Almost 100 local business representatives enjoyed an entertaining presentation from renowned guest speaker David Watkins, known as the Naked Entrepreneur, at Driffield Rugby Club as part of Humber Business Week.
Hosted by East Riding of Yorkshire Council and the Professional Voice of East Riding Businesses (ProVERB), a newly-established voluntary group of small business owners, the event was well-received by those in attendance and saw David strip business down and lay it bare through a mix of humour and audience participation.
David posed a number of questions and got people thinking about what it takes to run a business and practical advice and guidance on how to make their business sustainable and how to build a client base.
“I thought the event was excellent, with nearly 100 people in attendance. Certainly every seat was filled,” said David.
“I think it is good that the event was organised by local business people for the benefit of local business people and with support from the council.”
With thousands of small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) and micro-businesses in the East Riding and more being created every day, David has this message for those in the fledgling years of a business venture or those considering starting up.
He said: “Ask yourself the question, is there a market for your product or service? I think what a lot of people tend to do is go into business because they have a specific interest and because they are interested they assume that the world is interested as well, which is not necessarily always the case.
“Network opportunities, such as today’s event, are also incredibly important. I’m a great believer in establishing both a personal and business relationship with a customer.”
Tim Norman, proprietor of The Royal Bridlington hotel, said: “This was a great opportunity to listen to David’s unique take on business challenges as well as an excellent opportunity to meet some like-minded people to bounce ideas off. I wish ProVERB all the best and hope that as a team they and the many myriad of small businesses can further make East Yorkshire shine.”
ProVERB, who helped ensure the success of event, was formed as a way for the council to work with local businesses by creating a forum and a way of communicating with the wider business community.
Councillor Jane Evison, cabinet portfolio holder for economy, investment and inequalities at East Riding of Yorkshire Council, said: “There are almost 13,000 SMEs and micro-businesses in the East Riding and these are the lifeblood of our local economy. While the council would like to work with every business individually, this is not possible and establishing ProVERB is this authority’s unique way of working with the business community and ensuring its business services continue to provide the right support.
“We have had David speak at some of our events before and he has always been popular with his entertaining and thought-provoking take on business and I am sure those who attended today will go away with a lot of new ideas, focus and renewed enthusiasm.”
Kirsty Coates of ProVERB said: “ProVERB came together to help micro businesses and bring them together and that’s just what we did today. It was great to talk to such a diverse group of businesses and hear their stories and issues.
“Moving forward, it would be great to keep the communication going with small businesses in our area and people can do this via social media. We want to know how we can help you.”
For further information or to contact ProVERB, follow them on Twitter @Proverbgroup or like their Facebook page www.facebook.com/Proverbgroup
For further information about the range of business services offered by the council, visit www.eastriding.gov.uk/business or contact your local business centre.