When you’ve been doing business for a while, you pick up a few things. We’ve been around for (as of this writing) twenty years now and have resultantly learned quite a bit—and, since we’re in the business of helping other businesses grow, we figured we’d share a bit of what we’ve learned.
Is this a bit of a departure from what we usually share, but there is a little bit of overlap. Plus, these lessons can help your business be more successful, which is exactly what we want you to accomplish.
Security Should Be Top of Mind
This is the most important thing that we have seen reinforced time and time again. Security needs to be your first priority.
Actually, scratch that: security needs to be the foundation that everything else you do is built on. Not a priority, but a prerequisite. There are too many ways that a threat can mess with your operations to approach security in any other way… and we mean security, inclusive.
Cyberthreats are a major issue nowadays, but the potential for physical attacks should not be underestimated, either. Therefore, you need to ensure that your business is protected from all angles—that cybersecurity protections, physical security measures, and the required team training are all seen to. That’s all something that we can (and are more than happy to) help you with.
Get It In Writing
As much as we like the idea of sealing the deal with a handshake, it’s better for both parties to have everything laid out on paper. That way, there’s a minimal chance that A: there will be any misunderstanding about what is being agreed to, and B: neither party is able to renege on their side of the bargain.
While we certainly wouldn’t swindle someone working with us (and hope you wouldn’t either), having a contract is basically a little insurance policy in play to the benefit of both parties. In fact, we rather under-promise and over-deliver, and we personally feel that it pays off in most situations.
You Get What You Pay For
It’s a long-standing adage, but it’s no less true for it. Quality generally comes with increased costs. Your IT infrastructure is a prime example where this is often the case. Are there occasionally bargains available? Of course, and sometimes it feels good getting a good deal or finding a low-cost option. There’s also nothing wrong with pricing being a consideration in your decision-making process.
Having said that, your hardware and software is one area where the quality of the product generally lines up with the price you pay for it. Therefore, cutting corners and otherwise pinching pennies now will come back to bite you, and those few dollars you save now will ultimately cost you more time and money later. We can also help you get the best deals through our relationships with numerous vendors, which brings us to our next point:
Building Strong Relationships with Others is Critical
We often talk up collaboration, and for good reason—it is a great way to maximize value and productivity all in the same breath. Of course, in order to collaborate with someone, it is important for there to be a relationship to base the partnership on.
Whether you’re referring to your partners, your vendors, or (of course) your clients, we cannot emphasize enough how valuable a positive relationship with them is. A good relationship with your clients helps to build their trust in you. Good relationships with your vendors and partners help to get you better deals on your hardware and services.
The better your relationships with those around you, the better things tend to work. It’s as simple as that.
Take Your Time and Do Things Right
Have you ever heard the saying, “Measure twice, cut once?”
There’s a lot of wisdom in that. Basically, the idea is to double-check everything you can do over before you do anything that you have one opportunity to get right. You can measure as many times as you want, but once you cut something, it’s cut and you’re stuck with the outcome.
While working with technology is (generally) a little more forgiving than that, this is just a good policy to follow. Preparing for something properly simply makes your success more likely by reducing the probability of making a mistake. Unfortunately, there are a lot of things in business that don’t allow for a do-over, too, so it pays to put in the due diligence and get it right the first time.
Back Up Everything First!
At this point, we might as well have it emblazoned on our tombstones: backups are important, and could very well be the thing that keeps your business from failing if something goes wrong.
Of course, this is an extreme example, but a properly-maintained backup can also help protect your business from those relatively minor nuisances that eventually add up to a lot of wasted time and effort. Of course, you want to know you’ll be protected in a worst-case scenario… but it is also comforting to know that you’re also insulated against those less-severe issues as well. We don’t recommend data backup the way we do because we think all businesses are going to experience a major data breach, we do it because we know they could.
So, back up your data. Hard stop.
We’re Here to Share What We’ve Learned with Others
Whether it’s in the form of IT best practices or some simple operational advice, our goal is to spread our knowledge so that the businesses in Maryland can enjoy the successes we’ve been fortunate enough to experience. That’s why we offer the services we do.
If you’re interested in finding out more about our services, or talking about any of the services we alluded to here, please don’t hesitate to give us a call at (410) 531-6727.