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Preview: Small Biz Thoughts by Karl Palachuk

Small Biz Thoughts by Karl W. Palachuk

A blog for Small Business Consultants and the vendors who serve them. It contains Opinions on business success, News in the SMB consulting space, and Information on what I'm up to.All material Copyright (c) 2006-2017 by Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise n

Updated: 2018-03-15T10:43:18.452-07:00


WorldPay Releases 2018 Point of Sale Channel KPI Survey


I got a memo from my friend Jim Roddy over at WorldPay (Vantiv). They've released a three-part report on their annual 2018 Point of Sale Channel KPI Study. One more installment will be posted next week. Here's what we have so far.Part 1: Resellers report robust sales and profits in 2017, expect stronger 2018 Roddy - WorldPayA few interesting take-aways:23% of respondents saw either flat or declining sales. This was a big improvement from the previous year’s study (37%).  experienced either flat or declining sales. Looking to the year ahead, the number of resellers and ISVs who expect their sales to decline in 2018 disappears almost completely (10% in 2017, less than 1% in 2018). So things are looking up!Part 2: Resellers accelerate pace of recurring revenue transition few interesting take-aways:About 42% of respondents have most mostly or completely to a recurring revenue model. Another 26% describe themselves as about half way there. All of them expect to dramatically increase recurring revenue as a proportion of their revenue in the year ahead.Part 3: Resellers and developers share compensation, benefits data few interesting take-aways:About 77% of POS resellers have very low employee turnover (10% or less), probably due in large part to the benefits they offer. Top benefits are:Two or more weeks paid time off: 77.4%Health insurance: 67.9%Flexible work schedules: 50.9%Dental insurance: 49.1%Vision insurance: 43.4%Less than ten percent of respondents offered no benefits. As Jim points out, you're going to have a tough time finding and keeping good people in this era of low unemployment if you don't offer good salaries and benefits.Webinar on Key Performance IndicatorsWorldPay is hosting a webinar on March 21st - “KPIs of Rich-and-Famous POS VARs and ISVs” - where they'll discuss the study in-depth and answer your questions about the state of the point of sale channel.All webinar attendees will receive their own copy of the complete 2018 POS Channel KPI Study.Register Here for the webinar.. . .and Thanks to Jim for the information.:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

The Unbreakable Rules of PSA - Class Starts March 20th


The Unbreakable Rules of PSA- IT Service Delivery in the 21st CenturyInstructor: Manuel Palachuk- Five Tuesdays - March 20 - April 17, 2018 -- Register Now- All classes start a 9:00 AM PacificYou're guaranteed to learn something that will make or save you the price of admission!Everyone needs a PSA - Professional Services Automation tool. But in addition to simply having a PSA, you need to set it up correctly and use it wisely.In this course, you will learn how to double your value to clients and increase your profit with these powerful golden rules of PSA Service Ticket Systems.Coach Manuel focuses on the direct connection between your service delivery system, the value you give your clients, and your profit, and how to maximize each. He also gives an overview of Agile Service Delivery, an emerging method you must learn to stay competitive.Whether you’re a one-person shop or have fifty employees, to be consistently profitable, you must have guidelines for how to break down the work in an organized fashion and how you will communicate with the client along the way.You don’t have to be an MSP or even use a PSA to work efficiently and be profitable, but you do need a system and a method. These "golden" rules can be the seed for your own system if you have none, or you can adopt them in whole to enrich your existing methods. Either way, this is your opportunity to take your service delivery and your profits to the next level.The course includes a thorough discussion of the unbreakable rules of service tickets as well as covering quality communication with every client. It will be time well spent!Whether you're a new "Computer Consultant" or an experienced Managed Service Provider, you need to create successful processes that will propel your company forward. Nothing is more critical to making profit than having the right processes and procedures in place!Delivered by Manuel Palachuk, author and business coach.Includes five weeks of webinar classes with related handouts, assignments, and "office hours" with the instructor.This course is intended for business owners and managers. It is particularly useful for the Service Manager or Operations Manager.Only $259Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Thoughts on a New Community


So I've been thinking about creating a new online community. Actually, I've been thinking about it for years. But I wanted to make sure that I felt I had enough "stuff" to make it worthwhile.I've always tried to fill a void. So I want to do more than just have a place to distribute information.One of the things the SMB IT Community needs is a place where we can all gather as a community. There was a time when that place was the annual SMB Nation conference. But as the community has grown, that conference has faded and lots of other events have take its place.Now, there's a conference for Robin Robins, a conference for Datto, a conference for ConnectWise, a conference for CompTIA, and lots of smaller conferences. Then there are events for ChannelPro, ASCII, The Channel Company, SMB TechFest, and others.So we have plenty of conferences, in my opinion. BUT different people attend different events. I just attended TechFest, ASCII, and ChannelPro events back to back. All were excellent. And maybe twenty people attended two or three events. Otherwise, there was basically no overlap.We need a place to meet as a community. Yes, there are places online. But there are 100 places to get together on Facebook or LinkedIn. There are ASCII email lists, but that's not the same as an interactive forum. There are forums on Reddit, but mostly not focused on this community.I Use The Term Community because that's the thing we need the most.There are new-ish groups all over the place with people who are just getting into this business. They don't know about the channel. They don't know about managed services. They don't know that there are LOTS of people willing to help them.How could they? If you're just getting into this business, you probably think you're a "computer consultant." How could you know the terms managed service or channel?We need a community to help people who are new to our profession. And, to be honest, part of the role of community is to help show them that this IS a profession and to show them some of the standards.As I travel around, I meet so many great people. Over time, I get to know them. I learn about their families and friends. I can honestly say that some of my best friends are people I met in our community.But I'm afraid the community has become fragmented and will continue to fall apart. We need something where everyone can come together and interact with one another. The goal would be to add something we can't get anywhere else - not replace something that's out there.- - - - -Here's what I'm thinking about.A new online community with three levels. One is free, two are paid.1) Free. Includes all the free stuff I give away, plus an index to everything I've ever produced. So if you want to find something, you can.2) Paid content. Basically, this is everything I've ever produced. AND a commitment to continue posting new stuff month after month.3) All that, plus an interactive community. We'll have forums, special internal-only webinars, community meetings, member-only training, and more.As for the interactive forums . . . My head is exploding with ideas. We can have SIGs (special interest groups) for specialty and vertical technologies, sales, podcasting, tools, and pretty much whatever people are interested in. We could even have a buy-sell-trade board.I really think this would be a great place for a group learning experience. For example, helping people learn to create client-facing videos and marketing material. And once the group went through the learning process together, we could hold competitions for the best products that came out of it.. . .  Anyway . . . I've been thinking about this for years. And I think it's time to decide whether YOU would find it worthwhile. I put together a super quick survey. I would love your feedback on whether we should have just one offering or two or three. And, of course, what you consider to be a reasonable price.Please give your feedback here: you !!!:-)Feed: http:/[...]

