Networking is back and better than ever
WeDO networking is back! It’s been a busy week at WeDO hosting 2 in person events in less than 48 hours and words seem inadequate to express how happy that makes us! After a hiatus of 2 years with the exception of our 2021 Awards Dinner and 3 BBQs for members last summer, it’s been a long time coming.
We hosted over 90 events during the pandemic, all of which were online but to our minds, nothing beats the enjoyment of face-to-face events, and of course, they offer infinitely better opportunities to forge new connections and build relationships. There’s only so much staring at a screen one can do!
We are delighted to be partnering with the fabulous Johnnie Walker Princes Street for our Edinburgh Supper Clubs and our new monthly Networking Breakfasts. It really is the most stunning venue with service to match, the views are breathtaking.
On Tuesday evening we held our first Supper Club of 2022, welcoming our guest speaker and WeDO member, the highly engaging Atholl Duncan of Black Isle Group and author of ‘Leaders In Lockdown’. With 12 members attending, we ensured plenty of opportunity for everyone to join in the discussions and conversations, led by Atholl. Atholl kindly gifted all attendees a copy of his book, an insightful and powerful read, giving great insight from global business leaders about their first 100 days of lockdown. It’s a fantastic read which we highly recommend, you can order a copy by clicking HERE.
It was fascinating hearing more about Atholl’s background which was an engaging and entertaining story. He worked as a journalist, TV producer and executive for the BBC for more than 20 years and was Head of News and Current Affairs for BBC Scotland from 2007 to 2011. He is currently Chair of Salmon Scotland, which is Britain’s largest food exporter; Audit Chair of a cinema business; Chair of UK Coaching, and is a former interim Chair of the British Horseracing Authority.
The evening was scheduled to finish at 9:30pm however the last guests left at 11:45pm which speaks volumes about the enjoyment of the evening!
This morning, we welcomed 41 guests – members and non-members – to our inaugural Networking Breakfast, held in the beautiful Explorers’ Bothy. As was proven this morning, these events offer a fantastic opportunity to network with the Scottish business community and we alternate each month between an entrepreneurial speaker who will share their journey (including challenges faced – no rose tinted glasses overviews!) and topic based, where the speaker will share their expertise and tips on a specific subject. Places are limited to 50 to maximise the effectiveness of the networking.
We’ve shaken traditional networking events on the head a little with the breakfasts … the first half hour being for networking (and enjoying breakfast!) followed by the speaker and then there is another half hour for more networking. This worked very well this morning and is definitely the format we’ll be continuing with at future breakfasts. We’ve all been at networking events where the majority of the time is taken up listening to a speaker, and whilst that’s enjoyable, in many cases, it doesn’t give much time to meet and mingle.
Our speaker this morning was the winner of our 2021 New Start Business Award, Andy Miller of The Potato Guys who kept us all captivated with the inspiring story of this pivot business which he founded at the beginning of the pandemic, having realised he would not be able to run his successful National Sports Leagues business due to restrictions.
A highly engaging and entertaining speaker, Andy gave us plenty of laughs with his trademark sense of humour and we gather he has had a lot of potato orders as a result too!
You can watch the video Andy submitted at Stage 2 of our Awards below which even includes tractors!
In a change from the norm, Andy ensured everyone was wide awake and raring to go with a game of Heads and Tails at the start and then gave everyone a ‘Tasty’ Potato Guys hoodie!
Our thanks to both Atholl and Andy for being such excellent speakers and sharing their business journey with us, and of course to everyone who attended and made both events such successes. Also to the team at Johnnie Walker Princes Street for looking after us all so well.
Our next Networking Breakfast is on Thursday 24th March with sales guru extraordinaire, Iain Swanston of Klozers. You can find out more and book tickets HERE. Places are limited to 50 so don’t delay booking.
If you’re interested in finding out more about membership of WeDO, click HERE.
If you would like to be added to the mailing list for future Networking Breakfasts, you can sign up below.