Author of Excel University
In his live CPE training sessions, Jeff Lenning CPA CITP has shown thousands of CPAs and accounting professionals across the country how to use Excel to streamline their work and become more efficient. Several publications have featured his Excel articles, including the Journal of Accountancy and California CPA Magazine.
Jeff began his career in the audit practice at Arthur Andersen’s Orange County office. He was a senior financial analyst at Gateway computers and the accounting manager at Interpore Cross International. In 2000, he founded Click Consulting Inc., a technology consulting firm. In 2012, he launched Excel University.
He is a past president of the CalCPA OCLB Chapter, the former chair of the California CPA State Technology Committee, co-chair of the California CPA OCLB Chapter Technology Committee, a board member of the California CPA OCLB Chapter, on the California Society of CPAs Council, and an instructor for the AICPA and the California CPA Education Foundation. A Microsoft Office Certified Excel Expert, he is a nationally recognized speaker and Microsoft Certified Trainer. He was recently recognized with the California CPA Education Foundation’s Award for Instructor Excellence and Outstanding Webcast Instructor.
To view all of Jeff’s articles, please check out the published article list
To view a list of all instructors, please visit our instructor list
Jeff Lenning’s dad is an accountant with a traditional tax practice. Following in his father’s footsteps, Jeff enrolled at the University of Southern California where he was an accounting major. He also played trumpet in the Trojan marching band!
Since pizza is one of his passions in life, he agreed to attend the Accounting Society meeting on campus, where their main recruiting tool was free pizza. At the meeting, he was introduced to the, then, Big 6. Upon graduation, Jeff was set with a great job at Arthur Andersen. While at Arthur Andersen, Jeff became certified as a CPA and did audit work for four years. Since technology was his passion, Jeff would take on all the technology engagements he could.
The Technology Industry
When an opportunity arose to make a switch into the tech industry, he took a job with Gateway Computers in South Dakota and his journey into the technology industry had begun. “This was a great time in my life. I arrived in South Dakota with my girlfriend, Wendy. We quickly got married in Elk Point because, some may say I’m old fashioned but, we wanted to do things right. The midwest was a great place to live, and we loved our time there.”
It’s amazing how a personal fascination can lead to innovation. Becoming a CPA taught Jeff the painstaking process accountants went through on a daily basis. After all, the DILLY method (Do It Like Last Year) was what was used, and quite frankly, last year’s methods were outdated.
While at Gateway, Jeff began to explore the depths of Microsoft Excel. “What a breath of fresh air! With Excel, I learned I could streamline processes and shorten two weeks’ worth of work into two days. Moreover, once I did it, I had it forever. I could reuse, fine tune and build on what I created.”
The Birth of Click Consulting and Excel University
His fascination with Excel quickly turned to passion. He became a Microsoft Office Certified Excel Expert. Tweaking, learning, and streamlining processes led to major productivity gains. “When I realized what I managed to do, I was SO EXCITED. I shared it with friends and fellow CPAs. I wrote an article for the Journal of Accountancy, and received many nice emails. I love to help accounting professionals unlock efficiency with Excel.”
“A mentor once told me, ‘Whatever you love to do will always find its way back into your life.’ This became a self-fulfilling prophecy for me.” Jeff decided he would marry his accounting background with technology and so he founded Click Consulting. “When I started Click Consulting, I realized one of the best services I could offer was to teach people how to improve their processes with Excel.” This passion for training ultimately resulted in Excel University.
Jeff Lenning is:
- A past president of the CalCPA OCLB Chapter
- The former chair of the California CPA State Technology Committee
- Co-chair of the California CPA OCLB Chapter Technology Committee
- A board member of the California CPA OCLB Chapter
- On the California Society of CPAs Council
- An instructor for the AICPA and the California CPA Education Foundation
- A Microsoft Office Certified Excel Expert
- A nationally recognized speaker and trainer
- Recipient of CalCPA Education Foundation’s Award for Instructor Excellence
Today, Jeff lives in Southern California with his lovely wife, Wendy, and his children, Grace, Jason and Ella. They spend time hiking, riding scooters and playing video games.