Being in the MSP business is not easy. The IT industry itself is huge and it’s evolving fast. To achieve success, you have to continuously be learning new management techniques and operational processes to manage and improve your business.
I’ve been in this business a long time and what I know for sure is that to succeed you have to set your mind for change. Agility, creativity and being open to new ideas and new ways of thinking is essential. Here are 10 books that have helped me re-evaluate and shift my perspective on life and being successful in this MSP industry of ours.
In Three Simple Steps, Trevor Blake describes his journey from hard knocks to tremendous success. Trevor outlines his framework for completely reconfiguring your mindset for success. Although Trevor’s approach is backed up by science the approach he suggests really is as simple as the title itself.
The Hard Thing About Hard Things by Ben Horowitz I read this book annually as a reminder that business is not all sunshine and rainbows. It gets hard but that should motivate us to push harder and do better. Every time things get tough I remind myself of the most famous line from this book “If you’re going to eat shit – don't nibble”.
The Everything Store by Brad Stone talks about Jeff Bezos and Amazon and is a helpful reminder that although I may never be the richest man on earth, I know that we have barely scratched the surface of our own company’s potential. Jeff is renowned for being obsessed with the customer. So much so that every Amazon meeting or event has an empty chair for the customer – a great reminder to me that everything we are building is for our customers.
Speaking of potentials, Ready, Fire, Aim by Michael Masterson is a wonderful book about testing and launching new ideas. Before I read this book I was guilty of procrastination, working on new ideas and never executing them. Masterson highlights an important point about accelerating ideas to market. Not all of them may be successful but at least we find out one way or the other sooner rather than later.
No Excuses by Brian Tracy in my view is fundamental to anyone who has formed a belief that they cannot succeed due to something in their past. It’s so common for many of us to blame our parents, our schooling, the town we grew up in or various other struggles in our life. The truth is all of us have the potential to be our best if we’re willing to stop blaming and start pursuing our full potential.
Can’t Hurt Me by David Goggins - Anyone who has seen David’s Instagram or YouTube videos will know that he is one of the toughest individuals on the planet. Through this book David teaches us how he has overcome adversity by using pain and suffering to his physical and psychological advantage over himself and his competition. Whenever I think I have reached my limits I am reminded of David’s journey and his advice that most of us only use 40% of our capacity at best. This is an amazing story and a life changing book.
Pitch Anything by Oren Klaff, as a small business owner I had no idea how frequently I was being “alpha’d” by prospects and customers. Oren Klaff totally changed my perspective about my value to others and our company’s value. This book is a solid framework for taking control of meetings, pitching your ideas and winning those huge deals. This book is a must for any entrepreneur or anyone in sales.
Work the System by Sam Carpenter helped me scale my first company I Know IT and build a consistent customer experience. Sam’s story was one of chaos, high staff turnover, frequent problems with customers and the stress and anxiety of running a small business. After reading this book I began taking a little time out each week to clearly document every process in our company. Once we got a handle on our processes our business began to scale.
Mastering the Rockefeller Habits by Verne Harnish is a must for any company that wants to execute without drama. Verne introduces the concepts of rhythm through red light/green light reports, daily huddles, big hairy audacious goals and more! This methodology is a key element in our success at Benchmark 365.
Never Lose a Customer Again by Joey Coleman This is the most comprehensive book I have read to date on retaining customers. Joey introduces the idea of doubling down during the first 100 days in order to create successful customers and partners for our business. It’s why all of our partners and customers go through a vigorous 3 month program to set their business up for success.
There you have it! Would love to hear what you think!