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Panjim, Goa – BNI Goa Region and Business Voices BNI Foundation, recently hosted Leading the Change, a business event aimed at empowering and educating entrepreneurs in Goa. The event took place on 20th June 2023 at Taleigao Community Hall, and it welcomed a remarkable guest list of distinguished professionals from various fields.

This event was graced by the honorable Chief Minister of Goa, Dr. Pramod Sawant, as the Chief Guest, Dr. Ivan Misner, the Founder and Chief Visionary Officer of BNI Global, a renowned global business networking organization, as the keynote speaker, Mr. Mac Srinivasan, Global Markets President of BNI, as the Guest of Honor, Ms. Meena Srinivasan, Chief Digital Officer of BNI, and Mr. Hemu Savarna, India National Director of BNI, as special guests.

Leading the Change brought together entrepreneurs, business leaders, and professionals from various industries to share their expertise and insights on how to navigate the business landscape. The event served as a platform for networking, knowledge sharing, and empowering entrepreneurs to grow their businesses and make a positive impact in their communities.

The event began with registration and a Hi-Tea session, providing attendees with an opportunity to meet and greet each other. Dr. Ivan Misner, the Founder, and Chief Visionary Officer of BNI Global, then took the stage to share his insights on how networking can be a key driver of success in any business. Attendees then had the opportunity to engage with Dr. Ivan Misner through an interactive Q&A session, where they could ask the founder anything about entrepreneurship, networking, and leadership. Through this, he explained the efforts of the mentors and the future vision of BNI.

Dr. Ivan Misner said “In today’s digital age, networking has transcended physical boundaries. This shift has been recognized early on and embraced technology to enhance networking experiences. As young individuals, we must adapt to the ever-evolving digital landscape and leverage online platforms to expand our networks. Virtual networking events, social media platforms, and online communities provide endless opportunities to connect with professionals worldwide. By staying abreast of technological advancements and utilizing digital tools effectively, we can amplify our networking efforts and reach new heights. However, nothing can substitute networking through personal contact.”

Throughout his journey, Dr. Ivan Misner has exemplified the importance of innovation and adaptability in a rapidly changing world. He has constantly sought new ways to leverage technology to enhance networking experiences for BNI members. Under his leadership, BNI has embraced digital platforms, facilitated online meetings, and expanded virtual networking opportunities. By staying at the forefront of technological advancements, Misner has ensured that BNI remains a valuable resource for professionals in the digital age. He emphasizes the significance of networking with a purpose. It’s not just about attending events or collecting business cards; it’s about actively seeking out individuals who align with our goals and values. By focusing on building relationships with like-minded individuals, we can form strategic alliances, collaborate on projects, and create a synergy that propels everyone forward. Networking with a purpose ensures that our efforts are aligned with our vision, maximizing the impact we can make.

The Chief Guest, Honorable Dr. Pramod Sawant, Chief Minister of Goa took the stage and spoke about internship & apprenticeship and how the government places great importance on skilling the youth, and with an assurance that BNI foundation will receive all the support they need in this endeavor. He appealed to all the entrepreneurs and heads of different business organizations present to skill students by having them as apprentices or interns. In the end, he took the opportunity to thank Dr. Ivan Misner for founding this amazing institution that helps businesses on the one hand and guides and supports youth who are future leaders on the other hand.

“I am grateful for the impact that BNI has made among the entrepreneurs in Goa by helping them grow their businesses. It is heartening to note that BNI members in Goa have generated more than 2200 crores so far, with nearly 350 crores in the last 12 months alone. The government appreciates the contribution of BNI in terms of budget suggestions, employment generation, youth training, and empowerment, and for rising to the occasion during the COVID-19 pandemic. I am particularly pleased to hear that Rajkumar Kamat will be focusing substantially on youth education and skilling through the BNI Foundation. With his passion and commitment, I am sure this will be a great value addition to my vision for the state”

Mr. Mac Srinivasan, Global Markets President of BNI, and an industry veteran, provided attendees with an overview of the bigger picture and how it impacts businesses today. He explained how BNI Goa’s Leading the Change event is more than just a conference; it’s a catalyst for growth and success in today’s business world. By bringing together industry experts, thought leaders, and entrepreneurs, this event offers a unique perspective on the bigger picture of business. It provides valuable insights, connections, and solutions that help businesses thrive in an ever-changing market. The event then moved to its stage of recognizing outstanding performers in the industry through awards in various categories. He gave a lucid presentation on how entrepreneurs could scale up their businesses.

Mr. Rajkumar Kamat, Founder & Managing Director of E.P Kamat Group shared his thoughts on the role of entrepreneurship in driving economic growth and development in Goa. He stated “Entrepreneurship is not only the backbone of Goa’s economy but also the driving force behind its growth and development. With innovative ideas, bold leadership, and a spirit of determination, entrepreneurs are creating jobs, boosting productivity, and stimulating economic activity across the country.” he further continued by saying “Throughout this journey, we have been blessed to have the support of many mentors, including Mr. Murali Srinivasan, our District Director, Hemu Suvarna, ND, Mahesh Srinivasan, Global Markets President and Graham Weihmiller, Chairman, along with more than 100 Executive Directors of India. Mr. Ayush Bansal, the former ED of Vapi Valsad, went out of his way to mentor us in Mission Tejas last year. We are forever grateful to all these leaders. As we move forward, we are committed to helping more MSMEs, entrepreneurs, startups, and millennials grow their businesses through BNI. We are now within reach of our goal of 1000 members, set in 2012, and are excited to cast our vision for the future. We aspire to support more than 2,500 entrepreneurs, generating over 1.25 billion dollars worth of business per annum and impacting the community by generating more than 50,000 jobs by 2030. Besides, through BNI Foundation, Business Voices program, we aspire to mentor more than 1,000 youth in their entrepreneurial journeys”

Then a brief overview took place of the BNI Foundation and the Business Voices initiative, highlighting the importance of corporate social responsibility in today’s business landscape. The event then moved on to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding with 21 leading institutions to support entrepreneurship and innovation. The efforts of the BNI Voices Coordinator Team were acknowledged for their stellar contributions to the growth and development of the BNI Foundation. Followed by the Recognition of the outstanding performances of participating chapters in various categories.

Leading the Change event by BNI Goa was a great success, bringing together business leaders and entrepreneurs from across the region to share insights, ideas, and best practices, empowering entrepreneurs in Goa and providing a platform for them to grow their businesses and make a positive impact in their communities. From digital transformation to networking strategies and innovation, the sessions were informative, thought-provoking, and engaging. The event provided a unique platform for discussions on key business challenges, opportunities, and trends in a rapidly evolving market. The organizers are already looking forward to the next edition of this event, which promises to be even more impactful and engaging.

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