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Transitioning into the role of trusted advisor can be difficult even to get started. Most MSP leaders are more comfortable discussing technology rather than business. That’s part of the reason we work in IT in the first place. But it’s time to step out of that technology comfort zone.
There must be a way “tech” people can engage in business conversations with non-technical prospects and clients. There is vast opportunity for MSP leaders to leverage their natural business acumen and become trusted advisors, in some specific areas.
One of these often overlooked areas is how to ship or deliver their products and services in a profitable way. Imagine that?! One of the most important yet overlooked aspects of a business is one that defines profitability.
But why is an MSP leader always better here than most of his clients?

If you look at any well-run IT managed services provider, there are plenty of robust, systematized and documented processes in place. Service businesses are built on process management. Service desk, deployment, migration, and communication processes always require tweaking to be stay efficient, and efficiency is vital to a great MSP.

To enhance this process we use tools like PSA, RMM and dashboards full of metrics to quantify health and successful management. If you’re doing this you’re already in the top 1% of MSP leaders.

In all of this you must analyze processes, written process documents, education of your staff and colleagues, and staff metrics and management. Essentially you become a practitioner of business process management.

Most of your clients need that type of knowledge and experience to boost their companies as well. You can use these to kick off the business discussion and show some value in an area that is natural to you.

Now that we know you have the faculty let’s learn how to act as a IT consultant in the conversation. We have a sheet dedicated to “power questions” for this process in our MSP 2.0 Quickstarter Kit.

Try this: setup a meeting with one of your clients and focus on just one business area, using some of the power questions in the Quickstarter Kit. Choose something like sales, operations, logistics or procurement. Ask about their processes and procedures, where they feel they excel and where they struggle. I bet you can find a technology solution related to the latter. Don’t take my word for it, just try it. Have fun.

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