Since starting Joy Accounting four years ago, Terra and I have had the opportunity to travel to QuickBooks Connect in San Jose on three occasions. QuickBooks Connect is a three-day event put on by Intuit every November with (seemingly) a million classes on all things accounting and so much more.
What is the ‘so much more’ I’m referring to? Copious amounts of classes taught by industry leaders on everything from maximizing the value we offer to our clients to understanding latest trends in cryptocurrency. Amazing keynote speakers such as Oprah, Shonda Rhimes, and Alex Rodriguez (Oprah was definitely the best of that group!). Lots of opportunities to connect with representatives from a ton of QuickBooks partner apps. Oh – and in our first year we were even treated to a Goo Goo Dolls concert. Seeing over a thousand accountants rocking out to Goo Goo Dolls is about as nerdy – and awesome – as it sounds.
This year, however, was the absolute best, because we brought our team along with us. What an amazing experience it was!
One of the cool things about building a business in the digital age is that your team can be ‘location independent’. I plan on writing posts in the future about how we make our remote business work, but for now suffice it to say that our team represents 3 states (Washington, Minnesota, and Pennslyvania). So while we connect all the time via tools such as Zoom and Slack, prior to Quickbooks Connect we had never actually met together as a team.
I (Nate) was tagged with the unofficial ‘MC of Activities’ role for the week, so naturally I started planning an activity for our first day together intended to be fun and not too business-oriented – something that would bond us together as a team. And because I love eating good food, I landed on cooking together! I found a great service, Cozymeal, who were willing to send a trained chef to our AirBnb for a 4-hour experience involving making (and, of course, eating) a several-course meal. (Note: if you decide to do this in San Jose area definitely ask for Chef Joni…she was fabulous!)
We laughed, we ate, we laughed some more, and we learned a lot about each other in the space of just a few hours! For example, everyone got to see how little I knew my way around a kitchen and I was pretty quickly given appropriate tasks for my skill level!
This activity set the stage for what ended up being a fabulous week at QuickBooks Connect (expect many more posts from this conference!).
What was our main takeaway from the team-building part of our experience? As a small business owner, there are only so many different balls you can juggle at once, and it’s easy (and necessary) to let some things go by the wayside. Creating memories and connections with your team is absolutely not one of these things!
At Joy Accounting, we are so lucky and grateful to have some intelligent, creative, problem-solving team members. We truly believe that the connections we made throughout this experience will help us collaborate even better in 2019. Watch out world!!!