On a humid and rainy day 2 of SXSW Interactive, approximately 100 small businesses gathered at Proof Annex for the Small Biz Meet Up hosted by our bud, Ramon Ray. The meet up was a chance to get together with other small business experts for an hour of brainstorming, idea-buidling, networking, friend-making and career-enhancement.

When they arrived, each attendee was given a blank piece of paper and an “I Love Small Biz” sticker. Ramon then directed attendees to break into groups of 10 and discuss their challenges, thoughts and struggles and to capture it all on their paper.

The room quickly grew loud with lively discussions and banter. Conversations and ideas were flying almost as quickly as the rain falling outside.

After 15 minutes, the groups of ten flipped and joined new groups and continued. Like the drinks at Proof Annex, there was nothing watered down about these convos.

After 30 minutes Ramon grabbed a megaphone and  got people sharing. He rewarded the crowd with fun prizes including books and gift cards.

Common small business challenges across the board included:

  • How to get more customers
  • How to hire the right people
  • How to plan in advance and be proactive vs. being reactive

It was an action-packed hour proving that small business is alive and kickin’ at SXSW! Thanks Ramon for bringing it all to life!

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