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MSP 501 Profile: Technology Lab Staying Far Away from ‘Office Space’

Written by corres2

Umm, yeah. Founder Joshua Boyd thought if he could keep traditional corporate culture to a minimum, that’d be great.

Company Name: Technology Lab
Company MSP 501 Rank: 168
Founder and CEO: Joshua Boyd
Headquartered: Nashville, Tennessee

Primary Services:

  • Managed IT services
  • Cloud services
  • Security services
  • Professional services

LinkedIn: Technology Lab

With locations in Nashville and Memphis, Technology Lab is the only Microsoft and Apple-certified MSP in Tennessee. A spin-off from the commercial services division of Computer PROS, the company provides managed IT services to large business customers as well as the educational and health care organizations.

Technology Lab’s Joshua Boyd

When founder and CEO Joshua Boyd moved into managed services from mortgage banking, he was determined to leave what he called an “Office Space”-like environment far behind. And looking at both the customer and employee sides of the business, he did just that.

On the client side, Technology Lab conducts assessments to understand how their businesses operate and generate revenue. Knowing what their clients do and why helps them align the client’s technology strategy with their goals. Getting to know all facets of a client’s business, not just the technical aspects, enables Technology Lab to identify opportunities for improvement and performance led by technology.

On the employee side, Technology Labs hires engineers and technicians with the overall customer experience in mind. Technical skills alone are not enough. Candidates must also possess the equally important human aspects of customer experience: empathy and people skills. Those who make the cut find themselves in an environment that Boyd describes as “corporate enough.” The focus is on professionalism and people, not regimentation and reports.

Boyd provided some insights on his company’s experiences during the pandemic, working in a vertical market and creating a company culture where employees enjoy their work.

Channel Futures: What new opportunities and challenges came with the global COVID-19 pandemic?

Joshua Boyd: The COVID-19 pandemic brought a variety of opportunities. Organizations depended on their IT infrastructure and devices like never before.

In addition, it highlighted the need for many clients to move their infrastructure to cloud hosted or at least hybrid environments. All of these made MSPs more important to their customers than ever. It allowed us to lock arms with our clients and get in the trenches and help them figure out tough technological challenges.

At the same time, some of the challenges faced were terrible tragedies, such as healthy vibrant businesses having to unexpectedly shut their doors. Some of them for good. Thankfully we weren’t verticalized in the entertainment industry, but, being in Nashville, I had some MSP friends that were. It was a rough year for them.

CF: Tell us the story of the biggest pivot you’ve ever had to execute.

JB: We made the decision to exclusively focus on one vertical market. This was a bit of a gut check, because we were worried about isolating ourselves from potential business. But we put our heads down, plowed forward and made the tough decision. At the end of the day, it was the best decision that we could have made. It allowed us to become even better for our valuable clients. In addition, it made things easier for our service teams and management. And our marketing and sales efforts were streamlined.

CF: Why are you a business owner instead of working for someone else? What is the allure of entrepreneurship to you?

JB: I always had a hard time sitting by in the trenches watching managers above me make bad decisions. To complicate matters, if I gave feedback, it was rarely listened to.

My last job I had before I went into the MSP business for myself was selling mortgages in a corporate office setting. Every day I was there felt like a day in the movie “Office Space.” I had an office manager who made us send in “TPS Reports” (yes, that’s what she called them) every day. In addition, I had two bosses who would yell at me every time I did something wrong. We also had a room full of adults who would start drama and just make the place completely unenjoyable, and the bosses would placate these “adults.”

I made the decision to get out of there, take a leap and start my own company. We now have a culture of “corporate enough” where we have processes in place, but never will I ever allow it to reach that “Office Space” level. Also, corporate buzzwords like “synergy” are banned. (Not really, but you get the drift.)

Now I have a company with a culture that mirrors my vision, and offers an inviting place for people to work, have fun and feel at home. Why would I want to work anywhere else?

 




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