Designed in Dorset have had abusy start to the week with two networking events on Monday and Tuesday. The first was with the new Dorset Council who are pulling together feedback for their economic strategy for the County. As a new unitary authority, they have the chance to pull their thinking together and stop managing the county in silos as was the case previously. We were lucky enough to be invited and take part in a breakfast session at the Exchange in Sturminster Newton.
It is important to us to attend meetings like this so that we might be able to feedback some of the thoughts from our vendors and understand what is going on in terms of the local economy for the future. The event was well managed and we even had “who wants to be a millionaire” type keypads to offer our opinion. The resulting feedback appeared to suggest important points like support for work spaces in rural areas and aspiration training for local students to stop them leaving the county. We will wait and see to find out what is put in the official report, these events are going on a roadshow for the next month across the rest of the county. Thank you to the Council for inviting us.
The second event was more to network with other local businesses and see what the Dorset Chamber of Commerce has to offer. The “Meet the Chamber” event took place at the home of the Cherries/AFC Bournemouth home ground. Great fun for us, neither of whom have been to the cherries stadium before. They have a good relationship with the local business community and regularly run events in their suite of rooms in the main stand. Canopes and drinks were handed round as we chatted to a variety of people. They tended to be more corporate than we are used to seeing up in the north of the county. Not necessarily the type of company who will list on Designed in Dorset. However, we may encourage some of them to use us as their corporate shop to buy Christmas gifts to support the local area.
If you know of any networking events where you think we should be present then please get in touch, it is a great way to spread the word. It goes without saying that if you are a start-up business you should consider a local networking group, it is an easy way to get face to face with your potential customers or get introduced to other useful people.