Monthly Archives

August 2018

#LinkedInLocal Event Review

By | Business

This evening #LinkedInLocal held a panel discussion on How to Attract Your Audience Through Storytelling. Held at the Launchpad Hub in Richmond, the event was open to professionals looking to make connections within their community.

 

There was a wide variety of people present at the event, ranging from news reporters and social media influencers through to hospitality and events specialists. The panel consisted of a news reporter, a Social Media Influencer and a business coach.

 

The panel discussions were very interesting, covering the how to develop a story, keep your audience engaged and what drives a good story. The panelists were engaging and provided a number of good points. One of the stand-out points that was made is it is better to focus on Noah rather than the Ark. Making your story about people, rather than the facts, allows the audience to relate to the story, by imagining themselves in the shoes of the protagonist.

 

Once the panel discussions were concluded the attendees were encouraged to break into small groups to discuss creating their own story. The group based discussions were interesting, allowing attendees to share their experiences of sharing their story and learn from others who have shared their story successfully. Attendees were encouraged to record short videos of their story, while this was a good way to get people involved I found that some people were not as comfortable sharing their story on camera.

 

Overall the event was enjoyable, encouraging people to participate through the exercise after the panel was different. The attendees were incredibly varied and worth taking the time to talk to. I would attend events with #LinkedInLocal again.

 

Things to Note

  • Location: LaunchPad Hub, 10 Kingston Street, Richmond
  • Highlight: Friendly group of attendees
  • Cost: $30
  • Hot Tip: Get there early and make the most of the networking

Ratings:

  • Venue:  4/5
  • Catering: 3.5/5
  • Speakers: 4.5/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 4/5

Total: 16/20

Effective Business Networking Event Review

By | Business

This evening Small Business Victoria presented a workshop as part of the Small Business Festival. The workshop was titled, Effective Business Networking – Tips to Connect with Ease. Aimed at small business owners who have had little experience with networking, the workshop covered the why’s, how’s and what’s of networking.

 

While the information was relatively rudimentary, focusing on those who are more inexperienced with networking, the presentation was engaging. Throughout the workshop there was plenty of audience participation.

 

One aspect of the workshop that I found interesting was the opportunity for attendees to refine their pitch. I found this section of the event was a great chance to help others refine their pitch. I spoke with a number of attendees that had only just started their businesses and attended the event to gain some tips for networking. All of the people I spoke with appreciated an external viewpoint on their pitch.

 

The attendees for this event were all operating within small businesses, often their own, from a range of industries. There were a number of industrial design businesses, a travel agent and a couple of creative agencies present at the event.

 

All in all I found the event interesting despite being targeted towards those with less networking experience. I would attend events put on by Small Business Victoria again in the future.

 

Things to Note

  • Location: Richmond Town Hall, 333 Bridge Road, Richmond
  • Highlight: High levels of audience engagement
  • Cost: $33
  • Hot Tip: Be sure to participate

Ratings:

  • Venue:  2.5/5
  • Catering: N/A
  • Speakers: 4.5/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 3/5

Total: 10/15

Get Connected – Melbourne Business Network Event Review

By | Business

This evening the Melbourne Business Network presented Get Connected, an event focused on improving networking skills of the attendees.

 

This event was held at the Blue Rock offices. The initial space was vastly different to any of the networking locations I had been in before. Styled after The Faraway Tree and other children stories, the location had a number of small nods to the stories I read as a kid. While it was a decidedly different space it was also a little distracting, with so many different items drawing your eye it took some concentration to really focus on the networking conversations.

 

Once the main portion of the event got underway we were shown to a conference room. The event was hosted by Bev Friend, President of Melbourne Business Network. Bev was an engaging presenter, constantly interacting with the audience and utilized her own experience to provide context and relevance.

 

Bev also covered how to interact productively with a number of different personality styles, covering the DISC personality breakdown. The presentation also provided tips on how to best do business with the different personality types. DISC consists of four major personalities, Dominant, Influential, Steady and Compliant.

 

The Dominant subset are the do-ers, they  get the job done efficiently and on time. Influential are the leaders, they motivate others to achieve. The Steady subset are the team player, loyal and patient. Compliant are the group who dot the i’s and cross the t’s, this group are analytical and thorough.

 

The majority of the attendees came from professional services firms, ranging from financial services through to strategic planning.

