I normally cycle with a friend called Gary. I’m sure he breaths through his ears as he is the first person who I have ever met who can cycle up a 1:4 hill and still talk all the way up. Lets be clear I’m in awe. Just to put this into context – it takes me virtually all of my concentration just to stay upright on 2 wheels. If you put a hill in front of me then don’t expect an answer to a question until 5 minutes after reaching the summit!
But that is the great thing about cycling – if you are normally a talker, then its likely that on your ride you will need to become a listener; talking to someone in front of you isn’t easy but listening to someone in front of you is perfectly acceptable. Added to that is that I find talking to strangers on a bike much easier than talking to strangers in a room. On a bike the conversation flows, yet in a room there is an awkward stilted, slightly embarrassing exchange of looks and the often unfortunate need to look at someone’s breast region to see what their name is! There’s none of that when you’re on a bike!
So I was really interested when I heard about this new business based in the Marlborough Downs that has taken the idea of business networking, thrown away the rule book and in its place added bikes! www.Pedaltalk.co.uk is first and foremost a place where you can meet likeminded individuals who enjoy cycling. Its not a semi professional group of individuals who look down on you if you’re still riding your Raleigh Chopper, or trundling along on your vintage Dawes. It’s a group of people who cycle, take an interest in cycling and at the right time (which in my case would not be when going up a hill) talk about business.
I had the pleasure of meeting Darren Blackstock the founder of the business who passionately talked to me about work, cycling, family, cycling, holidays, cycling, business, cycling (I expect you’re getting the hint); he is passionate about anything with two wheels and is a pretty successful businessman too.
Darren actually approached me to see if we could help him source additional bikes for his business as he is often asked if he hires bikes, and of course I was more than happy to oblige, but I couldn’t stop thinking about all of the benefits www.pedaltalk.co.uk brings; a completely different way of networking, no more bland hotel breakfasts, a healthy activity, a great way of mixing business and pleasure, and finally meeting a whole new group of people where I know I will have something in common – bikes! No more going to networking events and pretending I interested in a new printing process, no more requirement to only speak about my business for a maximum of 2 minutes; no more finding myself next to the person that everyone has tried to avoid, only to realise that I’m stuck in one place for the next 2 hours.
I seriously love this idea – and be clear this is not some sales pitch. It’s written by a man who has been to too many networking events, who loves a reason to get out on a bike and enjoys meeting individuals who have great ideas and seeing them flourish into a great business. Good luck pedal talk – byyker wishes you all the very very best.