Standing With Customers: Ignite. Unite. Fuel.

Two years ago, our TurboTax business launched Project Ignite, a program to inspire employees to better understand our customers and their needs. Building on that success, our ProTax team, which makes products for tax professionals, duplicated the effort with Project Unite. And this year, our Small Business team took it to even greater heights with Project Fuel, bringing together about 1,000 employees and partners in four locations in an event designed to fuel small business success.

Employees at all levels and sites took part in workshops on the new QuickBooks mission, strategy and branding. To help them get a firsthand understanding of customer frustrations, they participated in immersive exercises that put them in the shoes of small business owners and self-employed individuals. Employees, and even the group’s leader, left the event inspired.

QuickBooks Connect Inspires Once Again!

QuickBooks Connect is our three-day, $10 million trade show that bucks the trend. We don’t sell any products. Instead, we gather 4,500 entrepreneurs, small business owners, accountants and developers to help them succeed through workshops, product demonstrations and motivational speakers. It’s staffed by 500 employee volunteers inspired to meet and work with customers. Last year’s event featured keynote speakers Oprah Winfrey, Jessica Alba, and Robert Herjavec of ABC TV’s “Shark Tank” fame.

Throwing Customers a Last-minute Lifeline

The aptly named Lifeline program is an all-hands-on-deck, ’round the clock effort that connects customers eager for answers to their last-minute tax questions to Intuit employees who are just as eager to supply them. Among those on the phone: CEO Brad Smith and other company leaders, sitting elbow to elbow with more than 500 Intuit employees at sites in San Diego, Tucson and Bangalore.

These human life preservers are trained before seeing action. And because tax training could be, well, taxing, we make the training fun. Our U.S. sites combined the work with a 1960s flower-power-themed party, complete with shagadelic beads, tambourines and roaming hippy bands.

Secrets of a CEO

Brad Smith writes a series of inspirational posts on LinkedIn, including the recent Three Things I Wish I'd Known Before Becoming a CEO. Clearly, his personal yet inspirational message resonated, earning 5,099 likes, 402 comments and 1,088 shares.

Joining Forces for Veterans

For many veterans, finding the confidence to enter the job market can be almost as difficult as finding a job. That’s why we joined forces with the White House and dozens of other tech companies to sponsor a program to hire vets and military spouses. Putting words into action, we pledged to hire at least 250 veterans and military spouses over the next five years.

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