Economist Tyler Cowen has argued that Americans are less adventurous than they were just a few decades ago. They move less often, they divide themselves by socioeconomic lines more frequently, and they stay in their jobs longer and don’t take the time to network or attend business events.
And, this shift toward complacency hasn’t avoided the entrepreneurial sector. Americans start fewer businesses than they used to. Also, markets are tightening up.
To remain a dynamic society, entrepreneurs need to take a chance on new businesses and deliver the products and services our economy demands. To do that, they may need to break out of their comfort zones in 2018. It’s time to shake up their approach to business. The place to start is attending business and industry events.
Why Business Events?
One great way to do that is by leaving your immediate surroundings. Attending business events that are full of other entrepreneurs who are looking to learn new things, have new experiences, and adopt new perspectives can be a real eye-opener. Plus, these business events can change the long-term prospects for your business.
Here are six business events to put on your 2018 shortlist.
1. Entrepreneurs’ Organization
EO is an organization designed to support entrepreneurs and enable them to learn from one another. EO holds global events throughout the year. However, it also holds regional events for members that address issues pertinent to a specific area.
From focusing on particular geographic areas, such as Latin America, to building events around a specific demographic, such as women, the organization makes an effort to acknowledge members’ experiences and challenges. Located everywhere from Bali to St. Louis, these events certainly push entrepreneurs out of their usual routines and into exploration.
2. Baby Bathwater
The Baby Bathwater Institute is an entrepreneurial community meant to bring people out of their shells and create a natural atmosphere for them to interact. It’s set far from pitches and business dealings.
While Baby Bathwater has members-only events, it also hosts European events and two “flagship events” per year in Powder Mountain, Utah. These events place entrepreneurs in a mountainous outdoor setting. At these business events, they can listen to live music while networking with others who have valuable insights and experiences.
Techweek is a technology-focused conference and media company that operates in eight cities, where it hosts weeklong conferences each year. The organization’s goal is to help entrepreneurs build “substantial and sustainable businesses” to create strong tech infrastructures in their cities and incubate talent and ideas.
Techweek’s weeklong business events include cities from Detroit to Los Angeles. Additionally, they feature fledgling startups as well as established businesses. That way, business owners on each end of the spectrum can learn what others are doing.
Summit is an annual “ideas festival” that brings together experts from a variety of fields. These business events are three days of sharing ideas, taking classes, and absorbing performances. Aiming to inspire new viewpoints and foster relationships, the event has been described as a TED Talk combined with Burning Man.
Each year’s lineup is intended to spark new ideas or shed light on what other industries are doing. For example, 2017’s speakers included Jeff Bezos and Shonda Grimes.
Collision is a tech conference that hosts more than 25,000 attendees who are seeking to learn about how other companies operate and make decisions. Created by the Web Summit team, these business events draw startups and corporations as well as investors and media outlets. This audience discusses new ideas and game-changing perspectives.
Featuring faces from Microsoft, the ACLU, and the WWE, among others, the event shares diverse viewpoints from a variety of industries.
6. The Gathering of Games
The annual Gathering of Games unites open-book management practitioners. At these business events, they learn and expand their practice.
Open-book management proposes that information should show employees what to do. Also, it must reflect how the entire company is doing. Those who currently practice the management style or are interested in introducing it to their teams can join this event.
Plan For Business Events Today
As an entrepreneur, you don’t want to become stagnant or stop taking risks. These ideas are antithetical to everything entrepreneurs stand for.
But, if you feel you’ve become a bit complacent or want to push your boundaries further in 2018, attend some business events. Lastly, those business events will push you out of your comfort zone. You just might find yourself with a much stronger business and a brighter future.