August 6, 2010
Embrace diversity: Small business conference focuses on multiculturalism
In the past two-plus years, I've mentioned a handful of local small business conferences on this blog. It's rare, however, that I see an announcement for a multicultural-minded conference aimed at our region's small business community. That's why I was excited to hear about the first annual Multicultural Biz Wiz Conference, slated for September 9 at the Renaissance Seattle Hotel.
Like many local conferences for entrepreneurs, this event promises to show attendees how to stay profitable and grow their business. It also promises to point them toward a bounty of helpful resources and provide ample time for networking with fellow business owners. But this conference goes the extra mile by including sessions on how to effectively work with businesspeople from other cultures. Why is this important? Because putting your foot in your mouth or your hand in someone else's personal space could very well cost you a critical account or valued business relationship.
As conference chair Lourdes Sampera Tsukada writes on the event's website, "When one is doing business or interacting with small business owners from another culture, communication styles vary. We are no longer doing business with the same culture and the same generations -- we are doing business with many different cultures, generations, and forms of communications. The awareness of these key components is the key to future continued success."
Registration for this all-day conference is $99 before August 27, $129 after August 27. To register or learn more, see the Multicultural Biz Wiz website.
Of course, embracing diversity in business doesn't begin and end with a one-day conference. If you're interested in finding other diversity-minded professional groups and events around the Puget Sound, including the fantastic Professional Women of Color Network and the Greater Seattle Business Association (aka, Seattle's LGBT chamber of commerce), see this comprehensive list posted by the Seattle Networking Guide.
Karen Burns is the author of The Amazing Adventures of Working Girl, a career guide based on her 59 jobs over 40 years in 22 cities.
Lisa Quast is a certified career coach, mentor, business consultant, former corporate executive and author based in the Seattle area.
Randy Woods writes about job-search tools, networking techniques and other tips to help you land your dream job.
Matt Youngquist is the president of Career Horizons, a career counseling firm.
Natalie Singer is a Seattle writer, editor and small-business owner.
Michelle Goodman is the author of "My So-Called Freelance Life" and "The Anti 9-to-5 Guide."
Paul Anderson helps professionals in transition find their desired employment.
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