I am a big proponent on building meaningful relationships, otherwise known as networking. The NABS West Speed Mentoring event came through Networking in Van and it immediately caught my eye. NABS West is an organization that helps professionals in the communications industry through counselling, career coaching, financial coaching and support that may be needed due to illness, injury, unemployment or economic difficulties.
The evening comprised of 3-5 meetings 6 minutes in duration with leading professionals in the marketing and communications field.
There was an impressive list of mentors that immediately got me excited about the event. I was lucky enough to be pair with three leaders in the marketing/communications field. There was an open networking portion where you could mingle with other mentees and mentors and grab a bite to eat. Following this there were 3-4, six minute sessions divided into three blocks. With the amount of moving involved in the event, I was very impressed with how smooth it ran.
I met with Mikkel Strojer the Director of Marketing and Digital at the Vancouver Whitecaps FC first. Now, full disclosure I've been a big fan of Mikkel and the work he does at the Whitecaps for a while. I was actually quite nervous being paired with him as I wanted to make a good first impression meeting him in person. The nature of the event really created a relaxed atmosphere. He was so warm and welcoming to my questions and discussion. I really wish I had more time to chat with him about the Whitecaps and the work he does.
Second on my mentoring list was Bryan Collins. He was a new mentor to me as I had not heard about his company 123W before. I did some research prior to meeting him and learned that his company just won a very prestigious award. Definitely a leader in his industry, I was a bit intimidated meeting him. He was great to hear just a quick snapshot of his story as he has been driven to owning his own business and built the skills to experience to do that over the last 20 years. I don't have a clear direction like he did at my age, but it was very inspiring to hear his drive.
The last mentor I was able to chat with was Chris Miller of Invoke Media. Now, I wasn't super familiar with Chris but I knew about Invoke. I've met a few of their employees and they are all amazing individuals! As the Managing Director of Invoke I wanted to know more about his role with this impressive company. He was super open and sharing some details about the work he does. We even ending up chatting briefly about leadership. This is a new area of interest to me and I definitely wish I could have continued that conversation beyond the 6 minutes.
It was a world wind of a night, but so valuable. How often are you in the same room with some of the top leaders in your industry? It was so well put on and I definitely commend the NABS West team for all their hard work. If you are in the communications field, I'd definitely recommend checking out their events.