The centre piece of our meeting this week was a presentation by Len Maylin regarding the art of public speaking with particular reference to our 60 second efforts.
His own presentation itself was instructive. He spoke clearly and slowly with awareness of his audience throughout and interspersed his pearls of wisdom with humour and interesting information.
Chairman’s Business Networking Blog Thursday 16th February 2017.
Despite the absence of several members through half term children duly there was good turnout of 22 members.
Our alternative meeting agenda was used this week to accommodate an Education Session provided by Len Maylin, a Public Speaking Coach. The essence of our alternative meeting is that we limit ourselves to the 60 second round together with the referrals round thereby leaving a reasonable period of time for Education or other matters in the second half of the meeting.
60 second round.
We went straight into this round which this week was themed. Our loves and likes in relation to our daily toil, all of which stimulated by Tuesday’s Valentine’s Day. The presence of a theme seemed to stimulate everyone to make the extra effort in their presentation. Dipping into the presentations there were several gems; not least Marcelle Saad who explained that the birth stone for February was the amethyst. Its colour is apparently caused by radiation and iron deposits and the darker it is the more valuable it is.
Donna Evans explained how she took pleasure in helping people make the right choices. She had recently helped someone who had the wrong paper and the wrong sofa……shades of Wallis and Gromit. They took her advice and lived happily ever after with the curtains she provided. I assume they also got rid of the paper and the sofa, but she did not say. She unsuccessfully also tried to elicit our sympathy by explaining that her Valentines evening was spent with a packet of maltesers and a bottle of wine. I think it simply stimulated envious thoughts in most of us.
Alan Shaw, back at his whimsical best, stood up with a Bunteresque exclamation of “Oh Crikey!!!”. It seems he proved to be the perfect husband by providing a bottle of Champagne to share with his wife. Unfortunately his wife was not well and he was therefore not able to share it with her. He would not own up to drinking the whole thing but he then swiftly moved on the explain that he designed houses.
Kevin Brooks has rediscovered love. He and his wife had never “done” Valentine’s Day but this year they reconnected with texts, tweets etc. although he still did not buy her flowers.
Jo Eastwood’s message, given the nature of her business, was more direct. Her two shops had had record takings for Valentine’s Day which was good to hear.
Terry Maylin produced some of the tools of his trade that gave him pleasure. They amounted to the equivalent of hand cuffs, a piece of rubber tubing and some rather unpleasant looking tweezers that looked ideally suited to pulling fingernails. These are apparently only used for “small claims”.
Stuart Smallcombe caught our attention by making data cabling sound sexy. The Cat 5 is the equivalent of a Ford Mondeo; the Cat 6 a BMW;… and fibre optic is the Ferrari amongst cabling. It was quite clear from this demonstration that width does not matter. He also managed to make a bit of red cabling, suitably put together, look just like a heart. Who says that romance is dead!!
Brian Painter made a concession to our theme of love by not subjecting us to the usual rigours of description as to the effect that smoking has on smokers.
If red roses are a symbol of Valentine’s Day, Howard Bullock symbolically presented with a red checked shirt that owed more however to the sort of attractive table cloths you find in French Restaurants. He also declared that his greatest love for doing his work was getting paid, and in retrospect we all probably would subscribe to this view.
With regard to my own offering I am comforted by the fact that all of you are now aware that it is Sonnet 18 that begins “Shall I compare the to a summers day…”
In Matt Barry’s absence and last week’s Oscar winner, he was replaced by Len Maylin who awarded the Oscar to Kevin Radford. I can only think it was as a result of his demonstrable versatility that the award went to him in what must have been a close call. Our Bard sang as well as rhymed and he described RMK as glue giving all round protection. You cannot get more romantic than that!
May I finally thank Dean Caldon, our stand in bellman, who administered the bell with the right amounts of firmness and generosity to ensure that the 60 second round was indeed a memorable one.
Referrals and other matters
Scott Griffiths presented the Meeting Secretary’s Report and confirmed Matt Barry to be in the lead in the Performance League. The referrals and testimonials round that followed produced 20 referrals and approximately £15,000 worth of business written.
We were treated to an excellent presentation by Len Maylin as to the do’s and don’ts as far as presenting generally and more specifically our 60 seconds. Notes of his presentation will be separately posted but one or two items of interest.
- The Gettysburg address only lasted for 2 minutes….. If this was all it took to deliver this monumental declaration, no wonder somebody shot him when he next visited the theatre.
- Be organised, protect your voice and keep the message simple.
