My name is Eric Whitney. I’m one of the Associate IT Directors at Insource. I’ve been with Insource for just over three years and I’m one of the people helping lead our IT teams and deliver services to our clients.
Most of my time is spent one-on-one with staff, developing them, helping them take on new challenges, and doing more than I could ever do myself.
I love working with strong performers and feel privileged when I’m able to support their professional development.
How did you find Insource?
In my previous role, I was leading IT at a small non-profit. I’d been there for years and oversaw every single piece of IT infrastructure. Everything was very stable, and my role was becoming more of a maintenance job. I wanted a challenge.
I’d started becoming interested in consulting when I went to hear Russell [Greenwald, Insource Vice President] speak on a panel at a workshop. I was impressed with what he had to say, so I approached him afterwards and asked to meet. We got coffee the next day and the rest, as they say, is history.
How was the interview process?
That coffee shop chat was the confirmation we both needed to line up interviews. I’ll admit I never had so many interviews for one job before! Now that I’m on the other side, I can understand that’s why we have such great people here at Insource – it’s because we have such a rigorous recruitment process.
The high quality of staff is because we take recruitment very seriously. We’re all humble throughout – everyone is here to learn, and no one knows better than anyone else. We each come in knowing we have a day ahead full of growth and learning. This creates a humble, growth-minded culture that attracts brilliant candidates.
What were your main goals going in?
Coming into Insource, I was seeking a role where I would not be bored. Careful what you wish for! When I consider the pace of my old job versus working here – the difference is like night and day! I’m so grateful as I’m always being challenged.
Those who manage me have a refined sense of when someone’s getting comfortable and they know how to push, challenge, and grow.
I find that’s how I grow best, and, arguably, how most people grow. My managers have been careful not to sink me or overwhelm me, but to help me thrive. My expertise is not measured by myself but by the team that stands behind me and has my back.
What was your biggest challenge?
Moving fast enough. I wanted the challenge and initially, I needed to acclimate to the consulting mindset and switching between clients, responding to emails and requests, etc. I quickly grew from managing three clients to six to ten and so on. Prioritization has always been key to me and that was crucial starting in my new role at Insource.
I soon learned the value of delegation and I take time to ensure I work with good people I can turn to for support. The main challenge, though, was increasing the speed at which I am able to respond. Like most of us, it’s an area where I’ll always be learning, never done.
What’s your day-to-day like?
My calendar is color-coded to show internal vs. external commitments. This makes it easy to assess what I’m spending my time on at a high level. So, for example, today, I have nine internal check-ins with staff. Two thirds of my time is staff-facing. I help with client strategy but in the capacity of supporting the managers I’m working with.
This helps them build those relationships, demonstrate their own skills, and grow. Each year, my client interactions decrease as I coach staff to take on more of that. More and more, my voice is one of reassurance and support as I make sure everyone is happy – clients and staff. This is what drives my day.
What opportunities are available to you?
Great opportunities have been there from the start. Very soon after I joined, Russell emailed me with the plans to shift and grow leadership, clearly showing my trajectory. I didn’t feel pressured, though. He took a “whenever you’re ready” approach. So, unprompted, I was grown, and I could see a future.
We have these conversations earlier and earlier in a new starter’s onboarding. No one is static. Within the first few weeks of a new hire’s career with Insource, we’re saying, “Let’s talk about your trajectory”.
What is the support like?
Support at Insource goes to the core value we share, namely: if we all accept that we are lifelong learners, no one should be operating by themselves. If we’re operating in a silo by ourselves, we’re missing opportunities to learn from someone or teach someone. So, everyone can always reach out with questions – in fact, it’s expected.
We always get answers, help, and support. It’s part of who Insource is. If anyone has a problem or crisis, they’d raise their hand, and everyone would try to jump in and help. We try to support each other, and it spills over into how our clients view us and work with us. We have trust and respect, built on support and integrity.
Work you are most proud of?
Building relationships with challenging clients, being put into challenging situations where we didn’t know how it would go, and then being able to turn that around. I apparently have a knack for listening, empathizing, and understanding how we can work collaboratively together in challenging situations and have myself and Insource helps them navigate through those.
What do you do for fun?
My day ends pretty consistently with a five-year-old and an eight-year-old storming up the stairs and grabbing me away from work. I love spending time with my energetic boys. I focus on having a good work/life balance and Insource has been very supportive.
If someone has a family or health issue, Insource always says, “you gotta take care of yourself first – we can’t get the best from you if you’re not at your best.”
Was Insource the right fit for you?
It was. I think finding it was a fair amount of luck baked in. Before Insource, I was aware of the IT MSP/Consulting world but now I have a deeper understanding of how Insource is different. We are far more flexible than many MSPs I’ve seen – we meet our clients where they’re at and want to be seen as their IT department.
It puts a lot more ownership on us – we’re there to recommend, implement, and manage. We’re on the hook to make sure the end result is achieved. We don’t just stay at arm’s length telling other businesses what to do, we implement it and take responsibility for making it work.
It’s an understatement to say it was the right fit for me – I’m so fortunate that the stars aligned, and I could meet Russell. I feel that this approach of taking ownership of our clients’ results speaks to a core part of who I am and how I view my work. Now I have the great opportunity to think about how I can offer the same to others.
How would you describe the Insource culture?
We are a people-first, tech-second company – a people company that happens to do technology. Everything we do – how we work internally, how we work with clients – it’s all about people. How we start there is why we have such strong relationships and bonds. For us all to get the most out of ourselves and our teams. It’s a culture I never want to see us lose.
Even now while we’re growing so much, we’re committed to maintaining this strong culture. I’ve been pushing for those conversations about good culture and ensuring the great culture we have goes beyond just Bruce (Hain, Insource President & CEO).
We’re asking important questions, like: How can we all be culture ambassadors? We need to identify what makes us who we are and double down on our commitment to understanding exactly what we’re doing right, particularly in those cultural areas of people and relationships. I’m committed to leaning into helping ensure we have a strong culture.
Want to see our open positions?
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