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Level 2

Getting started as a proadvisor..when did you get first client?

A year ago I attended quickbooks connect in San Jose, Calif and was suggested about becoming certified with Quickbooks online and now I have.   How did you get your first client?   I am training now for the Quickbooks Online Advanced Certification 2018.  I do know it takes one step at a time.

 

I am published on the Find A Pro advisor site.   Would love to hear how and when you got your first client.   I am currently working for someone else as an employee and hope to replace my current income with being ProAdvisor with Quickbooks online.  

 

I have a goal of getting it accomplished within 6 years or sooner.  Thanks

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Level 15

Getting started as a proadvisor..when did you get first client?

I have mentored many Pro Advisors and have them as my clients.

 

You are taking the right steps, except you need more Exposure. Having a Pro Advisor listing is not really a great marketing exposure. The main issues: you are relying on people to use an Intuit tool "Find a Pro Advisor" (1st point for potential failure, in that they are not going to follow the links) that actually works (second potential point of failure, since Intuit has had trouble maintaining their own web platforms).

 

I have one person who quit her "day job," had obtained certifications, etc, and paid for her own website, as well. That still doesn't help people find you, know you, or know what you want to do for them.

 

You want to get out and about in the community, such as join the Chamber of Commerce; look for Business networking opportunities (BNI, Linked In) and in my region, there is a Women's Business Network group that also holds an annual Convention. Go to Training sessions, such as take a local QB class from a continuing education school or the local Small business development center or even your local library might offer. All of these are great places to network. Sign up for your State's CPA organization and take some of their continuing education sessions that apply to things you should know, as well. That puts you in their member list and gets you out into their group sessions and shows them you are willing to learn and apply what they teach.

 

I teach QB classes, and it is not unusual to have 12 people in the class, one or two of whom own their own business and think they want to do their own QB, and during the class, they learn enough to know they want to hire, or contract, instead. Or, within a few months, their business starts clicking along and now they can afford to bring in a contractor. You would be someone they met, and you would have made a mark in their memory as a potential contact person when they have this need. Or, I get a mother intending to help their child with the business, and the mother sits in my class, obviously feeling a bit overwhelmed that they let themselves be talked into this, and they would rather take your referral info to their child. Heck, one lady didn't even own her own computer, but was taking my class, because her daughter was going to buy QB and a computer for her to use to "help" with the business.

 

Check with your local Job Service or Workforce Center; ours offers a QB skills competency examine that is then kept on file for reference.

 

And Volunteer. Getting all these certifications and being a Pro Advisor does not prepare you for how QB is used in the real world. That's one of the biggest shortcomings I have found; a lot of the Intuit Support articles are using bad methodology for good accounting requirements.

 

Go to local nonprofits, go to the Fire Hall, etc, and Volunteer. Here you will learn what they do, how they do it, and this is Networking for you, as well; it brings you into contact with business people in the community. Even if they do not use QB; everyone uses Accounting tools and has tracking and reporting requirements.

 

Also, go to free training sessions from your County or State, to learn about Governmental accounting. Many of my clients are Town Clerks, referred to me by the State Dept of Commerce. Sign up to your State's Vendor List for getting notification of, and to bid on contracts for managing project accounting, such as some contractor needs a bookkeeper for a sewer expansion project, they landed the contract from the County and need help for this one contract.

 

I am a vendor for "back to work" training for people injured on a job that was physically demanding, to help them convert to an office job. We also get an occasional contract that follows the person to their first job placement, to offer an additional 10 hours On the Job training that the employer doesn't have to pay for. It's a win-win-win: the employer gets the new hire, the new hire gets specific training, and the State has a rehabilitated worker, on a new job.

 

It depends on the type of work you want, of course. If you want to do routine Payroll, Reconciliation, etc, write to CPA offices and introduce yourself and the services you offer. They have clients that intend to do their own work, and never follow through or do it right or timely, and the CPA offices don't always offer these services for their clients, so you might get some introductions from them.

 

And you are right with the 6-year plan. It takes 2-3 to get up and running, another 2 or so to figure out what you want to do, what you don't want to do, how you fit into the business world food chain. At this point, one Pro Advisor that I worked with from 2013 has become my biggest customer; she subcontracts to me. She recently told me she is refining her client list and dropping those that are hardest to work with, hardest to get them to pay on time, etc. She finally has the business clicking along and can't be bothered with the problem customers, as that prevents her from working with better customers.

 

Good Luck.

Good luck.

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Level 2

Getting started as a proadvisor..when did you get first client?

Thank you so much for your advice...you have inspired me of what I can do and gave me ideas.

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