I have been working as a consultant for a number of years, I have a diverse and pretty extensive background, I basically do server\desktop\network\firewall\VPN\Exchange hosting\DR\Business continuity down to desktop preventive maintenance, builds etc.. Basically whatever is needed.
One of my larger clients has concerne if I were to die where that leave them. From day one due to my background of managing IT, and staff for companies with multiple location and being a senior IT person prior to consulting. I always put in place what I could to minimize exposure. I do the same with the current client base. Admin passwords are on file, all prod servers always covered by contracts with an SLA of on site in 4 hours etc.
This is a difficult one to answer. They are under the false impression they would be safer with a larger consulting company. They will never get this level of responsiveness/expertise/service/or price. I would love to grow the business and bring on someone else, or possibly acquire another consulting business, do I try to find a commissioned sales rep? Or even take over accounts of a small consulting business in the area where the owner was close to retiring, but for the life of me, I am not sure how to find consulting businesses that might be for sale, or someone in a similar situation that I can trust, and would not go after our clients etc.
Surely there are other consultants on this site that are in similar situations. If you think about it, we are more like an internal partner or high level staff than an external entity because of how we look out for their bottom line, help guide their direction from an IT direction and watch that they only invest in what is beneficial. We truly look out for their business.
So I can possibly take that approach when I explain it to them, it is more like losing a key employee. So you put safe guards in place. But still need that backup person. What do you guys think?
I just haven’t any idea where I might start looking for these options. Thoughts/ideas? Websites that lists/consulting. The client’s comfort level is critical to our business after being a client for about 15 years.
Thanks guys – this site has always been an incredible resource!
kind of act as virtual CTO for them, doing our best to always look out for what is in the client’s best interest first, NEVER sell try and sell them on something that would not benefit them, and keeping a watchful eye on where/how they spend their money on IT related needs. This has helped build an incredibly high level of trust.
Sure I can tell them if I were to retire or move on, I would do a knowledge transfer without a doubt and I would like to believe that would satisfy them. The challenging question to answer is, how do I respond to them in regards to their question if I were to get struck by lightning etc?
I am basically a one man company trying to build up the business, but it is challenging to do so. Need help with sales, perhaps hire a commissioned sales rep? Or where might I find another small time guy to partner with so we can cover each other’s backs? Yet another option might be to find someone selling a small consulting company in the area that wants out due to burn out or retiring.
I just haven’t any idea where I might start looking for these options. Thoughts/ideas? Websites that lists/consulting
I need for them to be comfortable, they are critical to our business after being a client for about 15 years.
Thanks guys – you have always been an incredible resource!