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KATIE BARBER

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Autumn/Winter Community Roundup

By Katie Barber, posted on November 27, 2017

This year I’ve made a conscious effort to get more involved in the Sheffield community and get myself out there by giving back a little!

Last year I was a volunteer at Disability Sheffield, helping a group of young disabled people on their own enterprising adventures, but this year I’ve worked on a lot more projects. At the start of the year I did some ‘hot desking’ at the Resilience not Reliance events in Leeds and Sheffield and I also did a workshop at Digital Cafe. But here’s what I got up to in the last few months of the year:

Building Better Opportunities – Confidence Workshop

I met Caroline from Building Better Opportunities on LinkedIn. The service aims to help people on long-term unemployment find work, whether it be voluntary or paid. They have a wide range of service users of differing abilities. Caroline suggested I run a workshop about confidence, as it’s something I’ve been studying a lot recently. As a chronically shy child and teenager, I managed to build up my own confidence. And as an adult, I’ve been retrospectively looking back on that period and working out how I did it. I’m a practical person not an airy-fairy one, so I tried to provide real steps people can take to become more confident.

A student from Sheffield University attended and wrote about the workshop here.

Sheffield Growth Hub

After meeting Andy from Sheffield City Region as a BNI guest (the less said about that the better!) he put me in touch with some funding for my clients and suggested I run a masterclass at Sheffield Growth Hub. Patrick at the growth hub said that they have a need for someone to present a class about sales and marketing planning basics. So that’s what I did. Just like my Facebook event earlier in the year, the class got booked out and numbers were extended. I met some terrific people!

 

Venture Matrix

Venture Matrix is a project at Sheffield Hallam which encourages students and businesses to connect in order to work together on real-life projects and get a true taste of the business world. I submitted 7 briefs to Holly, one of the liaison officers at the uni. One was selected by the Events management course leaders. I was really impressed by the student’s ideas and tenacity to learn and succeed. I will certainly be doing more projects with Sheffield Hallam University in future.

Honourable mentions:

This year I have tried a few new things. Here’s a summary:

  • I’ve done a couple of training events for staff members, ranging from apprentices to staff who have no involvement in marketing except the odd Facebook post.
  • I’ve had my first foray into PR. I’ve started working for a local cafe, which at first I was reluctant about because my background is solid B2B, high-value services such as law or construction and IT. However, I was really excited by the owner’s growth plans and agreed to work with them. Aside from running their social media accounts, it’s given me an opportunity to experiment with PR. So far I’ve hosted a blogger event for them for local influencers, got them involved with Mush Mums, booked them a block on Sheffield radio, and got them two publications in local magazines.
  • I’ve started a personal/fun blog about entrepreneurialism for new enterprises and sole traders. Which I’m really excited about. I’ve learnt so much this year about entrepreneurialism in general, aside from learning from hands-on experience, I get to work with successful entrepreneurs every day. I’ve learnt so much from the clients and agents I work with – I couldn’t not share!

I’ve really enjoyed giving back to the business community this year and will definitely be planning more things next year, but for now I’m going to concentrate on my blog and enjoy the winter festivities! Next year I would really like to do more things on a global level, such as contributing to other peoples podcasts and guest blogging.


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