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Metropolia business students organised two successful events in March as part of their studies. Boost your Business focused on entrepreneurship and the World Speech Day event consisted a wide range of interesting speeches about learning, working and networking.
In the Boost Your Business event 9. March several speakers from well-known organisations took the stage; Venla Väkeväinen and Ville Vahteri from SLUSH, Totti Nyberg from Makia and Hailer Ltd's founder Stefan Sundell shared their experience of entrepreneurship. In addition to compelling stories the speakers shared various tips for networking and startups.
Exhibitors Joblink Oy and Oy Opteam presented their services and available job opportunities. The event's primary goal was to provide an opportunity for networking as well as getting tips for starting a business and developing as an entrepreneur. A positive and relaxed atmosphere made the evening successful and rewarding.
World Speech Day was held for the first time in Finland in the Metropolia Business School on 15 March 2017. This global event celebrates speeches and speech making with over 80 countries taking part. The 2017 theme was "Thoughts for a Better World".
A group of six active students from the International Business and Logistics degree programme took on full organisation of the day as a project for their second year Managerial Communication course. They invited keynote speakers and organised panel discussions with representatives of many different companies. It was an ambitious project with a full day’s programme.
A highlight of the day was welcoming Member of Parliament Pekka Haavisto as keynote speaker who gave a very interesting speech on “Negotiating peace, what can Finland do?”. He discussed his work in crisis resolution, particularly in Africa and highlighted the root causes and indicators of conflict and how to prevent them.
Bijay Baniya, founder & CEO of Sparkwork spoke about his journey from being an overseas student in Finland to successful entrepreneur. We also heard from Jolly Dragon/ Unfair Advantage OY on how people can connect offline.
The middle of the day consisted of two panel discussions with alumni and CEO panelists chaired by students. In the first panel alumni Vivian Maar (CEO at Hooked by North) and Promise Nwagu (CEO at Hoivapalvelu ProHoiva) outlined their passion for becoming entrepreneurs and gave students tips on how to believe in themselves and strive for constant improvement. Alumnus Iiris Lehtinen, Operations conductor at Signmark Productions Oy, described how the work she does impacts lives. Jere Suikkila, formerly of HERE in California, mentioned the realities of working in large corporations which are not always discussed in business school. Jenni Dias of FitLine products Finland also shared insights into becoming a successful entrepreneur. A key theme of the discussion was the importance of networks for entrepreneurs, lifelong learning, achieving work-life balance, choosing work which inspires and being able to do something you’re passionate about.
The second panel discussed disruption and digitalization, taking risks, involving startups more in business education and being passionate about work. Päivi Enden, founder of Enden Consulting, stressed that innovations will not fly if you do not have sales/marketing skills. JR Estrallo, co-founder at Nordic-Asean Business Forum ry, convinced us to look to Asian markets. Final year IBL student Gerda Verbickaite encouraged students to take risks and believe in themselves. Alumnus Mehalet Yared, Programme developer at the Finnish Red Cross, gave an honest account of the realities of working for a non-profit organisation. Alumnus Sandra Krsic, Master data specialist at Onninen, shared how students will get to know themselves better while on placement and should not be afraid to take risks.
The day closed with Guilherme Varo of the University of Helsinki presenting his view of making an impact with the AIESEC organization and alumnus Alfred Leppänen sharing his story as speech writer for the Speaker of Parliament.
Many thanks to all speakers and panelists for their valuable contributions to our first ever World Speech Day and to the excellent organising team.
Boost your Business, text by Emina Bajramovic and Sari Viitakangas
World Speech Day, text by Louise Stansfield
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