 

Overall the event was fantastic, providing many helpful tips for networking more effectively. As with the previous Melbourne Business Network event I went to earlier in the month, this evenings event was worth going to.

 

Things to Note

  • Location: Blue Rock, 414 La Trobe Street, Melbourne
  • Highlight: Entertaining presentation with many useful tips for networking
  • Cost: $33
  • Hot Tip: Be sure to listen closely

Ratings:

  • Venue:  4/5
  • Catering: N/A
  • Speakers: 4.5/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 4/5

Total: 12.5/15

VCCI Speed Networking Event Review

By | Business

Tonight the Victorian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (VCCI) held another of their Fast Forward – Speed Networking events. This time the event was held at Pitcher Partners new offices on Collins Street, with a stunning view and an expansive space, it was a great location for the event.

 

As with the previous Speed Networking events, asides from the event last week, each conversation lasted for two minutes. This was enough time to provide an introduction to your business and learn more about the other person’s business.

 

Speaking more or less constantly for around an hour in a loud room is always an interesting challenge. Some people were fairly difficult to hear as they were softly spoken, but the majority of attendees made sure they were easily understood.

 

The attendees of the event ranged from Lawyers with varying size law firms, through to hospitality specialists and everyone in between.  Speed Networking always represents a fantastic way to meet a large number of contact fairly efficiently, while still having a meaningful conversation with them. I also spoke with a few people I had met before. Both during the Speed Networking portion of the event and the networking opportunities at both ends of the event.

 

The catering presented by Pitcher Partners and VCCI was fantastic, including a wonderful slow cooked lamb and polenta canape! None of the canapes disappointed, all offering something different and equally tasty.

 

I thoroughly enjoyed this month’s Speed Networking event and will definitely attend the next event in November.

 

 

Things to Note

  • Location: Pitcher Partners, 664 Collins Street, Melbourne
  • Highlight: Fantastic way to meet a large number of contacts
  • Cost: 
  • Hot Tip: Make sure to bring plenty of business cards

Ratings:

  • Venue:  4/5
  • Catering: 4/5
  • Speakers: N/A
  • Networking Opportunity: 4.5/5

Total: 12.5/15

Authentic Education Speed Networking – Event Review

By | Business

This evening Authentic Education held a Speed Networking event. This event was slower to the previous Speed Networking events I have attended. Rather than having two minutes to discuss both person’s business and exchange business cards, this event allowed two minutes per person with an additional minute at the end to exchange business cards. While this could be beneficial for people who are less experienced with networking, many people who I spoke with agreed that it was too much time.

 

Despite the extended time the evening was a success. I spoke with a number of people setting up operations within Australia for international companies, ranging from IT service companies through to food technology firms. I also spoke with individuals either starting their own business or working in a local company. The extended time per person also allowed for a more in-depth conversation about how we can help with their businesses.

 

The host gave out a door prize with a bit of a different twist, he got the people drawn out to give a pitch to the room. I was one of the people drawn and was more than willing to give a pitch.  The host also provided tips and feedback on each pitch. Given the clarity of our pitch the majority of the room understood what it is that Business Growth Partners does and how we can help small and medium businesses.

 

I thoroughly enjoy Speed Networking events, while this one was at a slower pace, I would certainly attend Speed Networking events by Authentic Education in the future.

 

Things to Note

  • Location: Curate Gallery, 306 Collins Street, Melbourne
  • Highlight: Opportunity to meet a variety of people
  • Cost: Free
  • Hot Tip: As always, bring a lot of business cards

Ratings:

  • Venue:  3/5
  • Catering: N/A
  • Speakers: 3/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 4.5/5

Total: 10.5/15

Canadian Australian Chamber of Commerce Presents; Cyber Security: Are you Cyber Ready? – Event Reivew

By | Business

This evening the Canadian Australian Chamber of Commerce (CACC) held a discussion around Cyber Security and preparing for a cyber threat. After all with cyber threats it is a matter of when, rather than if, you and your business will be affected.

 

The panel consisted of two Cyber Security experts, Telstra’s Chief Security and Compliance Officer and a Crisis Communications expert. Given the variety of these individuals it was interesting to hear their differing views cyber threats. The common theme of the discussion was preparedness when it comes to cyber threats. Rather than protecting everything, restricting your businesses capabilities, businesses should prepare for how they are going to deal with the fallout from a cyber attack.