- Maintain eye contact and beware of the overhead projector, use it sparingly.
Hopefully some of us will be inspired for next week.
Exhortation of the week
Try and use what you learnt today for next week’s 60 seconds.
Chairman’s Business Networking Blog, Thursday 2nd February 2017.
Do any of you get that panicky feeling that comes from being locked in a small room for a long time? Well 25 of us were indeed afflicted by the claustrophobic effects of being relocated to the small room behind the restaurant for our meeting.
There were 23 members present and 2 visitors. Dimi Bakalov was back clutching membership application and cheque; I can confirm that the committee approved his application and we accordingly have our thirtieth member. Our other visitor was Paul Edalere, a local business manager for Santander based in Basildon.
Notwithstanding the good turnout we were initially missing 2 vital components, Scott Griffiths and David Plumley. David had something akin to man flu. Scott Griffiths had no such excuse other than the fact that it was his birthday yesterday and he woke up at 7am hung over. To his credit he managed to turn up by 7.30am. A great effort under the circumstances.
Paul Booth delivered the Ed Slot. His message was, “don’t just turn up at the meeting on Thursday”. There are so many other things you should be doing to integrate into the group and help provide and therefore receive lots of referrals.
At the beginning of the 60 second round I felt it necessary to issue a general admonition for anyone extending the 60 second presentation into over 2 minutes. No names; no pack drill….and consequently everybody was very sharp and timeous throughout the round. Well done everybody, you know you can do it.
So with everyone on their best behaviour…what about their performances.
He was awarding the Oscar, but pride of place must go to Richard Reed not because he mentioned lots of offers for New Zealand but because, the moment the bell went, he sat down as if he had been poleaxed.
I will mention Nikhil Shah second rather than last. He would normally been mentioned last because he won the Oscar. He was however so upbeat that I feel it will stimulate me as I go through the rest of my description of other peoples 60 seconds. He has apparently had a good start to the year. He managed to make 2 people cry. One was a 17 year old who finished up giving him a hug and the other was a grandmother who was made very happy by the prospect of being able to smile again. Nikhil appears to have a much more rewarding job than I have. I am however relieved to say that none of my clients have currently offered to give me a hug and I find that in itself usually rewarding.
Brian Painter was at his doom laden best. A jumbo jet can crash every day for a year with all passengers on board perishing and this would only just about equate with a number of people who die annually from cancer. Perhaps you now know why I mentioned Nikhil and the hugs and smiles.
Marcelle raised a chuckle by explaining how it is not necessary to match earrings that accurately because… “there is a nose in between”. It sort of restores your faith in humanity doesn’t it.
Jo Eastwood excelled herself by serving us up some Chinese wine, Her excuse was the Chinese New Year. She asked us to identify the wine. The room was full of wine buffs who all confidently stated “Shiraz!”… it was in fact Cabernet Sauvignon blended with a small amount of Merlot. So much for EBF wine buffery.
Alan Shaw did not quite do enough this week to gain immediate reinstatement to the School of Whimsy but he did tell a good tale of how a local farmer ran a heat pump from a ground source. This apparently involved going down 90 metres. My own experience of heating on a farm when I was just a lad perceiving that one of the warmest places is the dung heap. I was commend this to Alan as he seeks to explore different types of heating.
Terry Maylin was keen to explain how at T M Law we can build them up (prepare shareholders agreements) and knock them down, (act for them when they inevitably fall out with their partners).
Alan Moller has been doing “odds and sods” and as a consequence did not feel he could “ blow him out”. Said “blow out” related to not charging too much to the customer who had received only odds and sods.
Kim Redwood Lee stood up, admitted to being currently disorganised and then fixed us with her best turn you to stone gaze and lectured us all on the importance of being organised.
There ended as good a 60 second round as I can remember for a long while.
Despite the fact that we had by then been locked in our darkened room for well over an hour everyone was very cheerful. Howard Bullock cheerfully declared that he could not perform his 10 minutes because the facilities in the small darkened room did not allow him to operate the projector. You will be hearing from him next week.
Another reason to be cheerful was Scott Griffiths announcing though his hangover that we had 25 referrals and £14,000.00 worth of business recorded which is a steady performance.
As a result of this the referrals and testimonials round was positive and constructive. Perhaps I did not mention, With Howard Bullock’s inability to produce 10 minute there resulted in a lively Q and A session which seems to always go down well… particularly in darkened rooms.
I have every confidence that next week we will be at our usual venue in Mary Green Manor. Let’s see if we can outdo anattendance of 25. See you all then.
