On the evening of November 3, 2011, the Entrepreneurial Success Network (ESN) had its fall business trade fair for the Lower Mainland business communities of Metro Vancouver. It was held at the Radisson Hotel in Richmond where there were over 70 exhibitors, 3 professional development seminars and hundreds of attendees. Communications and Corporate Relations (CR) members from AIESEC UBC were able to help out with the proceedings of the event.

(Source: Entrepreneurial Success Network Poster)

As volunteers, we were able to help set-up the registration desks and usher people to the right venues while registering their names on a list. We were tasked to check guests from the lists, greet people as soon as they came; and ask them if they wanted to make donations for charity: water, a non-profit organization that ESN supports which, bring clean and safe drinking water to people in developing nations. In turn, we would be able to network with the different people present at the event.

(Source: charity:water Campaign)

At first, people kept on asking us where the washrooms were and where they could get water and of course, we were happy to help them out. We had to tell them that registration would start exactly at 6 PM but realized that the first seminar would start at 6 PM as well. So when registration started, we compromised and told attendees, that putting their business cards into the baskets on the desks were sufficient for them to become registered.

Soon, someone asked me what the 7 PM seminar was about and I didn’t really know but later I found out it was on SEO, which stood for Search Engine Optimization, a process of improving visibility for websites in search engines through search results, something I’m not too keen on explaining but later found to be useful.

(Source: Networking Experience)

Next, as I paired up with a CR member, Sonia, to talk to company representatives, we finally had the chance to talk about AIESEC and why they would be interested with the Global Internship Program.

I also had the chance to go around with a fellow Communications member, Anne, as it was her first time applying the AIESEC spiel in front of business representatives. Moreover, we had to introduce ourselves, create personal connections and make most of our interactions by asking curious questions to companies, which we were unfamiliar with.

UBC AIESECers at the ESN Event

This was an opportunity to talk to people, give them information about AIESEC UBC and receive back information that we never knew about or would not have known if we never asked. The ESN event was about being resourceful volunteers and cheerful networkers. It was also a time when we developed communication skills by actually listening to what people said to us and by saying back something that may mean a lot for them.

By Jeff Chua, Communications AIESEC UBC