 

One of the biggest concepts that came from the discussion was that a rapid response to cyber issues is vital. The response does not have to provide answers to the issue, but rather “an issue has occurred and this is how the business is going to deal with the matter”.

 

The attendees of the event were an event split, between students in Information Systems degrees and professionals either in Cyber Security or related fields. I spoke with a member of a Canadian owned security hardware company, a recruitment agent specialising in Information Systems and some colleagues of both the CACC and the panellists.

 

Overall the topic was insightful, the panellists were engaging and often discussed among themselves without much prompting from the moderator and there were a number of individuals within the audience that had their own insights into the content. The Canadian Australian Chamber of Commerce put on a relevant and fascinating discussion and I would definitely attend more events in the future put on by the Chamber.

 

 

Things to Note

  • Location: Telstra Customer Insights Centre, Level 1, 242 Exhibition Street, Melbourne
  • Highlight: Engaging panel discussion around a vital topic for businesses in the current environment
  • Cost: $22
  • Hot Tip: Be sure to ask plenty of questions when you can

Ratings:

  • Venue:  3/5
  • Catering: N/A
  • Speakers: 5/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 4/5

Total: 12/15

Servcorp Co-Working Office Launch Event Review

By | Business

This evening Servcorp launched their new co-working space in Southbank. Servcorp invited a variety of individuals to the event, including current clients, previous clients and business contacts.

 

The space was rather impressive, with private offices, boardrooms and open plan working spaces. The open plan area is primarily used for Hot Desks, allowing travelling professionals or start-ups to utilise the space when they need it.

 

The attendees came from many different industries. Among the attendees there were mining consultants, IT professionals, marketing consultants and Migration agents. With such a wide range of industries represented the conversations had through the evening were as interesting as they were varied.

 

There was also a small panel section to the event, focussing on the benefits of having a flexible workspace. The panel was made up of various clients, past and current, of Servcorp, in particular the Southbank location. All of the panel members were avid supporters of co-working and flexible workspaces.

 

Servcorp offered a wide range of canapes, including Duck wraps, Satay Chicken and mini Quiches with Caramelised Onion and Fetta. Alongside the canapes Servcorp also provided and open bar, which sported beer, wine and a pair of mixed cocktails, their take on an Old Fashioned and a Tom Collins. The Old Fashioned is always a crowd favourite, especially when made well, and this time was no exception! 

 

Overall this was a fantastic event to highlight the new space from Servcorp, with a wealth of interesting conversation and a impressive catering spread. I will definitely be keeping an eye out for more events held by Servcorp in the future.

 

 

Things to Note

  • Location: Level 2, Riverside Quay, 1 Southbank Boulevard, Southbank
  • Highlight: Wonderful location
  • Cost: $35
  • Hot Tip: Be sure to try their version of an Old Fashioned

Ratings:

  • Venue:  4.5/5
  • Catering: 4.5/5
  • Speaker: 3.5/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 4/5

Total: 16.5/20

Retail Therapy: Getting Retail Ready for Christmas Event Review

By | Uncategorized

This the Reed Gift Fair was held in the Melbourne Convention and exhibition Centre. In conjunction with the trade show a series of seminars were held for Retail Business Owners. These events aimed to better educate attendees on various aspects of marketing, from Retailing workshops through to Social Media and forecasting.

 

Today the workshop focused on helping Retail owners prepare for the busy Christmas season. The event was run by Lotco, a business consulting group specialising in retailing. The presenters had 20 years’ experience between them, operating retail businesses and working for larger retailers.

 

Throughout the session the presenters discussed different ways the retail sector can leverage the Christmas period effectively. Major changes, such as changing the layout, or minor changes, like pre-wrapping popular items, can help Retail businesses leverage the Christmas rush. 

 

Given their experience the presenters provided many anecdotes from their time in retail stores. These anecdotes ranged from examples of how they changed their retail space to tips to generate a higher profit margin. However, the presenters continually interrupted each other, often speaking over the top of the other, resulting in a workshop that was difficult to follow at times.

 

The attendees of the workshop were owners of various retail stores. Ranging from furniture and homewares through to gardening supplies. While the attendees all interacted with the presentation, asking questions, offering their own experiences and so on, the networking opportunity was very limited. Once the presentation ended all of the attendees departed immediately.

 

While the content was relevant to the audience, this workshop did not offer any networking opportunities. As such, I am unlikely to attend events like this in the future.

