GG. Work Hard – Play Hard.

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These are a few interview style questions that we put to the music artist GG about her battle with work life balance as she conquers all in an exciting and challenging industry.

Music and the arts are a big talking point right now with a move away from faceless corporate jobs towards the dream of ‘making your stamp on your industry’. But what is it really like for a young adult trying to make their way in an ever-condensing market of signers and songwriters? Read GG’s answers to find out.

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5 Top Festival Hacks For Summer ’17

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It’s the start of Festival season, also known as our favourite time of year because it brings together our passions: parties, music, events and maybe a couple of drinks. So it’s safe to say that Team yada is experienced when it comes to the festival season. So we’ve teamed up with our friends over at Freshers Festival to bring you the top Five Festival Hacks to survive your weekend with the most amount of fun and least amount of time drenched in mud!

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Startup Stories!: 3 Examples of Why Collaboration in Start-up life is so important!

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We  often chat about start-up life on twitter, or in our Work Hard- Play Hard series. We love the freedom, the creativity, the bean bag chairs and table tennis. It’s all fantastic, but moving away from the very true stereotypes, people rarely acknowledge that start-up life is a massive amount of work. There are probably 5 other companies (in your city alone) trying to recreate whatever your endeavour is. So it can be incredibly difficult to stand out or get ahead. But the wealth of people also in start-up life can be your greatest asset. Everyone like’s to think they can go it alone, do everything themselves, but collaboration is always a fantastic thing and here’s a couple of examples how, from our journey so far:

Collaboration in your sector (The London LightBox) :

We don’t talk about ourselves very often but here we go. We’re an events app/platform. We like to bring people together to create and find events and then document them through photos, videos, even social media.

So when our friends over at Good Life (we can’t call them a start-up, they’re too big) came and wanted to use the app for their next big night life event, of course we jumped at the chance! Everyone loves to take selfies on a night out… So everyone could take selfies, upload them in the app or on twitter and we could display them around the venue and get everyone involved! A fantastic opportunity right? But getting people to download an app for a night out they might not have heard of before? There’s a challenge (especially university students who have been pre-drinking). But this is where collaboration can save the day. If you look at any list of the biggest trends in events this year, photo-booths will appear, and for good reason. It’s one of the best ways to engage your attendees! Everyone loves a selfie, but what does everyone love even more? Feeling like a model.

So this is where collaboration rather than being closed minded comes in. We have some friends in the Photo Booth game (In fact they have the coolest Photo Booth by far in our opinion) – The London LightBox, and they’d always worked in private parties or events. They’d never dipped in to a nightlife setting, especially one for university students. So it’s the perfect chance to test the waters in a new sector! After some technical wizardry to allow their Photo Booth (The awesomely named ‘Obscura’) to upload directly in to yada, we’ve got something mutually beneficial! We can create the buzz and engagement we love (in  an audience slightly too tipsy to see the value of an extra download on their phones) and The London LightBox gain Market research! Moral of the story? Never be afraid to work with people, a job shared is a job halved and all that!

Collaboration outside of your sector! (Maison De Choup) :

Start-ups don’t just cover tech. As much as we all think that way, you can have a start-up Butcher, Baker and Candlestick Maker.  They just have different, more romantic terms for them. They’re ‘artisans’ and ‘boutiques’. But if you took the defining features of a start-up and applied them to their style and business, they’re a start-up in their own right! So it’s another area of collaboration you shouldn’t ignore (even if it’s just for a sexier looking client to put on your website 😉 ). But they can be a massive help to your business!

We recently partnered with a fashion brand centred around Mental Health Awareness for the launch of their new collection. Why should you look outside of what you think is your target audience? For one, Mental Health Awareness is something we believe in strongly and linking a passion to any part of your business is always fantastic. But linking specifically with a Fashion label to help their launch party opened our eyes massively. It showed us opportunities for our app that we would never have come across focusing on one type of client. So you should always look for the broadest range of collaboration chance because you never know what you might find! It may just open the largest area of opportunity for you!