Chairmans Business Networking Blog, 26th January
Although there was no ice on our windscreens it really was a cold morning with a misting drizzle (mizzle) making things even more unpleasant.
Despite the inclement weather a really good turnout of 23 Members and 1 guest, Charlie Hurlock of A Matter Group.
Also and notwithstanding the inclement weather there were signs of spring in the attire of some of those present. Pride of place must go to Jill Willis who sported a pair of gold coloured bumpers, at least that’s what they were called when I was a lad. I suspect things might have moved on since then. Also David Plumley was sporting some new clobber. A rather smart black leather jacket that he assured us was bought at a very reasonable price off E Bay. It was the sort of high quality schmutter that would make an Eastern European people trafficker green with envy. By the time he stood up to deliver the Ed Slot however he had divested himself of aforementioned piece of natty menswear.
Not only was he sartorially ahead of everyone but he also was well prepared with 2 graphic designs;
1 of a wooden stair case and the other of a frog. The staircase represents a project or personal goal and the frog can only leap 6 ½ inches. The stair heights are 6 ¾ inches and so there was strategic dilemma which faces a lot of us in our personal business lives. The solution is to either make the stairs lower or train frog to jump higher. If you were a carpenter the solution would be obvious and probably if you were the ring master of a flea circus you would otherwise fancy your changes with the frog. All in all a thought provoking start to the meeting.
The 60 second round probably set the tone for the rest of the year.
Mike Rogers is still cheerful and was talking about how he helped a pregnant women get somewhere to stay over Christmas. I don’t know whether the story rings any bells with anyone.
Jo Jones likes long words and this week’s word was “procrastination” or rather “procrastinators”, She is looking to persuade them to make sure they start exercising instead of procrastinating and therefore becoming “exercisers”
Kevin Brooks followed her and declared he was back from skiing, which made you think he was not one of the procrastinators. As it transpired however he seemed to have been more in the way of merely encouraging the Skiers whilst otherwise engaged with various libations.
Jo Eastwood therefore, who followed him, had an excellent opportunity to further cause for alcoholic drinks. However she produced a non-alcoholic spirit that is made like Gin and smelt like peas. I think someone bought it before the end of the meeting.
Steve Roach was celebrating the Leyton Orient Show currently gracing Phoenix FM. To show they go the extra mile for their advertisers they had arranged for 15 primary school footballers and their respective parents to visit Leyton Orient to watch a game. As this doubled their gate for the particular weekend Leyton Orient felt that they were the winners from this advertisers support.
Donna Evans came up with a very graphic description of a large house that she was quoting her curtaining services for. However, she described the basement containing a squash court and a gym and several other rooms. I hope she realised that as a basemen, there are no windows, but I assume that she quoted for other parts of the house.
By the time Alan Shaw stood up I felt that there was lots of Whimsy about but he was having none of it.
Her told of how he had surveyed a building before getting the figures together to produce a design. It was all very much on the point and no casual observer would have regarded him as anything other than an Architect. I therefore hereby declare that he is no longer a member of the School of Whimsy until he has produced a 60 second performance that warrants his re-inclusion. One member of the School Of Whimsy however was more than active. Our Pilgrim, Brian Painter, treated a businessman who spent £600.00 a month on renting his commercial accommodation and got him to successfully give up smoking which was at the time costing him £700.00 in cigarettes and “weed”. Brian felt that he was effectively enabling him to trade rent free and with a bit of money over to spend. From there the story moved towards “body to body” massages. If this form of therapy is perhaps difficult for the reader to envisage, the thought of Brian engaging in it is even more puzzling.
The 60 second round became even more puzzling as David Plumley rose and produced a router which apparently uses archer technology. It had antenna that can detect a device but not fire arrows. Anyone confused about Brian Painter’s body to body massage was definitely struggling with this technological eqivalent. It really did not get any better.
Finally it was Scott Griffiths who, by producing various rather tedious looking tomes. won the Oscar. Suddenly La La Land becomes an attractive proposition.
Before the 10 minute presentation two matters of note. Scott Griffiths produced the Meeting Secretary’s Report that confirmed in excess of £34,000.00 business recorded and just under 20 referrals. Terry Maylin regaled us with the new recruitment drive that is to create groups of 3 who for a three months chase visitors by whatever means they choose and at the end of a year, with 4 groups having performed, a prize will be given to the one that produces the most visitors. Jill Willis, Matt Barry and Tina Walker are first up and their enthusiasm was palpable.
