Olaf Furness picking up his Creative Edinburgh Award from a chap in an ill fitting suit.
I’ve been in the Chair at Creative Edinburgh for four years in which time we have grown our membership from virtually zero to over 2,300.
It’s a uniquely aggregated network of everyone from jewellery-makers to promoters, to designers to accountants to film producers and pretty much everything in between.
If it has done one thing only it has exploded the myth that networking is boring, scary and a waste of time.
It has created hundreds of commissions, collaborations and friendships and it has created an energy that is rarely (I actually mean never but I don’t have empiric evidence to prove that…yet) experienced in the professional workplace.
We represent the Creative Industries on an economic development ticket. So we’re not an arts organisation, we’re a membership group that invests time and energy into mentoring, matchmaking, sharing knowledge and space and time and experience with our members; young and old.
I like to think of us as “Edinburgh’s Creative Oxygen.”
We don’t sneer at students. We welcome them. Not in a token way, we embrace them.
We don’t see our older members (like me) as past it. We see them as wise and connected.
One, two and three person businesses, and freelancers, are manifold in our membership. That’s because Scotland is a nation of SME’s and self employed.
It’s what Scotland is and the sooner we recognise that and accept that the emerging economy is based precisely on that business model, the better.
But we also welcome and enjoy the experiences of our larger member organisations.
We even go out and train some of Scotland’s largest corporations.
But we rely on knowledge, passion and commitment to survive and thrive.
We’re at a crossroads in our development. We want to march on but we need help.
We need knowledge too.
That knowledge will come from an important member survey (that non-members can fill in too). You know me (you’re connected to me after all).
Please, take 15 minutes out to fill in this nicely designed questionnaire. (FYI, it’s been created in a great new tool that competes with Survey Monkey called Typeform and is rather good.)
Thank you my friend. It means a lot to me.