What Do You Need to Charge per Hour?


I've seen a number of posts on social media recently that mention hourly tech support rates well below $75/hr. I find that shocking for a competent technician. Of course no one calls themselves out and says, ". . . I'm a total noob and have no idea what I'm doing."When I started my first technology consulting business in 1995 I set my rate at $100/hr. The reason for this was very simple. I thought it was large enough to be taken seriously as a professional.I also thought it would make me a lot of money. After all, billing 40 hours/week at $100 was a very cool $4,000 per week. Times 50 weeks = $200,000! Sign me up! Of course that didn't happen.Lesson One: If you bring $100 worth of value to a job, no one will bat an eye at paying $100/hr for labor.Lesson Two: You never bill 40 hours per week. In fact, you're lucky to bill 20, especially when you start out.Click to EnlargeYou may not charge for travel, so take travel hours out of the possible 40 hours in a week. You certainly don't charge for sales meetings, or for putting together quotes and proposals. So take that out. Meetings, planning, and time spent actually running your own business are all not billable to clients.A really, really good technician working for someone else and doing most work remotely can often be 80% billable. That's 32 hours per week. 65% is much more common. That's 26 hours per week. Managers are frequently in the 40% billable range. Owners who do sales are frequently 20% billable or less.The point is: You cannot bill 40 hours a week. Track it. Be rigorous and honest, and you'll see that you're lucky to hit 50%.Now consider your hourly rate. See the chart.The average income reported in the U.S. is about $75,000 per year. The green blocks add up to about $75-99,999 per year. As you can see, there are two simple ways to get yourself in a green cell: Bill more hours or charge more per hour.Plot the number of hours your realistically bill in a week. If you're starting out and you're a sole proprietor, you are probably billing 20 hours or less. As you can see, you'll never reach $75K charging $50 or $60 per hour.If you're charging less tha $75/hr, I want you spend a lot of time staring at these numbers and being honest with yourself. What do you really, really charge? How many hours do you really bill?If you use QuickBooks, I encourage you to invoice every hour - even if it's free. You don't have to send zero-dollar invoices to clients, but it's pretty good P.R. if you do. But I want you to do this for yourself: Invoice every single hour. At whatever rate. If you give hours away, write that down as well. QuickBooks will allow you to enter five hours at zero dollars.When you do this, you'll be able to run report / Sales by Item / Detail (or summary) and see exactly how many hours you invoiced, and the total income. Let's say you work 50 hours per week. You bill 25 at $75/hr. And you don't send bills for another 25 hours at $0/hr. Your effective billing rate is $37.50/hr.But again, I bet you're not billing that. In fact, many people tell themselves they're doing great - until they run the actual numbers. It's much more likely that you have an occasional great job and a lot of weeks very really bad numbers.The market is excellent for technicians and everyone in I.T. Services. Be honest: If you can't earn more than $100,000 in taxable income on your 1040 income form, STOP playing around in this industry and go get a job.When you're ready to commit to a career as an individual consultant, you need to do a few things. First, charge enough to be taken seriously. Second, get yourself enough of an education to be worth at least $100/hr.I welcome all the new people joining this industry. But please know that there are lots of people who have a lot of experience and charge more like $150-175/hr. Make yourself worth that, and charge those rates.It's a lot easier than trying to squeeze out impossible hours at almost-impossible rates.- - - - -BTW the other colored cells are as follows:&[...]

Five Week LIVE Cloud 5-Pack Formula Training Starts Thursday


In 2017 I literally traveled the world teaching my Cloud Strategies in dozens of cities across Europe, North America, and Australia. That was a wonderful experience. But I can reach more people over the Internet than I can in person.So I got together with Mark Smith over at EH Media (parent company to ChannelPro Network) to put together my successful cloud training in a five-week live class. We have about 30 people signed up already - and we'd love to have you join us.A couple weeks ago we held a live webinar to talk about cloud strategies. It went one hour and fifty-four minutes.  Mark and I answered answered 85 questions during the webinar. You can view the replay here: How I Built a 7-Figure Business Using the Cloud 5 Formula.In case you missed it, we put the Q and A from those 85 questions into a Google doc. You can read it here:Q and A from the Cloud 5 WorkshopThe document is 22-pages long from one Q and A session!- - - - -Now, here's what you can do right now:Sign up for my new, live, 5-Week course:Making Money with the Cloud 5-Pack Formula!Sign up now and get a bunch of great free bonuses! (see that page)Class starts Thursday March 1st at 2pm EST. Sign Up NowYou can sign up here: course is designed to walk you through the exact process I used to build his 7-Figure MSP business selling Cloud Services, including:What cloud services to bundle togetherWhere to buy them for maximum efficiency and marginHow to price and package them How to deliver them efficiently using your RMMHow to market and sell them And all the step-by-step checklists you need to build a successful cloud services businessOne huge thing we learned from doing the webinar is that you have lots of questions! I will leave lots of time for questions in every class.If you have questions, please contact me - soon.All classes are recorded, so you can sign up after Thursday. But obviously, if you want to participate in live questions, you need to attend live.Thank you as always for your support.:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Jennifer Fields, Elizabeth Vanover, and Richard Tubb join the SMB Roadshow