We then went into the 10 minute presentation introduced as always this week’s sartorial paragon who in true “madam malaprop” fashion talked or Redding Wings……… you don’t need to know the context, only what he said.
He then went on to introduce Richard Reed whose turn it was this week. We were already attuned to Richard and his wares as he had occupied 2 ½ minutes of the 60 second round in doing his 60 second presentation. He carried on where he left off and told in conjunction with the screening of his website how started, details of what he does, and to the general consent of those of you who have used him, how well he does it. Richard is a member that we can recommend with confidence and he produced a very interesting presentation which hopefully will ensure that the referrals keep coming.
Next week I anticipate we can look forward to another well attended meeting which, if like this week, will be lively business like and entertaining.
Chairman’s Business Networking Blog, Thursday 19th January 2017.
Back on track with numbers, 22 Members and 1 visitor Dimi Bakalov who makes “stairways to heaven”. We hope he will return next week.
Kim Redwood-Lee delivered the Education Slot and pointed out some of the not so obvious benefits from being a member of the group which includes; making friends, practising public speaking and having a network of people available for guidance through our email network. She prefaced her presentation by stating that she could see us all. In theory that meant we could see her, but perhaps that did not automatically follow.Nonetheless it was a useful reminder to us of all the benefits of EBF.
So the 60 second round.
Marcelle opened the proceedings by describing certain trends in engagement rings. Apparently Rose Gold is “in”. This was confirmed later by Donna Evans who is finding Rose Gold as the colour that she is coming across in conjunction with her curtains.
Richard Reed regaled us with new trends in Safaris; land rovers with a sleeping compartment on the roof. What he described sounded like the old wagon trains forming a circle and everyone sitting round the camp fire. No mention however of shooting your prey before roasting it over the open fire.
No one was in Whimsical mood this week but Brian Painter started out what could be a serialised commentary on one of his clients who binges and purges but only at home, not when on holiday or with friends. So Brian is looking to make the connection with her home. A positive suggestion might be that she goes out and makes lots of friends and goes on holiday with them, which would probably please Richard Reed. I look forward to this story unfolding before our very eyes.
Jo Eastwood, back from illness, has obviously not had her enthusiasm dampened by her recent state of health. Anticipating a dry January she produced various beverages all which were dry including Sherry, Chablis and Gin.
Acronyms bordering on the indecent came from David Plumley, PISS and Alan Moller, POOPS. As I can no longer remember what either of them stands for it seems slightly gratuitous mentioning them but hey ho….
Paul Booth managed to combine posture support with sartorial interest. He was wearing, what those of us who are avid followers of the Bond movies would describe as, double shoulder holsters. No firearms were evident and certainly when he stood up he kept his shoulders back. Maybe he can introduce something akin to Howard Bullocks bare legathon.
Steve Roach was very upbeat claiming global domination for Phoenix FM. They apparently have broken into America through their West Ham United show and there is now boxing on the horizon.
After all of these offerings pride of place went to Mike Rogers who probably deserved it simply for saying that he had good news. He then went on to relate this good news by illustrating the reductions that are currently being offered by lenders with fixed rate products. It has to be acknowledged that he was cheerful.
The 10 minute presentation was Tina Walker’s turn this week. She projected her details onto a screen that looked distinctly “wavy” and in tune with the beams that are found in the meeting room at Mary Green Manor. She presented herself well and with a good sized audience hopefully referrals will flow.
The referrals round was lively as was the whole meeting. Typical of us as a group when we are there in sufficient numbers.
Let’s look forward to even better attendance next week.
Chairman’s Business Networking Blog, Thursday 12th December 2017.
Back in the full swing of things there was a good turnout, 23 Members and 2 visitors Len Maylin and former Billericay member Ian Stanley. Ian is threatening to return and join up.
David Plumley delivered the Ed Slot and focused on the 60 second round and our presentations. Amongst many suggestions the ultimate advice is that you should prepare your 60 seconds so that you do not mumble, stumble or otherwise bumble.
Scott Griffiths announced the winner of the Performance League for last month to be Paul Booth and he was duly presented with his certificate, well done Paul.
With David Plumley’s encouragement ringing in our ears we set about the 60 second round.
Jo Jones, the current holder of the Oscar was presiding. In her 60 seconds she came up with a remarkable proposition, namely that a 40 year old client of hers lost weight as a result of being encouraged by Jo to exercise less. That is the sort of message that will encourage punters from far and near.
