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How to get the most out of pre-conference workshops this conference season

Posted 3 years ago in Advisors by
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Spring and Summer are just around the corner, and do you know what else is? Xerocon Atlanta! As always, we’re bringing you a day of pre-conference workshops to make sure you start your Xerocon learnings off on the right foot. But how do you know if pre-conference workshops are right for you? Which one should you choose?

As you plan your conference season (including Xerocon, of course), we know these are top-of-mind questions. So we asked the experts — Xero accounting partners, our fellow Xeros and Xerocon speakers — to share their insights as to why pre-conference workshops, in general, should always be “must-attend” on your conference list and why our Xerocon workshops stand out.

Gain that dedicated in-the-field, we-get-you focus

“Pre-conference workshops offer intimate sessions with a concentrated focus,” says Sarah Bleeker, Manager of Evangelist Development at Xero. “And at Xerocon, each session is led or co-hosted by a Xero partner — your peers, offering real-world insight and examples.”

Pre-conference workshops are taught by those in the trenches who have been where you are and know exactly what you need to grow your business – offering insight tailored to your experience. In many cases, such as our Xero Advisor Certification class, you can complete a workshop taught by a peer advisor who knows firsthand how certifications can add to your firm’s value.

Dive into the ‘how’ in interactive, hands-on workshops

Pre-conference workshops offer the opportunity to get hands-on. With full-day experiences that go beyond the 50-minute sessions in a regular conference schedule, you’re not just listening. You’re getting involved: talking, sharing, and creating action plans. Ryan Watson, Xero Ambassador and Founder and Principal of Upsourced Accounting, agrees:

“Pre-con is actually the most beneficial part of Xerocon,” Ryan explains. “It offers an opportunity to work in small, collaborative groups with other Xero partners and solve something tangible for your practice. There really is something for every firm partner and staff member to take back to their practice and implement.”

What are some of those tangibles? Each workshop has been crafted to help you reach your goals as an individual and as a firm. The Art of the Sale will hone your skills in selling your firm and your services by giving you a proven structure and process.

David Emmerman, Xero Ambassador and partner at Emmerman, Boyle & Associates, explains that the Accelerate pre-con workshop will help you “turn your focus to working on your business, not just in it.”

“This is a roll up your sleeves and work workshop,” David adds. “You will be sharing and interacting with your peers. We will share our thoughts, ideas and best practices as a group so come willing to share where you are now and where you aspire to be.”

Build deeper networks with peers

With such deep conversations, the connections you make are only amplified by the more intimate setting. With limited seating and a hands-on approach, you will work in smaller groups of attendees sharing mutual experiences, with an understanding of each other that goes deeper than traditional sessions. Since networking is one of the top reasons people attend conferences, these workshops offer the perfect way to ensure you’re building solid relationship foundations.

“Every time I have attended a Xero function, the best thing is the amazing new people I meet,” says Michael Levy, Xero partner and CEO and Co-Founder of Bean Counter 4 Hire. He took networking to another level at a Xero event – starting a business with a peer that he met there.

“It’s great to hear others sharing similar experiences because then we can encourage one another through the various ways each of us has managed them.”

Take the right steps on your business journey

Many Xero advisors are on a journey: one that will define the future of their firm and the success they want to achieve. Wherever you are on that path, there is a workshop that will help you build action steps to get there. In Owning Automation: Streamlining Your Bookkeeping Workflows, you’ll learn how technology can automate your day to day for more efficiency. In the Mobile Advisor, learn how Apple and Xero can help you define a plan for creating a niche-focused mobility workflow for your clients.

Jessica Berkley, Certified Xero Advisor at Beyond Balanced Books, attended Xerocon Austin and says that last year’s pre-conference workshops helped define both her personal goals and her firm’s goals for this year.

“I came away from that session with a renewed sense of purpose about the role I play within our firm and with our client relationships,” Jessica explains. “Based on the content, our goal as a firm this year is to enhance our existing client and internal workflows to provide ‘modern bookkeeping with a personal touch’, blending both best of breed technology with proactive bookkeeping services.”

So whether it’s Xerocon or other conferences this season, take full advantage of the opportunities pre-conference workshops present. Take a look today at the pre-conference workshops on offer at Xerocon Atlanta and choose your own adventure.

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