Networking with a difference

Venus Awards Devon 2013

I was very pleased to be invited to the launch of the Venus Devon Awards yesterday evening at the Sapphire Living Space nr. Topsham. It was very well attended, but there were some differences to the usual networking that I attend.

Drinks were available on arrival (Cranberry juice for me, I was driving!) and there was the usual mingle of guests getting to know each other and there businesses.  At previous networking events that I’ve been to the canapes were served by by waiters, but at this event we were able to watch the chef prepare and cook our canapes and chat to him while he was working. There was a lovely selection including Brioche with sun-dried tomato, foccacia and chicken satay. Unfortunately I missed out on the roast beef, but it looked delicious. The chef explained how to cut the chicken and use every last scrap. Well, I didn’t expect to come back from a networking event having learnt that! Also on offer were free sample massages from Therapy South West, I didn’t partake of this though, although those that did seemed to enjoy it. There were also delicious mini cakes, the eclairs were gorgeous and a lady from Choccie Bar offering samples and selling her hand painted chocolates.

The main focus of the evening was the launch of the nominations of the Venus Devon Awards, and we were encouraged to nominate on the night via iPads that were available for this purpose. I opened my email this morning to find someone had nominated me for business mother of the year – wow.

All in all it was a very enjoyable evening, getting to know some new people and catching up with some old friends. Having different things available was really interesting as it was something else to discuss with the other attendees other than work 🙂

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Preparation is the key.

On 27th February I will be exhibiting on behalf of my company at the North Devon Conference 2013. This will be a small exhibition which is being put on as part of the conference. There will be approximately 150 delegates, so why exhibit?

Knowing the demographic and business types of those attending, they are the target market for our website and CRM products. The next thing I have to consider is preparation.

Preparation is the key to doing anything like this, hence before deciding to exhibit looking at who will be attending and will it be worth it for my business. I am now in the planning stage for the event itself as it is only next week. I have a list of things to do, the main things being organising what I want on my display stand and redoing a PowerPoint slideshow to reflect what I am promoting. As long as I get things done with plenty of time I should not (hopefully :-)) be panicking next week and need to sort things out at the last minute.

As I said in the title of this blog ‘Preparation is the key’

Winding down for Christmas – already!

It’s interesting the interaction that I’ve had lately with some businesses. Although it’s only 5th December today some are already starting to wind down for Christmas. To be fair I do have 3 Christmas lunches to attend in the next 2 weeks, lucky me :-), but other than that it’s business as usual, trying to fit in the Christmas shopping around work.

We will be open as usual until 21st December, and my son doesn’t break up from school until then either. To be fair knowing my other half he’ll still be doing some sort of work over the break, and I probably won’t take the whole break off depending on parenting/mum’s taxi duties as my two eldest will be home from college and University for 3 weeks.

When do you start thinking about winding down for the holidays or do you just carry on right through? It would be interesting to hear from you and how do you celebrate the holidays?

Santa at his computer.

Santa’s working hard!