I am happy to announce some very special guest speakers on the SMB Roadshow. NOTE before you get the wrong impression. There will be ZERO selling at the SMB Roadshows. You are paying for education that change your business for the better. You are not paying to sit through sales pitches.More info at's the roundup:Dallas, TX – March 6th - in conjunction with ChannelPro SMB Forum– Sign Up NowPhoenix, AZ – March 9th - Special Guest Elizabeth Vanover from Executive Marketing Collective– Sign Up NowCharleston, SC – March 23rd - Special Guests Jennifer Fields and Elizabeth Vanover from Executive Marketing Collective– Sign Up NowNew Orleans, LA – April 5th - Special Guest Richard Tubb from– Sign Up NowHonolulu, HI – April 24th - Special Guest  Jennifer Fields from Executive Marketing Collective– Sign Up NowMaui, HI – April 26th - Special Guest  Jennifer Fields from Executive Marketing Collective– Sign Up NowBaltimore, MD – May 7th - in conjunction with ChannelPro SMB Forum– Sign Up NowDenver, CO – May 11th - Special Guest  Elizabeth Vanover from Executive Marketing Collective– Sign Up NowAbout These Folks . . .Photo by Joshua LibermanJennifer Fields and Elizabeth Vanover have each been helping Managed Service Providers implement marketing campaigns for more than five years. In late 2017 they joined forces and founded the Executive Marketing Collective (EMC).For more information on EMC, see my interview with Jennifer and Elizabeth on the SMB Community Podcast.EMC focuses on a very cool perspective to marketing: Helping you to position yourself as an expert in your field. In addition to that, they offer a full set of services.Richard Tubb is a long time coach from the UK who just happens to be available in early April, so I begged him to join me and he agreed. Richard and I also have a segment on the Frankly MSP podcast called What's Going On.Richard also has an excellent blog at You'll find a link to Richard's blog in the blog roll on the right side of my blog.I've been very lucky to visit Richard in the UK several times over the last few years. And I'm grateful to him for joining me here in the States!As you can see, The SMB Roadshow for 2018 has some amazing content. Please join us!I just finished polishing my first slide deck for the roadshow and have more that a dozen slides that will EACH save your or make you enough money to pay for the cost of admission.Sign up today at All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Join Me at the Phoenix AZ SMB User Group - March 8th


As long as I'm in town for the SMB Roadshow in Phoenix . . . I'm speaking to the AZ SMB User Group.Topic: Checklists Will Save Your BusinessYou can find out more on the group's Meetup site:, March 8, 20186:00 PM to 9:00 PMOriginal Garcia's Las Avenidas2212 North 35th Avenue · Phoenix, AZBefore Six o'clock look in the bar areaAfter six we will be in one of the meeting rooms.BTW - here's a picture from NASA that I'll show in my presentation.That's a checklist on the arm of an Apollo astronaut. You need a checklist when you go to the moon . . . because it would suck to go 30,000 miles and forget to do one of the experiments!If you're anywhere near Phoenix, plan to join us. Check out that site for further information.:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Hear Ye, Hear Ye. Attend the Live Community Meeting - February 26th


PLEASE mark your calendar for a very different kind of public meeting for MSPs, CSPs, VARs, resellers, computer consultants, and everyone else in the SMB/IT and managed services communities:Hear Ye, Hear Ye!Live Community Meeting (online)February 26th1 PM Pacific4 PM Eastern9 PM GMT8 AM the next day AEDT. . . . .I can already hear you askingWhat's Up?I am trying something new. To my knowledge, this hasn't been done in our community before.I've set up a meeting that will take up to 100 participants. That means up to 100 people can be logged in at the same time - AND join the conversation.Believe me: I'm quite prepared for there to be a bit of chaos! Everyone could be connected with audio AND Video. So wear your nice clothes and mute your microphone when we start.Here's what I'm doing . . .This is intended to be an open discussion about what you need. I want to talk about a possible new, interactive venture in the SMB IT and Managed Service community. BUT I promise there will be no sales pitch.Over the last dozen years, I've been lucky enough to come up with products and services that you need and want. Lots of it is available for free. Lots of is sells for a price. But I can't read your minds!I want an open discussion about what works and what doesn't work in our community.I want to talk to you about a new project I'm scheming up and see how you think it should evolve. Setting my ego aside, I'm also prepared for the attendees to say it's the stupidest thing they've ever heard.Who knows. This Community Meeting might work. Or it might bomb. But let's give it a try.Specifics:No registration is required. That means you don't enter your email. You just show up and get in. Zero barrier to entry. That also means, you won't get reminder emails.Absolutely Free. No selling allowed. I promise.Meeting InfoTopic: Karl's Community MeetingTime: Feb 26, 2018 1:00 PM Pacific TimeUPDATE: View the recorded meeting here.Guidelines:You will be muted when you join. Please unmute yourself whenever you wish. But please stay muted if you are just listening. This could go wrong a hundred ways.Be patient and respectful. I've never done this before and I'll be learning along with everyone else. Let's not all talk at once.Limited to 100 Participants. If we get more than that, I don't know what you will experience. My guess is, keep trying in case someone drops off.Enter your name in Zoom. It could be your whole name, your first name, or just a handle you want us to use. I can't call on you if everyone comes in as anonymous.This is a video call. Please use a camera if you have one. The screen will show 25 people at a time. In the upper right hand corner, select Gallery view to see everyone. If you select speaker view, the system will show you whoever is speaking at any given moment.Note: I am going to talk for 5-10 minutes about my proposed project. I would love your feedback. But if you have other agenda items, we will try to get to you . . . and everyone else.- - - - -Please share this announcement with your groups on social media, forums, etc. I would love to jam the phone lines with 100 people.Put this in your calendar and paste this "join" link into the appointment so you don't have to look is up:UPDATE: View the recorded meeting here.I hope to see you at the Community Meeting!:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

