Takeaways from Day 1 of this Week’s Specialized Industry Accounting Conference

I’m on the road again enjoying sharing insights from the specialized industry accounting conference I am attending.  Today’s takeaways started even before we reached the registration desk, where I introduced Elizabeth Spradley, our firm’s accounting manager to some of the returning attendees and conference administrators.  They continued as we participated in the day’s workshops and on through the welcome reception.

Here are my highlights and takeaways from Day 1 of the conference:

Office in the Clouds
Office in the Clouds

These days your office is truly in the clouds:

Use travel time as quiet time away from your office, a great time to reflect on operations or update your business plan or even finalize your goal list for the conference you are heading to.



Mobile Office
Mobile Office

Technology is helping you create a truly mobile office even when on the road. Most of us use our telephones for keeping in touch with the office while away from our desks, certainly via voice and text.  Available technology assures that business never stops even though we are traveling. Today after landing in Florida I was in our Lyft car on my way to a lunch appointment and a video chat meeting reminder popped up on my cell phone. I downloaded the video chat app and joined the meeting, and then used the video to show the restaurant’s “cool” interior and then ended the call.  No need to reschedule!

AP & ES: on our way
AP & ES: on our way

Plan out your conferences for the year and schedule to have at least 2 team members attend. The reception was a bit like “Memory”, the matching game we played as kids.  Many of the firms sent 2 or more employees to the conference and we were able to match team-mates by the state they were from.  During the first-day group discussions, I found that many firms (businesses) send several employees to the same conference.  With pre-planning, they may sit in on different sessions and then compare notes.  When they return to the office there is a pre-scheduled day for debriefing, practice improvement recommendations and specific training.  “Share all insights via “Cascade training”.

Conference workshops in group project format when facilitated properly can yield the best insights of the conference.  This is usually an opportunity to share factors that influence why and how we grow our firms or businesses.  Also a great time to hear and discuss what is going on in the industry/profession.  My recommendation is when more than one team member is attending that each of you sits at a different table.  This is a great opportunity to be a “fly on the wall” at the other table.

It was a great first day, greeting old friends, making new ones and sharing “best practices” during the breaks.

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