Up Close and Personal
Exactera has always adopted a remote working model, which started with a man, a plane, and a can of SPAM®–but that’s for another post. Today, I’m thinking about how our client summits created an opportunity to establish meaningful relationships with our customers in a world, pre-COVID, where remote relationships seemed cold and transactional.
At Exactera, we have always appreciated the power of human interaction and the opportunity for face-to-face learning. The desire to know our clients resulted in hosting summits—weekend getaways–in beautiful locations to promote mindfulness and authentic connections.
Although we include a structured agenda with topics of interest, such as the latest updates in transfer pricing and global tax reform, the most interesting stories are shared poolside or over dinner. This is where I heard firsthand experiences of tax authorities looking at LinkedIn profiles to validate functional profiles as well as discussed improper characterization of transactions leading to adjustments.
Many customer challenges were the same–the inability to accurately delineate financial data for transfer pricing purposes, over-complicated policies, or lack of internal support to ensure documentation accuracy, coverage, and timeliness. But the funny thing about the intimate setting of the summit experience is that people are more open about sharing practical ideas. Real connections are made, and everyone goes home with an extra nugget or two of knowledge, including myself.
That intelligence is not limited to tax and transfer pricing, it includes understanding the bureaucracy of adopting a child from Burundi, or learning about survival skills needed to hike the caverns of the Grand Canyon, or cultivating the discipline needed to raise high-performing athletic children… real life experiences are exchanged because we all ended up in transfer pricing. In fact, I have yet to meet a person that wanted to specifically pursue transfer pricing as a career, but I digress.
I’m excited for our next upcoming summit in Tampa, with our next group of attendees, who have not only been working with us virtually, but because of COVID, have probably been in more virtual meetings than in-person meetings over the past two years. That makes this summit even more meaningful as we continue to navigate the “dare I say” post-stay-at-home environment. Face-to-face connections may not be the standard anymore, but Exactera’ tradition of personal client relationships is still going strong. After 20 years—and in the aftermath of a pandemic–we are still building personal and professional connections through our summits with education, connection, and maybe a few cocktails.
Interested in attending a Exactera summit? Let us know. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org