BONUS TIP: But how do you find collaborators?

This is an example of how we’ve done it but there’s a principle that reigns true from it, so sit back and let the advice wash over you. You know how at the start we joked about Start-ups loving bean bag chairs and Table Tennis? Don’t worry we’re not going back on that. But the reasons why those stereotypes exist is quite simple. When you’re a startup, you’re are just that, you’ve just started up and as we all know… Offices are damn expensive, so to obviously fill this issue, the co-working space was born (Necessity is the Mother of invention and all that). So if you take an office block and fill it with hundreds of small companies all working in different sectors, what do you have? The best network of potential clients and people to collaborate with? YES! If you want a greater opportunity to network or work with people. The co-working space is perfect for you, so if you’re still silver-surfing in coffee shops with your co-founders. This is your next step. It gives you a sense of legitimacy and the opportunities you really need as a fledgling business. Your neighbours become not a nuisance but a resource for business, testing, advice… You name it.  So if you know you need to collaborate with your fellow startups to help growth, then maybe look in to your nearest Co-working space to give yourself the boost you need!    

Do you have any tips or advice on how to overcome challenges in the working world? Let us know by talking to us on Twitter! 

Make sure to check out The London Lightbox here and Maison De Choup here!

Also if you want a cheeky behind the scenes look in to Team yada make sure to check our insta!

Why not email the author about featuring on the blog or getting in touch with yada Events app: rhys.terrar@yada.events 

Try out the app and see how you can use it for your next event management project.

Download it on the App Store or Google Play and follow us

online:

www.yada.events

Work Hard. Play Hard. Elizabeth Harwood.

These are a few interview style questions that we put to Elizabeth about her battle with work life balance as she slogs it about in the city designing and promoting her designer scarf brand.

Start-up projects and entrepreneurship are a big talking point right now with a move away from faceless corporate jobs towards the dream of ‘making your stamp on your industry’. But what is it really like for a young adult trying to make their way in an ever-condensing market of brands and influencers? Read Elizabeth’s answers to find out.

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What is your role now and what are the main responsibilities for you?

I am a one-woman band so I do absolutely everything! But my passion is the creative side, specifically designing the collection. Luckily, I have had a tremendous amount of support from The Princes Trust, from friends and family. I think the key is to harness all your contacts and all the opportunities which are available to you. I have my strengths and weaknesses and I am unbelievably thankful to those who have been there to help.

Currently, my main focus is on promoting my collection and making sure my brand is more widely known.

How long have you been doing this for and what did you do before?

I launched Elizabeth Harwood on 1st February 2017, but have been working with the Princes Trust for the last 18 months on their Enterprise scheme. As soon as I graduated I started designing my collection and applied to the program, it supports young people with a range of help from training and mentoring support to funding and resources.

Beforehand, I studied for my Art Foundation and BA Degree at UAL. During my foundation year, I always sneaked down the corridor to the printing studios where the BA & MA students were creating such impressive work. The way that a piece of art can be applied to many mediums from books to wallpaper and fashion completely fascinated me so I made sure I got a place on the course. I then went on to study my BA, since the second year I knew I wanted to create my own collection. Creating scarves seemed natural medium as I had a scarf which was glued to me when I was younger; it was gold and grey and had the most beautiful paisley design – believe it or not, my mum actually won it in a raffle.  My mum used to go crazy at me telling me that I needed a new one as it got so tatty and worn (I refused). The scarf reminded me of countless memories and adventures I had as a teenager, I couldn’t bear to let it go. It became more than a scarf to me – occasionally I still wear it so please don’t tell my mum.

Can you think of any key challenges you had to overcome and how did you battle them to get to where you are?

Every day I face new challenges, starting a business is a something completely new to me so I am always learning. As a business owner it is essential to persevere – it is such a rewarding experience when you know you can put a tick in the box, and you’ve learnt something new! I am challenged every day and I love that the business is growing just as I am. 

