It was a long gestation, and perhaps a bit of a painful experience, for the couple who brought this new creation into being here in the heartland. David and Tiki Jo Farmer are the proud couple giving birth to the newest ‘active’ National Advisor Network (NAN) Group, and perhaps my role in this whole thing might be best described as ‘Godfather.’ (Personally, I think I will like that title).
Turn-out was a little on the light side, especially when you consider that we sent out 170 invitations to every Oklahoma ProAdvisor within 150 miles of Oklahoma City. So the fact that only 8 people attended might seem a poor turn-out, but when you consider that the temperature outside was 22 degrees, with a wind-chill 11 at the start of the meeting, and possibilities of light snow before midnight, you might understand why some people from even 30 or 40 miles away might decide not attend the birthing.
From left to right: Patrick Farmer, Valerie Williams, Ann Lee, David Farmer, Tiki Jo Farmer, Liz Scott, MJ Brienen and your's truly "Murph".
The majority of us attending knew each other, and in fact this undertaking had begun at least conceptually at last summer’s Scaling New Heights where 6 of us ‘got all excited’ over the opportunity of saying “we’re proud members of the Oklahoma NAN Group.” The reality is that we were all equally excited tonight to sit down and listen to each other’s story, and share what the National Advisor Network and Scaling New Heights has meant to us, as well as begin the quest of growing-up into a great group.
Tiki Jo Farmer (who forever will be ‘mom’ to the group’) had everything perfect, from the NAN name tags to the agenda, to the copies of the NAN Member Code of Conduct, along with informational flyers on NAN and SNH, I must say that she did a great job of organizing not only tonight’s meeting, but getting the next two meetings already lined up in terms of venue and agenda. Of course it never hurts to hold a meeting at one of the best Bar-B-Q places in the state, especially when the staffer assigned to us waited on us hand and foot (“thanks Earl’s of Moore”).
The new Group’s father, David Farmer, gave an overview of NAN membership benefits. I couldn’t help but reinforce the fact that the best QuickBooks and Intuit forum on the planet is the NAN forum. I mean the forum alone, composed of high quality questions and high quality answers from the ‘cream of the crop’ best ProAdvisors on the planet is more than worth the $10.00 per month for the entry level NAN membership.
David also gave a presentation on what those attending Scaling New Heights receive in the way of professional education, vendor interaction, access to Intuit personnel including product managers, and most of all the opportunity to build life-long relationships with ‘the best of the best’ advisors working within the Intuit ecosystem. Of course my job was to forecast just how much ‘fun’ we are all going to have at this year’s conference in New Orleans. By the way Joe Woodard has generously donated 1 free registration to Scaling New Heights 2015 which will be presented at our next Oklahoma NAN Group meeting on April 2nd, “Thanks Joe.”
I spoke briefly (those of you who know me are laughing at that) about Intuitive Accountant, several recent Intuit related ‘issues’, and the launch of Intuit’s new QuickBooks Point-of-sale for iPad powered by Revel. Perhaps it was some of these topics that could be akin to the ‘birthing pains’ for our baby NAN chapter.
Personally I think it was a successful delivery and now we must grow, surely there will be growing pains along the way, and we will need some guidance and help from those who have gone through similar experiences, but I am confident that our ‘little one’ will blossom before our eyes in the months and years to come.
If you are not a member of the National Advisor Network, you should be. The cream of the crop, best of the best ProAdvisors on the planet are members of NAN. The forum, the free monthly webinars, the learning resources and other benefits far outweigh the cost of membership. NAN is like having a ‘looking glass’ into the minds of Intuit, QuickBooks product managers, and other ProAdvisors just like yourself, as well as countless other professionals who can provide knowledge resources you and your practice need. Here is your link for more information about NAN Membership and Benefits.
No I am not done (there are some things I just can’t say enough about). If you are a NAN Member or even if you are not, you can still benefit by participating in a local NAN Group. Don’t quote me on this, but I believe that there are more than 50 active NAN Groups across the United States, while some states don’t have a NAN Group, many large states have several Groups; in fact in some large metro areas there may even be multiple Groups available to you. NAN Groups foster local relationships with other experts in your own area, each participant can build their knowledge and skills by not only absorbing what the group has to offer, but just as importantly by contributing to group as well. About now you are thinking ”how can Murph know so much about NAN Groups when the Oklahoma Group just formed?” Well I can say that I am a proud ‘unofficial’ member of the Dallas NAN Groups, usually attending about 3 or 4 meetings each year for the past few years. It’s been my pleasure to not only attend and contribute to those meetings, but to also instruct on one occasion. What I have come to recognize is ‘you get out of NAN and NAN Groups, what you put into them.’ So get with it people, NAN is where it’s at, the question is, are you part of NAN?
Last but not least, let me mention Scaling New Heights (I realize my Editor’s comments are going to be as long as my feature article) but February 28 is the deadline for early registration for this summer’s conference to be held June 21 thru 24 in New Orleans. Right now you can save big on your registration and even bigger by coupling early registration with your NAN Premier Membership by earning education discounts for education credits (from NAN activities like webinars, chapter meetings and conferences.) Scaling New Heights is a ‘one of a kind’ Intuit-centric educational event which hosts the largest single gathering of QuickBooks ProAdvisors and experts anywhere. This is pure QuickBooks at its finest, desktop and online versions, core products and 3rd party integrated solutions. Focus groups, in-depth and one-of-a-kind training that can be found nowhere else, not to mention hundreds of Intuit product specialists, product development personnel, support staff, and even product managers, not to mention many high level Intuit executives. Don’t wait to decide you should attend, register for the conference NOW while you can still take advantage of the discounted pricing, and then make your reservations for your hotel accommodations before the room block is sold out. It will be more than ‘worth your while.’