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Business & Wellness Travel with WIBN

5 reasons why I’m excited about WIBN in Vancouver

When I’m jonesing for a wellness vacation but booked for a business conference, things can get ugly inside my head. Good thing the Women in Biz Network answered my prayers with an urban retreat to precede their official business conference. What’s more, they invited me to emcee the retreat – anyone who knows me knows I never turn down an opportunity travel AND speak.

Wearing my other hat as the Chief Idea Officer of SocialNorth, I’ve been working with Leigh Mitchell, President of the Women Biz Network for a few years in Toronto. Attending the first WIBN conference in Vancouver as GoGirlfriend, I’m thrilled to share why I find conferences that combine business skill-building with heart-wellness-nurturing important.

If you don’t have WIBN’s Vancouver conference on you radar, consider this your 411. If you’ve already got your ticket, give me a shout on Facebook or Twitter and let’s make plans to meet up while we’re there.

1. Hello Vancouver!

Stanley Park, Vancouver, CanadaDo you really need an excuse to visit Vancouver? Known as the most ethnically diverse city in Canada, it’s also been dubbed as one of the top ten most “liveable” cities in the world. From the natural beauty of Stanley Park to the smattering of beaches (great for swimming and boating) to cultural offerings like the Vancouver Art Gallery to an eclectic diversity of heritage buildings mixed with modernist buildings, there’s a lot to see and do in this city.

I’m looking forward to catching up with a lot of people I only know online but especially with Kirsty Connolly, a GoGirlfriend contributor who lives in Vancouver.

2. Clearing my mind with fellow entrepreneurs

Being an entrepreneur more often than not feels like I’m pushing a dirty stone across an even dirtier floor – with my nose. It’s hard work. But connecting with fellow entrepreneurs, sharing my woes along with my encouragement fires me up and gets me back in the game. Sure it’s networking but it feels a lot more like hanging out with friends.

3. Speakers I simply can’t get enough of

Attending conferences allows me to connect with thought leaders who’re eager to share their ideas. These are just a few of the women I’m looking forward to hearing on stage:

  • WIBN speakersDanielle LaPorte – It’s about understanding your DESIRE: getting clear on what you truly want, and turning your definition of success inside out — which is how you create goals with soul, lives of meaning, work that feels good to put into the world and be outrageously successful
  • Jessica Holmes – The secrets of success are the same no matter what business you’re in; and success begins with getting motivated. Inspiration and comedy unite in this 60 minute transformation from “I shoulda…” to “I will!”

4. Shangri-La Vancouver

The Shangri-La hotel, the tallest building in Vancouver, is sponsoring our stay during the conference and has promised us a delish experience. We’ll enjoy a meal at their signature restaurant, Market, and hope to meet up with friends in the evening in the lounge, Xi Shi. Between all the wining and dining and conferencing we’re going to sneak in a visit to Chi Spa.

We’re avid readers of TripAdvisor and happy to see that 94% of guests were happy with their stay at the Shangri-La Vancouver. Of course, we’ll be reporting back through Twitter and Facebook while we’re there as well as doing a property review on GoGirlfriend when we return. We visited the Shangri-La in Toronto (and the Miraj Hammam Spa) and yes, we wish we could have stayed forever.

5. Hello Richmond!

Harolds at the Sheraton, Richmond, BCThanks to a friend I met on Twitter, we’ve decided to spend our last day in Vancouver (after the conference) in Richmond, a suburb of Vancouver. The Sheraton Hotel has invited us to stay with them overnight, grab lunch at Harold's (we hear there’s a great story about the restaurant name) spend the day shopping and dine with the marketing manager of the Sheraton at Bar One that night to learn more about the hotel and surrounding community.

+1 ~ Have fun!

conferences are about the peopleAnyone who goes to a conference strictly for their professional development is not maximizing their ticket. Take advantage of the learning and networking and business building and don’t forget to enjoy yourself – or the destination if you’re in a new city.

Need more conference inspiration? Catch yourself up to speed on how to maximize your conference ticket in Vancouver – long before you arrive:

As a small business owner, conferences provide me a smorgasbord of opportunities to nurture business opportunities, acquire skills and grow your community – both professional and personal. Nothing will ever replace a handshake and getting out there and meeting people is the single most important activity small business owners can engage in. Read more at WomeninBizNetwork.com.

Got your ticket for WIBN in Vancouver yet? Let’s continue the conversation on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn (whichever one works best for you) or leave a comment below.

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