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Trent is the Managing Director of Xero Australia, the leading cloud-based accounting platform for small business. He joined the Xero Australian team when it was 30-people strong and now leads more than 300 people. He shares his personal story and his best advice to achieve continued business growth.
1. Hire for attitude, is that based on your gut feel or how do you decide? You or team consensus?
I am typically the last interview so by that stage suitability for the role is pretty much done. What I am looking for is attitude and values. You can teach skills and develop knowledge but great attitude is either there or it is not.
2. What’s next for Xero? Is your focus now shifting offshore?
Heaps of things.
Growing Xero globally is already happening as we now have customers in over 180 countries. We estimate that only ~3% of small businesses worldwide are using cloud accounting so the global opportunity is massive.
Locally we continue to build out the platform adding more features, capability and making it easier for small businesses to thrive.
3. With regards to your new small business data what are data do you think you will add to this in the future?
We are actively gathering feedback on Xero Small Business Insights and plan to add in new hero metrics and more detail on the current metrics.
The trend lines of this aggregated and anonymous data are already showing us some amazing insights that we just haven't had the ability to measure and analyse before.
4. What do you say to accountants that don’t embrace cloud accounting?
Give MYOB a call. No seriously it is ultimately up to the practice but I do fear that those accountants that don't embrace cloud and digital connectivity risk getting left behind with a model that is not competitive. Government and big business are all moving to digitally connected services so it is fast becoming a "must have" instead of "maybe have".