When you are self-employed, networking is a very important part of your business psyche. I find that going out and meeting like-minded people invigorates me and validates all my blood, sweat and tears, something that family and friends are not always able to do.
So on Friday the 19th November, I went to the ‘Big Business Breakfast’ organised by Enterprise Nation as part of Global Enterprise Week. Apart from meeting San (the face of http://twitter.com/BitsyTalk) and Emma Jones, Founder of Enterprise Nation the morning was really productive. The line-up included the following speakers listed below, and I will feedback on Torsten and John Hayes’ presentation:
- James Caan, TV ‘Dragon’ and Entrepreneur
- Torsten Schuppe, UK Marketing Director, Google
- Dan Wagner, Founder of Powa.com
- John Hayes, Minister of Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning
Torsten gave us an overview of Google’s collaborative drive with BT, E-Skills UK and Enterprise UK to get British Businesses online with a presentation entitled ‘How to get online in 20 minutes’.
- 1.8 billion people worldwide, use the internet
- 1.5 million businesses still not online
- Face Book alone has 500 million users
- 65% of people online are over the age of 35
- Google aims to get 100,000 businesses online by the end of this year
- There is interaction between all the various types of communication for example, people listen to the radio/watch television whilst they are working on their laptop
- UK leads the way with 41 million people online
- UK spend more per person on online purchases than anywhere else in the world including United States
- 90% of people moving house lists broadband access as a prerequisite, or something that they must have within a month of moving house
- 50% of new internet is accessed through mobile phone, in particular through smart phones
- Internet is worth £100 billion pounds to the UK economy
- Consumers and businesses expect to find a business online
- Businesses that have an internet presence are four times more successful.
What are some of the benefits of having an internet presence:
- You get found more easily
- You can enter new markets
- You can sell directly to customers
- Customers like the convenience of being able to surf at their leisure
- You can reach and exploit niche markets
Case study of businesses that have benefited from having an internet presence include:
How do you get your business online?
Log on to this link for your free website.
John Hayes, Minister of Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning
John Hayes spoke about the Government’s strategy for raising the profile of vocational and other practical skills. This is particularly relevant for IT skills where all the statistics show that in the next five years more than half a million skilled people will be needed to support the IT sector.
The fact that there are still over a million businesses in the UK without a website does not augur well for competition in a growing IT sector.
The strategy aims to:
- develop a sectoral approach to training
- put employers in the driving seat in terms of the type of training that is provided
- carry out robust quality control on training providers
To support the strategy, there will be a ‘growth and innovation’ fund for eligible businesses
Emma Jones (Founder, Enterprise Nation)
I have had a quick glance at the book and it should be a must read for anyone who wants to go global with their business.
Some useful resources mentioned at the meeting:
Thanks for reading.