Ari Milner, owner of PLANIT, (www. plainitinnovate.com) has been helping small businesses since 2016 take advantage of technology by generating new revenue from marketing. In addition he coaches them in ways of improving efficiency and reducing costs by understanding and improving use of technologies . He agreed to take time from his consulting services to answer some questions.
Please describe your philosophy.
I am available to help the little guys. I strive to be IT (information technology) and web technology resources that my small business clients value.
How old were you when you first started working with clients?
I first started working professionally in IT for my father when I was about 10 years old but first stated working professionally with my own clients when I was in college at age 18.
How did you come by the name PlanIT?
My business is PlanIT. I take pride in using the pun with a logo of the globe of the earth encircled with the symbol of power, the line through the circle.
what role does gut instincts play in problem solving /trouble shooting computer problems?
Intuition is very important in IT troubleshooting. Most of the time the end user describes a problem differently from how a technician may see it. However, with intuition, a skilled technician can tell the difference between what an end user is describing and what they are actually experiencing in technical terms. Therefore with good intuition, they can more easily understand how to solve the problem.
What role does gut instincts play in creating websites?
Websites are the public face of all small businesses these days. It is as important for a business website to reflect the style and look of the business as it is to reflect the values and culture of the business. I ask many questions of my clients when creating websites for them but beyond answers to the questions, intuition fills everything else.
How much time do you spend keeping up with changing and growing technology?
The industry is something that I’m always thinking about. I’m constantly reading articles, listening to podcasts, and chatting with colleagues about changes in the industry. This is important in any line of work, but with an industry as fast-paced as technology it is even more important.
In your work with people, how much or how often do you rely on intuition to address client concerns?
I rely on intuition regularly in dealing with my clients as well as project planning and creating proposals for them. I would say that at least once in every engagement with my clients I’m using some form of intuition. In all client interactions, it is important to listen to your clients and adjust your responses in a way that is understandable for your target but also addresses their needs. Most of this is educated guessing as well as intuition.
When you work with clients, do you think about what you know about the client?
Very much so. This is much more important with small business clients than with corporate clients. Corporate clients tend to be familiar with industry standards, certifications, and common needs or industry standard pricing and expectations. However small business clients typically need more education at varying levels before being comfortable enough to make an informed decision. It is just as much my job to educate my clients as it is to follow through with them on services. This is also why trust is more important in working with small businesses than with corporate clients. It is extremely important that my small business clients value my expertise in order to build trust and form a mutually beneficial relationship.