Tag Archive for 'shine2008'

Podcast about blogs from Shine is up

Dave Dawes, of Entreprenurses fame, has posted up his podcast of bloggers talking about blogging (and a bit about twittering) at Shine 2008. It features not only myself (the most incoherent / inaudible of all the participants) but also a range of other blogging advocates and sceptics, and covers, amongst many other things:

  • Meeting and networking with people via their blog
  • Making time for creating and following blogs
  • How blogs can raise the profile of your social enterprise
  • The role of blog comments and blog readership
  • Corporate vs personal/informal blogging styles
  • How to start blogging (typepad, wordpress, etc)
  • Check out and download the podcast here.

    Live blogging: final pitching event

    OK – final event here at Shine 2008, with 3 social entrepreneurs pitching to an esteemed panel for £5000…..MC’d by the ‘compere without compare’, Matt Kepple. I can see David Wilcox doing some video of the pitches, so I’ll aim at an edited highlights commentary.

    First up is Minnie from India, who wants to go round Devon doing workshops on climate change, based on things she has learned from her time at Schumacher College. The panel are being very nice about the pitch (which rambled a bit and lost me), but the kernel of the idea came through: a people-powered movement to locally inform and reach out. Questions were about the need for brand, about the need to differentiate, and about the possibility of sharing and working in partnership with others. Minnie gave pretty good answers to most of those.

    Second up is Alexia, who used to be the Social Enterprise Coalition membership officer, is pitching for a project….which aims to utilise yoga to tackle mental health issues / eating disorders etc. She wants the money to help inform and advocate the various stakeholder communities (care services, yoga practitioners, funders etc. and so forth), as well as deliver workshops herself. In the first instance, she wants to do some market research as the first stage of her journey. Good presentation, which was very clear and, to her credit, started with a clear outlining of her personal motivation. Questions are pondering the scope of ambition (too much?), planning effectively, and the barriers there may be: not least because it’s about working in the NHS. Good answers, particularly about not wanting to ‘own the space’, but ensure others can learn from her work.

    Third up is Ben, who is pitching for a third sector communications agency for those whose projects and organisations can’t afford big budget investment in this area; utilising volunteers (students, but also those with experience from different agencies). Is now explaining the business model, and the potential social impact. Probably the clearest pitch so far: pretty impressive: “at the start of the weekend, I wasn’t sure this was a good idea….but now I know it is”. Questions are around quality control (particularly if using volunteers), about the internship culture already existing (a suggestion around providing the training scheme to the existing big marketing agencies gets a decent response), uniqueness, method:purpose…..

    [I have to say, and I am aware that this might be the jaded, slightly tired grump in me, but why are people incapable of phrasing a succinct, concise and clear question? Hey ho....]

    And finally, the voting, people are holding up different coloured cards like a low-budget Apprentice:You’re Fired…. and the winner, with the blue cards holding sway….. is….Alexia.

    That’s a wrap, people!

    The vibe is: chilled and engaged

    It must be the hottest and sunniest day of the year, and, in combination with the Premiership title decider , that means the crowd is smaller today. There is a lazy, Sunday vibe today….but still people from different walks of life, different backgrounds connecting, getting advice and taking part in a really wide range of sessions. Currently, there are sessions about partnership, about authenticity in social media, about marketing, and different 1:1 sessions on tax, business planning and so forth.

    What always interests me are the unique points of view and preferences that everyone brings. I thrived on the energy of Friday / Saturday, but there are others finding today’s atmosphere more to their liking…interesting to think about how an event can try and cater to those different interests and emphases: a challenge for next year.

    Insights and wedding dances

    Just attended a great session led by Servane Mouazan of Ogunte about different ways of gaining insights into dilemmas, obstacles and situations. Introductions via the senses (i.e. less what’s your name, and more what’s your favourite colour, smell, sound etc.) were remarkably illuminating, and there were some interesting connections from those first thoughts alone.

    Then we had to choose a dilemma (mine was worrying about the first dance at my forthcoming wedding (considering my two left feet), then utilising thinking cards and cross-pollination cards to think about it in new ways. So, for me, that was thinking about ‘how my superhero would do it?’ and then a few ‘what would happen if?’ questions to prompt answers. Whilst I didn’t arrive this morning thinking about how Superman would approach a first dance at a wedding, it was interesting to do so….and certainly brought about some new insights: about the ability to use an alter ego to gain confidence, about everyone having insecurities / anxieties (re. Lois Lane / Clark Kent), and about the possible use of pants outside the trousers as a distraction tactic.

    Nice methods to gain insights, and approaching problems in creative ways. Check out Servane’s site (link above) for more.