What is the dream, or where would you like to see yourself in five or ten years?

Objects deserve the human touch, as a craftsman (or woman) you should be honest, genuine and responsible for the products you create. However it is your clients make product iconic and emotional. True luxury is when you care about the environment and how it affects the wearer, you care about the emotions it gives them as the objects we make shape us. There is no creativity without meaning.  For me, the object isn’t the end goal; it is my clients and their emotions who truly make the product.

In five or ten years, every entrepreneur including myself wants business success. Personally I want my clients to tell me when and where they have worn their scarf, to remember absolutely everything they did when wearing it. I aspire to creating something that is going to add something unique and special to someone’s life. It should bring joy and happiness into their everyday. The objects we have, create positive feelings, but it is the client who gives it the meaning, history and emotions. When this happens it is truly magical.

How do you find balancing lifestyle and downtime with your job?

It’s in me, it is who I am, every day I wake up and I am so excited and passionate by what I am doing. The possibilities that are right in front of me excite me and help push me forward. I wouldn’t say there is one particular busy or down time as I put my all into every aspect of my life whether it is my business or seeing friends. It is important to surround yourself with people who make you happy and who want the best for you – they help to support and motivate you through any difficulties. I am incredibly lucky to have friends and family who are so supportive and do just that.

I think when you have routine everything falls into place, 22:00 bed times and early mornings. I work out before I go to work so that I have evenings for events or time to myself or with the people I love. If it means enough to you, then you can make it happen. If you’re making excuses then you may not truly know where your heart lies. 

If you could give one piece of advice to a young spark looking to start their business, what would that be?

If you’re passionate enough, you will find a way to make it happen. Trust your instincts.

What has been your favourite event you have attended this month? If not month, this year?

At the end of November I was fortunate enough to take part in the annual Princes Trust Christmas Fayre. I sold several scarves and one client will always stay in my mind, he was an elderly man in a chocolate brown wax jacket which was worn at the sleeves, he looked as though he had left his farm to come straight to the event.

He attended the event with his wife, who he would not stop doting on. She fell in love with one of the scarves and before I knew it a credit card was flapping in front of my face- he couldn’t wait to spoil her. One of the most pricesless experiences I have ever had was seeing the look on her face as he gave her the gift, it was incredibly heart-warming. I hope there are more men and women out there who have that exact experience when giving or receiving a piece of my collection.

And finally, what do you think is the best part about being an upcoming, self-employed business owner right now?

I am doing what I love.

Thank you so much for talking to us and telling us about your experiences so honestly! We can’t wait to hear all about what you get up to in the future, keep in touch!

Check out Elizabeth’s collection here and make sure to follow her on Facebook and Instagram!

Do you have any tips or advice on how to overcome challenges in the working world? Let us know by talking to us on Twitter! 

Also if you want a cheeky behind the scenes look in to Team yada make sure to check our insta!

Why not email the author about featuring on the blog or getting in touch with yada Events app: rhys.terrar@yada.events 

Try out the app and see how you can use it for your next event management project.

Download it on the App Store or Google Play and follow us

online:

www.yada.events

5 Tips for Beta Exhibitors at Collision Conference

Just before we left for Collision conference we gave you some tips for if you’re about to be an Alpha exhibitor, but what if you’re about to take that jump to Beta? Firstly congrats on making a massive leap! We just had our first year as a Beta and it’s safe to say things change, so here’s our tips and tricks we learnt to bear in mind, before your larger stand space and status goes to your head!

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  1. USE YOUR SPACE

It might seem obvious, but a massive difference between Alpha and Beta is that in Beta there’s way less of you and you have way more space! So does everyone utilise their space? No! Most people turn up with some paper marketing and a laptop to play a presentation on. Which we think is a massive waste. It’s an opportunity to get inventive and truly display your brand and to try to stand out. So invest a little in something to set yourself apart, we created a whole style/campaign around the nostalgia of Polaroids and it made people stop and chat to us. So think a little outside the box and utilise your Beta privilege!

