When I delivered my seventh annual review last year it was optimistic largely based on the fact that our current venue was new, and attendance was up. I feel that optimism was fully justified.
New Members who have joined over the last year have given new life (if this was necessary). Attendance, particularly over the Summer holidays, was excellent and slightly more business was recorded this year than last year.
It was with great sadness that we lost Michael Adelizzi to cancer. We lost a friend and a good member. He was simply a very nice man.
Another casualty of the year was Alan Shaw. He has been missed since he announced his retirement from the group some weeks ago. He is fondly remembered for his whimsical and rather ponderous delivery of his 60 seconds that gave us all great pleasure. He will not easily be replaced. Great moments like the Education Slot with the brick in cistern, advice for saving water and for those who read the Blog his lead role in the School of Whimsy.
Several others have left who have also been missed, Jo Eastwood who made the speakers prize a no brainer and Nikhil Shah. During the year Kelly Walker, Syd Barrett, Rupert Miles all came and went, and we also lost Cathy Neat.
The loss of these members only emphasises how important it is for us to maintain our membership levels.
The Website has worked well in introducing the new members I have already mentioned. Ben Golding, Vince Goode, Saj Sreedharan along with Ellen Beckenham and Anna Marie Cooper, Mason Edwards, Toby Acton, Simon Essex and last week Ashley Bermange.
We started the year with 31 Members, we go into our new year with 31 Members.
Thank you to all of our new Members for helping improve the Group but the message is clear. We cannot rest on our laurels so far as membership is concerned.
The Website is a tribute to Scott Griffiths’ skill and tenacity in helping attract Members, but we must all try on a day to day basis and find and recruit new Members.
More Members does mean more referrals and despite the increase in attendance, to maintain levels in excess of 30 needs a membership approaching 40.
Our collective New Year’s resolution should be for all of us to try and introduce one new member during the course of the year to supplement the effective website that we have.
Brian Painter has successfully acted as our Social Secretary and over 30 Members and their partners enjoyed an excellent Christmas Dinner at the Duke of York in Billericay. Thankyou Brian for not only the the organising but coping with a cancellation from the original venue and finding us such a good replacement.
Getting together with members and partners it is great way of getting to know fellow members better and thereby enabling more referrals to be found.
What we have to do however is make sure that Brian is the organiser but not necessarily the generator of social events to attend. As with finding new members, it is open to all members to introduce social events to our calendar. You have the idea and you link with Brian over arranging it. We have not had much success this year in doing that, but may I once again suggest that each of us makes a resolution to try and suggest to Brian and assist him where necessary in arranging one social event. The size of it does not matter. We are a big enough group to have a diversity of members and there is nothing wrong with small social events aimed at specific group amongst us.
I have made suggestions about us all looking towards recruiting members and creating social events,
1 2 1’s even 3 to 1’s have started happening after our breakfast meeting, and this is a great way to use your time efficiently and get to know other members business.
Richard Reed and Paul Booth continue to arrange for the Business to Consumer and Business to Business Synergy Team Meetings respectively. These take place on the second Tuesday in every month, in Paul’s case and the third Monday in Richard’s case. Thank you both for your efforts over the year and may I again suggest to Members, however difficult it might be, that they all try and pay at least one meeting during the year to a Synergy Team, even if you are not a regular. You will be very welcome, and it helps these teams function efficiently.
Great picture Anna Marie who took it 🙂
An excellent year end review with stats to embarass other networking groups AND we’re a much happier group.
Ahhhh that would be telling… (but have you heard of ‘a selfie’?) ;o)
This has been another great year for EBF other than of course the passing of Michael who was one of life’s gentlemen and the retirement of Alan Shaw a founder member of the group. The leadership team continue to steer us ever onwards and I am grateful for the efforts that they put in. Well done to all the winners of the awards , all fully deserved and congratulations to everyone for all your contributions which make this a fantastic networking to belong too. No stringent “you must do rules” a fun but business like meeting and the end , properly recorded results speak for themselves.
The group has been a great help to me – lighthearted, encouraging, cheering and constructive.
Thanks to everyone for welcoming me in right from the start. Hope this year is another fruitful one.
Well done to the winners (I’ll pat myself on the back now as it’s downhill from hereon!) especially Aidan who has been faithfully at the helm for so long.
Your heartfelt victory speech absolutely resonated with me and is in fact one of the hidden highlights of being a member of such a supportive group which isn’t always recognised. I felt the same when I first joined. Your 60 seconds are always well thought out and delivered containing the right amount of humour / props but also highlighting what stunning photo’s you take. Congratulations again
Membership of EBF has been, and continues to be, invaluable to me; and the business I’m growing. The groups has been there as I’ve matured from a freelancer, to the owner of an ambitious copywriting agency. Huge thanks go out to each and every member for the advice, friendship, support, and of course referrals! EBF is the best networking group in Essex, hands down. Great work Aidan. This round-up shows how proud we should all feel, and motivate us all individually to go out there and share this great group with others.
Thanks so much to everyone who voted for me. It’s wonderful being joint Member of the Year with Scott Griffiths. We collaborate so much in work, why not collaborate in award wins too!
Another good year with EBF, thank you for having me, congrats to all the winners, but then I have not met a looser at EBF EVER! well done everyone, here’s to another great year 😊
Really great review and seriously impressive figures! I have no doubt I have joined the right group!