Innovators Hub Catalyst – day 3

Day 3 of IHC started as last week had with a few of us meeting for coffee before it started, one of the things I’m loving the most about this experience is getting to meet like-minded people that I wouldn't have met otherwise. 

We each went around the room and said how we were feeling this morning, a great way to get the feeling of the group at the start of the day. Andy gave us a little talk about the Angel Solutions ‘vision days’, a time where everyone stops working and has a chance to change their routine. Building on this we were set a small activity. 

We were all brought into an open area of the office and were asked to get into age order starting from youngest to oldest - another way to speak to people we maybe hadn't before. Andy then went down the line and gave us a number of 1-5. Each of these numbers had also been put on our table and we were to sit with other people with the same number. My group ended up with the oldest and the youngest of the group which was interesting, a chance to get a difference in perspective in our activities for the day. We were given a number of questions to ask one another on our table to get to know each other, this worked well for our table as many of us had not spoken before. 

Our morning session started with Mark Russell from BMicro. Mark’s session was all about personal branding and knowing what you want from yourself. One of the things that Mark said that really resonated with me was that internships and apprenticeships are a great way to get a real experience in your work environment. 

Personal branding is all about your personal identity and characteristics being aware of your own mind and thoughts. Building your personal brand is about not conforming to what everyone wants from you and being your own person. 

We worked on an Ikigai diagrams - Japanese for “a reason for being”.

Mark’s session was great, a really good way to look into ourselves and have also gain tips about networking and marketing ourselves. 

After lunch we shared our views on the morning session and got to go up to the roof of the Tempest building and take pictures, look at the beehives and take in the scenery of Liverpool.   

The afternoon session was from Liverpool Vision with Peter Smith and Lydia Hampson-Delamere. We looked at city image and identity, getting businesses, investments and tourists into the city. We looked at what a city identity is: image, physical environment and people. 

In our groups we were each given a city and asked to write three good things and three bad things about that city. Our group was given Liverpool – yay! As one of my favourite places, I found it easy to write down my good points but more difficult to find the bad ones. The main things that I could come up with was the bad perceptions that people have of Liverpool. But my experience in Liverpool has been nothing like I’d been “warned of” - in fact it’s one of the nicest, most fun places I’ve ever had the fortune of living in. Other groups were given places like New York, Paris & Amsterdam. 

Next we were shown videos of how countries and cities market themselves, places like Iceland had quirky strange funny videos. Cleveland had a video showing how they're different and love it & don't follow the rules. We were then given a pretend project to build a marketing campaign for Liverpool 2018 as it will be 10 years since city of culture, 30 years since the Tate opened and 20 years since Biennial was launched. 

Our team came up with doing a big celebration in the city, with music and food and activities for all ages. We wanted to market it with a viral campaign of art around the world with a code you could scan and post about to get tickets to the event. 

After the session we were given the opportunity to go to Studio Mashbo, were invited into the office and were given a talk by Gavin Sherratt, the MD. He told us about the trials and tribulations that the company had gone through and showed us some projects they had worked on. It was great being in such an open space with the IHC people I had met and seeing what kind of companies there were to be a part of. 

Gavin told us about a networking event they were throwing that day, Creative Kitchen, at the Tempest. I was excited to go, this would be my first networking event. It was awesome getting to hear people speak about where they came from and what they had achieved. From Senior people like Andy and even a freelance lady who was trying to change the perception of a freelancer, and she did for me. I count this as the end of the Innovators Hub day for me as a few of the others joined as well. 

All in all, even after only three days I’ve already made two new good friends, met new high-powered contacts and invigorated myself to do everything I can to be a part of the new Digital and Creative world in Liverpool/ I can't wait for next Tuesday!