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     2.GET READY FOR ATTENTION

You might hear some Alphas crying in despair but Beta did make a difference. Maybe it’s purely that there’s less of us or that you’re further down your ‘roadmap’. But that Beta Blue badge meant we had more people chatting to us than our Alpha days, and it wasn’t just other startups! We had more investors come a knocking and we did more media and press interviews. The lift in ‘status’ (we don’t like calling it that) did help. But do you know what that actually means? You have to be so much more slick than your alpha days. You need to have your pitch  committed to memory past the point of robotics. You need to be able to easily drip feed it to, to whoever you’re talking to. We know it’s not an easy thing to do, but having it ready to go is invaluable. It’s your chance to impress and you can’t waste it! 

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     3. USE BETA STATUS TO YOUR ADVANTAGE

This might sound a little evil or maybe just bigheaded, but we know that when we were Alpha we looked at Beta companies like they were a BIG DEAL. Maybe we were just a naive bunch last year, but if you can utilise it, why not? Alpha companies will look to you for advice, collabs, exposure, loads of things. So if there’s a company of interest in Alpha and you look important because your badge, why not flex it a little to see what goodies it can give you. (Even if it just means some more social media interaction 😉 )

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     4. MAKE THE MOST OF NIGHT SUMMIT

We know this isn’t going to be a surprise, Team yada telling you to make the most of an opportunity that involves night life and maybe a few too many drinks. But it’s a networking opportunity just like at the conference, with one key difference. People are looking to let off some steam, let loose a little, whatever appropriate cliché you can think of, and because of that more deals and partnerships get made at Night Summit than anywhere else! People let their guard down a little and have a real chat (or dance off in some cases…). It’s something you can’t miss out on! Even if you’re just looking for some more contacts!

BONUS TIP: If you have some key people already identified, making contact with them and going for a drink before Night Summit and then sticking with them for the night is a fantastic way to rapidly solidify a relationship. If you were the person with them on their craziest night in New Orleans… They’re not going to forget you or more importantly, what you do!

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     5. ENJOY YOUR SELF

You might not think this is a worthwhile tip, but it really is! You’ve managed to make it to one of the most massive tech conferences, written about by Forbes, Buzzfeed and loads more. While it’s important to use this chance, you should also just take a moment to sniff the roses, to chill and reflect on what you’ve achieved! (It also helps that if you’re more relaxed you’ll probably get more out of the conference). So just think about where you are, enjoy it and everything should be fine!

Those our tips for the next generation of Beta exhibitors! Do you have any tips or advice on how to overcome challenges that you faced at Collision Conference? Let us know by talking to us on Twitter!

Why not email the author about featuring on the blog or getting in touch with yada Events app:

rhys.terrar@yada.events

Try out the app and see how you can use it for your next event management project or, follow our 2017 Collision journey.

Download it on the App Store or Google Play and follow us

online: www.yada.events

5 Top Tips for Alpha Exhibitors – From a previous ALPHA start-up

Applying for ALPHA and being accepted is an incredibly exciting feeling for any start-up but it can also be a little daunting. If you haven’t been to a tech conference before it is hard to know how to get started, what to do, who to speak to and most importantly how to make the most of it. It is the classic catch 22 of “needing the experience to get experience” but don’t worry, we’ve done it before and are here to help. Here are our top 5 tips on how to ace the ALPHA experience at Collision Conference 2017.

Plan your itinerary

This may seem obvious but it is also the easiest thing to forget. The best thing to do is keep it simple! Luckily Collision gives you all of the tools you need to ensure that you know exactly what is going on before you get to the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center. The web app and mobile app are invaluable to planning your itinerary. From talks and workshops to Night Summit and bar crawls it has it all. Take your time and go through everything the conference has to offer but don’t commit to too much. Do what works for you and your start-up and remember your exhibiting day is probably the most important so don’t pack too much in.