This Year's Roadshow vs. Last Year's Roadshow


So . . . I created some confusion. Let me clarify . . .Right now I'm promoting two very different things. But both include the word cloud, so there's some confusion.Thing One: 2018 SMB RoadshowThe 2018 SMB Roadshow is a 3-hour intensive workshop on the most important things you need to know today to sell Managed Services and Cloud Services. Hence, the Killer Combo.See – Details Registration 12:30 PM – Seminar starts at 1:00 PMTopic 1: The Absolutely Unbreakable Rules for a Successful IT ConsultantDeep dive into the 25 absolutely unbreakable rules of running a successful technology consulting businessDetailed examples with extra handouts, checklists, and examplesTopic 2: Cloud Services – 2018Overview of cloud services todaySimplifying your offering – and making it more compellingNew clients versus existing clientsTopic 3: The Killer Combo – Managed Services and Cloud ServicesManaged Services are Great; Cloud Services are Great; Together they guarantee extreme profitabilityNew bundles examples and price listsPricing strategies for the new era of MS + CS… Followed by BeerFest 2018Tickets now on sale at $199 for all cities.- - - - -Thing Two: The 5-Week Cloud 5-Pack Training(How I Sold Millions of Dollars Worth of Cloud Services)This is an updated and repackaged version of the 2017 Roadshow training on how to design, sell, implement, and manage an extremely profitable cloud service offering.This 5-week course includes LOTS of downloads, checklists, and supplemental materials AND several bonuses.This free webinar explains it all: (How I Built a 7-Figure MSP Using the Cloud 5 Pack Formula)ThursdayFebruary 15th11 AM PST / 2 PM ESTSign Up NowI am very proud to be working with ChannelPro Network to offer a brand new workshop based on my Cloud 5-Pack Offering.The syllabus looks like this:Week One – Setting the Stage for Cloud Services in Small Business·         What is (are) cloud services?·         What is not the cloud?·         Where cloud fits in the history of computing·         Where is the opportunity?·         Attitudes and mind change·         The future of your business·         The 800 Pound Gorillas: Microsoft, Amazon, and GoogleWeek Two – Introducing the Cloud Five-Pack·         The Core Technology you can sell to every client·         Begin with fresh eyes·         What goes in the box?·         How much is the box?·         Your offering – version one·         Server Lite·         Cost of Goods Sold (COGS)·         The evolution of your cloud offeringWeek Three – Implementation, Sales, and Variations·         Cloud “readiness” procedures and checklists·         Quoting the cloud migration project·         Managing the cloud migration project·         Staying Inside the Scope / Staying Profitable·         Walk Through: Cloud Migration Plans (per client)·         Deeper client relationships (Example New Employee Orientation)Week Four - Cloud Migration Strategies and Procedur[...]

Free Webinar - Learn the Cloud 5 Pack Offering - Thursday


Free Webinar - Learn the Cloud 5 Pack Offering - ThursdaySubject: How I Sold Millions of Dollars Worth of Cloud Services(How I Built a 7-Figure MSP Using the Cloud 5 Pack Formula)ThursdayFebruary 15th11 AM PST / 2 PM ESTSign Up NowI am very proud to be working with ChannelPro Network to offer a brand new workshop based on my Cloud 5-Pack Offering.Last year, as some of you know, I traveled the world, teaching IT Service providers how to create a 7-Figure Managed Service business using the Cloud 5-Pack formula.Notes:1. If you attended last year's Roadshow, then you have 95% of this information. No need to attend. (But please tell your friends about it.)2. If you missed last year's Roadshow, PLEASE do yourself a favor and attend this webinar.I will lay out a program that could literally become your business model for the next five years. And best of all, this program will pay for itself with the FIRST client you sign up!You can sign up here: You Will Learn In This Online WorkshopCloud 5 Bundling: How to create a profitable bundle of cloud services that will give you a competitive advantage and delivers tremendous value to your customers.Cloud 5 Pricing: How to price your offer to achieve a 73% or more margin.Cloud 5 Delivery: How you can setup your business so that it can be supported by an admin, freeing you up to work on your business instead of in your business.Cloud5 Marketing: How to get your ideal prospects to sign up to meet with you and close them quickly.So, sign up today at: - - - -Hundreds of people attended my Cloud Roadshows last year. But millions missed out. Here's what one attendee says about the Cloud 5-Pack seminar: allowfullscreen="" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="" frameborder="0" height="266" src="" width="320">Ken Shafer - Portland, ORFeed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

My Social Media Tools


In the last two weeks I've posted two videos highlighting the tools I use to "broadcast" to social media. I thought I'd highlight them here for those of you who have not yet subscribed to my YouTube Channel.These tools address the great challenge with social media:Most of the time, most of the people aren't paying any attention to what you do!The first tool is called Symphony. This used to be called Networked Blogs. You log in to Symphony via Facebook. Then you register your blog(s) with Symphony.Once you prove that you own the blog, you can set up Symphony to automatically promoted your blog onto all of your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.Now, whenever you post something on a blog, it will automatically appear on the social media sites you've selected. For example, this blog is automatically posted on my personal and business pages on Facebook as well as Twitter and LinkedIn.Here's the Symphony video: width="320" height="266" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>The second tool is HootSuite. HootSuite is one of the old tools for managing all your social media in one location. You can use it to view your profiles on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram. But I rarely use it for that.I love Hootsuite because it allows me to post one message simultaneously across all the social media. My administrative assistant logs in regularly and schedules "re-broadcast" teases for my content. These are scheduled in advance.Here's the Hootsuite video: width="320" height="266" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>So here's the overall schedule of how my social media presence is broadcast.Day 1: Karl posts a blog or video-- Symphony re-posts this content to my social media accounts almost immediately.About 8 days later: Crystal schedules a re-posting teaser via Hootsuite to all social media accounts.. . . and this is repeated every eight day until each post has been re-posted twelve times.- - - - -I hope you can see why I look confused when people say things like, "Are you doing a roadshow this year?" I re-post and re-broadcast my content for three months and still no one sees it.Remember:Most of the time, most of the people aren't paying any attention to what you do!:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

