Branson Centre impacted over 3,000 people worldwide with Leadership in a Digital Age. The virtual summit took place during Global Entrepreneurship Week on November 17-18. Through a mix of on-demand webinars and livestream panel discussions, attendees got the opportunity to learn actionable strategies from global experts and digital entrepreneurs on how to grow a business online and navigate the new normal brought on by the coronavirus pandemic.
“It is extremely gratifying to witness the global impact of this event,” said Joanna Banks, PanJam Investment Limited’s Senior Vice President of New Business Development and Strategy. “PanJam has been a longstanding partner of the Branson Centre because of our shared commitment to innovation and entrepreneurial development, and Leadership in a Digital Age perfectly represents those ideals,” she added.
Yello Media Group also partnered with the non-profit to produce the dynamic event. “Those in attendance were able to learn best practices and walk away with actionable marketing strategies to grow their business,” said Yello Media Group’s General Manager, Jessica Campbell. “Branson Centre’s summit has proven that when different organizations have a common goal and pool resources together, they can achieve amazing results”.
Dubbed as a “crash course on leadership, branding, and marketing for SMEs”, the event featured entrepreneurs with million-dollar online businesses, including Adam G. Force, founder of the multi-media digital brand Change Creator; Barrington McIntosh, founder of BaLance eCom which trains multi-million dollar sellers on the Amazon marketplace; as well as Jamaican-born podcaster, Nicaila Matthews Okome of Side Hustle Pro; as well as leadership and marketing experts from the Caribbean, United States, and Canada. Speakers include, Heneka Watkis-Porter from The Entrepreneurial You; Nadine Liverpool, personal branding and online marketing strategist; Keron Rose from Droid Island; Robby Polk from Yello Media Group, among others.
“I am extremely humbled to take part in a great keynote discussion for the summit,” said Change Creator’s Adam G. Force. “Entrepreneurs and small businesses are two of the most important solutions to rising global challenges, and that’s why meaningful businesses that solve these challenges are more important than ever before”.
“We gathered the best of the best for Leadership in a Digital Age,” said Lauri-Ann Ainsworth, Branson Centre’s CEO. “This was a free event, but the value of the content is priceless,” she continued. “It was our intention to inspire SMEs as well as provide practical training that attendees could implement with ease,” said Ainsworth. “Even though we shifted our focus from business acceleration to recovery management, we wanted to show SMEs that opportunities are still out there to help them get on the path for growth”. Branson Centre’s CEO commented that another event objective was to give more Caribbean faces the opportunity to showcase their expertise on a global stage.
Leadership in a Digital Age hosted two livestream panel discussions. ‘Leadership marketing for Caribbean entrepreneurs’ highlighted how Caribbean entrepreneurs can stand out in a noisy digital world. When asked what it takes for entrepreneurs to position themselves as thought leaders, panelist and Digital Disruption CEO Kadia Francis stated, “You can’t be a thought leader if nobody knows what your thoughts are. You have to start exercising your expertise, people have to actually know what it is that you know. The magnificent thing about the age that we live in is that there are no gatekeepers anymore, it’s your audience that decides your relevance, it’s your audience that decides that you’re good”. Other experts adding to the robust discussion included Kemal Brown, CEO – Digita Global Marketing; Gabriel Heron, VP Marketing – JAMPRO; and Sherron Washington, CEO – The P3 Solution.
The second panel focused on the topic ‘How Caribbean businesses can thrive in a digital world’. The discussion spotlighted the evolution of leadership in this digital age and the way forward. Oliver Sabga, CEO of Term Finance, a web-based credit institution operating in the Caribbean region, offered an empowering yet thought-provoking statement: “Take the risk and pivot from employment into entrepreneurship, but dot your I’s and cross your T’s in your business plan and be realistic.” Other panelists included Janette Brin, CEO – Caribbean POSH; Larren Peart, CEO – Blue Dot; and Melissa Smith, CEO – Association of Virtual Assistants.
The summit got rave reviews. One attendee, Christine Gyles, said “the sessions I was able to join were awesome. As a budding entrepreneur, I learned valuable gems from your expert presenters. I was grateful that I was able to view some of the sessions I missed. It was time well spent. I look forward to another summit in the future. Thanks to you and your partners for making it possible for me. I did not know of your company before, and now I will not forget you, because you have added value to my life”.
Leadership in a Digital Age is Branson Centre’s first virtual summit. “The numbers don’t lie. It’s clear that taking our signature event online was a step in the right direction and that SMEs are craving this kind of content,” said Branson Centre’s Development and Communications Manager, Gizelle Riley. “Entrepreneurs have to be agile and multifaceted leaders in this fast-paced digital age, and Leadership in a Digital Age reflects that in an educational and inspiring way”.