When I think back to earlier in my career, there are hundreds of things that spring to mind. Memories of good times and bad, highs and lows, I’m sure you know the sort of thing. In and amongst those memories is a vivid image of my desk, which zooms in on my computer screen to see hundreds upon hundreds of emails. Emails I’d read, emails left unread, but all piling up. It characterizes how I used to work: controlled by my email inbox, struggling to lift my head above the parapet and consumed by the stress of information overload. It doesn’t have to be this way. I’ve changed. You can too. Continue reading How to Avoid Information Overload
I recently attended the ISBE conference and delivered a paper with my colleague Steve Harding. The paper is called Collaborative Learning with Creative Enterprises in the EU – a case study approach.
The conference had many different strands but the bits of interest to me are nicely captured by Frances Brown in her blog. And if you like fancy visuals, Frances created a picture of her ‘takeaways’ too.
Creative industries track (and a tiny bit of social and enterprise education)
Networks and Networking – “Fitting in and standing out” Eleanor Shaw
Everyone was talking about networks whether it was musician-entrepreneurs spending time and money to be part of their community via doing free gigs and supporting others gigs or networking being used as a learning experience via peer information sharing. An interesting presentation looked at a new business that set up in a mature industry but quickly became embedded in and central to the network. The study looked at the journey from pre-embedding to deep embedding via strategic networking, with intent. Actively planning roles of each member of the business to network with others on their particular employment levels e.g. director and director, manager and manager and for a particular purpose. The human capital of networks and communities were also considered in terms of entrepreneurs feeding into the community and having positive impact via contacts and reputation and the occurrence of an informal sharing and barter system.
Intent was considered again in relation to creative industries with it’s overwhelming drive to set up business for practice rather than for business sake. In this case the complexity of the industry was examined with differing levels of intent arising in the form of ‘tactical’ intent – driven by desire to practice, often working towards an ultimate future goal – and ‘pragmatic’ intent of those who had multiple businesses over the research period and displayed a weak attachment to the projects/businesses as long as they were practicing in some way.
The discussions about networks, social & cultural capital are particularly pertinent for students launching a career in the media and creative industries. I touched on that in a previous post.
Marina Ibrahim of Bizz Buzz gave students excellent insights into developing a niche business.
Marina talked about networks and creative alliances as key to understanding your sector. She demonstrated how she makes good use of her contacts and if she needs further support, she creates a network to access that help. For example, she has set up a local Jelly and a Mastermind group. Continue reading Developing a Niche Business