The DEN – Without the Dragons

Yesterday YEP Media witnessed the launch of a fantastic new resource for entrepreneurs of Birmingham city – The Diverse Entrepreneur Network. I had the privilege of attending this inspiring evening, courtesy of the UpRising project and was given the opportunity to listen to some empowering, exhilarating stories from some brilliant business minds in a relaxed informal environment. The reason the DEN is a such a fantastic resource is because it sees the idea of networking as we know it challenged and it seeks to bring business back to what it is really about – Relationships.

This was made clear in presentation by the first speaker Mike Burnage,  Managing Director of the Academy of Chief Executives, who inverted the whole idea of networking by challenging people to approach networking with the idea of sharing your dreams rather than your business. His philosophy was that people will sooner buy into the dream than the business because our main motivation in life is purpose.  I found this particularly interesting as it caused me to ask the question – do people really understand what the big vision or the dream behind YEP media actually is? Do they know that we are not just another communications agency?

The second speaker was Toby Reid, Managing Director of which a type of online reality website showcasing the warts and all stories behind the start ups of 3 local businesses. Toby highlighted the need to distinguish the difference between being an entrepreneur and being enterprising (There is a clear distinction but people get the muddled up). Toby reckons that if we could all learn from the mistakes other people make on their business ventures we would be more informed and better at starting our enterprises, hence the reason behind I will definitely be following that site. They say a wise man learns from a fools mistakes.

The final speaker was Kwai Yu, Founder and Managing Director of LeadersCafe 2020. Im not even going to begin to try to explain Kwai’s stories but he is fascinating so just check out his Online presence by googling him. Very inspiring guy. One quote I took away from his presentation was ‘victory in marketing doesnt happen when you sell but when you create advocates for your brand.’ – That’s a piece of advice we will be taking note of at YEP Media.

So, that was the DEN – without the Dragons est. 7th April 2011 by Mr Joel Graham Blake. If you are looking for a network of support as an entrepreneur we would definitely recommend the DEN.

Join them on

Twitter: @denbirmingham


Here is a short video clip of the DEN. Excuse the sound quality, it was recorded on a little flip mino HD cam.

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