SMB Roadshow Teams Up with ChannelPro SMB Forum


We are proud to announce that we will be holding some SMB Roadshow events in conjunction with the ChannelPro SMB Forums this Spring. More information at or did a quick interview with Michael Siggins, Founder and Publisher of ChannelPro Magazine. Please watch: width="320" height="266" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="" src="" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen>Details and additional information at more and sign up today!:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

New Online Course - Financial Processes for the IT Services Firm - Starts February 13th


Next Big 5-week course features the always-popular Rayanne Buchianico:Financial Processes for the I.T. Services FirmTaught by Rayanne Buchianico, Author and Coach- Five Tuesdays - February 13 - March 13, 2018 - Register Now- All classes start a 9:00 AM Pacific- All Classes recordedThere are few things more important than the finances of your business. But most technology consultants didn't get into business to run balance sheets or figure out cash flow.This class provides unique content from a unique teacher! Rayanne is a managed service provider from Tampa, FL. She is also an accountant and an Intuit certified ProAdvisor. In addition to her MSP business, Rayanne helps I.T. consultants to take control of their finances and understand their own business at a deeper level.Topics for this class include:Learn to read and understand your Balance Sheet and P&L StatementsCreate a chart of accounts that makes sense for your businessSeparating out information on the P&L for management decisionsEntities and tax considerations - understanding how your entity is taxed. Handout is a tax projection worksheet for 2017 taxesCash flow forecasting - Handout is a cash flow projection spreadsheet to forecast revenues and expensesUnderstanding margins and ratios - Deep dive into the P&L and Balance Sheet to understand how the numbers work together to make decisions. Handout is a worksheet on calculating and understanding the ratios & margins.Use margins to price your services for profitCalculate billing and burden ratesAction plans for success. . . and More!Delivered by Raynne Buchianico, Financial Coach and QuickBooks Advisor. Rayanne has been an MSP - managed service provider - for many years and advises MSPs on how to get the most out of their QuickBooks and PSA integrations.Includes five weeks of webinar classes with related handouts, assignments, and "office hours" with the instructor.This course is intended for business owners and managers. It is particularly useful for the Owner or Operations Manager.Only $259(A GREAT deal for five hours of education, plus LOTS or handouts!)Check out all of our online courses at All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

SMB Roadshow - Agenda and Details Announced


Woot!Thank You to the folks who already signed up for the big SMB Roadshow 2018.As I work through developing all new material for this roadshow, I am getting very excited. I just finished updating the Agenda and Details page over at let me know if you have any questions.Deets:- - - - -The Killer Combo:Cloud Services and Managed ServicesAgenda – Details– Registration 12:30 PM– Seminar starts at 1:00 PMTopic 1: The Absolutely Unbreakable Rules for a Successful IT ConsultantDeep dive into the 25 absolutely unbreakable rules of running a successful technology consulting businessDetailed examples with extra handouts, checklists, and examples Topic 2: Cloud Services – 2018 Overview of cloud services todaySimplifying your offering – and making it more compellingNew clients versus existing clientsTopic 3: The Killer Combo – Managed Services and Cloud Services Managed Services are Great; Cloud Services are Great; Together they guarantee extreme profitabilityNew bundles examples and price listsPricing strategies for the new era of MS + CS… Followed by BeerFest 2018!Seminar Objectives This is a workshop – which means you will leave with some real-world goals, and the tools to implement them. The bottom line is always: We guarantee you’ll learn tips and best practices that will pay for this seminar! As always, my handouts, checklists, and worksheets will save you many hours labor. First tip: If it takes you more than two hours to pay for this seminar – you’re not charging enough! Many IT consultants use the term “managed services” but really just provide the same service they’ve always provided. Learn why that’s far less profitable than it should be! Here’s what you’ll learn 25 Absolutely Unbreakable Rules for IT Service DeliveryI managed dozens of technicians at a time before starting my own consulting business. Find out what that taught me.I was Site Manager for PC Software Support at HP’s Roseville, CA plant – managing 25 technicians and responsible for 7,000 computers on 5,000 desktops. Find out what that taught me.I have built and sold two successful managed service businesses. Find out what that taught me.Best practices for delivering service todayGetting the right clientsGetting the right toolsCreating awesome Standard Operating ProceduresWhy you have to have a holistic approach to managing your consulting businessWhy you can’t pick and choose best practicesBranding, hiring, training, service delivery, and getting paid: Four sides to the same objectiveThe bottom line: This is NOT a motivational, rah-rah-rah, “You can do it” presentation. This is a no-BS business improvement seminar. You will leave with the tools (worksheets/checklists) to refresh your business model and a thorough understanding of how all of this fits together to make you more successful. Target Audience This all-day seminar is intended for any IT service provider who wants to stay up to date with the latest tools and techniques. Whether you make money on Break/Fix, Managed Services, or Cloud Services, this event will help you build a profitable business for years to come. Money Back GuaranteeYou need to make or save two hours of labor in order for this seminar to pay for itself. * “Between the best practices and the labor-saving handouts, I guarantee this seminar will pay for itself.” – Karl W. Palachuk If you implement five or more best practices, checklists, or worksheets from this seminar and do not make or save the price of admission within six months, send us a note. We will send you a full refund. * Note: If you cannot pay for this seminar with two hours labor, you need to raise your rates. Just sayin.:-)Feed: http://feeds.feed[...]

