Do you want to grow your network and your business know-how with like-minded entrepreneurs or business owners? Attending events is a great place to start, but the number available can be mind-boggling. We’ve found the top five free events across Australia to save you time.
Billed as the biggest small business expo in Australia, the annual B2B weekend expo runs in Sydney and Melbourne with around 5,000 people usually in attendance. It’s one of the best events for small business and entrepreneur education and networking, and there’s even a pitch room for startups. The expo is a mix of paid and free events, with more than 60 people speaking on topics ranging from digital disruption to marketing and finance. The meet-the-experts roundtable, for example, is free and gives you the opportunity to ask questions on business challenges in small, specialised workshops.
2. Small Business Festival
Business Victoria’s annual festival has more than 400 events (and webinars) in Melbourne and regional Victoria – many of which are free. It’s open to all who are interested in starting a business, or scaling up and expanding overseas. The Small Business BIG Ideas sessions are a highlight, focusing on small business and digital innovation, while the Festival Roadshow tours regional areas. The Small Business Festival runs over August and September each year, so make sure you mark it in your calendar.
3. The Entrepreneurs’ Unconvention
With Elon Musk potentially on the cards for 2018, this ‘unconvention’ is tipped as one of the best entrepreneur conferences worldwide. The Entrepreneurs’ Unconvention has brought together more than 23,000 business owners and entrepreneurs since 2010, helping them connect and build networks. There’s a mix of free and paid events in Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, Brisbane, Adelaide, and Auckland.
4. Speed networking events
Free speed networking events are held around Australia at various times throughout the year. How do they work? You get a total of six minutes for each structured exchange, with two minutes for you and another attendee to speak, after which you have two minutes to exchange details and plan an optional next action. While small, these events make it into our top five because they’re a great way to meet other business owners and perfect your networking skills. Brush up before you go with these networking tips.
5. Bright ideas speed pitch night
A little further afield, there are some great networking and education events for small businesses in Tasmania run by The Van Diemen Project. Its next speed pitch night is November 21, 2017, with prizes including access to a co-working space and a business masterclass. Best of all, it’s free!
Learning new skills or networking can take time – particularly when you’re a solo operator – but it’s easier if you can save time elsewhere. Software tools that automate tasks, like QuickBooks Online, can free up the time you’d usually spend on invoices and payroll. That way you can focus on what’s most important: growing your business.
Learn more about how you can grow your business with these resources.