How Should a Small Business Owner Develop a Digital Mindset?

Up to 70 entrepreneurs joined the first post-pandemic public start-up event in Dublin’s northside. Attracted by a panel of 5 speakers, all digital entrepreneurs to the Go Digital event. Coupled with a business exhibition and drop-in business mentoring from three digital experts.

The Entrepreneurs

see list and photo below.

Deirdre Monks

Ciaran Brennan @livecosts

Rohit Thakral @TargetInt

Ronan O’Neill @digigrow_ie & @MoneyJar_

Fredericka Sheppard @VoltedgeHR

Panel of speakers for StartUp Ballymun
Digital entrepreneurs panel at StartUp Ballymun

History of StartUp Ballymun

The first of the 9 events in 2016 came about from the pooling of ideas by Liam Barry of Dublin City Council and Billy Linehan of Celtar Business Advisers. Liam in his role of Economic Development Officer wished to encourage self-employment in Ballymun, and promote the area as a place to do business. The name StartUp Ballymun signifies a return to what true startups are about, anyone from anywhere taking a risk to be their own boss. See some previous events HERE.

Covid Interruption

Running twice a year in Spring and Autumn, the start-up event was interrupted by the COVID 19 pandemic. Like many other events attendance was down slightly as there is not yet full confidence in the public about attending events in confined spaces.

Focus on entrepreneurs

The highlight of every evening is the Panel of Entrepreneurs. Individual business owners share their knowledge and experience of growing a business ‘warts n’ all’. 49 businesses have presented at StartUp Ballymun since 2016. Authenticity is guaranteed as only business owners are invited to speak on the panel, no consultants, agency staff or VCs.

Go Digital banner in Irish
Go Digital – Go Digiteach – StartUp Ballymun 26 May 2022

Thoughts on running an evolving event?

  1. First time, it was managed and organised over Zoom. The 2 main organisers, Billy and Liam met in-person twice only over 6 weeks.
  2. Promoted extensively across 4 platforms as ‘Grow Your Business, Go Digital’ (Facebook, Twitter @StartUpBallymun, Eventbrite and LinkedIn ). Thanks to all the Shares and Likes, they make a difference amplifying the offer, making the event available to a wider audience. Facebook and Eventbrite integration was hard to figure out when promoting the event across both platforms.
  3. A post Pandemic event – as mentioned not sure what the effect was, attendees reported that they had friends who would have liked to be there. A few attendees wore masks. Confidence will improve when Indoor Air Quality Standards are regulated, and then implemented.
  4. Promoting in the Irish language was a first, see photo.
  5. Recruiting a balanced panel of speakers is always a challenge. An entrepreneur’s life is a busy one, many were unavailable because of short notice, childcare, on well earned holidays, abroad on business deals etc. Billy’s SFA membership came up trumps and 3 speakers were sourced from the SFA membership.
  6. Our longtime allies at Irish Tech News continue to give media support You don’t have to go to Harvard to develop your Digital Mindset – try StartUp Ballymun instead
  7. Planning the Autumn event starts now ……. sustainability and climate change the possible themes?