Many people know Len DiCostanzo from his years at Autotask and Datto. Now he’s out on his own, helping IT consultants under the moniker MSP Toolkit.
Len is a huge fan of ITIL (Information Technology Infrastructure Library) and best practices. He’s also dedicated to models that focus on recurring revenue.
I ran into Len at the NexGen Conference and Expo in December. We sat in on each others’ sessions and took notes about each others’ advice. We mostly agree on best practices!
A mainstay of the channel community, Len provides thought leadership and best practice guidance to technology channel vendors, Managed Service Providers (MSPs) and other Business Technology Service Providers (BTSPs). Most recently, Len was SVP of Channel Development at Datto where he focused on helping partners drive recurring revenue with Datto’s cloud-based solution portfolio. Len was with Autotask for a decade prior to Autotask being acquired by Vista Equity Partners for the second time, and merging with Datto in December 2017.
You can find him at MSPToolkit.com – where he helps both vendors and MSPs. He helps MSPs get the right processes and procedures in place. He helps vendors find a broader audience in the MSP space.
Watch the interview:
Len is very well steeped in the ITIL best practices for ITSM (IT Service Management). In this interview, he gives some great guidance about how you approach problems (or are they incidents?) with clients. As you’ll see, Len’s a firm believer that our industry is better off when more of us follow these best practices.
Len has a few introductory offers. Contact him (email is in the video) to find out more about how you can engage him.
January is a great time to catch up With Arlin Sorensen and talk about building a successful managed service business. Arlin has built a few successful companies, including one of the most successful managed service businesses in the U.S.
Now he’s the Vice President of Peer Groups at ConnectWise. Although, as he says, he spends a lot of time helping folks with mergers and acquisitions.
In this interview, we cover a lot of territory, including planning for for M&A, building value in your business, and the habit of working “on” your business by participating in peer groups.
Along the way, Arlin talks about how the ConnectWise peer groups help members deal with leadership inside their companies, building a legacy, and work-life balance. He has some particularly good advice about hiring a service manager and the centrality of that role within a managed service business.
Interview with Arlin:
Arlin always brings information and wisdom to the conversation. Check it out and explore whether peer groups might be right for your organization.
I caught up with my brother Manuel right after the first of the year. He’s got quite a lot going on this year. We talked about the concept of Agile Service Delivery – and the course he offers on the topic.
There’s also a lot of fund stories in this interview. As you can imagine, we have some history together – both personal and work related.
Manuel’s primary web site is www.ManuelPalachuk.com. You will also find his blog there and lots of resources.
In addition to his four decades of work in service industries, Manuel has deep experience in IT generally and managed services particularly. Now he travels, speaks, and coaches IT professionals.
He was my first outsourced employee – at age seven.
This interview has a great description of Agile Service Delivery and where it fits in your managed service business. It’s all about managing the work instead of managing the people. The PSA vendors tend to push a calendar-focused view of the world, which is literally a 250 year old approach to managing work.
Books mentioned: Making Work Visible: Exposing Time Theft to Optimize Work & Flow by Dominica Degrandis.
and The Phoenix Project: A Novel about IT, DevOps, and Helping Your Business Win by Gene Kim.
Erick Simpson is my long-time friend and fellow coach.
My good friend Erick Simpson, formerly the Co-Founder, Senior Vice President, and CIO of SPC International, is now out doing consulting on his own.
This is his first interview in his new role as an IT Business Transformation and Channel Growth Expert. Erick is an author and consultant, a former MSP, a great coach, and one of the pioneers of the Managed Services business model.
In this interview, Erick talks about how he recommends filtering which prospects should become your clients. I love the discussion of how to determine whether a client has a strategic approach to business. Hint: Ask them.
Along the way, we tell a few stories and Erick throws out some good book recommendations (besides his own).
Erick’s new web site is at http://www.ericksimpson.com – and you can sign up for his newsletter there. I did.
Watch the Podcast:
This interview is about 30 minutes long.