I would like to think that the members of the School of Whimsy had resolved this New Year to deliver more and ever increasing whimsy. It would appear that I might well be disappointed. Alan Shaw had been the subject of envy of one punter who thought that he did nothing more than sit in his office and draw pretty pictures. This was a promising start but then he went on to describe to us what he could do for people who wished to convert their buildings and suddenly he was on message. Likewise Brian Painter toned things down. He is looking for smokers who are trying to maintain their New Year’s resolution about giving up smoking. He got his message over simply without giving us the gory details of the sort of damage that smoking does to the body. After what had been a very satisfying breakfast his approach was very much appreciated. Nick Cooke on the other hand started talking about little cracks. Little old ladies seem to value his services and this one had produced a nice testimonial for him after he calmed her fears that cracks did not amount to subsidence. All together far too focused. It might well be that David Plumley’s message in the Ed Slot had got through. I hope not.
Michael Adelizzi, he of the House of Thrones, was singing the praises of porcelain tiles that, because they were not porous, were less likely to stain. The porcelain tile imitates marble and can even be changed to look like wood. What will they think of next…
Pride of place must go to Kevin Brooks who is currently into props. This week he produced a fantastic machine that was used for taking levels and looked like R2D2. Kevin spent the bulk of the 60 seconds giving said android looking creature a good cuddle. This presumably helps it get its lines level and straight.
Although he did not produce any props Matt Barry is doing a job for clients that will involve animating different creatures including a ladybird and gecko moonwalking. Some people just have more exciting lives…
Howard Bullock, he of the Naughty Corner, went all posh on us. His advice has to take into account geo political events. Trump that if you can.
Pride of place however and the award of the Oscar went to Alan Moller. He went through all the things he could have talked about wasn’t going to talk about, and then asked us to look out for lighting show rooms for him, well done Alan.
The Meeting Secretary’s Report was stunning. 28 referrals this week and initially £51,750.00 worth of business written but then Kevin Brooks waded in with a further £150,000.00;….“may the force be with you” Kevin!
The 10 minute presentation this week fell to Nick Cooke who persisted with the theme of cracks. He also put up on the screen photographs to exhibit said cracks. The sinking of a house in the middle of a terrace was the most impressive. All in all the presentation was impressive. Nick is a long time member who we can all with confidence refer so let’s hope we can find some referrals for him arising from his presentation.
Based on the figures referred to earlier, given to us by Scott Griffiths, it was a good referrals round and as usual, the meeting always has a buzz when our numbers are up. Let’s keep up the good work and lets have a good turnout next week.
Chairman’s Business Networking Blog 5th January 2017.
New Year’s hangovers and Christmas germs having been picked up from relatives rendered our first meeting of the New Year a little light on personnel.
There were 16 of us in attendance and we kicked off with an Ed Slot from Jill Willis. Her themes were that New Year’s Resolutions were effectively negative, they were highlighting problems or things that have not hitherto been achieved. She advocated a positive approach, a “summer time state of mind”; seeing problems in good time, taking steps to address them and then moving forward must be the theme for the New Year. All of this grown up information was illustrated from a book that is aimed at 7 year olds upwards…..to 74 if you want. A very interesting start to the New Year.
In the main, the 60 second round that followed represented an opportunity of members to remind us all in general terms of what they do.
One or two revelations emerged from this generality. Michael Adelizzi for example is looking to have shop sales and there are lots of good deals wo be found in the House of Thrones.
Kevin Brooks showed a typical chunk of insulation that now must be standard to all new buildings. At about £45 per square metre it doesn’t come cheap.
Jo Jones stimulated us all by asking which of us were intending to “try” and get fit or eat less etc. She is not interested in us folks. She quite rightly pointed out that “trying” was not enough; we either wanted to do it or we didn’t and if you are only trying you didn’t really have the stomach for the fight. This quite rightly won her the Oscar. She was followed by Alan Shaw who told of a ransom strip that was preventing further development by one of his clients and that he was going to “try” to negotiate a deal with the developer who owns said ransom strip. This was not apparently a New Year’s resolution.
On the day when many were off sick David Plumley talked anti-virus tools and recommended ESET. This should be taken in tablet form over the internet.
For those of us who are avid followers of Brian Painter’s clients problems, we had a follow up to the lady who needed two new knees but had hitherto refused treatment because she picked her shins No doubt our Pilgrim pointed out you can’t choose your relatives so why should you be able to choose you shins. Apparently she had been 10 days “pick” free.
Nothing further exciting really emerged from this particular batch of 60 second renditions.
Good news however so far as business done was concerned as reported by Terry Maylin who was standing in for Scott Griffiths. £85,000.00 was recorded for the 3 meetings in December and this week, despite our low footfall £22,500.00 was recorded. A good steady start to the month.
