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View Full Version : Biggest Frustrations W/ Running Computer Services Businesses


Michael_Fridman
04-12-2009, 09:05 AM
Hey folks,

Like all businesses, I have my good days and bad ones. Mostly good tho :D

In fact, my business has allowed me to travel abroad and help out the Anglo communities in cities overseas (they prefer to work with someone from the US rather than local based service businesses).

Anyhoo, one of the bigger frustrations I have is dealing with clients who never pay for their services. Typically, I just never deal with them again and don't give it a second thought as to keep the blood pressure down, but when it's a rather large sum of mula, it's a pain in the ass to go after them.

My question is this, what's your biggest concern or frustration when it comes to running your own computer service company?

Cheers!

M

gunslinger
04-12-2009, 04:32 PM
I would say clients who try to get out of paying, or clients who compare me to their sons friend who is a "computer person" and will fix it for free.

stevenamills
04-12-2009, 04:46 PM
Easily - repairs that take WAY longer than they "should".

jj2000
04-12-2009, 04:50 PM
I would say clients who try to get out of paying, or clients who compare me to their sons friend who is a "computer person" and will fix it for free.
Reply With Quote

i agree 100% and would like to add relations who think its a freebie just because they are relations no matter how distant and another annoyance is people telephoning us constantly trying to sell us adspace in some publication that no one has heard of,rip off artists.

jj2000
04-12-2009, 06:22 PM
@ACG we get calls like this every day and every day its the same "We can schedule a visit today " click... hang up,never to be heard from again.:D
We have also been inundated of late with calls asking to fix 10 or more machines and they will supply the software and hardware but when we asked for more info once again click... hang up,these people are a complete pain in the Ass.

Michael_Fridman
04-12-2009, 10:37 PM
Hello Michael,

I've found that like you collecting payments (especially in these desperate times) from new clients, can be a big pain. Fortunately we have a plan in place if such a situation arises.

The other major pain I find is reasonably priced, effective advertising. Finding good business clients can be costly sometimes. We really do not do residential accounts, except for the ones I have been doing for years, and their referrals. It's really too easy to get burned or hassled by residential clients, so we have shunned away from taking any new ones outside of our loyal customer referrals.

This is a good topic, I am glad you brought it up. Welcome to the forums, and enjoy your stay!

P.S. I see you are from NY, as am I. What part are you from?

Upper East Side, NYC. Born and raised. :)

Starting with residential clients is a fantastic way to get into the business when starting small. It allowed me to delve into my own business rather than waiting to get all the legalities of owning a full fledged business.

The great thing about it was as word got around, people started calling me for larger contract work from small to mid sized businesses. Once this happened, I was able to afford the time and money to get into the big picture.

Success likes speed. ;)

M

Michael_Fridman
04-12-2009, 10:49 PM
All the above replies are great, I'm not going to try to answer everything, but I will say this: with time, you can start to tell who you SHOULD and SHOULDN'T be doing business with.

After just a few months of starting my own business, I could tell a lot from just speaking to a potential client on the phone. If I get a bad vibe by speaking to them, I politely decline their business.

The beautiful thing was that I had built a list of clients that I enjoyed (keywords "I ENJOYED") doing business with:

a) because I knew they were repeat customers who are honest and loyal.
b) they enjoyed working with me because I gave them 110% effort to always help them out and go the extra mile for them.

Filtering out the losers and focusing on the winning clients is the best way to go. It's kept me sane and my clients really really happy. Sure, once in a while you'll slip up, but it's all about learning and moving on.

Here's to all your success!

M

Bullfighter
04-12-2009, 11:00 PM
I really hate it when people pose as technicians to get peoples attention just to sell them on a scam book, website or SEMINAR that promises to "teach you the real way to do business" or some such nonsense... especially when they say:
"How to instantly become a computer “expert” and have everyone fighting for your services…". Ya gotta love the word "instantly".

Just saying is all.... I would REALLY hope someone would not do this here.

The real way to be successful, is hard work, research and especially customer service. I think a great example are the majority of people that post on this site.

What is your opinion, Michael?

EP

CharleslRay
04-12-2009, 11:47 PM
I would say clients who try to get out of paying, or clients who compare me to their sons friend who is a "computer person" and will fix it for free.

My response usually opens with a wide smile, a square look in their eye and a casual question of "When was the last time they serviced you and were you happy with the results?"

99.9% of the time this disarms them and they stumble over their words, trying to find a reason to contend my genuine question. I then make a point of politely reminding them that I'm not in high school, have my certs and have been at this for years on end..as I hand them the completed work order to sign ;]

Bullfighter
04-13-2009, 03:48 AM
Michael, still there?

