Sitting in Sligo airport on a Saturday listening to local businesses outlining how they have come so far was a very positive and encouraging experience.

Swell Summit was a one day conference run by #SwellSligo in a unique location beside the sea in the West of Ireland village of Strandhill bringing those in the web, creative and entrepreneur communities together to explore doing business in the area.

My 5 key take away points from the day were:

  1. Customer service A common theme from all the presenters was the importance of customer service. Do whatever you can for your customers. Adapt and create products and services to meet your customers' requirements. Ask customers for feedback and respond based on the feedback. Double your customer service.
  2. Be authentic and say thank you Be yourself. Appreciate your customers. Have a personal relationship with customers and suppliers. Do not forget to remind customers that you appreciate that they chose to do business with you. Stand by your customers at all times. Always be authentic.
  3. Do not be afraid to fail Be flexible. Try different things out and see what works best. Move with technology and adapt based on feedback from customers. Focus on learning rather than failing. 
  4. Know when to quit and move on Do not keep going in the hope that you can turn things around. Not everything will work. Ask for help and guidance. Evaluate the position regularly. Learn from your mistakes and move on. Do not make excuses.
  5. Cash flow is king Always know your cash flow position. Regularly monitor it. You need to know your cash position and future projections in order to plan. Learn about cash flow – money in and money out of the business. Have a cash flow projection for at least 3 months. Hopefully this was an inaugural annual event and many more successful events will follow.