I am starting to wonder, if I am turning into a serial networker? Or if I am embracing what I am preaching: to develop your innovation skills you have to push yourself out of your cognitive comfort zone?
September 27th crystallised this very question into my head.
During the day, I attended the Remix Summit, one full day of conference about culture, entrepreneurship and technology. I chaired a panel about running a creative business, with high profile personalities such as Doug Richard ex-Dragon Den's, Bindi Aria CEO from Microsoft Bizzsparks, Marcus Davey CEO of the Roundhouse and Declan from Bloomberg Fixed Income.
How did I feel? Unsettled
Why? Because dealing with highly creative and entrepreneurial people and put them in the context of technology was new to me. It was not part of the list of things I can say I know how to do.
Mixing and mingling with some of the 250 people that attended the event, I was more on listening and observing mode. Trying to understand how they see their world? How they define business and value. What is their purpose? And what I could learn and replicate for my own purpose.
Later that evening- I attended a networking event from BaydonHill, the prominent FX brokerage firm. Doing business, living and investing in the UK were debated. Through high quality presentations laying out the dos and the don'ts in the light of of the up and coming change of fiscal law, the session was both informative and interesting.
How did I feel? At ease
Why? Because, this was familiar territory to me, coming from a Finance background. It was easy to follow and it made sense. I was able to associate with known patterns and concepts.
The mixing and mingling that followed, caught me talking about business opportunities and creating a new chain of value...
Same day, two events, two perceptions.
Attending the REMIX conference got me closer to the concept of technology. It is a critical dimension to factor in future business ventures. How to use it not only as medium but as the core of any business. It also triggered my thinking on leadership of the future when it comes to strategy, innovation, talent and co-creation.
Attending the Baydonhill event - made me question the future of the UK as a financial place, and how to set up the best business structure.
Attending them in sequence was powerful- as the key takeway for me was : How to use technology to avoid more and more stringent fiscal rules in the UK...and maybe a new business opportunity ?