The 10 minute presentation fell to Nikhil Shah. He managed to successfully fight technology with the assistance of David Plumley and produced a photographic show of his premises and staff and them some “before and afters” of people who had been severely dentally challenged. He also explained how we could refer to him. All in all it was a good introduction, well presented, that will give us all an opportunity of finding him referrals.
It can only be described a steady start to the New Year and other members would have benefited to listening to Nikhil’s 10 minutes.
Lets look for a proper turn out next week.
Chairman’s Business networking Blog, Thursday 15th December 2016.
At this last meeting of the year we had an altered format to enable us to try and cope with the Brian Painter Experience.
23 Members turned up, all bright eyed and bushy tailed, sporting festive pullies of various sorts. There were even that ones that flashed all time, helping demonstrate that the Christmas Spirit was alive and well and living in Brentwood, at least between the hours of 6.15 am and 8. 45 am.
Howard Bullock gave us an update on the state of health, both physical and mental of his much dispossessed hound Obi; the waves of sympathy were palpable, at least from the blokes!
In David Plumley’s absence the Education Slot was dispensed with and we went straight into the 60 second round.
Marcelle Saad showed an eye wateringly expensive diamond but even that could not cheer Donna Evans up. She was a bit Bah Humbug over the whole thing, Christmas that is, but things started warming up when Steve Roach told of a couple of charity live music events for the New Year. Both of these seem to involve “a sit down curry” In my view its only worth eating if it makes you sit down.
Most people were looking to wind down. Not only was this true for Dean Caldon but also for Kevin Brooks, Alan Shaw and Scott Griffiths. Terry Maylin however intends chasing the bad guys up to the last minute.
The School of Whimsy has been true to its nature to the last. Not only was Alan Shaw trying to wind down but the whole 60 seconds wound down and away. Brian Painter has an elderly lady client who is scratching her knees and ankles which apparently is a reaction to her recent divorce. Nick Cooke was resplendent with a new trim. Apparently the beard remained unpruned but he certainly looked neat and tidy and could not really be accused of looking like Saint Nick.
Two people produced poems. The Bard of Hadleigh of course is driven in this regard but Kim Redwood-Lee chipped in with an offering of her own. As she was awarding the Oscar however, it was not Kevin Radford’s poem that really caught her eye but Mike Rogers who produced a singing Santa who performed the whole of Mike’s 60 seconds. Mike might find it helpful if he produced said Santa every week.
So with many best wishes being offered for Christmas and the New Year we moved almost straight from the 60 second round to the referrals round, thereby clearing the way for Mr Painter and his band of players.
The referrals round however was in reality the highlight of the meeting. 44 referrals were passed by 23 members and £24,600.00 of business was recorded creating over a 3 meeting month just short of the magical £100,000.00 worth of business recorded.
On the back of these figures we will ride into the New Year, but not before our Pilgrim had produced the live entertainment.
His warm up act was Paul Booth who told a few jokes, did a question and answer session with Mr Painter and then we were into the Quiz.
As usual the Quiz was 20 irritating questions whose answers including a hare, little Jack Horner, the number 9 and burping. I believe Tina got 12 right and won the prize, a great effort. The final act performed by Painter and his gang was the Secret Santa present distribution.
Donations for SNAP totalled £185.00 gathered from the meeting which was a tribute to Richard Reed’s tenacity in liaising between EBF and the Charity.
The final EBF act of the year will be the dinner on Friday night at Ask in Billericay High Street, starting at 7pm.
Our next meeting will be our first meeting of January when I hope we pick up where we left off on our regularity of attendance.
HAPPY CHRISTMAS TO YOU ALL
Chairman’s Business Networking Blog, Thursday 8th December 2016.
22 Members present and one guest witnessed at least two unusual aspects to this week’s meeting.
Both which posed certain difficulties for your chairman at the very beginning of the meeting.
Our guest was from Thurrock Council, there to give us a talk on the grants available in relation to Low Carbon Efficiency. That in itself was not a problem but with the name of Marialena Papadopoulou-Kipou created certain tongue and brain issues that early in the day; I stuck to plain “Marialena”.
Having surmounted this obstacle so early in the day I was confronted with another very different issue. Howard Bullock managed to come up with one of the best excuses for non-attendance for some time. He had to arrange for his dog Obi to be taken to the vets to be castrated. I have to congratulate all members on their restraint and propriety. Apart from the odd snigger everyone managed to avoid the more obvious quips. The words “ ’Cos it can…” did not pass anyone’s lips and any superlatives did not refer to any organ or organs of a dog’. Our sympathy must go out to this particular hound who can presumably now be known as Obi Non Kanobi. Well done everybody.
