Finch & Fouracre are pretty indebted to the Cultural Enterprise Office. Fortunately, they don't look for too much in return for their excellent advice and brilliant events. Just, I suppose, for folk to listen, consider the advice, and do what they can.
The first CEO event Beth and I went to was, in fact, a Christmas party, which, totally free of charge (like almost all of the CEO services) offered networking with other new creative professionals alongside some fun and drinks. Since then, we've attended events like Starting Out, Market Day, and taken advantage of many one-on-one advice sessions. All of these have been valuable, giving us much food for thought, and usually resulting in us digesting the advice over a pint in Blackfriars afterwards (we would purposefully get the last session of the day so we could justify the visit to the pub!).
Since Beth left in February, I arranged an advice session with Lowri Potts, who helped me gain a bit of confidence about continuing F&F on my own. Yesterday I attended an event about manufacturing and the creative industries. As usual, I met some familiar faces, as well as new people with interesting businesses and ideas - one of the best things about these events is meeting the others there. And, as usual, I came away with lots to think about, and things to get working on.
Yesterday's event was followed by another networking event (I hate that term! But I like meeting people) for those who had completed the Starter for 6 programme - a great scheme that helps businesses starting up, and offers a chance to pitch for funding to develop your business idea. Again, a great opportunity to meet people and hear about interesting and fantastic businesses and ideas.
Basically, I write all this because the CEO and the events it hosts fills me with confidence and joy about the state of Scottish creative industries, and those who choose to follow their dreams and make, design, create, build, draw, grow their ideas.
You can find out more about the CEO and starter for 6 here. I love CEO!