Our agency has been fortunate enough to make the INC list the last 2 years in a row. I attended the conference in Washington DC last week on Oct 10th and 11th with Jeff Tompkins who is our top producing Business Development Executive. It was an amazing event.
Over 2,000 people attended and amazing companies from all over country showed up. We got there early to attend the golf tournament on Thursday morning but it got rained out. Unfortunately it was raining the entire weekend so everyone pretty much stayed inside, attended the sessions and networked.
The first night there was a great cocktail reception and we got to visit all the booths. The best booth by far was the Chase Ink booth. They filmed every entrepreneur there about how they grew their companies and their future plans for growth, then made a digital landscape of their journey, emailed it out and posted them on a large screen for the entire conference to see. It was very well done.
On Friday morning there were some great sessions lead by Jim Collins for CEO’s on how to lead in different environments. He was one of the better speakers I have seen. Gary Vaynerchuk was a staple at the conference as he is at many conferences and hosted several Q&A sessions. Most of the topics revolved around social media and how to use it properly for your business. I got a lot out of the lunches and dinners each day. This was a great time to meet other successful leaders of companies and pick their brains about all sorts of business issues. There was a cool event Friday night for Oktoberfest that included games and networking events as well. It concluded with a black tie gala on Saturday night which was very impressive. They also honored one company who had been on the list for 10 years in a row which I thought was amazing.
The thing that stood out the most to me during the conference was the willingness of every business leader to be overly friendly and helpful to others. There was a feeling of a mutual sense of respect for everyone that was there and made the INC list. Each CEO and owner there knows what it takes to start and run a business. They know the grind and the constant ups and downs. Owning a business can be an amazing experience but it is also a very stressful one, and it can take a toll on all aspects of your life. Being around several thousand people who have all experienced the same issues was a powerful thing. INC did a great job putting on the event and I hope we get to make the list again next year for the third year in a row!