Create a check-list

You will have so much to remember and we find it really helped to write it all down. Creating a list is a great way to brain dump and clear your head for the most important things (like talking to people and remembering your pitch!). We had a list for everything when we attended and it helped us cover all bases. You have probably spent a lot of time and money preparing for Collision so you don’t want to be kicking yourself last minute if you forget your promotional products in the office. The more you put on paper, the less you have to rely on your brain to remember. Just make sure you remember where you put your checklist!

Perfect your pitch but don’t become a robot

You will have a lot of conversations with different people at the conference as the attendee list ranges from investors to journalists and attendees to speakers. Although you are well rehearsed in what your company is or what your product does, it is hard to keep it fresh and original for each individual. Why not try and write down multiple versions of your pitch? Changing the tone and wording of your pitch won’t take away from the important aspects but it will make it a lot more interesting to listen to. Also, keep it clear and simple! No one knows your product quite like you do and they can’t read your brain so assume that they are completely clueless. Obviously, this doesn’t mean that you should be patronising because you never know who you are talking to!

Show your passion

It is hard work to make it this far and it takes passion and dedication to persevere. You should enjoy your time at Collision and look at it as a reward, not a challenge. There is obviously a lot to do whilst you are there and it is hard to let your guard down but your passion is what will make your start-up stand out. Enthusiasm is contagious and people will feel it if you project it whilst you’re pitching. There are lots of other start-ups there and we can guarantee that all of them that they have what it takes so make sure you stand out with a smile and positive attitude. But remember, be humble and don’t fall into the trap of becoming another pushy start-up. Pushy doesn’t mean passion!

Enjoy yourself

Collision Conference is hosted in one of the most incredible cities. New Orleans is the home of music, magic and mardi gras which means they know how to party. Although Collision Conference is the most important reason that you are there, you shouldn’t neglect what this electric place has to offer. Night Summit is where we forged some of our most important relationships with a huge variety of contacts. Come the evening, everyone is ready to enjoy a Pimms Cup or two and let their hair down so don’t feel as if you have to rest-up in your hotel room because you may just miss out on the most important conversation of your trip.

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Do you have any tips or advice on how to overcome challenges that you faced at Collision Conference? Let us know by talking to us on Twitter!

Why not email the author about featuring on the blog or getting in touch with yada Events app.

mehram.sumray-roots@yada.events

Try out the app and see how you can use it for your next event management project or, follow our 2017 Collision journey.

Download it on the App Store or Google Play and follow us

online: www.yada.events

Work Hard – Play Hard. Swakara Atwell-Bennett.

These are a few interview style questions that we put to Swakara about her battle with work-life balance as she slogs it about in the city with her creative group Better Shared. (Which we’re hosting a screening of their new series tomorrow at WeWork Spitalfields! RSVP/ Get tickets HERE

Start-up projects and entrepreneurship are a big talking point right now with a move away from faceless corporate jobs towards the dream of ‘making your stamp on your industry’. But what is it really like for a young adult trying to make their way in an ever-condensing market of brands and influencers? Read Swakara’s answers to find out.

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What is your role now and what are the main responsibilities for you?

I am the Founder and Creative Director of BetterShared.co a platform for creatives of African / Caribbean descent. I also Freelance as a Designer / Art Director under Swakara Ltd.

My role mainly involves a lot of researching, I am always on the lookout for new creatives and general inspiration – It’s something I can’t switch off, you can spot something or someone anywhere. Most of my time is spent planning, editing and curating content for our interview features, social media and any events or campaigns we have scheduled. I have become a bit of a list addict which helps me keep on top of everything and alongside my marketing assistant, we plan our social a month in advance. The favourite part of my role, however, has to be interviewing, whether that is in person or over Skype / Google Hangouts. As a Freelance Designer, I work on a mixture of projects from UI design to branding and occasionally motion graphics and print.

