Xerocon 2015

Last week 3 of our team travelled to Melbourne for Xerocon. Here are the thoughts of Annette, our newbie.

As a first time participant at a Xero Conference and a relative newbie to Xero, my expectations were high for this year’s Melbourne Xerocon. It didn’t disappoint.

I attended the Uni Day on Wednesday, 12th August 2015, where I participated in the Partner Certification. This course took us through the basics of Xero, with exercises to match the syllabus. Gayle and her team did an excellent job of keeping about 80 people on track. I was expecting a little more depth for some of the topics, however, it was mentioned that time just didn’t allow for more in-depth discussions on some of the topics.

The next day was the start of Xerocon. It was HUGE. It felt like thousands of people was packed to hear Rod Drury’s opening speech. I think it was about 1600 participants – but it felt bigger! Rod was a treat. He wasn’t talking all fluff and high-to-come-by theories – he spoke like you and me, and he looks like you and me! In fact, what used to put me off the Accounting profession was the suits and the career climbing and political games to get to the top. This was not it. The participants were everyday people, mostly from small businesses, to support other small businesses – I fit right in!

The conference had various streams – education stream, accounting stream, bookkeeping stream etc. where we sometimes split up to attend talks that was more relevant to the stream. I listened in on social media discussions with blogger Louisa Clare and others to advise on online marketing tools. Other talks included tips and tricks for Bookkeepers, and how to add value to modern bookkeeping services with the lovely Mel Power. Xero also had various talks on what they are currently working on to be released in the next few months, and what’s further down the line.

The Friday morning saw a selected few, including colleague Nicole Lynch, at a breakfast for the ‘Grow your Practice’ graduates – with positive and empowering tales of people who started with very little and have seen their practices grow over the last 6-9 months. Very motivating.

The conference ended with an open Q&A session with the Xero Management Team, which saw interesting questions (and a few questions that have already been answered during the previous 2 days!) and lastly it al came down with a bang at the Gala Dinner down at Docklands, with Xero’s very own band making loud noises, and some prestigious awards being announced.

All in all, it didn’t disappoint. I met like minded people and aspiring add-on partners. The only thing I missed was the bumper cars – I heard (and saw some very graphical evidence) of last year’s bumper car fun – nowhere to be found this year 🙂

Here’s to Xero for making everyone feel like part of the family!