Why do you think it’s so important that people in this industry, and in fact in all industries, need to be tapped into the cloud and understanding what it means to them? – Alexi Boyd

Amanda Newton being interviewed by Alexi Boyd on the #SmallBizMatters radio show

I am a digital nomad. I call myself that because it means I can work out of my handbag. That is because I have embraced the cloud. Some people feel that they are … either have embraced the cloud because they’ve got an online accounting solution, but they still haven’t embraced the ability to actually work remotely. For someone like me, coming to something like this, this is actually one of the few times I actually get out of the office and meet a lot of people. It’s really important to stretch yourself to travel and to actually see if you can work outside of your office. Coming to a conference like this is actually a great opportunity. There’s a lot of meeting room areas set up so you can actually work and conference and learn and be amongst your peers and be amongst wonderful, rarefied accountants and learn from them and tap into the technology that’s available here and learn from the technology and see what’s here.

It’s interesting what you say about that concept of getting out of your office. It’s great that we can all work remotely and work from home and work at the dining room table and find that work life balance. In same ways, it’s so important to be somewhere like this because you’ve got that connectivity with other people. You’ve also got the education element as well. – Alexi Boyd

This is an extract of an interview Alexi Boyd of #SmallBizMatters did with me at the Accounting Business Expo #ABE2019. You can hear the full interview at the link at the bottom of the page.

Accounting Apps that can support your advisory journey –  Accounting and Business Expo

I was on a panel with Tim Hoopmann, Bryan Williams, Joseph Robins discussing apps you could use on your advisory journey. We discussed various tools that you could implement on your actual practise to help with business intelligence, to help collect data from clients, and to make sure your practise is running as efficiently as possible. The team at GoCardless the payments collection solution produced highlights of the panel discussion.

Here is a highlight video of our discussions of Apps you can use on your Advisory journey…

DataDear is a tool you can use for a two way connection between your online accounting solutions to Excel. You can do the analysis and manipulation you love in Excel and have your accounts in the cloud.

Here’s me explaining that customers are telling accountants what apps they want to use.
“We know a lot of accountants and bookkeepers are sitting in Excel spreadsheets and they are not even on online accounting solutions. They are comfortable in that world. Knowing where to go and where to move from that is the challenge and hopefully bringing them on board to show them a better way. As we have gone through this journey I’ve heard a lot of accountants have been initiated by their client who has actually found the technology first and then has come back and said why are we not doing this.”


Community, social media and finding your tribe –  Accounting and Business Expo

Community, social media and finding your tribe at ABE photo credit Michelle Grisdale

Now the other session I talked on was with Amanda Newton Head of Community from Xero. That was actually on building a community and using social media and being very brand present and brand aware about what’s happening across social media. Many of us have found using social media platforms to be very effective in sharing what we do. We had a great session talking about building that community and being professional, but still having fun, in the various Facebook groups, the LinkedIn groups, the Twitter, and talking to people about how they should … how they would benefit, what are some of the good ways that they should interact online.

Alexi Boyd:                          Because that interactivity is one way that you can get out there and connect with other people, but you have to be careful. One of the things Amanda was saying here today is the importance of treating others with respect and maybe sometimes if you’re feeling a bit heated up about something, to just type it out, walk away, and not hit send. Is that something that I think … in your experience with cloud accounting and people working more remotely, that we’re becoming a little bit more aggressive with our online presence, or is it getting better in your opinion?

Heather Smith:                  For me, it’s been, on the most, a wonderful, wonderful experience. However, I do think what Amanda kept stressing was be kind online, be kind online. I think sometimes you put something up black and white and it can be read in a couple of different ways. I facilitate a mastermind … cloud mastermind group with over three thousand people. Every so often, someone puts a comment up and I actually have known that person for years and years and years. I’ll take them aside and said, “That is coming across as this. Is that what you meant it to be?” They’re like, “Oh. No, no, no, no.” They just didn’t put enough words and didn’t explain themselves enough, so it did come across aggressive, but perhaps it was just … it was a bit short.

Heather Smith:                  When you do put something up online, make sure you’ve thought about all the different angles someone is going to read that. I know that a lot of people actually voyeur in the group, which is wonderful, but yet you can go and put something up. Go and talk with people. Think of it as a café. What would you say in a café that would be appropriate, professionally, to your colleagues?

Alexi Boyd:                          Just lastly, I wanted to just tap in with you with your fantastic newsletter that you have because I’m learning more and more about that. That is a fantastic resource for people who want to find out little tidbits of information. Obviously, today, lots of great cloud applications.

Tell people how they can subscribe to your Accounting Apps newsletter.

In the #SmallBizMatters studio

Heather Smith:                  You can find my newsletter at HeatherSmithAU.com/ and the concept of the Accounting Apps newsletter is to provide you with chunked education about accounting apps. You can receive it as often or as little as you want. You just need to tell me. It gives you insight into the accounting apps world and you can click through. As you click through on things, the newsletter will customise to what your interests are. The other day, my website designer, who subscribes to my newsletter, she’s … she came by and she goes, “Wow. I’ve picked up some great tips about the tools that I use in my own website designing digital business,” which was sensational. These are solutions that accountants may well be interacting with and helping their clients use.

Alexi Boyd:                          That’s a fantastic resource. Thank you for providing that to the small business community. Look, thank you for everything you do with representing accountants, representing bookkeepers, and really being a force of nature when it comes to the connectivity that you offer everyone. Thanks for joining us today, Heather.

Heather Smith:                  Thank you so much, Alexi. Really appreciate being here. Thank you to all the listeners for listening in.

You can listen to this interview on YouTube