Meet Gary Blawat of Businertia!
Tell us a little about your MSP…
Businertia was established in 2006. Originally, we were going to be a management consulting business and had an opportunity to start an IT business for a real estate investor that wanted to diversify. We actually had two articles written about our flat-rate IT model in 2007. However, when the market crashed in 2008, we were able to negotiate an asset purchase for the IT company we started. Twelve years later, we are still enjoying delivering IT services to the SMB market.
How long have you been a member of The 20?
I saw Tim talking about Cytracom at ASCII for a couple of years before we joined and kept hearing about this great idea called ‘The 20.’ So, in May of 2018, I decided to dig a little deeper and I signed up a month later. Michael Vu, Michael Wayland, and others were big influencers to our decision. When you can hear the vision and then talk to people that are working to make it a reality, it was a game changer.
Why did your MSP originally look to partner with The 20?
The bottom line was scale. With every new customer we always seemed to hit a resource limitation to perform technical work to a high quality and focus on growing the business. The biggest thing I realized was that we needed to focus on building our competitive advantage and that was not going to happen by organically growing a support desk or just outsourcing it. So, the idea of us joining a group that was building a common support desk, leveraging core tools, and most importantly: giving us access to a dynamic, mastermind group, became too good to pass up. It quickly became an integral part of our future growth plans.
Tell us about the biggest change in your business since joining The 20.
Ensuring that we continue to create face value with all of our clients. Once the documentation is done and the support desk starts handling the day-to-day ad hoc requests, it became increasingly noticeable that we are in the ‘people business.’ We needed to ensure we were still reaching our customers in ways that maintained our local presence, but demonstrated the depth to handle their every day demands. The challenging part of that was not bypassing the support desk and doing simple work to create that value. With the amount of information that flows in the Teams channels, the question is not ‘how’ to create that value, but implementing ideas in planned stages over the course of a customer’s agreement.
What do you like most about being a member of The 20?
The people. There is so much business and technical acumen within the group. Every VISION, Quarterly, or daily peruse of Teams gives another ‘Aha!’ moment to solve a problem.
What do you think is the most important quality necessary for success?
Self-discipline. It is so easy to get carried away on fun items or worry about items that cannot be controlled. I’m always in awe over those leaders that have mastered it. They know when to push themselves enough to move ahead or just seem to focus on the right things at the right time.
What are your biggest business challenges?
Setting the right expectations. Really identifying where I want to take this business so it supports the right balance for my lifestyle and for my employees.
What are your areas of focus for 2020?
Setting the wheels in motion to become the best communicating MSP (MID) Service provider in South Eastern Wisconsin. This also includes re-branding the organization to better match who we are.
What advice would you share with an MSP looking to scale their business?
Stop looking at support desk as a cost-per-hour as it relates to dollars spent in correlation to amount-of-time on tickets. Having the support desk should be looked at as an operational cost that provides you scale in a very budgetable way. However, keep in mind, having a 24/7/365 support desk is only one facet of how you create value to your customers. There is still work to be done in justifying the price points you need to grow your business.
What book are you currently reading?
The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business by Charles Duhigg.
– Good habits in a business empower employees and distinguish you from other like organizations.
Favorite blogs / podcasts
I look forward to my daily dose of The Insider News from Code Project.The humorous subtitles in response to the article title starts my day with a laugh. For instance, take article title ‘The new surf game in Microsoft Edge now available for everyone.’ — the subtitle to the article is ‘I guess this means all the bugs are fixed (and they’ve run out of icons to change)?’
Interested in becoming a member like Businertia? Click here for more information!