Last Wednesday I was lucky enough to attend the first Dublin Tech Summit with two of my best friends (and fellow final year Marketing Students). I love to learn and of course where better to grown my knowledge and meet the professionals then at one of Ireland’s largest Tech conferences. While I could write for days on the endless tak-away facts and tibbets of genius I learned during my day trip to the big Schmoke, I’ve managed to narrow it down to the 5 Things I Think Everyone Should Know from my time at Tech Summit!
A little Innovation Can Take You Anywhere
The week before Dublin Tech Summit, I had €15.58 in my bank account. My laptop recently packed in and thus I invested in a Macbook as an early graduation present to myself. While I love the freedom of having a laptop that doesn’t take 17.5 minutes to load, I’m broker then broke. I knew Tech Summit was coming up and so I used the little initiative 15+ years of education has still allowed me keep and sold some of my unused books and tech. I made enough to get myself to Dublin and back and didn’t miss my chance to attend my first Summit! We all struggle with money issues, personal problems and general struggles but the best way to survive is to hustle on. If you have a little time, a little brainpower and a little bit of cop-on, you can get through anything and make your own changed to your own life.
Proving Your Inner Skeptic Wrong is a Great Investment
I’ve always been interested in Gary Vee and what he has to say. My friends are obsessed, my mother a little in love with his motivational aura but me, I’ve always been a skeptic (as I am about anyone with that big of a following worldwide). As someone who’s worked my ass off to get to college; spend the last 4 years investing all my time in energy and time on getting a degree hearing a multi-millionare with a private college education telling his massive audience that no school will ever prepare the working world… well I was peeved. Getting the chance to meet him in person and hear him speak without the mirrade of editing and social fanfare was a great opportunity to really understand the “Vee way”. From the second Gary walked into the room, it was clear he was personable, passionate and interested; taking the time to ask all to introduce ourselves and our backgrounds and remembering as much as he made references to each of our stories as he spoke with vivid wording. I’m converted! While I may not agree with all the Gary Vee ideologies and I certainly have struggles buying into most influencer’s jargon, I’m definitely a huge fan of Mr Vee’s way of encouraging, energizing and motivating.
When I later too my seat in the Prism Auditorium to hear Mr Vanyerchuk speak to the crowd, I noted the differences between the kind, bright-eyed man in the meeting rooms of the Dublin Convention Center and the swear laden, swaggering and overly exaggerated public persona I saw on stage; the Gary Vee we see in vlogs and vines, in youtube videos and keynote speeches is a well-oiled brand. They say, don’t meet your heros, I say, maybe it’s for the better sometimes.
Everything Changes Once You Learn to Omit Emotions From Your Business Mix
A lesson from the man himself, you will only succeed in business once you realise you can’t be ruled by emotions. I’m an emotional wreck most of the time; I cry when I see small dog and cute kids sure…. but I’m learning to channel my sentimental nature in different ways. Carrie Fisher was quoted by Meryl Streep as one day advising “take your broken heart and make it into art” and I hope I can do just that; be it in my writing, my attempts at web design or the time I spend playing with the buttons on Photoshop. Being a women in the business world already means I’m up to face a number of different obstacles by matter of my gender alone; I can’t let emotion distract me in my working life. My new goals including learning to not take things so personally. It’s a big, bad world and I’m a big, bold girl now; it’s time to act like it.
No Niche is too Niche (aka, sometimes the most bizarre ideas are the best ideas)
I’ve had a lot of bizarre ideas for start-ups, business solutions and little entrepreneurial ideas I could dip my toes in. Up until now, I’ve never developed any of these ideas into anymore then just that, ideas. Tech Summit has allowed me to see that there are niche markets for everything and anything and the biggest mistake I’ll ever make within my own business identity is not trying. Some of the best start-ups, apps and products I saw on the convention room floor where the ones that were a little out there. Some of my favourite ideas included Woofadvisor (for the doggie traveller in your life) Airdates (for the dater with no data…. in the air for example), Arrays.co (for beautiful data) and Pyltix (who had the loveliest events team …for managing product data online). Maybe in a few years (when I have more than the cost of a one month subscription to Spotify in my bank) I’ll be out there on the conference trail, a wacky idea and the heart to try behind me.
Invest (in your Students, Interns and Soon-to-be Graduates!)
Missing college for any reason in the middle of the last few months is a huge no,no for so many reasons but for events like Dublin Tech Summit, it’s vital! As a digital marketing geek and a tech obsessed lover of all things internet, I’ve tried to get tickets to a few of the many interesting conferences and summits that Ireland host every year. Offset, Web Summit, 3xE and even Social Media Summit are all too expensive for an already struggling student but would provide huge learning and networking potential to people like me who are passionate about the marketing/digital/design/online world. While student tickets do exist, Dublin Tech Summit was the first opportunity I was give (in my 4 years of study that is) to be given a free event ticket, a practise more events should really consider. I’m not asking for Offset to suddenly offer all students a free ticket, I get the monetized model, I’m simply examining the idea that there should be an allowance of tickets for students and interns who want to get some industry know-how. I think businesses some-times consider us “entry-level” folk as being at the bottom of the food chain but they need to realise someday we’re going to be the 90% who populate said chain. Invest in knowledge, in personal development and in inspiration. On behalf of all the students who got the chance to be inspired over the course of the 2 days, thank you wholeheartedly Dublin Tech Summit!
I’ve read a few people’s take-aways from Tech Summit but have yet to hear from any of my fellow students. I’m always interested in spreading the knowledge and hearing about other’s experiences; what where your biggest learning curves from the event?