June News:

On The CalendarJune at The Fulcrum Group

Summer's officially here and we are excited to bring you info on a couple of special online events we will be hosting!     What:  Fulcrum Group Bi-Weekly Microsoft Teams Tips & Tricks When:  Every other Thursday 2:00pm beginning June 11th. Description:  Every other Thursday we’ll have a 30 minute Microsoft Teams Tips & Tricks meeting, sharing some of our favorite tips & tricks, using Microsoft Teams in your environment. Who is this for?  Fulcrum Group team members and Fulcrum Group clients’ team members Note:  These sessions will be recorded and made available to attendees.     What:  Fulcrum Group Bi-Weekly Covid-19 Business Recovery Executive Discussion When:  Every other Thursday 2:30pm beginning June 11th. Description:  Every other Thursday we’ll have a 30 min executive discussion around what leadership is and should be during the Covid-19 business recovery.  We’ll discuss what Fulcrum Group is doing to speed along our recovery, and would love to hear what you are doing.  If you have specific questions, send them to us, and we’ll cover in a future session. Who is this for?  Fulcrum Group Executive Members, Fulcrum Group clients’ Executive Members     If interested in attending either of these special events, reach out to david@fulcrumgroup.net to be added to the calendar appt.     Another bit of "normalcy" returning - we're excited to share that The Fulcrum Group WILL be partnering again with B2BCFO for our usual summertime event in July, geared especially for small business owners, Grow Successfully 2020.  Get more details on our Events page.     During this Coronavirus Pandemic, while we're learning to manage remote teams and implementing new best practices and managing various life challenges along with work, always feel free to check in with our extra-helpful Extraordinary Times blog series, for great, useable-now tips, sanity-savers and life and work hacks. These include some great strategies to use yourself and/or pass on to colleagues.  We'll let you know about any additional upcoming special events through our social media pages, which we'll update on our Events page as they occur. Quick links to our social media pages are accessible right from our website and in every monthly newsletter email you receive from us. If you're new to our newsletter and you'd like to subscribe, let us know.

How To Increase Your Service Leadership

By Fulcrum Group President, Steve Meek Customer Service Leadership Managed service provider on-site support was easy, as clients can always tell when you care. They can see a smile. They understand your preparation from notes you are taking. They see your body language as you reflect and think through system changes or new issues.   The challenge with any knowledge-worker is living in the moment with the problem to solve, and being mindful of the emotional situation of the client - or the patient or the end user.  With our clients working remotely, and now many team members working from home, it feels important to over-emphasize great customer service so people don’t under-emphasize their efforts. Our internal efforts led to the creation of our own standards which we posted here  Are you putting the leader in service leadership?  In all size organizations, service starts at the top. Do you, as an owner, hold yourself personally responsible for great customer service? In the high-tech world, it is easy to get overwhelmed by something as simple as the ongoing demands for organizational cybersecurityBut as a businessFulcrum Group has to continually innovate our existing model to make sure we take care of your core capabilities first.   That means creating a vision for our team of what great customer service should look like and identifying role models. As leaders, we can point out responsibility but we also need to identify new ideas to improve customer service. Getting your team working together helps avoid finger-pointing or passing the buck. We work hard to add value at every single interaction instead of just eventually answering a question or fixing an issue.  Target the client experience for easy wins  Through our internal efforts we have sought to target specific moments that matter in our clients Fulcrum journey. Moments that matter today, for a service provider like us, often focus around phone conversation. For example, that very first call into our organization to find out about our company, we want met with an actual person rather than an automated attendant.   A governmental entity that services via facilities and servicehas to be more concerned about the see, touch, smell or taste of things where their teams engage with constituents. I had read an article that included some great content, also reinforcing the importance of moments that matter with your own team.   Customer service increases when service culture is aligned   No organization wants bad culture but the world of service delivery is a demanding one. No one has a budget to be overstaffed, so smart firms must be mindful of service metrics to execute consistently and with high quality. In our early days, we tried to watch everything all the time which created more challenges than benefits. Since then we try to focus on fewer metrics, but those that seem to impact success and client happiness the most. To me, one of the biggest challenges is working out which of your metrics are the most impactful for your audience.  I first saw Ron Kaufman at a Scaling Up Summit here in DFW and fell in love with his content. His basic reminder is that customer service expectations rise all the time, so even a really good experience at some point becomes bad. Another key idea was to make sure that your service team was speaking the same common service languageSomething as simple as working a ticket” could mean multiple things, including:  
  • actively working with the user on an issue,  
  • reviewing the ticket details to figure out how to resolve an issue 
  • updating ticket status or  
  • gathering details to escalate to a more senior person.
What industry terms in your service organization would benefit by having a glossary of specific phrases that meant very specific things?  We shared ours last month - feel free to have a look

Free Microsoft Teams Trial - Teams Free, vs Teams Paid

Microsoft Teams Free Trial - Teams Free vs Teams Paid If you've worked from home during the Covid-19 pandemic, or had (or still have) staff working from home, you and your colleagues likely received a crash course in teleconferencing.  Due to the pandemic, Microsoft recently announced it would offer a free 6 month trial of paid Teams plans. We hope you'll read the article, which details some key differences between the free version and paid Teams plans.  Generally, the differences are geared around maximum members, file storage sizes, extra features in recording meetings, as well as phone calls. You’ll also find that there are lots of extra administrative options with paid plans, too. As always, we hope you'll feel comfortable reaching out if you have any questions or if we can help point you in the right direction for just the right fit for your organization.
June Security Awareness Newsletter

Click to open June's Security Awareness Newsletter.

Cybersecurity SPOTlight: Mobile Device Security

The ins and outs of keeping your devices as safe as they can be, including mobile threats you need to know about, and travel tips - in this month's Cybersecurity Awareness Newsletter. As always, feel free to reach out to us if you have questions.

Vistage Executive News - Best Practices for Navigating Change & Driving Transformation

Vistage Executive Group According to a recent Vistage survey of small and medium-sized manufacturing companies, 70 percent say their revenues have decreased. With disruptions to supply chains and employee productivity on top of revenue impact, the Coronavirus crisis has also resulted in notable transformation and innovation.  Here's a great article on best practices for navigating change and driving transformation during these extraordinary times.
Fulcrum Group Did You Know

Did You Know...? Microsoft Teams

Did you know…Fulcrum Group manages your Microsoft Teams environment as part of our SPOT Managed IT Services?