David Plumley finished the last of his four part thriller on attendance. It was a bit like Game of Thrones without the sex, violence or intrigue. His message in these Education Slots has been to the effect that you only get good value from your membership if you attend the breakfast meetings on a regular basis and indeed attending Synergy Team Meetings doesn’t hurt.
Scott Griffiths was presented with his certificate for winning the Performance League last month and this month’s is currently being led by Kevin Radford.
The 60 second round revealed that an awful lot of us are in a hectic, if not to say frantic state in the run up to Christmas. Michael Adelizzi certainly was. He did however offer up a remedy for boredom over the Christmas break. Get into your bathroom and get into some remedial work. The master of the House of Thrones has a whole range of products that you can buy to tide you over the Christmas to New Year period. Paul Booth was similarly on message. When the conversation flags over the Christmas dinner table you can always ask probing questions like, “who is your accountant” and “do you want to maximise tax savings”. Alan Moller likewise is booked up to Christmas and is therefore not looking for jobs until the New Year. By contrast Jill Willis advised that we should all wind down between Christmas and New Year and think of planning the strategies for our business for the year to come; and whilst we are talking about the New Year, Jo Jones has a voucher scheme to encourage people to exercise more. Kevin Brooks is trying to finish various jobs by Christmas and is looking forward to a rest. It must be at least 4 or 5 weeks since he had his last holiday so he had the sympathy of the meeting.
The School of Whimsy was on top form this week. Alan Shaw is obviously feeling the strain of the run up to Christmas. He started off talking about a planning appeal to extend a development from 32 to 39 flats and then mumbled into oblivion. Nick Cooke by contrast started off in very lively fashion. His topic was “crack damage” which is not as might appear at first sight, adverse effect from drug use. He had in fact produced a report for a lady to re-assure her that crack damage was not serious in her property. She was apparently “thrilled skinny”.
After Nick’s contribution Brian Painter kept up the Whimsy by talking about a plump bird. This apparently was the culinary desire of one of his subjects who hitherto had been limited to burgers, sausages and potatoes. Turkey would stick in his throat. Seems a perfectly reasonable diet to me but our Pilgrim is trying to cure him of it and have him extend his range of food stuffs.
The Naughty Table was definitely depleted this week. Howard Bullocks absence with his award winning canine excuse was not present to lend his usual disruption through his mere anarchic presence. Stuart Smallcombe however took up the challenge. He is involved with a green power station in Mucking, something to do with underground fibres that need to have a full medical. The juxta position of Mucking and Fibre is enough to drive Mrs Malaprop to distraction.
Honorary School of Whimsy contributor of the week was David Plumley; he talked about an anti-virus called Windows Defender which apparently looked like a chocolate tea pot. I think this particular part of his 60 seconds shows he has not fully recovered from the Finance Synergy Team’s Dinner when he tried to ensure that everyone sitting round the table took wine with him…on to their laps.
One way or another it was a great 60 second round
Not to be outdone the referrals section produced 23 referrals and recorded business of £59,200.00.
Back to this week’s presentation by the aforementioned Marialena Papadopoulou-Kipou. She gave a presentation that was both clear and useful. Although some of the members will not be able to take advantage of the grant system she explained about, there were several who were interested. It is always nice to have an interesting presentation from a guest to remind us that there is some benefit from getting outside speakers to attend out meetings every quarter or so. I will be getting further information from her which I will pass on to you all.
As the meeting drew to a close the shadow of Brian Painter fell over us. Next week will be his extravaganza. May I remind you not to forget the following:
- Christmas Pully
- Secret Santa gift
- Your forbearance as far as the inevitable quiz is concerned. Remember this is the quiz where we tend to argue more about the questions than the answers.
I hope we can have full turn out and ask you all to gird up your loins for next Thursdays Meeting.
For those wishing to download the presentation from yesterdays meeting, please use the link below:
Chairman’s Business Networking Blog, Thursday 1st December 2016.
23 Members present and a very cold morning.
The Education Slot was taken by Terry Maylin, his talk was very much focused on channels of communication. The meeting is for the benefit of the members and he explained the importance of airing issues; in particular if a member feels that another member has not performed well. The first reaction must be to try and resolve it directly. What Terry went on to point out is that there is a committee available through their chairman Richard Reed to receive any concerns that cannot be resolved in this way. He also he announced the appointment of Kevin Radford who will hereafter assume the role of “Human Suggestion Box”. Members are welcome to contact him to pass on any suggestions or concerns about EBF generally and hopefully with any positive suggestions for improvement. The more input from members the better.
