I can get my ideas across and have an engaging meeting with them. Oh.. did I say I have only one hour?”. We helped this client shift from being reactive, defensive and unorganized to professional, confident and prepared by assembling their personal committed overview ready for the meeting in 30 minutes using our pre-built templates and software. This is how the risk was turned into opportunity.

Topics: IT Client Engagement QBR Quarterly Business Review
5 min read

5 Questions that will make your Client Meetings Strategic

By Denes Purnhauser on Jan 23, 2020

What would it feel like not just having great and engaging meetings with clients but being able to become true business partners? Progressive MSPs has been started because when the Quarterly Business Review (QBR) meetings aren’t focused on the “Client’s Business Review” but the “MSP’s Business Review” then engagement drops and the relationship gets mired in the technology partnership level. Although it raises a concern about the scalability of the process - as account manager employees seem to have trouble engaging executives with real business discussions - there are best practices that can be applied to empower employees to elevate the conversation.

In this blog we collected five great conversation starters that will generate huge engagement among high-value client business owners and executives. Your growth need not stagnate just because you as a business owner are the only one who can deliver these meetings.

Topics: IT Client Engagement QBR Quarterly Business Review
5 min read

How to get out of your “Client Engagement Debt”

By Denes Purnhauser on Jan 17, 2020

As a Technology Provider, you’ve undoubtedly encountered the symptoms of your clients' "Technology Debt." This is the manifestation of the inherent costs of perpetual support for less-than-optimal technology. This is a drain on both you and the client. Client Engagement Debt is a similar concept that encompasses the implied cost of not having enough quality Account Management, Technical Account Management, vCIO or IT Consulting activities with your clients. This costs you money, erodes trust, loses opportunities and even lowers the value your clients see in your services. Let’s take a look at how much debt you have and how to get rid of it this year.

Topics: vCIO IT Client Engagement QBR Technical Account Manager Quarterly Business Review
Sign up for the Client Engagement Excellence Manifesto PDF coming end of January

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