Last night we enjoyed an evening of dinner, dancing and decoration at the Xero Awards in London, celebrating the success of our partners in 2014.
Nineteen awards were presented across the evening, from our Regional Accounting Partners of the Year, right through to the Most Valued Professional, Add-on Partner of the Year and the Overall Accounting Partner of the Year.
A huge congratulations to all of our winners!
We welcomed our guests back to Xerocon day two after a big night of celebrations at the Xero Awards, acknowledging the success of our high achieving partners.
Branding your practice
Rita Clifton, chair of BrandCap, opened day two with why branding is so vital in the digital age. Successful branding is about being clear about who you are and what you stand for, communicating that in all that you do, and employing people who stand for what your brand stands for. “It helps if the CEO isn’t an idiot… they’ve got to epitomise who the brand actually is.”
“A brand is more than packaging and labelling,” she said. “It’s the substance that lies beneath.”
Today’s guest author is international motivational business speaker Debbie Mayo-Smith.
You know how important it is to have a small elevator pitch or few word summary of what you do. Not only to have it – but to get it right.
This is something that I have had great difficulty with. No, more than difficulty. It has painfully eluded me. Even though I am a marketer and normally have a way with words and know how to talk in benefits. Well, you would think – that is until it came to describing succinctly what I do. Having that wee pitch that generates interest and ‘tell me more’
Oh the struggle! Every time someone would ask ‘so, what do you talk about’? A feeling of pain would have to be carefully hidden from showing in my facial expression (because I knew I hadn’t found the perfect description) as I would stammer out an answer.
This past week I was in Melbourne, invited to speak at a very important event – AIME. Asia-Pacific Incentives & Meetings Expo. This event is populated with my prime target market – professional conference organisers and event/meeting planners.
I thought I was creative in picking this title for my presentation:
Tiny Tweaks – Great Gains. Fabulous smartphone, software, Internet, cloud tips from the queen of productivity Debbie Mayo-Smith.
Yeah, I agree now in retrospect. Toooooo verbose.
Keep your elevator pitch simple
The day before my keynote session, we had several networking events. Seeing simply my company name SuccessIS, which I never use anyway, people would ask, as they do, “So what do you do?” and “What do you speak about?”.
“I show how to use your everyday business tools better for more time and more income.”
“I talk about using everyday technology better.”
“I show how to make small changes for great gains in using everyday business tools.”
The response has always been bland – not that “ohhhhh, tell me more” that you are supposed to get (according to the people that teach you how to get the elevator pitch right). Yet, the subject matter – email overload, smartphones, software, the Internet, is something everyone uses and struggles with. Continue reading ›
More than 800 accounting industry professionals rolled into Battersea Evolution this morning for Xerocon London 2015, the UK’s largest fintech conference. Attendees arrived from far and wide – New Zealand, Australia, and the US, as well as all across the UK. Many rolled in on our awesome Xero shuttle bus, and some even arrived in our Xero black cab… though it’s no longer black!
Earlier this year we gave you a preview of our work on building out RTI-compliant UK payroll software. Now, we’re getting ready to bring UK payroll in Xero to life to offer a seamless online payroll & accounting experience for our UK customers. We know changing payroll software providers is a big decision, so we want to share details on what to expect.
Payroll in Xero is designed to help make running your business easy. If you work with your accountant or bookkeeper they can be invited in to manage payroll for you or invite someone in to manage payroll without seeing the rest of the business financials. Integrated accounting and payroll is inevitable. Information from payroll seamlessly flows into the accounts – no more manual data entry, no more manual processing. The way it should be.
UK Payroll in Xero
We’ve built beautiful, smart online UK Payroll for businesses and their advisers that’s easy to implement and easy to use from anywhere. We’ve designed the experiences for businesses with less than twenty employees.
Today’s release introduces a new notifications framework to Xero – a new way of keeping you up to date about what’s happening from within the application.