SMB Roadshow 2018 - The Killer Combo: Managed Services Plus Cloud Services


Tickets Now On Sale- Buy now and save!I'm still working on the web site, but tickets are now available for the 2018 SMB Roadshow. Our theme this year is The Killer Combo: Managed Services Plus Cloud Services.We start with a discussion of the 25 absolutely unbreakable rules of delivering perfect managed service. After that, we discuss the modern state of cloud services in the small business space. And of course we finish off bringing it all together as profitably as possible.More information at!Here's the invitation video: Your Registration includes a recording of the entire workshop and (as always)LOTS of Handouts and Checklists — at no additional cost!Here are the cities we've booked so far:Dallas, TX – March 6thPhoenix, AZ – March 9thCharleston, SC – March 23rdNew Orleans, LA – April 5thHonolulu, HI – April 24thMaui, HI – April 26thDenver, CO – May 11thRegistrationOnsite registration is only $259 - a great bargain!But if you pre-register, your price is only $199 for the first attendee and $149 for additional attendees!Sign up today and save!AgendaRegistration 12:30 PM – Seminar starts at 1:00 PMTopic 1:The Absolutely Unbreakable Rules for a Successful IT ConsultantTopic 2: Cloud Services – 2018Topic 3: The Killer Combo – Managed Services and Cloud Services- - - - -More details will be posted on the SMB Roadshow web site. We have already had several people sign up in four cities! More to come, I am sure.Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

New Class - Service Agreements for SMB Consultants - starts January 31st


All About Service Agreements for I.T. Consultants(Service Agreements for SMB Consultants: Applying the Book!)- Five Wednesdays - January 31 - February 28, 2018 -- Register Now- All classes start a 9:00 AM Pacific AND 4:00 PM PacificGREAT afternoon time slot added. It's morning in Australia and New Zealand - and evening on the U.S. East Coast as wellBased on the best-selling book Service Agreements for SMB Consultants, this course covers everything you need to know about developing your service agreements. And the book subtitle is important, too: A Quick Start Guide to Managed Services.Most I.T. Professionals sign - or don't sign - contracts for the wrong reasons. Most think contracts are intended to draw battle lines for when you have a disagreement with your clients. In fact, that piece of the relationship is almost always outside the contract! We'll explore why you really need contracts or service agreements.We'll also look at various options, icluding a 2-page "terms of service" as well as managed services, programming agreements, and more.Tuition for this course includes the ebook version of the newly revised and expanded Service Agreements for SMB Consutants!That includes all the downloads from the book as well. YES - You get all the contracts and amendments!You will learnDefining Yourself and Your RelationshipsDefine YourselfDefine Client RelationshipsThe Language of Service AgreementsThe Service Agreement Construction KitA Sample Credit AgreementBoilerplate: A Sample Service AgreementFlat Fee or Managed Services PartsThe Managed Service AgreementGetting Help and Managing AgreementsGetting Help - Lawyers, Accountants, etc.Managing Your Service AgreementsPLUS lots more. This class is filled with great advice and tips on running your I.T. company and moving into the world of recurring revenue with managed services.Delivered by Karl W. Palachuk, blogger and author of the very popular "SOP Friday" posts at five weeks of webinars with related handouts, assignments, and "office hours" with the instructor. All classes are recorded for download.This course is intended for business owners and managers. It is particularly useful for the Service Manager or Operations Manager.Only $259A Few Details . . .Each course will be five one-hour webinarsThere will be handouts and "homework" assignmentsIf you wish to receive feedback on your assignments, there will be instructor office hoursClass webinars will be recorded and made available to paid attendees only.All calls start at 9:00 AM Pacific Time and again 4:00 PM Pacific TimeFeed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Managed Services in a Month - Now on Amazon


At last! Amazon has found the newest version of Managed Services in a Month!They haven't put a graphic to it yet. But they will. We have no control over how they list or price our books.And the saddest part is . . .Book reviews do not carry forward from previous non-fiction editions!That means I have zero reviews. Will you please do me a favor? If you have anything positive to say about Managed Services in a Month, please post a quick review here: same goes for the Kindle Edition, here: you!Notice the Kindle edition is linked on Amazon and has the front page graphic. I have no explanation. :-)- - - - -And if you have nothing positive to say, please click below and enjoy these cute and humorous animal videos: allowfullscreen="" class="YOUTUBE-iframe-video" data-thumbnail-src="" frameborder="0" height="266" src="" width="320">:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Replay Posted: 2018 State of the Nation Address for SMB IT


I just posted the recording of my webinar from a few days ago -The 9th Annual State of the Nation Address for SMB ITIn addition to discussing a bit about where our industry went in 2017 and where I think it's going in 2018, I spend over half of this webinar talking about right-sizing your company in the modern world.AnnouncementsAmong the announcements in this webinar are:SMB Roadshow 2018 DatesJoin me at four ChannelPro events15 classes at Great Little SeminarJoin me at four SMB TechFestsNew book teaseManaged Services in a Month Peer Teams(See blog post on that)The Myth of Expansion:Many business owners have bought into the myth that you have to grow all the time - doubling the number of clients; doubling the revenue; doubling the employees; etc.It doesn't have to be that way. You can grow with intention. With some thought, you should be able to figure out the "right" size for your business. That might be one person, two people, five people, or fifty people.Whatever it is, the size and make-up of your company should be your intentional decision. Once you know what you want to do, and how big you want to grow, you can begin moving in that direction. And if you don't want to focus on doubling and doubling forever, you don't have to.There are many ways to make money today without growing X% per year. You can reduce costs all the time. You can outsource tasks. You can replace your smallest client with your new largest client. And so forth.Obviously, there's lots more juicy information in the 75 minute presentation. Check it out! allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560"> As always: I appreciate all your support and look forward to an amazing New Year!:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Webinar - Managed Services in a Month Peer Teams


