The beautiful scenery, rolling hills, rich history and heritage and wonderful stories that people have to share are just some of the things that make Yorkshire a region that you can be proud to call your home.
Having lived here all of my life, despite moving from North Yorkshire to West Yorkshire when I was younger, it never ceases to amaze me. We have so much to offer, not least some of the UK’s leading brands, businesses and talent.
That’s why it is no surprise that we have a day that is dedicated to the region, something that we can call our own and that now receives attention from the national media. There were many celebrations going on, with different activities planned but we decided to show our support for our client, the Yorkshire Mafia (YM).
A great organisation, the YM now has more than 22,000 pre-approved members. It started as a LinkedIn Group and simply went from there. It now hosts a year-round schedule of events which include Buy Yorkshire, the largest business to business event in the North.
And so, it was off to Blackhouse, a restaurant in Leeds which I have often been to and class as one of my all-time favourites. Champagne awaiting, we arrived to a bar jam-packed with people. It was great to see that so many people had taken the time to venture out on a sunny Tuesday evening.
The chatter was buzzing and the drinks flowing, it wasn’t long before we came across some friendly faces. There was a real mix of people that we know from the past and those that mentioned it was their first experience of the YM.
Needless to say, the impression that they had was positive, which was good. With more than 200 people at the event it was busy but that didn’t seem to impact too much on the bar, which was awash with thirsty revellers.
Looking around the room, I got to thinking about what makes Yorkshire so special and it’s often said that it’s the people and I have to agree. Everyone was smiling and friendly, as they should be at an event where the purpose is to meet, share and learn.
I was pleased that people following the YM code of conduct and didn’t go around thrusting business cards into sweaty palms whilst announcing that ‘we have synergy’, quite the opposite. I had the chance to speak to some really interesting people, many of whom had just started their own businesses.
Understanding the challenges that you come across when you launch a business, having been there almost nine years ago (I know, where has that gone!?), we got chatting and before long were guffawing about the ups and downs of becoming unemployable as a result of working for yourself.
Overall the event was a huge success and I made some new contacts, one that I am already planning to introduce to a client after seeing first-hand the work that they do and the approach that they take.
I have always enjoyed the YM evenings and will continue to do so, but there was something extra special about this particular one, perhaps because we were all there for the same reason; to get out and meet new people while celebrating the one thing we already had in common, Gods own county, Yorkshire.