Now that you have made the decision to go, booked and paid for your ticket, what should you do to prepare for Xerocon?
As I look forward to my 5th Xerocon in London in October, here are my 4 top tips – what to do to help you prepare for Xerocon.
1) FINALISE YOUR TRAVEL ARRANGEMENTS
Make sure that all your travel and accommodation plans are finalised well in advance of the event date. Hotels in the area will be busy, so booking early will give you a better chance of finding something close to the venue at a reasonable price.
Once you arrive in London, how long will it take you to get to your hotel?
What is the best way to get there? – is it by Tube or if flying into Gatwick, will you take the Gatwick Express?
Although the London Underground is straightforward to use, I always like to plan my route in advance. I like using Tube Tamer but you may be happy planning your journey using a map of the underground instead. Make sure you have allowed enough time for delays and busier times around rush hour.
2) THINK ABOUT PERSONAL AND PRACTICE EXPECTATIONS
What are the personal benefits you are expecting from Xerocon?
Review the schedule issued by Xero …
Here’s where you will find details of Day 1
Here’s all the information on Day 2
What interests you?
Which speakers are you looking forward to hearing from?
Choose your break-out sessions if they are announced in advance.
What does your boss expect from you? It’s worth discussing with your manager in advance and finding out what they want you to achieve? On your return, do you need to write a report or maybe give a presentation to other members of staff?
I always like to write down my expectations, so that I can refer back to them both during and after the event. There’s no point deciding what you want to achieve a few weeks beforehand and then forgetting all about it.
3) NETWORKING PLANS
As mentioned in my blog “Should I take my Team to Xerocon?” the event is great for networking.
Who do you want to meet up with and why?
Here’s some suggestions…
- Your Xero Account Manager – see if you can plan a meeting time in advance, as he/she is likely to be inundated with requests.
- Other Xero Accountants – is there somebody you look forward to catching up with every year?
- Xero add-ons. If possible research the exhibitors and decide the ones you might want to check out.
- Is there somebody you have met on social networks but not in person? It’s always worthwhile searching for #Xerocon and #XeroconLondon on Twitter and following the Xero blog for the latest updates. Being sociable in advance can lead to new, lifelong friendships with other Xero fans.
4) PACK YOUR BAGS
What do you expect the weather to be like in London and what do you plan to wear at the event?
Xerocon is a fairly casual affair, so there’s no need to worry about packing a shirt and tie, unless that’s what you feel comfortable wearing.
And don’t forget the party evening. Will you have time to go back to your hotel to get changed beforehand? Or do you need to go there prepared in the morning?
And before closing your bags, don’t forget your phone, laptop, chargers and most of all your enthusiasm!
That’s all I can think of right now, but is there something I have missed? How do you prepare for Xerocon? Do let me know in the comments.