This morning, on my 9th Annual State of the Nation address for small business IT, we announced the formation of Managed Services in a Month Peer Teams - in association with Bering McKinley.What are "Managed Services in a Month" Branded Peer Teams? Basically, these are peer groups focused around the ideas and strategies outlined in the 3rd edition of Managed Services in a Month (MSIAM) - and in my other writings on processes and procedures.The idea is to start with MSIAM as a framework for improving your business.Questions? Of course!Join Josh Peterson and me on Wednesday, January 17th for a live webinar. We'll explain the whole concept, introduce pricing, and answer all your questions. Register Here.-- This event was recorded. Recording is here: information also available at Bering McKinley.Bering McKinley is a Management Consulting firm specializing in IT Solution Providers. They have over ten years experience in consulting owners and staff of IT Firms. They proudly provide Blue Chip consulting to small business. Since they only focus on one industry, they have in-depth expertise in all three business units: Sales, Service, and Finance.Josh Peterson has more than 14 years of management consulting experience.  He has run Bering McKinley for five years, focusing very heavily on the most important challenges facing managed service providers.Josh is also very active as a Peer Team leader. Bering McKinley Peer Teams focus on accountability and constant improvement. He has helped over a thousand companies move to a higher level of success.. . . Now he's bringing all that focus on success to the Managed Services in a Month Peer Teams.This morning I also posted a 30 minute interview with Josh over at You can check out the podcast there or just watch the video here.Watch this video to learn more right now: allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="" width="560">Then register for the live webinar January 17th - where we'll answer all your questions.Or just Join a MSIAM Peer Team right now!!!See you then.:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Save Big with "Karl777" Discount for Bering McKinley Sales and Service Retreat in Las Vegas!


A while back I blogged about Bering McKinley's big Sales and Service retreat.Well, they've set up a discount just for folks who read this blog.Enter the code Karl777 at registration and receive $100 discount off the already great price for this seminar. FREE Two Nights Stay at LINQ® Las Vegas* + 5 Jam-Packed Sessions in Sales, Service, Finance, and Culture + Parties + Lunches and MORE!Las VegasFebruary 5-6, 2018 REGISTER NOW This event delivers a jam-packed agenda across two and a half days with 5 breakout sessions led by industry experts and unparalleled networking opportunities starting on Sunday’s Superbowl kick-off and extending through Tuesday afternoon’s farewell wrap-up.Excel your business acumen by attending our five critical pillars for growing your business.Superbowl party, hotel rooms, High Roller happy hour and daily lunch are all included in the registration fee (while supplies last). Take advantage of this opportunity to learn, network and up your business game in 2018. 2018 ‘BIG GAME’ KICK-OFF PARTY Let’s start this retreat on the right foot with our 3rd Annual BIG GAME at THE VEGAS SPORTS BOOK IN THE LINQ® . We will be taking bets to see which team will win. We will have complimentary specialty drinks, prizes and more! GROUP FINANCIAL ANALYSIS Presenter: Josh Peterson, Bering McKinley We’ll be training you on the 14 Key Financial Metrics. You don’t need 100’s of crazy micro detailed numbers. You need the fundamentals and you need to know the benchmarks. Oh, by the way, these are THE ONLY NUMBERS IN THE INDUSTRY you can trust. They are pulled right from your Quickbooks. No easily manipulated spreadsheets to skew the results.  Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Join me live at SMB Techfest January 18th


Join me live at SMB Techfest in Anaheim!Get in free - visit Be my VIP guest and see me live at SMB TechFest.  SMB TechFest Q1 is coming up on Jan 18th.  See me present along with other industry experts in sessions to grow your business.  Also engage in the IT Mixer, Expo Hall, and prizes included in this exclusive no-cost VIP pass for you.  You can attend onsite in Anaheim, CA or online from anywhere worldwide via the live video broadcast.  In-person allows you to network better so join me live.  I have a limited number of complimentary VIP passes and they're first come first serve.  VIP SignupLimited free passes so register nowSMB TechFest Highlights Watch the 2 minute videoOur Lineup Focused to Kick-Off 2018      ·         Marketing Guru Kendra Lee·         Sales Expert Gil Cargill·         Power Talks·         Business Coach Manuel Palachuk·         Security·         Partner Panels·         2018 Platform Tools for Operations Rated a Top 50 Channel Conference·         Expand your solutions at the Expo Hall·         Network with 250+ partners and Technical Professionals·         Win Prizes·         Hosted Bar and appetizers·         Exotic Car.  Raffle.  130+ mph experience.·         Parking Included·         Includes breakfast, lunch and more·         Great for Partners & IT Pros of all industry focus·         Always a high-value packed agendaOne DayThursday Jan 18, 20188:00am - 6:00pmSessions, Expo Hall & Large Social Mixer Onsite in Sunny CaliforniaEXPO CENTER1960 S. Anaheim Way Anaheim, CA U.S. Wide & InternationalRemote Live Video StreamAll Sessions See you at the Event! :-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Revised Class - Managed Services in a Month - Starts January 9th


Managed Services in a Month - Applying the Book - Newly Revised for 2017Instructor: Karl W. Palachuk- Five Tuesdays - January 9 - February 6, 2018 - Register Now- All classes start a 9:00 AM Pacific AND repeated live at 4:00 PM PacificGREAT for people in Sydney or those who want an evening class on the East CoastYou're guaranteed to learn something that will make or save you the price of admission!This course will cover the process outlined in the book - to build your managed service practice in a month. In this case, five weeks. :-)Managed Services in a Month is the best-selling guide to turning your "computer consulting" business into a recurring revenue machine!This course is designed to walk you through the process outlined in the book. AND your registration includes a free copy of the book in the format of your choice.Updated Information on Tools, Cloud Services, Per-User Pricing, Creating Bundles, and MORE!For more information on the book, see's not too late! YOU can get into Managed Services -- in a month.Even if you decide not to become an MSP (managed service provider), this course will help you establish some great best practices when it comes to running your I.T. business.Whether you're a new "Computer Consultant" or an experienced Managed Service Provider, you need to create successful processes that will propel your company forward. Nothing is more critical to making profit than having the right processes and procedures in place!You will learnComputer Consulting in the 21st CenturyWhat’s Different About Technology Consulting Today?Cloud Computing in the Small Business SpaceThe Managed Service ModelNew Consulting Business vs. Existing BusinessManaged Services in a MonthIntegrating Cloud ServicesMaking A PlanStarting Fresh with No Clients to ConvertCreate A Three-Tiered Pricing StructureBundling ServicesPer-User vs. Per-Device Pricing ModelsPutting Your (New) Business TogetherWeed Your Client Garden and Finish The PlanWrite a Service Agreement; Have It ReviewedOvercoming ObjectionsDesktops and Managed ServiceExecuting the PlanClient Sit-DownsAfter The SaleKey Points to Remember for ProfitRunning Your New MSP BusinessThe Right Tools for the JobYour Standard Offerings (Your Catalog of Services)Building an Action Plan that worksand MORE!Delivered by Karl W. Palachuk, blogger and author of the very popular "SOP Friday" posts at five weeks of webinar classes with related handouts, assignments, and "office hours" with the instructor.This course is intended for business owners and managers. It is particularly useful for the Service Manager or Operations Manager.Only $259Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Network Documentation: Start Somewhere


