Balkan Conference 2017 in Bucharest, Romania, 21-23 April 2017



Balkan Conference 2017 in Bucharest, Romania, 21-23 April 2017
The experience as a Romanian from Finland

Balkan conference is a new concept for an international event aimed to grow the potential of making business in Balkans. The idea originated from Quebec WC 2017 when it became obvious that the seven countries from Balkans: Bulgaria, Croatia, Moldova, Romania, Serbia, Turkey and Ukraine are striving to do business together. JCI immediately took the initiative to bring entrepreneurs together to foster their collaboration, to build business bridges and attract capital for a new generation of business leaders.
The event will be held every year by one of the Balkan countries, Romania hosting the very first conference in spring 2017. In 2018 we will have the pleasure to go to Turkey, and experience trainings and networking in the original Turkish local culture.
The event was scheduled for three days, combining activities and knowledge for making business together as well for getting more insights about JCI actions at EU level. I had the pleasure to meet Christopher Furst (JCI Area Director for Europe), who spoke about JCI growth and development in Europe, as well giving us insights about the new website and other projects that are in the pipeline.

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As Regional INT I found very useful to meet and connect with people that succeeded in building an international career in JCI. Cristina Cerga is one of the success cases who is now the UN and External Affairs Committee Member 2017, she took us through a detailed presentation about the SDG (Sustainable Development Goals) and highlights about her journey to this position, responsibilities and goals she has developed for this year.
Kevin Hin, former National President of Monaco, 2016 Vice President for Europe, spoke about DOING BUSINESS WITH THE BALKANS – from an outside perspective. As people could not be more spectacular in JCI, it surprised me to find out that Kevin is a great trainer on how to make successful international events. I am planning to bring him to Finland and give a training for our local chapters on this matter.
Dawn Hetzel JCI World President honoured with her presence and gave the opportunity to exchange few words and meet her in person.

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The best part of my experience at the conference was the World Trade Game, a half day interactive activity where participants experiences how it is to make business on a global level. We got split in teams of 1-2 persons representing each country on the globe having been provided with resources and man power according to the country's economy. I was representing USA which has the most resources and manpower, everybody was coming and bagging for resources as they had no money or other resources to trade. The game gave us a dramatic perspective of why certain countries cannot develop while other countries have abundance and still not sharing. After few sessions we understood that stocking more for ourselves and not helping neighbor countries in need, has as a side effect of not producing growth for anybody, neither for USA noor for undeveloped countries. I totally recommend the game, is fun, is educative and it does open up the view of the world and life in general. Check the video for a live perspective of the experience.

As Balkan conference could not be Balkan without a traditional party, the event was closed with a traditional Romanian Wedding celebration. I was surprised to see how close the cultures are between the seven countries, everybody knew how to dance and they seemed to have enjoyed very much the atmosphere and feel like home.

Overall, it was more than I expected, and I totally recommend to you to go next year to Turkey. They seem to take things seriously, there were more than 30 delegates from Turkey at the Balkan conf in Bucharest, few from Germany and Finland, and the rest from Balkanic area. The overall event hosted 80 participants and 20 hosts. Small but special, that’s how we do it in Balkan.
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#balkanconference2017
Official Website: http://jciromania.ro/bc2017/
story and method to do Business in The Balkan area!


Viorica Milea R-INT


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