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“Oh to be in England now that April’s here…” and so far it’s delivering on the promise with some days more like Summer than Spring. The year is galloping ahead and suddenly we’re ready for another Rekindle event next week on Wednesday 26th April at the Royal Agricultural University (and, by the way, we’ll be a third of the way to next Christmas – perish the thought).
I’ve been thinking and writing about relationships for the Cirencester Scene. I’m realising that – in this increasingly uncertain, dynamic and volatile world – you’d be foolish to think you can make it on your own and don’t need the support of others in your business. That doesn’t mean employing people – for many of the smaller businesses that’s not a viable option. It does mean creating working relationships that are mutually beneficial. In a way, these relationships are like really good friendships. You don’t make friends in case you want something, and the best friends give without counting the cost. That, I think, is the secret of a healthy business relationship. You are there to provide support if needed, you’re available to help in whatever way you can but you’re not counting debits and credits to work out if people are giving or getting more than they should. Unlike other networking events, Rekindle is not “single category” – if we’ve four people in the same business in the room I see that as a wonderful opportunity to share learning not to be frightened of giving away trade secrets.
Of course, the mutual benefit will almost certainly have to be measured in pounds and pence at some point. However, the spirit of willing sharing and selfless giving is essential for smaller businesses to work together. That’s why I created Rekindle – to profit from experience.
Rekindle events will always include some space where people can build those relationships – whether you call it networking or just chatting probably doesn’t matter. What does matter is that you come with a mindset which is about giving as well as taking. What have you got to offer people that could be of benefit? I don’t mean your product or service. I do mean your ideas, your mistakes, your learning, your leads, your contacts and your skilled listening and questioning. My best friends are willing to challenge my thinking – you should be ready to do that with each other in the Rekindle community too.
So – be ready for another 1130 sharp start. We’re including the opportunity for people to have an exhibition stand and table for this event so they’ll get a bit more airtime. You can have one too of course if you haven’t already booked. We’ll allow for plenty of networking after the initial introductions and I’ve asked ClearWorth to provide some relevant learning for those that wish to stay. By the way that last session got an 89% approval rating so it was clearly worthwhile.
It can be lonely running your own business so use this time to build new relationships and to learn something too. I read just the other day about how to be successful at a conference (I’m afraid I can’t remember where – must be my age!) “Meet someone new, learn something from someone, teach someone something” – that should be your motto for every Rekindle event too.
…and my thought for the day encompasses learning a new relationship and comes from the man whose birthday is this Sunday, William Shakespeare: “We know what we are, but not what we may be.”

See you on Wednesday