Enterprise Nation Nottingham

Enterprise Nation Accelerates Nottingham Networking

Networking evokes one of two emotions in most people – those often also associated with Marmite. However, people buy from people, so the more people you know, the more business is likely to come your way. Not rocket science is it?

For very small businesses, start ups, micro businesses and one person working from home outfits, it’s hard to know where to start to build those networks and which events to put the time and effort into.

Let’s face it, walking into a room full of strangers isn’t everyone’s cup of tea and it can be emotionally draining to big yourself up and make small talk with someone you’ve never met when your head is still problem solving or you’ve spent a whole day staring at a lap top in solitude. But, getting you and your brand out there in as many ways as possible is the most important thing you can do.

 

Connecting small businesses

Small business network Enterprise Nation cottoned onto this years ago and has been a trusted source of support, advice and action for those building up businesses for over a decade.

With already established hubs in Birmingham, Bristol and London,  Enterprise Nation had it’s inaugural ‘Small Business Meet Up’  in Nottingham recently, at the newly opened tech hub, Accelerate Places and it was true to its mission of “creating a more entrepreneurial society in the UK, helping you start, run and grow your business”.

The atmosphere had an energy and excitement from the off. Within two minutes of arriving there was wine and diverse chat with an innovation consultant, design architect and skin care specialist about the merits of marketing automation without human intervention (pet food mailers to non-pet owners) and the questionable credentials of celebrity TV builders (think Grand Designs).

Enterprise Nation Founder, Emma Jones MBE

Enterprise Nation Founder, Emma Jones MBE

For the ‘formal’ bit, we made our way into a very trendy amphitheatre style arrangement and were given the low down on the evening from Enterprise Nation’s Nottingham Ambassador, Greg Simpson of Press for Attention (thankfully the rubber gloves remained off), who then handed over to an excitable Emma Jones MBE, founder of Enterprise Nation – with a strictly no PowerPoint policy for the evening.
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Platform for pitches

The enthusiasm for the team of beauty related start ups, including IntheBuff,  who had just returned from a pitch at Boots was infectious and Emma’s relaxed, yet no nonsense approach to bringing people together was refreshing – encouraging people to take the floor and use the forum to make direct business contacts. Chinese Tea Ceremony start up, August Moon,  taught us all a lesson in PR and self belief.

The main event was an overview of Handle – an idea so good you can’t believe it doesn’t already exist – which offers a digital dashboard for your business profile, so you can see your business the way the world sees you at the touch of a button. Built by one of Accelerate’s first occupants Business Finance Technology Group Ltd (Bizfitech), Handle will no doubt enhance Nottingham’s growing reputation as a FinTech hub.

Wrapping up the evening talking to a fascinating accountant-turned-fashion designer off to Qatar for her first show was inspiring. The energy, buzz and passion for supporting people on their business journey was infectious.

 

Be inspired

For anyone looking to be reinvigorated by networking events and build their brand, as well get access to exemplary business support and solid, practical, results-driven advice, give enterprise nation a go – tell ‘em yer from ‘NOTTINGHAM’ and get 10% discount on membership. Might see you there.

Photographs by Toby Neal

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