Polar Plunge, new email security tool, Penn and…Coppedge?

February 3rd, 2020
Polar Plunge, new email security tool, Penn and…Coppedge?

Penn Jillette and Bob CoppedgeFirst month done.  Spent it Polar Plunging (in Santa Barbara), reviewing new legal documents (almost as fun as jumping into the Pacific in January), goal setting (more below), EOS reviewing, finishing up 3rd book, seeing another QCT be successfully implemented.  We started on the biggest realignment of our Service area (headed up by Kevin) in years.  Gary Pica would be proud, muttering “see, Coppedge, I was right” under his breath.  Well, actually I think he’d shout it.

On the surface I don’t think you’d notice much.  Pretty much same stuff going on as before.  But you’d be wrong.  We’ve added two new Level I technicians, first of all.  And we’re really taking our time with their training, which is driving me bonkers (don’t tell anyone I said that).  But you’ll be seeing/hearing from and about them as we move forward.

Our QCT event continues to succeed.  But I really am looking for topics that bring our clients in and really gives them value.  If you’re a client, don’t be surprised if Michelle (Ops Director) reaches out in the next month or so to ask what would make it worthwhile for you to send people here for half a day.  Specific topics?  Better food?  Me out of the building?  Inquiring minds want to know.

We’re having our next CoMITs (Co-Managed IT services) breakfast this month (click here for more).  CoMITs accounts for about half of our new clients, and it’s raised quite a bit of attention in the industry.  I was at a conference in Nashville last week and wasn’t speaking on it but was called on the topic several times by the speaker.

But the breakfast isn’t actually about CoMITs.  It’s about how a person who is responsible for the IT in their company can improve their operations without bringing in outside consultants (even us).  Is there a sales pitch?  Of course there is.  During the last 5 minutes.  Otherwise it’s all about sharing value.  Click here to see more information about that.

At this conference I had a chance to hear Penn Jillette (most commonly referred to as “the guy from Penn&Teller who talks) speak.  Really interesting guy.  I had a chance to talk to him later in the hotel lobby (ridiculously polite and open to conversation) about his views of the performance and development styles of Robin Williams versus George Carlin.  Really insightful stuff.

I was asked to participate in a panel discussion about the future of the MSP (Managed Service Provider) at the Auvik MSP conference (which is how I got to Santa Barbara).  Great little first-time conference put on by our partner (Auvik).  And the panel was sponsored by another partner (Datto).  Sometimes the smaller conferences are the best.  The conversations between the attendees (other MSPs) was a lot more direct and specific.  Less fluff.

That's where the "Polar Plunge" occurred.  And yup, I'm in this video (for about half a second around the minute mark).

On to goals.  For the past couple of years each quarter I put our organizational and departmental “rocks” (goals) up here online, and also how we did in terms of the prior quarter.  Well, after much reflection I decided to stop that practice.  Not that we’re hiding anything (happy to chat), but more I want to double my focus on communicating the goals internally.  We’ve done a reasonably decent job of organizational and departmental goals.  This is thanks in no small part to our coach Kimberly Dyer of Culture Shoc.

But we got a bit stalled in terms of really sharing and drilling the EOS process down to the employees (and back up again).  So my goal (excuse me, “Rock”) is to really focus on that.  Internally.

Again, I’m happy to share what we’re doing (good and bad) if you’re so inclined.

For the first time in years we’re evaluating our contracts and developing full Master Service Agreement and Statement of Work documents for clients.  Ug.

Just a heads up that March will bring our next Cyber Security breakfast.  This will be a great opportunity for you to get an overview of the cyber security without the (IMHO unnecessary) hype.  Believe me, it’s serious out there.  And you are probably more vulnerable than you think.  This event will deal with technical issues without diving into technobabble.  Click here for details.

Let’s say a user wasn’t sure if an email was legitimate or not.  Ya know what would be cool?  If they could click on a button and the computer would give them an idea of how likely it was that the email was evil.  We’re evaluating a couple of solutions and probably going to be introducing something like that for existing clients in the next couple of months.  At no additional charge for many.

More on that next month.