How to Mix Business with Leisure – Representing Red Alert Labs at the IoT Expo Europe!
Hi everyone! I am writing this post on the day of the France is scheduled to face Belgium in the FIFA World Cup semi-final. Although the match begins in a few hours, the streets and metro are packed with people chanting the French national anthem and screaming “Allez les Bleus.” Quite unexpectedly this past month has turned out to be the best possible period to be in Paris!
And yet, this blog will be about the Netherlands. Out of the blue? Let me explain. Two weeks ago my boss offered me a trip to Amsterdam and an entry to the IoT/AI/Blockchain Expo organized in a local conference center. He said he initially planned to go there with me; however, he had to be physically in Paris during that time and so I became the only person who could represent Red Alert Labs. I naturally accepted that amazing opportunity and began to think about my approach.
Did I feel the pressure? I’ll clarify: I was about to go to a city I had never been to before and meet with people I had never met before to talk about their area of expertise that I had never studied before. Indeed, I felt quite unsure. Nevertheless, I have always enjoyed being thrown into deep water and believed it is the best way to learn. This time turned out to be no different.
On the day the Expo began, I caught a morning train from Paris to Amsterdam. Of course, the train got delayed because of the strikes of rail workers (remember we are still in France), but we eventually left after an hour of waiting. After arriving at the Amsterdam Central station, I took the local subway to get to the conference center, the photo of which I am attaching. At first I felt a little overwhelmed, but that feeling quickly passed after I began speaking with the exhibitors. Fortunately, the business pitch I had prepared before and the knowledge I had acquired at Red Alert were enough to establish some relationships and gather a bunch of business cards. The second day was even better – filled with a lot of presentations and networking.
After the conference, I decided to stay in Amsterdam for the weekend and visit the city (big thanks to my boss for the Friday off!). Amsterdam exceeded my expectations and I really enjoyed my stay. The views, the people, the atmosphere are all just amazing. To prove it, I’m attaching a typical tourist picture of the canals in city center.
All in all, my trip to Amsterdam turned out to be not only a great opportunity to improve my business skills and expand my network, but also an occasion to see one of the most beautiful places in the world!