Monday, August 15, 2016

Training Day

By David Ianetta

Back in my days as an MSP I remember being called in by a manager of a large client to clean up their computer. It has “suddenly” become slow and unresponsive. Since I was already on the road coming off an onsite job, I swung by her office to take care of the problem.

While I was in her office, cleaning off the abundant Malware including a keystroke monitor, I heard her on the phone saying, “No, I did not authorize an $8,000 transfer…yes can you stop that please?”

As IT professionals, we know there are real life hackers out there making very good money by preying on the uneducated.

Lucky for her she happened to be on the phone with the bank taking care of something else when the would be thief was brought to her attention.

Other people are not so lucky, some of them have lost their whole business.

After she hung up the phone I said, “um, did you open an email or click on something that you shouldn’t?”

“Yes…I opened an email that seemed kinda funny…”

“Did you know the sender?”

“No…maybe I shouldn’t have opened that?”

Ya think?

I’m always amazed at how much of our jobs as technicians are similar to that of a doctor. We fix what ails the computer, but we also try to advise people on how to avoid getting “sick” to begin with.

What it boils down to is training.

But have you noticed that too much of this training happens randomly when someone has already had a problem that could have been avoided?

Training, after the fact.

Offering a simple one hour training class can benefit both your client and your company. A simple curriculum of tips and techniques can help empower everyday users to protect themselves from the ever growing threat of cyber crime.

Benefits to your client

By offering a training class to your clients you are sharing your expertise. Most of them are not reading current articles on security, or seeing firsthand how a breach could have been prevented.
The knowledge you bring can make their IT experience a better one. Even offering training on everyday software products such as the Microsoft office suite can help your customers be more productive and less frustrated. Sharing tricks and tweaks for the latest OS can also be very empowering to them.

Benefits to you

The benefits to you and your company are even wider. Whether you offer a training class in person or in a webinar format you a placing a personality to your brand. A face with your name.

Normally your customer thinks of you one of two times; when something is broken or they are paying your bill.

Training makes you a member of their team, and as such you are bringing value that goes beyond fixing a problem.

Training brings value into their workplace and helps foster a long and healthy relationship between you and your client. Instead of being the “sign of doom” you are a bringer of light.

So how about you?

Do you offer any training to your clients? If so we'd love to hear from you about it. If not, there is no better time to start.