Wolves Summit 2018: How I joined the wolfpack

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4 min

Another month, another great conference. This time, we’ve visited Wolves Summit 2018 in Warsaw. Check out what the capital city in Poland offers in terms of networking and running a business.

Wolves gathering in Warsaw

This year, here at The Software House, we were really crazy about conferences. Our staff took part in events all around Europe. For instance, the Sales Team visited Arctic 15, where they had a chance to meet new people and catch-up with our existing clients from Nordic countries. We were also present at infoShare and Bitspiration, not to mention a bunch of software development events which our developers attend on a regular basis.

As for me, I’ve heard a lot of positive feedback about Wolves Summit. Finally, I’ve decided to check out for myself what the event has to offer. This year’s edition took place in Warsaw’s most iconic building – The Palace of Culture and Science. After the first few minutes there, it became clear for me:

Wolves Summit is the perfect event for people who love networking.

As of the numbers, this edition broke the records from the last years. Over 1500 participants, out of whom 300 were executives, 200 were investors and another 300 startup owners. Looks good so far? This is just the beginning!

Opportunities for everybody

Wolves Summit is a well-defined event for one main reason. As Barbara Piasek (the charismatic founder of Wolves Summit) stated in the opening ceremony, it’s equally interesting for people with different goals to achieve: startup owners, investors and tech companies.

Startup owners could benefit from meetings with potential investors and from the pitching contest. Obviously, if they already had a ready product on the market, they could also find new clients. Investors might look for interesting projects for new business opportunities and for maximizing their deal flow. And then there’s the third party – where The Software House belongs – i.e. service providers of any kind who could look for opportunities and potential clients among the participants.

The founder of Wolves Summit, Barbara Piasek, on stage

Here’s Barbara Piasek, the founder of Wolves Summit, talking about multiple opportunities occurring during the conference

On a different track, the two-day event was also packed with multiple speakers from all over the globe who either had prepared original speeches or took part in an open Q&A panel with other participants. It shouldn’t be a surprise that the topics covered in this section focused on startups, companies lifecycle, scaling and a whole range of possibilities of attracting investment. If this was not enough and you still had a chance to find some spare time, you could also sign up for workshops. They were dedicated, among others, to soft skills improvement, headhunting or running a company in general.

One of the best networking events in Poland?

However, my main goal was to meet as many interesting people and potential clients as possible. Luckily, it was clear that that the organizers put the emphasis on the networking side of the event.

The numbers here are huge and it shows how big the potential is. During the event, over 3000 one-on-one meetings were held. It was possible because of a dedicated matchmaking app. This easy-to-use tool allowed you to see a short description of every attendee and an overview of their companies – to check out if you have some common business topics. For me, it worked perfectly.

A few days before the actual event, my schedule was already filled with almost 30 meetings.

All of the meetings were held in a speed-dating formula in a separate part of the venue. The rules were simple: you had exactly 15 minutes for each meeting so you really had to get to the details. At first, it seemed to me that the time frame given by the organizers was not sufficient but after having a dozen meetings I’ve changed my mind. 15 minutes is enough to understand the basics of other people’s businesses and struggles.

The networking part was organised perfectly – I didn’t experience any double bookings or cancellations. It made me think of Wolves Summit as one of the best events in Poland in terms of networking opportunities.

Me during the Wolves Summit 2018 conference

Check out the smile on this guy! I really had great time during the networking part of Wolves Summit

Our projects are REALLY recognizable

After having 26 successful meetings at Wolves 2018, I’ve realized one thing: some of the apps that we build in The Software House are more popular than I thought.

It may seem that I’m bragging but the numbers speak for themselves. For instance, 100% of businesses from Finland that I had a chance to speak with knew one of our biggest clients, Smartum. The same goes for Norway, Sweden and Denmark and apps which we’ve built for these markets – our presence in the Nordic area is something that definitely stands out.

Once the people on the other side of the table realized that they knew some of our work, I was sure that I have their full attention.

But it was not exclusive to the Nordic market. I’ve also had a meeting with a company from the Netherlands and after a few first minutes it turned out that the person is an active user of WieBetaaltWat – one of our mobile applications. In this case, we quickly defined the potential fields for cooperation and I hope that one day this meeting will convert into yet another satisfied client.

Another thing which drew people’s attention during the meetings was the size of our team. Over 120 people on board are something that TSH should be proud of, as it shows that we’re capable of doing a whole variety of projects. From scaling up internal teams to building complex systems.

Our presence on the local market has also been recognised quite quickly. I had a nice conversation with a startup from Poland and they were familiar both with our local initiatives and our online content. Among the former, it was our event Uszanowanko Programowanko – the biggest IT meetup in the region. And when it comes to online presence, they knew about a funny landing page which we’ve created a few years back – Which Cat Is Your JavaScript Framework.

Summary

When I got back to Kraków, I was sure that the decision about going to Wolves Summit was right. The two-day event was filled with meetings, interesting talks and business opportunities. At first, I wasn’t convinced that I could attend circa 30 one-on-one meetings and stay focused all the time. But thanks to the great organisation and the awesome app it was all possible.

When it comes to networking in the IT sector, you cannot get much better than Wolves Summit.


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Tomasz Mróz

Tomasz Mróz

New Business Manager