Should we create the Oxfordshire Business Innovation Network?
Half way through our Practical Innovation series, we took a look at how well we were hitting the mark as to what local businesses wanted.
We received some excellent feedback from our Bicester session held on 26 April. The charts indicate that our audience of around 50 local business people found that the event met its objectives, they found the presentations useful and they wanted to attend future session.
The point they didn’t rate as useful was networking, and we’re not quite sure why.
Our audiences are filled with bright, exciting business people from the Oxfordshire community who openly shared ideas and questions in the discussion sessions.
So how would we get more value from the networking side of the event?
Perhaps our mental models keep us from recognizing the real value of our acquaintances and friends. We’re used to paying consultants on a day rate or seeking ‘funding’ to get projects off the ground. What if our ‘community’ could provide some or all of that support free of charge just because we live in the same place or were part of the same economy?
It might be a bit naive to pose the question but it’s at the heart of the big society agenda. Rip out the banal political rhetoric and you find an argument for creating communities in which the members support each other.
Could the Practical Innovation ‘gang’ – the folks who have been attending and contributing to our short evening sessions – form a networked community that offered our ‘friends’ some help free of charge and based on shared experience or advice?
Does this happen today? How could we accelerate it and make it happen more effectively in future?
What do you think?
Posted by Frank Nigriello on May 2, 2012 | Comments Off