jeff hirz, social media and content marketing managerI’m new to Beachwood.Brand new.

We’re talking never even visited the city until August – I’m a west-sider, what can I say? That was for my first interview here at Dynamics Online. Now that I’ve spent some time in the city (8 hrs/day, 5 days/week for the past month) I’m finally starting to get to know the Beachwood area. Some things I have learned:

  • If you hit Chagrin Blvd and I-271 around 5 p.m. you’re not leaving town until at least 5:30.
  • The population of Beachwood is 11,867 (I like population statistics).
  • Giant Eagle sushi really isn’t too bad.
  • This is a very strong, interconnected community – this lesson being acutely learned this past Tuesday at the Beachwood B2B Show.

The New Guy

The value of networking has never been made more apparent to me than when I stood at the Dynamics Online booth watching the show unfold. It seemed like there wasn’t a person at the show who didn’t know at least a dozen others. I’ve never seen such a large gathering of business professionals know one another so well.

I introduced myself to a host of new people as they walked by and the common reaction I received was, “Oh, so you’re the new guy!” I laughed. Helplessly.

I liked this place.

4 Key Takeaways from the Beachwood B2B Show

Beachwood B2B ShowWith hundreds of attendees, dozens of vendors and a number of presentations lined up throughout the day, the Beachwood B2B Show, hosted by the Beachwood Chamber of Commerce, was slated to be the business event of the year. And for those who partook in what was offered, it did not disappoint.

Here are my four key takeaways from the show:

  1. Face-to-Face Interaction is Still King – In today’s society based in convenience and instant gratification, it’s all too tempting to simply shoot off an e-mail, dial seven numbers or communicate in some SMS platform. We forget that face-to-face interaction still reigns supreme in the business world. Networking events like the Beachwood B2B Show help us remember why.
  2. Revisiting Strategy is Crucial to Business Success – So many of us get lost in the hubbub of our daily work that we forget to view it from a strategic vantage. The workshops at the Beachwood B2B Show covered numerous valuable topics, from small-business solutions to the importance of following a sales process. These lessons lie at the core of most businesses and thus are too often taken for granted and ignored. The workshops helped re-align business goals and strategy with the ins and outs of the day to day.
  3. You Can Never Have Too Many Connections – I added 15 new business cards to my rolodex – that’s a good three-months’ worth for me normally! – the lion’s share of which were a result of face-to-face conversations. It’s always nice to be able to reference an introduction from before, however cursory – can somebody say “ice breaker”? That’s better than asking how much a polar bear weighs . . .
  4. Candy Doesn’t Start Conversations – While I would like to thank the booth across from us for the M&M’s my colleague Keith and I raided every time you walked away, it was easy to see that candy was not a good conversation starter. The deliciousness will lure the myopic attendee into your booth, but if you’re looking for a qualified lead or conversion, see the above bullets.

Thank you to the Beachwood Chamber of Commerce for planning the event, Corporate College for hosting it and all the sponsors. You’ve all helped folks like me become much more connected and establish great business contacts.

See you all next year. My rolodex can’t wait!

For some images of the event, check out Dynamics Online’s Facebook page.

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Jeff Hirz is the Social Media and Content Marketing Manager at Dynamics Online.
You can reach him by calling (216) 292-4410.