13 Signs That You’re Not Cut Out To Be An MSP

By Stuart_R_Crawford
In MSP Coaching
July 30, 2013

Stuart R. Crawford / Stuart Crawford

1. You’re impatient.

Managed Services ProviderPatience is definitely a virtue for MSPs. When it comes to a client’s IT issues, they strike without warning, typically require a good deal of time to resolve, and most clients expect an immediate resolution. Without patience, you’ll give up, lose your mind, pull out all your hair, or all of the above. The need for patience isn’t just for solving a client’s IT issues. Sometimes a business owner or manager will test your patience more than the IT problem. If you can’t be patient with these people, then you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

2. You don’t answer the phone at night.

Most MSPs are on call 24/7/365. Some people think that because they employ help- desk staff and on-call technicians they don’t need to be there for clients during the night. Their lives should completely revolve around their business and their clients, both day and night. If they weren’t willing to sacrifice like this, they wouldn’t be in their current positions. If you turn your phone off at the end of the day, or refuse to answer business calls during night, then you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

3. You go to work at 9am and quit at 5pm.

An MSP business doesn’t operate during bankers’ hours alone. Clients need you after hours, during dinner with your family, on weekends, on holidays and sometimes even in the middle of the night. It will take you away from family gatherings, time with friends, or prevent you from taking some time to relax. If you refuse to allow your work to impose on your personal life, then you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

4. You don’t like people.

The reason you’re in business is to help your clients succeed through better IT. But if you can’t relate to your clients you’ll never completely understand their business needs. Many people think that working on IT means you don’t need to deal with people. Just the opposite, without good people skills you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

5. You give up quickly.

How many times have you had a project that really tested your abilities? Did you give up or did you forge ahead until you solved the problem? If you gave up, you failed; you left a problem unsolved, or you gave up on a client relationship.  This is unforgiveable, and you’ll lose all your clients this way. In this case, you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

6. You’re easily frustrated.

Being an MSP could frustrate even the most unflappable person. Frustrations are a common occurrence for anyone working with IT. It’s when you let your frustrations get the best of you and you reveal frustrations to your client that this becomes a problem. If you can’t keep your feelings of frustration to yourself, then you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

7. You’re unable to multitask.

MSPs typically tackle a handful of problems or issues all at once. Two projects are completed, and three more pop up that need your immediate attention. You don’t have the luxury of handling one issue at a time; you need to juggle projects like a plate spinner, moving effortlessly from one to the next. If you’re unable to multitask you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

8. You hate technology—You hate business management. 

Quite the opposite! To be a capable MSP you must love technology and be a technophoebe. You must also love the technology industry and the challenges and opportunities for innovation that it brings to your business. And that brings us to business. You may love technology but you hate managing a business. Your MSP business should be like a baby you love, and who gets constant attention and feeding. If this isn’t the case, you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

9. You have no desire to keep educating yourself or to learn from others.

You may be at a point in your life where you believe you’ve learning everything you can. As naïve as this sounds, some people do believe this.  But when working in IT it’s impossible, because IT is a moving target and constantly changing. And when you own or run a business, the same goes.  Unless you swim like a shark, keep moving forward and learning, your business will sink.  Learning not only means learning about new IT innovations, but business management, your clients’ culture and information that you learn from your employees, partners and others.  Unless you can do this, you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

10. You can’t function under pressure.

MSPs have many clients who depend on them to keep their business running. And these clients have many employees who depend on a solid and secure IT structure to do their jobs. Depending on the size of your MSP, the livelihood of thousands of people (including your staff) is on your shoulders alone. If you get upset or freeze like a deer in the headlights when seized with pressure, you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

11. You’re not interested or won’t do what it takes to meet new contacts and network with others.

Networking events and creating partnerships are essential to growing your MSP business. You must make sacrifices to grow your business. Many events occur at night, if you’re unwilling to attend early breakfast workshops or evening networking events and you’d rather head home to sit on the couch, you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

12.  If you think sitting back waiting for the phone to ring is an effective sales and marketing strategy.

If you catch yourself saying, “Give me a qualified lead and I can close it.”  You shouldn’t be an MSP.  Being an MSP means evaluating prospects and doing the hard work to build your book of business. If you’re not comfortable on the phone or speaking face-to-face with people you don’t know, you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

13. If you think subscribing to the same website service or marketing coach is the right strategy.

Successful MSPs aren’t robots and they don’t look like or act like everyone else. Successful MSPs stand out from the crowd and own their voice.  They don’t let someone else be their voice. If you’re not like this, you’re not cut out to be an MSP.

Losing your passion about being a managed services provider?  Not sure where your next lead is coming from?  You don’t know what to do next?  Call Ulistic at 716.799.1999 x102.

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