As it is the first Thursday of December Scott Griffiths was able to announce the Performance League results for November. He announced himself as the clear winner in a rather embarrassed way. No need for embarrassment Scott, we should all be embarrassed that we are not able to match you and that is the challenge for us as members for the short month of December.
The 60 second round followed and there were lots of good contributions.
Marcelle Saad explained about Tanzanite; not only is it from Tanzania but it is a thousand times rarer than diamonds. This must cast doubt as whether diamonds are in fact a girl’s best friend.
There weren’t too many props used by members but the ones that were used were notable. Nikhil Shah produced a selection of teeth and a brace which he managed to drop on the floor. He adopted his usual procedure when such braces are dropped on the floor, he spat on it and he cleaned it with a handkerchief or did he adopt the 10 second rule, I can’t really remember. Anyway, the various sets of teeth that he produced seemed to assume a grin.
Now Richard Reed has been to Marrakesh!!! Four days of last week he was sampling the attractions of the Souk and also a zip-wire experience. He looked tired.
In the meantime Michael Adelizzi was looking particularly to have shop sales, particularly sanitary ware. His extra sized toilets that are the speciality of the House of Thrones deserve to be viewed and indeed purchased. A great Christmas gift for everyone, not just the incontinent.
As Christmas approaches it is a time of stress for lots of us and Nick Cooke was no exception. The stress in this case however was brought about by an undersized steel beam which the building inspector declared to be the wrong size and the builder who declared that he had not read the plans carefully enough. Although slightly bizarre there was nothing whimsical about his contribution this week but Alan Shaw more than made up for it. He started off by following up Nick Cooke’s offering by continuing with the reference to steel beams. He then moved towards an old client of his whose property had burnt down and who was saddened by having a new development site. He continued in an erratic way that would have more than graced a Ramblers Association.
As we delved into the 60 second round further whimsical wonders, often associated with the Christmas period, emerged. Stuart Smallcombe talked of “number portability”. Apparently you can sit in Brentwood with both a foreign and a London number ringing on your desk, wondrous. This former occupant of the Naughty Table who had moved for this week, sort of out Whimsyed the Whimsy’s. Brian Painter produced nothing Whimsical at all. He stuck with smokers, cancer and death.
Scott Griffiths spoke of E-Cards for Christmas. It was getting all too festive. Jill Willis went one stage further, she talked New Year’s resolutions including aims and objectives by business owners to be considered and made clear.
Terry Maylin maintained the Christmas Spirit by explaining how it can be a busy time for us employment lawyers as employers try to shed staff before Christmas to avoid paying the Christmas or New Year bonus.
Howard Bullock declared himself “eye candy” as well as a careful IFA. I think we should all consider what particular type of candy we consider Howard Bullock to be. Is it a gob stopper or a sherbet lemon, your suggestions in the comments section of this Blog please.
After Nikhil Shah, the other member who produced props was Jo Eastwood. Hers were tempting alcoholic gifts for all of us to consider for our loved ones. Her Christmassy message with these supporting props earnt her the Oscar.
So at the end of the 60 second round we had the Meeting Secretary’s Report. He was able to confirm £11,250.00 worth of business recorded and 26 referrals which is excellent and which led to an excellent referrals and testimonials round. However before the referrals round our ten minute speaker, who managed to get prepared and up to speed in a couple of days, none other than our Pilgrim entertained who duly regaled us… and indeed felt he was doing so well that if it was worth taking 10 minutes to address us, he might as well take 20 minutes.
His theme was Past Life Regression. He made the interesting assertion that in some parts of the world birth marks are the sign of a violent death in a previous life and that young children were able to demonstrate this most readily. Presumably because they are closer to having been being born and therefore closer to the event that caused their demise in a previous life. May I repeat the invitation I previously made in the meeting for you all to fully examine yourselves and own up as to whether you have any birth marks and therefore the potential of an earlier life of someone who suffered a violet death. Also if you happen to have an ideas of what that violent death was, please let us know.
So December has another 2 meetings and we have a lot to look forward to. There is a guest speaker next week who will be addressing us upon the grants open to the SME’s based on carbon saving schemes. Who knows there might be a grant out there for you!!
The following week is the last meeting before Christmas and of course is the Brian Painter experience. Lets have a good turnout for both of these meetings.