I can't count how many conversations I've had over the years about how to "get started" with network documentation. The truth is, everyone in this business has already started. That's not the challenge.The challenge is to create a system that's scalable!If you think you're at the stage where you don't have a system, that just means you're really at the stage where you need to start taking stock. Where you keep track of domain name registrations? Server IP addresses? Passwords? Client usernames and passwords for Microsoft licenses? Network maps? DNS configurations? etc.If you have more than a couple of clients, you simply can't keep all that stuff in your head. So where is it?There are three fundamental approaches to documentation that work:1) Index where everything is kept2) Create a tiered storage system3) Keep everything in one placeNo matter what people have tried, #3 is simply impossible. But it's still a legitimate goal because you CAN manage to get MOST documentation in one place. Generally, that place is either going to be a storage area (Server "X" drive, ShareFile, OneDrive, DropBox, JungleDisk, Achor drive, Datto drive, etc.) or a software package (IT Glue, Docusnap, Confluence, OneNote, PassPortal MSP, SharePoint, etc.). Some people even attempt this with their PSA or RMM tools.If you can get most of your most important documentation in one place, then you just need to know how to access the rest of the documentation as needed. Some might be stored on individual client servers or or storage arrays. Some might be in various tools (e.g., You might store most network-wide information in ITGlue but keep individual PC information in the RMM tool.). Very often, license information is stored at paper documents for older licenses and electronic files for new licenses.So, as you can see, the three "systems" all come into play. Keep as much as you can in one primary storage system or tool. Then keep other information where it makes the most sense. And that leads to the final element: Index it all or create a system so everyone can know where everything is.One of the obvious weaknesses of "modern" education is that tests often require students to memorize arcane information. This is obviously a problem because you are rarely in a position in the real world where you cannot access books, tools, libraries, or the Internet. So the skill you need for success in the real world is not to memorize everything: It is to know how to find the information you need.- - - - -Now is the time to start building your Network Documentation Library for 2018. Create a ticket in your ticketing system to start gathering information.Job One: Figure out where you have all this information now.Write it down. If you haven't made an effort to be organized in the past, the information is probably in a different place for each client. That doesn't matter at this point. Just write down where it is located. At a later stage, we'll scoop it all up and put it where it belongs.Also . . . start thinking about the information you need to keep and the information you don't need to keep.Check in next Friday for another post on network documentation.Feedback welcome.:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Register Now: My 9th Annual "State of the Nation" Address for Small Business IT


Karl's 9th Annual Annual "State of the Nation" Address Thursday, January 11th9:00 AM Pacific / 12 Noon EasternRegister Here: your calendar now and don't miss this once-a-year podcast. This will be my 9th Annual "State of the Nation" address for small technology providers.Don't miss this year's webinar.No cost. Just register and tune in.Paste that into your calendar so you don't forget!Topics Include:Highlights (lowlights?) from 2017Windows 10, Server 2016, Azure, . . . and what's nextCloud Services - Report from the RoadThe EconomyBuilding Your Business for the Long TermSpeculations about 20182017 was a great year for small business IT. And 2018 looks just as promising. As I look forward to the year ahead, I am committed to helping IT service providers build successful businesses that look to the future of technology and guarantee their success moving forward.Business can be difficult in a changing environment. And we are certainly in a changing environment! That's always true for technology. But with the Internet of Things, and the adoption of TCP/IP for virtually all new technologies, our world will change at a dizzying pace. You need to make sure that get your share of the new technology money while keeping your share of the established technology.I am going to focus on the most important things you need to do to build a profitable business - and lock in a very successful 2018!Tune in to learn more.Karl's 9th Annual State of the Nation Address for SMB ITJanuary 11th9:00 AM PacificWebinar Registration: - - - -Note: I have 100 seats. But don't worry!One of the things I've learned is that there's about a 50% drop-off rate when things are free. If registration reaches 200, I'll buy the extra seats.Plan to log in early, though, to guarantee your seat.See you then.This session will be recorded.:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]

Point Your Clients to this IoT Explanation


One of my other blogs - Consultant or Amateur - is designed to be a place you can point your clients and say, "See. This guy's telling you the same thing I am." It's basically technical advice your client will understand. And it can help you convince them to make the right decisions about technology.I just posted a new item there: Setting up an Internet of Things network. It's entitled "IOT - Internet of Things Basics for Small Business."My advice is to isolate the IoT devices to a separate network segment. I give a very basic diagram and discuss the possibility of adding a firewall to separate the traffic.But I'm also clear that business owners should contact YOU - their network professional - to help them find the right solution. I don't mention all the options because there are too many. For example, if they have the right firewall already, you can simply create a VLAN.My goal here is to provide a site you can safely send your clients to, without fear that I'll try to get their business. I don't want their business. I want YOU to keep reading this blog. :-)Your feedback is always welcome.:-)Feed: All material Copyright (c) 2006-2016 Karl W. Palachuk unless otherwise noted. [...]