 

  Things to Note

  • Location: Melbourne Convention Centre, 1 Convention Centre Pl, South Wharf
  • Highlight: Insight from experienced industry members
  • Cost: $40
  • Hot Tip: Great for Retail to boost their Christmas sales

Ratings:

  • Venue:  3/5
  • Catering: N/A
  • Speaker: 2.5/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 1/5

Total: 6.5/15

The Pointy End of Sales Event Review

By | Business

This morning the Melbourne Business Network held an event, at the RACV City Club, titled “The Pointy End of Sales”. Initially there was a presentation by the RACV’s mobility team, introducing attendees to their new Carshare platform. Rivalling carsharing, such as GoGet or FlexiCar, RACV’s Carshare provides individuals and businesses with flexible, low cost car rentals.

 

The main speaker, James Tuckerman, then presented “The Pointy End of Sales”, aiming to educate the attendees on how to maintain an efficient sales funnel. The presentation was engaging and thoroughly entertaining. Working as any good funnel should, James began with the top, explaining the breakdown of your target market. Within your target market there are five different segments.

·         The “Yes” group: These customers need your services at this moment (3%)

·         The “Active” group: The customers in this segment are actively looking for you or your business (7%)

·         “Aware”: This group is aware of you or your Business but may not believe they need your service at this time (approx. 24%)

·         “Unaware” (approx. 36%)

·         “No”: AKA as Red flags. These people will always say no to your service. (30%)

 

The “Unaware” segment are likely to reject your offer unless they are made aware of the issues you can solve. The problem many businesses face is they operate under the belief that everyone is part of the “Yes” group.

 

As always, the RACV Club is a great place for networking, the food was good and the coffee was fresh (exactly what was needed at 7 am). The Melbourne Business Network seems to attract a wide range of people from every industry. I spoke with a number of technology based Business Owners, along with a few Managing Directors of financial services firms. I also had the chance to touch base with a couple of people I met at past networking events. 

 

I will definitely be attending more Melbourne Business Network events in the future.

 

Things to Note

  • Location: RACV Club, 501 Bourke Street, Melbourne
  • Highlight: Fantastic audience engagement
  • Cost: $35
  • Hot Tip: Get ready for an engaging presentation!

Ratings:

  • Venue:  4/5
  • Catering: 4/5
  • Speaker: 5/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 4/5

Total: 17/20

The Hunger Project: Event Review

By | Business, Uncategorized

I attended ‘In Conversation with Change makers of the Hunger Project’ on Wednesday 1st of August. This event was held at Ernst & Young on Exhibition Street from 5.45pm-8pm.

The Hunger Project is a global not-for-profit organisation that aimed to empower women and men living in rural villages in Africa, Bangladesh, India and Latin America to end world hunger.

 

This was the first ‘In Conversation with Change Makers’ in the series by the Hunger Project. With more events to continue later in the year due to the number of attendees at the first one. The event was a sell out with about 40 attendees.

The event was targeted to mainly women who wanted to focus more on their entrepreneurial spirit and listen to a selection of positive changing women.

 

The night begun with 30 minutes of small talk with the attendees. There were a selection of nibbles and beverages that were being served. The food was absolutely delicious.  We were then seated in a seminar type format.

The MC for the night was Cyan Ta’eed, the Founder of Hey Tiger and Envato. Hey Tiger, Cyan’s latest social enterprise start up and Envato, one of the largest digital market places in the world.

 

We sat down to listen to the panelist discuss why they were committed to empowering women globally. Touching on their personal and professional leadership journey.

The panelist were Lisa Michael, the General Manger of People and Business Improvement at DECJUBA. Followed by Chantal Noble, who was on the Board for the Hunger Project Australia (THPA).

 

I found the event was worth-while to attend however it was not much of a networking event. Majority of the attendees had some connection to either of the two panelist or just had an interest in raising money and supporting the not-for-profit, the Hunger Project.

 

Things to Note:

  • Location: Ernst & Young, Level 23, 8 Exhibition Street, Melbourne, VIC, 3000
  • Highlight:  The panel discussion
  • Cost: $30
  • Hot Tip: Wasn’t much of a networking opportunity

Ratings:

  • Venue:  4/5
  • Catering: 5/5
  • Speaker: 4/5
  • Networking Opportunity: 1/5

Total: 14/20