As I am preparing my schedule for GPUG Summit 2018, I wanted to expand on a post I wrote for LinkedIn. Here is the “director’s cut” of the article. Please see information at the bottom of this article about my upcoming Academy classes!
I’ve had the amazing privilege of presenting at all sorts of GPUG events – GPUG Summit, GPUG Amplify, many Webinars, and even Chapter Meetings. They’ve all been great fun, and I really enjoy putting together fast-paced programs to present at general sessions. They’re exciting and packed full of good information that you can put to use immediately!
However, there’s one type of session that stands out from them all:
Frankly, I think it’s essential to add an Academy class to your itinerary if you want to get the most out of GP. Here’s why:
Extended sessions. With a general training session at, say, GPUG Summit, you only get an hour. In that hour we have to cram a demo (which, because of time, is likely pre-planned to deliver the expected outcome) and Q&A – which means we don’t really get to dive deep and deal with real-world issues. What’s the difference with an Academy class? They come in two flavors: Half-day and Full-day. More time = more get-your-hands-dirty-learning!
Elbow room. Most – if not all – general sessions are packed. I mean, I’ve taught some sessions where people were standing in the hallway outside listening. And that’s great – there’s lots of interest, and as long as you can see and hear, you’re benefiting! But let’s contrast that with an Academy class – half the chairs come out of the room, and desks go in. That’s right, you get your very own desk! And you’re guaranteed a good view of the screen.
Get those hands dirty! Nothing makes a longer-lasting impression on your mind – and thus forming better usage habits you can take back with you – than actually DOING what you’re taught, in real time. I can put on a great demo for you, but you’ll get the highest quality training and results from a hands-on Academy class. You can even ask questions as you’re learning, enhancing the experience even further!
Shining Stars. Do you know who teaches Academy classes? It’s a who’s-who listing of the GP world – many GPUG All-Stars (like me!) and Microsoft MVPs. The quality of the training is outstanding, and what a value – do you know how much these people charge on average? Getting a day with one of them is a steal at Academy prices – and you don’t have to pay for their travel! (Although I’d bet that they wouldn’t say no to a drink during the “Advanced Networking Hours”)
Fresh Content. Instructors are constantly re-vamping their courses, including content that covers the latest version of GP, Excel, SQL Server, PowerBI, and so on. Not to mention there’s a wealth of real-world knowledge they have that you get – included at no extra charge.
Learn stuff you can actually use. If you look at the course outline of many training centers you can find online, you’ll see that much of what they cover comes straight from the GP manual. Setup? Maintenance? If you’re not already part of your company’s IT staff, when are you ever going to use that? Heck, you probably don’t have proper security permissions to touch that stuff. Academy classes are focused on giving you skills you’ll turn around and use the next day in the office. Stuff that can make you more productive (and more valuable!) For example, I teach a Payables Management class, as well as the GP Smorgasbord class aimed at beginners. Great stuff!
As you can see, there’s a huge bang-for-your-buck factor in Academy classes. Not only do they offer a huge value, but they’re also just plain fun!
I hope I’ll see you at one of my Academy classes real soon! Tell me what you like and don’t like. Just don’t make fun of my hair. 🙂
Upcoming “Live Virtual” GPUG Academy Classes:
- Getting Started with Payables Management (June 28, 2018)
- Dynamics GP Smorgasbord – Tips and Tricks for the Newer User (July 26, 2018)
- Beyond the Basics: Financials (August 16, 2018)
Upcoming “Onsite” GPUG Academy Classes at GPUG Summit (October 14th and 15th in Phoenix, Arizona):
- Getting Started with Payables Management
- Advanced A/P Topics – Getting Started with Purchase Order Processing
- Beyond the Basics- Best Practices for Microsoft Dynamics GP Month-End /Year End Close
- Academy – Dynamics GP Best Practices: Efficiencies, Tips & Tricks for the Newer User (formerly titled: Dynamics GP Smorgasbord – Tips and Tricks for the Newer User)