When you come back, can you let me know how I can:

grow into a 6 figure a year business with absolutely NO EXTRA WORK (and implement this tactic in mere minutes)…

Or

instantly become a computer “expert” and have everyone fighting for my services…

Or

How to qualify my clients in order to work less and make more money


For those of you interested in Michael's ....concepts you can check out his website here:


http:// computerservicescartel dot com/blog/the-best-darn-computer-services-you-ever-heard-of/#more-3


EP

angry_geek
04-13-2009, 04:24 AM
I have two huge frustrations:

1: People who think it's ok to waste 30 minutes of my day on the phone asking questions rather than pay for an appointment. They never seem to understand that I may have other customers to take care of.

2: I explain my rates on the phone and offer the option to bring it into the shop or have me come on site. When the problem winds up requiring a 5 minute fix, they balk when they have to pay for a full hour. It took me 20 minutes to get there, 20 minutes to get back, gas, road rage. Just pay the bloody bill already!! I'm not your 16 year-old nephew who lives down the street!

Majestic
04-13-2009, 06:43 AM
I have two huge frustrations:

1: People who think it's ok to waste 30 minutes of my day on the phone asking questions rather than pay for an appointment. They never seem to understand that I may have other customers to take care of.

2: I explain my rates on the phone and offer the option to bring it into the shop or have me come on site. When the problem winds up requiring a 5 minute fix, they balk when they have to pay for a full hour. It took me 20 minutes to get there, 20 minutes to get back, gas, road rage. Just pay the bloody bill already!! I'm not your 16 year-old nephew who lives down the street!

1: Whatever they ask tell them you would be happy to help them out after they make an appointment with you. Anything they ask tell them there's no way for you to know for sure without looking at the machine in person.

2: Simply let them know you have a policy of one hour minimum. If the problem is fixed after 5 minutes, then tell them they have you for the hour, So is there anything else you can help them with? Works for me..

Majestic

frostbyte5014
04-13-2009, 08:13 AM
I would say the paperwork and office work bites the most.

Michael_Fridman
04-13-2009, 12:51 PM
Michael, still there?

When you come back, can you let me know how I can:



Or



Or




For those of you interested in Michael's ....concepts you can check out his website here:


http:// computerservicescartel dot com/blog/the-best-darn-computer-services-you-ever-heard-of/#more-3


EP

Bullfighter,

Actually, my background is in Systems Administration and have been working as a Sys Admin since the age of 21 when I worked hard to get my MCSE. Since then, I've been working for various large international corporations as a Sys Admin.

Back in August of 2008, I decided to quit my job and start working for myself because I saw a better opportunity there. So I started my own computer services business.

Everything that I've applied to MY OWN business is in the report and is not a scam. I've worked hard to build up my experience as an IT professional and am sharing my experiences to those who are interested on taking the same path.

Did I at any point force my report down anyone's throat? Nope. This forum is for sharing information and I'm truly not interested in defending my work here. If you feel that there's something wrong with it, feel free to PM me.

Thanks,

M

P.S. Did you even READ the report before bashing anything I've posted on the forum?

P.P.S. If you DID read the report, you'd see that the term "instantly" refers to the fact that not everyone should go for any kind of certification. I got mine because I went into a different field of work BEFORE I opened my business. If someone has the skills, they can start their own business as soon as tomorrow and in fact, I recommend it highly instead of always finding reasons to push things off for "another time".

P.P.P.S Thanks for reminding me to change the blog post!

Bullfighter
04-13-2009, 01:50 PM
Greetings Michael_Fridman,

Did you even READ the report before bashing anything I've posted on the forum?

Please revisit my posts, I never bashed a single thing that you posted or your website.

I just want to clear the air in case anyone on this forum was going to waste their time with an elaborate spam. If you are truly interested in sharing advice and taking advice and if you are truly interested in contributing to our community and not making money off of it, then I welcome you. Otherwise, I don't think you will have a friendly reception here.

Sincerely,

EP

Michael_Fridman
04-13-2009, 01:55 PM
Michael, still there?

When you come back, can you let me know how I can:



Or



Or




For those of you interested in Michael's ....concepts you can check out his website here:


http:// computerservicescartel dot com/blog/the-best-darn-computer-services-you-ever-heard-of/#more-3


EP

Greetings Michael_Fridman,


Please revisit my posts, I never bashed a single thing that you posted or your website.

I just want to clear the air in case anyone on this forum was going to waste their time with an elaborate spam. If you are truly interested in sharing advice and taking advice and if you are truly interested in contributing to our community and not making money off of it, then I welcome you. Otherwise, I don't think you will have a friendly reception here.

Sincerely,

EP

EP,

Thanks for the reply. I'm enjoying the stay thus far and look forward to adding as much value to the community as I can.

Here's to your success.

