The Conferences You TOTALLY Should Attend in 2018


Photo Credit: Lauren McPhillips

I am a strong believer of Continued Education, whatever field that you’re in. Continued Education doesn’t mean you’re going back to school, but it’s all the ways that you keep learning, growing whether formally or not. As a tech entrepreneur, attending events, meeting people and networking at conferences has been key. For instance, I learned so much about raising money, the difference between an angel investor and a venture capitalist, advances that are currently happening in the tech world, I met some really dope people who are evolving on that scene and finally, I got hella inspired and learned tons — and that, is everything.

Because the nature of my work is worldwide, I’ve participated in conferences all over the world – but you don’t have to do that, you just need to narrow it down to a few that are of interest to you, in line with your personal and professional objectives, in your price range and that you know you can attend for sure.

Conferences are a GREAT networking opportunity, everybody you want to meet is basically there; how can you not go?!

Here are some of the conferences that every entrepreneur should totally attend in 2018:

SXSW – Austin, Texas

I am dying to go to SXSW, it has all the components of what are important to me and to the growth of my business. This festival is a mix of art, tech, innovation, film, music…it has it all. The conference goes on from the 9th of March to the 18th of March, you don’t need to be there for the entirety as many different conferences and festivals go on during that period. There is still time to register, check out their website here for the full schedule and details.

C2 Montréal – Montréal, Québec

Imagine being immersed in creativity, commerce, innovation, knowledge and networking, all in one place. Well, that’s what C2 Montreal is. For 3 days, over 6500 people from 40 different countries come to Montreal to be part of a unique, collaborative environment where you have the opportunity to listen to some of the world’s greatest innovators and thinkers, participate in collaborative installations and network with entrepreneurs from around the world.  Sounds like your cup of tea? It certainly is mine, all the details of this year’s conference are available here, see you there!

Vivatech – Paris, France

I’ve said it before on this very blog and I will said it again, there’s a new renaissance going on in Paris and it’s the place to be for entrepreneurs in Europe right now. The president of the 5th Republic, Emmanuel Macron has vowed to position his country as a Startup Nation and it’s beginning to look like it. Vivatech is a huge conference that goes on every year in Paris. This conference, taking place in English, brings speakers and attendees from all over the world and focuses on you guessed it….tech and innovation.  From an entrepreneurial point of view, it’s an opportunity to be in the know about the latest advances in technology by the way of startups, an opportunity to meet possible venture capitalists if you’re looking for some seed money, series a, b and more to expand your startup as well as a great opportunity to network. Details of the conference can be found here.

Summit – United States

I heard about this on my friend Sue Kuruvilla’s Instagram when she first attended, and I was so intrigued. Then, I attended the Me Convention in Germany this last september, and one of the co-founder’s of Summit was giving a talk and it was so motivating and seemed like something I would totally be into.

Summit bills itself as a 3-day festival that encompasses an array of talks, wellness classes and performances. If you’re looking for a traditional conference, this isn’t it. Founded by 5 dudes who raised 40 millions to buy Powder Mountains, a ski resort, Summit puts on a series of events such as their 3-day festival which have one really important goal in mind: creating a community of like-minded people who want to connect with other innovators, big thinkers, share knowledge and grow. Past attendees are the who’s who of any field you can think of, as well as-up-and-coming thought leaders and entrepreneurs. Their 3-day festival which is by invitation only, is totally on my radar for 2018, more info here if you’re thinking you’d like to apply to attend.

Ted Talks – Online

I love me a good Ted Talk, and what’s awesome is the ability to be able to listen to all this knowledge in the privacy of your home. You don’t need to leave your house for continued education and the Ted App is a great one that connects us all to an array of knowledge from around the world, field that we wouldn’t necessarily have access to. As an entrepreneur, that type of knowledge is essential. You need to know what others are doing, advances in different fields and you also need to have the right mindset — and Ted Talks are great for that.

Know of any super dope conference that I should add to my list? Let me know in a comment!




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  1. January 24, 2018 / 2:36 pm

    Hi Winnie. Thanks for this. I am going to check out the Summit. You might also be interested in the Archangel’s Summit. It happens right here in Toronto in early September and is for entrepreneurs focused on having a positive impact in the world. I went last year for the first time and it was off the charts. The whose who of the self-help and entrepreneurial world were there. It was a combination of information and inspiration. Let me know if you want to go. Maybe we can go together ;))

    • winybernard
      January 24, 2018 / 2:53 pm

      Thank you so much for letting me, sounds right up my alley and would love to go with you!