With more features being added to Xero every month, and with the features we’ve got in the pipeline, there will be more opportunities to send updates to you – and to your advisor. We’re keen for Xero to “work while you sleep”, automating many of the mundane and repetitive aspects of running a small business. As we do more of this for you, we also want to keep you updated.
We figured this required a rethink about how we provide you with these updates.
Previously, updates have been provided through the notifications inbox; every now and then you’ll see a small red circle letting you know there’s a new update to read about.
Typically these updates tell you about a new product release, or about a bank feed’s status. To read the notification you need to click on the inbox icon, access the list of notifications and click on one to read it. Put another way, you have to stop what you’re doing to see these updates.
Our vision is simple: to have a single notification engine that supports all our applications; not only Xero, but our mobile and practice offerings as well.
Today’s release is the beginning of that journey.
Updates are signalled in the same way: via a small red number on top of the inbox. Instead of needing to go into the inbox, you click on the icon to display a drop-down menu that sits “on top” of whatever you’re working on. You don’t need to jump into a new screen to read the update. Watch the video below to find out more.
Xero UK managing director Gary Turner is down at Battersea Evolution the day before Xerocon London 2015 kicks off, with a summary of what to expect over the next two days. Check it out here:
Last month (Wednesday, January 21, to be exact) a group of four Xeroes – Saul Colt, Arthur Garcia, Marie Jung and Karen Liu – packed into the Xero-approved Mini Cooper and headed to the California State Capitol in Sacramento. There, they marked the Xero territory in chalk, fed hungry accountants, and doled out lots of Xero love during CPA Day @ the Capitol.
State CPA societies often organize an annual CPA Day – an event that gathers members with state representatives to discuss key issues facing the profession. These discussions are important. They help shape the future of better business policies all across the state. Attendees volunteer their time – and this year, for CalCPA, a record number of members, including student chapters, attended.
A shared mission
Xero shares a mission in common with CPA Day. And we’re inspired by the folks who took the time to perform this service – which made it the perfect setting to show our love and support – complete with food and smiles. And well, the feeling was mutual:
What will it take to boost the role of small businesses in the UK? In less than a week, a line-up of influential guest speakers along with some of our very own stars will speak at this year’s Xerocon, which is now the UK’s largest fintech conference and is taking place on February 10 and 11 in London.
Xerocon Day One – Tuesday, 10 February
Our first guest speaker to the stage will be the vice-chairman of West Ham United FC, Karren Brady, who is also a peer in the House of Lords and the Small Business Ambassador to the Conservative Party, besides making regular appearances on the BBC TV show The Apprentice. After many successful years as a businesswoman, Karren is well-placed to explore the theme of this year’s Xerocon.
Karren will be one of several influential thinkers at this year’s event, which is at Battersea Evolution in London and features talks and workshops brimming with practical advice, insider product updates and predictions about the future of technology. And of course, plenty of opportunities for networking.
Welcome to another year of doing beautiful business in the cloud. The new year is still young, but it’s already shaping up to be a massive one. We’ve got lots of exciting developments to share with you, and plenty of ideas to help you get inspired about smarter and more efficient ways to run your practice.
And there’s really no better way to keep you informed, and kickstart your thinking, than by coming along to a roadshow. So I’m really looking forward to hitting the road, meeting partners and doing my bit to inspire all of you.
This February we’ll be visiting 20 cities across the county to present, network, demo and chat all things cloud accounting and business evolution.
Evolve is the theme for this year’s February Roadshow. What does this mean for you as a partner?
Whether you’re starting out with cloud accounting, or are well on the way to growing your client base, this roadshow is about evolving your thinking, ideas and business processes and really taking what you do to the next level.
To help you get there, we’ll be showcasing our latest tools, a new demo stream and hands on sessions to create clear action points for the evolution of your practice. And yes, we’ll be sharing a sneak peek of upcoming Xero product features.