    Mapping connections at Shine

    The Shine unconference is very much about connecting people: acknowledging the value that comes from one-to-one connections, intimate conversations, personal advice, peer-to-peer learning and so forth. This did make it difficult at times to pitch to funders: so mapping those connections, trying to track them, and start to measure the value of them, is really important.

    And that’s why we’re excited by the conversations we’ve been having with The Social Network Company, who are going to experiment with using their graphical mapping tool at the event….which (as with much at the event) is very much an experiment and a trial, but could have interesting results. Particularly if we can go back to those people after (say) six months, and see how such relationships have developed over time.

    MyBnk, The Hunger Project and other stories

    Great, laidback vibe around the building today: lots of one-to-one sessions and conversations taking place. I bumped into Lily Lapenna of MyBnk in the Snug and chatted about CSR, Ashoka and other things. It’s a great project, so check out the website: financial awareness and understanding is such a key life skill, and initiatives like this will be key in making it happen.

    Also seen quite a few SSE Fellows: Jo Dempster, Winnie Williams, Tom Bulman, Will Rogers and others; great to see them all here. I’ve been trying to broker them to some particularly interesting sessions and areas; where else could you get innovation thoughts from NESTA, bespoke advice from What If?!, planning from Ashoka….all for £20 a day. Bargain.

    Currently Tom is talking in front of me to Patrick Moore from the Hunger Project, who’s speaking hugely passionately about the need to empower men and women in developing countries. Patrick’s just suggested that I link to their new video, so watch it here. What I totally agree with Patrick about is the need to stop seeing people as ‘beneficiaries’ and see them as potential leaders, as authors of their own solutions. Very much in line with the messages SSE gives out about people in the UK and beyond: social entrepreneurs often come from the communities they’re aiming to serve (and the problems they contain).

    Day 2, people…..

    So, with only a mild hangover and a desperate need of coffee, we begin day 2 of the inaugural Shine Unconference. As Nelly once memorably said, it’s hot in here: hoefully the beautiful weather will inspire people to come to the SouthBank, rather than head to the great outdoors…..

    Already bumped into the impromptu social reporting team (Darragh, Ben, Dave) this morning; you can check out what they’re writing throughout the day here and at their own blogs (http://darraghdoyle.blogspot.com/ , http://puddingrelations.blogspot.com/ ); also met with Siobhan Edwards from Nesta, who are one of our kind, generous and pioneering sponsors. David McQueen has just welcomed everyone in the Marketplace, and people have now gone off to their various sessions in the snugs and nooks and crannies of this amazing building.

    Do check out some of the video clips from yesterday (see link to the right), and watch out for the live twittering, posting etc from today’s day at Shine….

    First day round-up

    Ok, sitting here in the Marketplace listening to Steve Moore (I think) discussing the announcement of a new fund related to Channel 4 and digital media. It’s been a great first day here at Shine: really in line with what I and SSE and the other organisers hoped for when we first sat down to discuss this event. Practical, relevant, full of networks and inspiring, interesting conversations; no long tedious speeches; genuine interaction and engagement. I’ve seen all of that, and more, today, and I hope more tomorrow and Sunday.

    OK, not everything’s worked: we had problems at reception with ticketing, and a few sessions had patchy attendance, but generally really positive. And great to see some real value emerging from 1:1s as well.

    Roll on tomorrow.

    Live blogging: David Rossington from DCLG

    OK, here’s a first for me. Genuinely live blogging; let’s hope the wireless holds up.

    David Rossington, the new head of the Social Enterprise Unit at the Department of Communities and Local Government, is speaking to around 20-25 people here in the Future Cafe. Great that he’s come out to have the conversation with us here today. Currently outlining the background:

    - DCLG empowerment white paper: does relate to social enterprise and entrepreneurship, but also about active citizens getting voice in their communities in relation to local/regional government.

    Continue reading ‘Live blogging: David Rossington from DCLG’

    Blogs, libraries and conversations

    Nick being interviewed by smallbizpodOK, back in the zone: delivered my session on how and why to blog, which went well, with a good mix of established bloggers (step forward Dave Dawes and Rob Greenland), possible bloggers, and those who were coming not knowing a lot. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow and Sunday….no doubt it will improve.

    In other news: had some good conversations in various snugs and nooks and crannies. Learnt about a project called BodyGossip, about what a ‘library of needs’ is (photo to follow), and with the ever engaging and knowledgable Jason Mollring from SE squared (South East Social Enterprise Networks). And my colleague Ian Baker has arrived from SSE…and arrived with coffee.

    And, breaking news, just been interviewed by Alex Bellinger from SmallBizPod, who’s going to be putting up a podcast in a couple of weeks’ time, which is great: I know Alex has a big and loyal audience on iTunes, so that should help spread the word.

    More soon.