During the Fall of 2013 I was fortunate to attend an intense retreat on Method, a CRM (and more) which integrates with QuickBooks. That retreat was in my opinion a complete success with just a couple of exceptions. At that time I was the newest Partner and to me it seemed to be 'way too much material' (both didactic and practical to cram into the few days we were there. While there were several Method staff members there to help during practical session a few more staffers might have allowed for even closer tutoring.
Well more than a year went by, but this past December, Method held another Partner Retreat but this time on their home turf in Toronto.
Yes, it was chilly on the outside (especially for those southern US Partners who spent their first day in the mall, adding an extra winter layer or two to their wardrobe) but inside the Retreat things began to heat up right away. As I understand it there was a major snow storm the day after the retreat ended. Being on 'the home front' you might expect a few differences in this most recent retreat over the last and sure enough.
From the initial welcome reception, all the Methodologists (Partners and staff alike) were ready to jump feet-first into training on the new version of Method. Aside from the hands-on product training, there were also great opportunities for Method Partners to get an updated view of the vision, priorities and roadmap for the company - the team brought them further into the world of Method, outlining what the weeks and months ahead were planned to bring.
Partners also had the opportunity to give Method great feedback via a brainstorming session where groups gathered insights as to the key resources they'd need for the new version of Method. In fact, ‘opportunity’ and ‘feedback’ quickly became the buzzwords for the entire event, with the dialogue open, continuous and often loud and excitable!
After a gentle introduction, the hard work began with attendees splitting across three training tracks to start their introduction (or continue their further immersion) in the new Method platform. With the platform still in Beta, the days weren’t without some hiccups. However, the ability to work hands on in the product, with Method staff leading sessions and providing assisted guidance throughout, was invaluable. Running the Retreat in Toronto was certainly a hit, with more Method staff available to be on-hand during sessions as well as during social time, to connect face-to-face with both new and long-term Partners alike.
The Method Retreat saw an amazing cross-section of attendees, from their longest-running Partner, Woodard Consulting, to their newest member (who joined, signed up and attended in just a week!) Bill Kennedy of Energized Accounting. Attendees identified the two key highlights of the retreat as the opportunity to dive deep into the new platform, and connect with Method staff during the post-conference one-on-one sessions.
So when will we next see Method training on the new platform? Well, as the new version of Method progresses, more online resources for self-help and self-training will become available - plus, they’re scheduled to run a number of sessions aimed at new- to intermediate-level Partners, at the Scaling New Heights conference in New Orleans this coming June.
Will there be a Method Retreat in 2015? Absolutely! The team plans to run the Retreat again in Toronto, although they may adjust the timing if possible so as to offer a warmer alternative that’s a viable option for their Partners, who may already have a heavy event schedule during summer or fall.
It’s an exciting time to be a Methodologist (OK, OK - a 'Method Partner'), by getting in early so as to be ahead of the curve, trained, knowledgeable and ready to go, on the new platform, they are uniquely positioned to deliver the Method as the new version drives its way towards public launch later this year.
So if you are interested in becoming a Methodologist, you can find information on the Method Partner Program here and an overview of the Scaling New Heights Conference which will include Method sessions here.