M

angry_geek
04-13-2009, 05:30 PM
I forgot one: Verizon DSL!!!

soho-integration
04-15-2009, 02:23 PM
Bullfighter,

Actually, my background is in Systems Administration and have been working as a Sys Admin since the age of 21 when I worked hard to get my MCSE. Since then, I've been working for various large international corporations as a Sys Admin.


Michael,
No offense, but if you 'worked hard' to get your MCSE - one of the easier certifications - how are you going to teach anyone to do anything 'instantly' and 'easily'?

An MCSE doesn't really qualify you for much - kids are getting that before they leave high-school...

iptech
04-15-2009, 05:20 PM
Bullfighter,

Actually, my background is in Systems Administration and have been working as a Sys Admin since the age of 21 when I worked hard to get my MCSE. Since then, I've been working for various large international corporations as a Sys Admin.

Back in August of 2008, I decided to quit my job and start working for myself because I saw a better opportunity there. So I started my own computer services business.

Everything that I've applied to MY OWN business is in the report and is not a scam. I've worked hard to build up my experience as an IT professional and am sharing my experiences to those who are interested on taking the same path.

Did I at any point force my report down anyone's throat? Nope. This forum is for sharing information and I'm truly not interested in defending my work here. If you feel that there's something wrong with it, feel free to PM me.

Funny, a couple of weeks back you describe yourself as an MCDST (http://www.janglo.net/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=121821&Itemid=157)! I'm not sure what qualification an MCSE is that you took in just a few days, but if you need to rely upon Google for the answers to technical problems then you're a long way from being a guru who can mentor others in this fast moving and ever-changing business.

Good luck with your endeavors Michael, but for my money you'd need to be a little more frank about your own experience and skills.

soho-integration
04-15-2009, 08:52 PM
MCSE is an easy certification? It is if you used braindumps and crammed for it in 3 days - maybe - that's how most people here probably passed their A+,Network+, MCP on WinXp - however you should really study and KNOW IT if you want to be responsible for a business' infrastructure and deploy and maintain any kind of email/server system even for a smaller company.

Yes, it is an easy certification. A++, MCP, Network+ is not even worth the time it takes to take the test. And I'm not talking about the cram books / exams either.

Michael_Fridman
04-16-2009, 10:29 AM
Yep,MCHDT is my background, I've worked for other companies up until last year, when I decided to go work for myself. I beleive in either my report or somewhere on the forum I mention that helping the Anglo communities overseas is a great way to make money and it's worked wonders for me and still does.

The MSCE course was NOT easy for me at all. That could possibly be because I worked hard an actually studied and remember and was interested in everything. I didn't just memorize the words to be able to pass just to forget it later. This is something that I have always been interested in and passionate about. I knew I could use my knowledge, experience and passion later in life for something just like this.

Cheers!

M

Comtech Solutions
04-16-2009, 07:30 PM
Michael, you need to start your own threads - it seems like every thread you touch gets hijacked into an argument. It would be easier for the rest of us who are actually trying to read and stay on top of the posts. If you are interested in the welfare of this fine tech community, please do what you can to help, not hinder, the community.

On topic - Here's my frustration, represented by 2 calls I had yesterday:

1) 9:30 p.m. cell phone rings, regular client in a panic - she says 'computer looks different and can't open her programs'. Turns out she had dragged her taskbar from the bottom of the screen to the left side of the screen - the change was boggling her mind to the point where she had to call me at, what I consider, too late a time.

2) 7:20 am cell phone rings, different regular client has an 'emergency'. She tells me she knows I have little kids and would be awake at this time. (Actually any one who has little kids that they are trying to get off to school knows that morning is often the busiest time of day!) And what was the emergency? She couldn't shut her computer down. She used the start/shut down option at night and in the morning the screen still said 'windows shutting down'. I had her hold down the power button; problem solved.

Both cases no pay. Although there will be other service calls with these clients. I guess, people feel you are free tech support once they've paid you once for an hour's time. And of course you are available 24/7/365.....

For new clients, I'm pretty good at saying 'I can't tell without looking at the machine, when would you like me to set up an appointment?' But the easy stuff, with existing customers?? Oh well.....I'll call it marketing.......

iptech
04-16-2009, 10:02 PM
Yep,MCHDT is my background, I've worked for other companies up until last year, when I decided to go work for myself. I beleive in either my report or somewhere on the forum I mention that helping the Anglo communities overseas is a great way to make money and it's worked wonders for me and still does.

The MSCE course was NOT easy for me at all. That could possibly be because I worked hard an actually studied and remember and was interested in everything. I didn't just memorize the words to be able to pass just to forget it later. This is something that I have always been interested in and passionate about. I knew I could use my knowledge, experience and passion later in life for something just like this.

Cheers!

M
You seem to have forgotten you also have an MCP+I (http://www.techsupportforum.com/pro/certification-career/354272-new-venture.html#post2056220) qualification. :confused: