IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

Save Now - Check out the Small Biz Thoughts Technology Community

We think we have the 7-part formula for making 2021 as successful as possible!

I know you have lots of organizations you could join. I belong to most of them.

Please do yourself a favor and consider the Small Bit Thoughts Technology Community.

You'll save $100 right now - and lock in that price for life.

We created the community two years ago with one simple mission: To make YOU as successful as possible. My personal mission is to help IT consultants be better at the business part of their business. Obviously, this is a good fit.

(If you'd rather consume this information in video format, check it out here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qCs2m38ctRk)

We have hundreds of downloads - processes, procedures, audio programs, video training, and every book I've written (plus every new book is automatically added to the community before it's made available to the public). Plus a lot more.

We are an online community of dedicated managed service providers, and IT professionals who want to be managed service providers. We get together online in forums, on Zoom calls, and in classes to help each other to be more successful.

You might be saying, "We're not big enough for that." Or maybe, "We're not small enough for that."

Neither is true! We have members who are just one-, two-, and three-person shops. We also have companies that have 50 and 60 employees. At the end of the day, the things you need to be successful are pretty much the same no matter what size your business is.

Almost every company I have ever coached needed the same things: Processes, procedures, and accountability. That's what we offer in the SBT Technology Community.

Now . . . for today's real topic: 

How to Maximize Success in 2021

We've identified seven things that will help you be successful. 

I believe 2021 is going to be a difficult year. There's no way around that. A lot of us did really well in 2020, because we spent a lot of time helping clients to move out of their offices into their homes, keep it secure, and keep people connected.

A lot of people took that opportunity to move many, many resources up to cloud services, which is awesome. And we helped clients have a very positive experience with all of that that.

We need to continue that into 2021, but we have a different set of challenges. First of all, the economy still has to hit bottom before it can bounce back. The recovery will probably take another three to six months.

At the same time, dealing with the pandemic and the vaccine, we will probably not see significant changes with regard to the pandemic for at least two or three months. And then it'll be a few months after that before things finally get back to normal.

I have no crystal ball, but I'm hoping that by the second half of 2021, things will be pretty much back to whatever normal is, or the so-called new normal, or "next" normal.

No matter what happens, there are challenges to your business that you have to pay attention to. So what can you do to make the most of this situation that you know is going to be difficult? Let's look at seven things to help you make the most of 2021.

First: Training. You have many options for training. You need to you makes sure that your staff is up to spec on new technologies, on new services that you're offering, on new resources that are out there, and on ransomware and fighting the bad guys.

One way that you can get that training is inside our community. So we have a lot of members-only training.

Second: Great Little Seminar. Community members enjoy HUGE discounts over at GreatLittleSeminar.com. Great Little Seminar hosts ten classes a year, and we charge $299 per student. Annual subscribers to our community you get ALL of those classes at no addition charge.

If you join now, you pay $999 for an annual pass and you get $2,990 worth of classes! That's pretty much a no-brainer. Monthly subscribers to the SBT Technology Community still get a huge discount. They receive $200 off each class, for a savings of $2,000 per year. And that's still way more than the cost of membership.

Third: Books. I have written ALL of the best selling books on managed services and cloud services. Plus, I've written lots of other books to help IT consultants to be as successful as possible. When I started the SBT Technology Community, I put ALL of the books inside the community. So, all members get access to all of my books in all formats at no additional charge.

I am also adding in all of my checklists, all of my forms, and all of my SOPs. AND we are developing new members-only content on top of all that. I'm putting every single thing I've ever done into the community. Members get it all for one price.

This is a huge, massive resource. In fact, this is literally a resource that nobody else can offer because these are the materials I've created over the years.

Fourth: Community Forums. We have Forums inside the Community. This is a place for you to bring up questions, talk about challenges you have with other people.

Fifth: It's the people that matter. The other people in the community are people who have your business model. They're in the same industry as you. They have the same challenges. They're looking for the same tools. They're looking for the same resources. They want to talk about those vendors. They want to talk about the experiences with certain technology.

They want to help each other find things like web cameras during the pandemic!

Basically, it's a broad community worldwide that you can rely on to help you as you face challenges going forward.

Sixth: Regular Community Calls. This obviously follows on the people piece. We have a monthly meeting with our community members. In that, we get together and present some information, then have an open forum with Q&A. Any member can bring up anything and we discuss it as a group. 

We also meet weekly on Zoom. During the pandemic, we started doing weekly calls and those have become super popular. So we just continued it.

Kara (our Community Manager) guides us around here and there, but basically, the conversation goes however the community wants it to go. Sometime, there are coaching type questions for me, but most of the time, it's members asking each other questions.

Where are you getting training? What products are you training on? Which vendors are you looking for? Which vendors are you moving away from? All those things that you see, but here's the best part about this community.

Best of all: You know that every one of these people is successful and has committed to their own success by buying a membership in this community. You have probably seen the old cartoon from the 1990's: 

On the Internet, no one knows you're a dog.

Well, on the Internet, you can go to a lot of forums and get advice from a lot of strangers. And you have no idea whether they're super successful or complete failures sitting in their parents' basement. 

In our community, we know who these people are. We know know that they have invested in their business. We know the challenges they're facing because we meet with them week after week after week.

And it really does make a difference to be surrounded with people who are successful and are moving in the direction within your own industry.

Some people say, "I don't want to talk to my competitors." I think that's a silly argument. For more than twenty years, I owned IT consulting companies in Sacramento, California. In all of those years, the only time I ever saw any of my competition was when we got together for a monthly IT professionals meeting.

I just didn't feel like I ever competed against these people. And here's a fun fact: Sometimes I meet people out in the world and they ask me, "Do you know such and such?" And I no, I've never heard of them.

Oh, they say, "They're one of the biggest managed service providers in Sacramento."

Look, Sacramento is not that big, but we just don't compete with each other. We really, really don't.

One of the Absolutely Unbreakable Rules of Service Delivery is that your competition really is irrelevant and you need to know that. The more attention you focus on your competition, the less attention you are focusing on your clients.

So, I recommend that you just completely and absolutely ignore your competition. Other people do not compete for your dollars. There is enough money; there are enough clients in the world that you literally have no competition as long as you're good at what you do.

Focusing on the quality of service that you give and the education level of your employees is far more important than worrying about whether somebody across town is giving $10 off on some service.

And finally, 

Seventh: Kara - Our Community Manager. One of the greatest assets in our community is we have Kara as our full-time community manager.

She monitors when people have questions about stuff. She helps members I find thing. She is constantly monitoring things. AND she's our primary web developer.

When Kara gets an idea, such as gamification, she makes it happen. She's really great at managing the community. She is the first line of support, and she's really fun to work with. She has a very positive personality. We love having her in the community and we think that you will too.

So the best thing that you can do in 2021 is to join the Small Biz Thoughts Technology Community. And here's the important safety tip.

The price goes up January 1st.

We're raising the annual subscription to $1,099 a year, up from $999.

I know it's only one hundred dollars a year, but if you join in 2020, you will lock in the lower price for life. Really. Every member is locked in at the price when the joined.

Note: We are not racing the monthly price, which is only $119. And if you join at that rate, you will also lock in that rate for life. There is a 12 month commitment, of course. But, if you want to make the monthly payments, you can do that and that price will never increase for life.

We do not let folks test-drive the community, BUT you can see everything we have inside. Our community search engine is completely open to the public. If you browse to https://www.smallbizthoughts.org/all-resources/ you can search for books, checklists, client-facing downloads, audio programs, training, live events, SOPs, whitepapers, and more. You'll see the result instantly. 

But, obviously, clicking on a resource will bring a login screen.

Please feel free to visit www.SmallBizThoughts.org and check it out. We would love to have you join us and to help you be a successful as possible in 2021.

:-)

About the Author

Karl W. Palachuk, is a technology consultant, author, speaker, trainer, and coach. He is the author of fifteen books. He has built several successful businesses, including two managed services companies. His books include Managed Services in a Month and The Network Documentation Workbook. Karl is a frequent trainer and speaker in the SMB Community. His popular blog can be found at SmallBizThoughts.com. He has more than twenty years experience as an I.T. professional and serves on advisory panels for several hardware and software companies.

ChannelPro SMB Magazine
SUBSCRIBE FREE!

Get an edge on the competition

With each issue packed full of powerful news, reviews, analysis, and advice targeting IT channel professionals, ChannelPro-SMB will help you cultivate your SMB customers and run your business more profitably.