How long have you been doing this for and what did you do before?

It will be two years this August, prior to this I worked full-time as a Graphic Designer at a branding agency in Shoreditch. I loved my job, but working within the creative industry also allowed me to witness the lack of diversity and lack of representation. The average graphic designer is still a white middle aged male so a black female Graphic Designer in the UK I am something of a rarity.

Can you think of any key challenges you had to overcome and how did you battle them to get to where you are?

I would say I am still battling them as there are new challenges every day, BetterShared exists to inspire, promote and connect people so the business element is something that has only recently manifested. Asking people for help was something I wasn’t so keen on at the beginning but it has been crucial – especially if you are launching something on your own. It’s not a bad thing if you can’t do it all or you need help once in awhile, without the help of my team who jumped onto BetterShared from the idea phase – it would have stayed as just that, an idea.

Another example was our birthday event, we underestimated the scale and it ended up going way over budget. We were trying to fit too many things into one event until we realised that sometimes less is more, on the day we scaled it back and the event was a success, the people, the music, and vibes were magical. Although I’m a lover of lists, at times you need to be able to think on your feet.

What is the dream, or where would you like to see yourself in five or ten years?

The dream would be to be one of if not the largest creative network in the world, somewhere that creatives know they can connect to one another and find future icons.

Personally, I would love to be balancing a business and motherhood as I would hope to have at least one or two lil’ ones by then.

How do you find balancing lifestyle and downtime with your job?

Most of the time even when I am supposed to be ‘taking time out’ I am thinking about BetterShared, since I have started I have found it hard to switch off from it completely. I do make the effort, however, to ensure I still see my friends and family and turn my notifications off when I’m relaxing, especially on holiday. It’s hard, but I think it’s necessary to give your mind a rest or at least find time to take up a hobby, it’s not always easy I do find weeks or months when downtime feels non-existent but then I will give myself a few days of chill after a hectic period. I’m definitely making more of an effort this year to focus on my well-being.

If you could give one piece of advice to a young spark looking to start their business, what would that be?

Don’t be afraid to just try things, the hardest part (as cheesy as it sounds) is just starting. I posted a launch date on Insta before we had even edited our first piece of video content. It was scary and looking back I may have done things differently but it forced me to make an idea a reality. Also, stick to it, a lot of people expect overnight success and it generally takes a lot longer than you’d expect. If you’re looking for an easy ride you’re probably in the wrong profession, it’s a brilliant feeling to know something you have imagined or dreamt of is finally happening but you have to be prepared to work your ass off to get it there.

What has been your favourite event you have attended this month? If not month, this year?

Bloom The Film launch last year was brilliant, I loved the accompanying exhibition which featured female artists from across the globe who created pieces in response to the coming-of-age film. The film itself is moving and the work was beautiful, they also included little details such as the bike from the film and flowers were scattered across the exhibition. Huge s/o to Jesse Gassongo-Alexander, the Writer, Director and Curator of the film and exhibition. Also Screened Nights – a summer screening of shorts by up and coming Directors. They had summer and winter events, it such a good concept can’t wait for their 2017 edition!

And finally, what do you think is the best part about being an upcoming, self-employed business owner right now?

The best part for me is knowing that I am working on something I’ve built that I’m truly passionate about – you spend over half of your life working so it may as well be on something you enjoy. Also in the age of social, it’s much easier to reach an audience and connect with people whether that’s for advice, partnerships or even testing ideas.

Thank you so much for talking to us and telling us about your experiences! We can’t wait for the screening! 

Make sure to check out Better Shared’s website here and follow them on Twitter.

And RSVP for the screening here!

Do you have any tips or advice on how to overcome challenges in the working world? Let us know by talking to us on Twitter!

Why not email the author about featuring on the blog or getting in touch with yada Events app. rhys.terrar@yada.events

Try out the app and see how you can use it for your next event management project.

Download it on the App Store or Google Play and follow us

online:

www.yada.events