Unconference and getting involved
Being based in Winchester means we are part of a thriving business community, and at the start of May there is a new event looking to expand and develop that
So here is some background on what WinchBiz is and what ‘unconference’ is all about.
Winchbiz is entirely devoted to making Winchester a great place to do business, and the first event as part of this is the ‘Unconference’ at Guildhall Winchester on Friday 2nd March, if you want to sign up to join, visit here
So what is an unconference? I was suitably confused but also curious, this is how Winchbiz describe it;
Well, it’s lots of things…
It’s a bit like a conference, but there’s no pre-defined agenda, and participants ‘pitch’ session ideas to each other
It’s a fantastic opportunity to meet people and discuss both issues and opportunities. Anyone with an interest in doing business in-and-around Winchester can attend.
It’s a social occasion. When we empathise and are nice to each other, it’s amazing what barriers we can overcome.
They don’t mention it on their site, but I’ve also been told that it isn’t a normal networking type of event, so read on for my guest blog post!
Unconference, sounds a bit odd, bit quirky, makes you want to find out a bit more?
It certainly did for me, and as soon as I read about it I signed up!
You can find out plenty about it throughout this site, so this blog post isn’t about the event, but why you should sign up, go and take part.
So why should you do any of those, ask yourself these questions…
• Do you work in the Winchester area?
• Do you want to see more business developed in Winchester?
• Do you want the business you own or work for to benefit from business development in Winchester?
If you answer yes to any of those you should be at Unconference based on the theme being ‘how can Winchester be a premier business location?’ That could and should affect every business in the City and area.
Our company is not in central Winchester, and so we could feel left out of such discussions, but with the format of this event, we will be able to put forward our ideas that cover both our location and needs which may be quite different to the more centrally-based businesses.
Another selling point for me is that it’s not ‘networking’ which can often bring people, me included, out in a cold sweat. People and their companies are not there to sell themselves to each other, it is about sharing and developing ideas, working together to improve business for all, rather than trying to thrust your business card in someone’s hand.
I hope that doesn’t sound too ‘social’ and ‘nice’, but sometimes you can create great things by being nice and talking to people rather than just ‘selling’ to people. Another positive from just having a chat is that you discover things that you might never get to if you are trying to network and sell, those little gems that develop out of conversation, and are ultimately so much more rewarding.
Because it’s a not a conventional conference, everything already seems so much more approachable and relaxed. You can pitch your ideas within the first part of the day which be developed as a session, or you can just to attend choose which sessions look interesting as the day progresses and join in, there is no pressure.
Plus, as the agenda is set after the initial pitching session it’s much more intriguing. I’m not suggesting it’s like a murder-mystery, but I think it’s fascinating that you can start the day with no idea of what is going to happen!
I hope that you can join me and the other attendees at the event, and take part at whatever level you want to, have a conversation on how Winchester can be a premier business location and just have a nice day, with no hard sell and a smile on your face.
Sounds good, doesn’t it, so if you want to join in, you can register here, looking forward to it!