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18th Feb, 2013

JCI Cambridge graduates from JCI UK's Marketing Academy!
by Laura Wing on February 18, 2013 22:06


Over the weekend of  9 and 10 February, the JCI Cambridge marketing team attended the JCI UK Marketing Academy in Birmingham. The 4.30am start and service station with no vegetarian option were the only lowlights of what was otherwise a fantastic learning experience for the team. They share exactly what it was that stood out for them...

Blog » National Events » JCI Cambridge Marketing Academy graduates 2013!.jpg

Kelly Tennick

The thing that stood out for me the most over the marketing weekend was the importance of continuity within branding and how important it is to create a solid, seamless image for your business or organisation. I realised that branding is about more than just a logo and a few pretty colours! It provides an insight to who you are and defines your organisation, allowing you to stand out and create awareness in a way that supports the core values of the company.

With regards to social media, I began to see that it is much more than just a platform for ‘blank advertising’ and that it should be about socialising with your audience and getting them engaged with your brand rather than just constantly trying to sell things to them blindly. I understood the importance of continuing solid branding through to social media to provide a professional ‘face’ when communicating to existing and potential customers.

Finally, I learned that measuring your success is so important. In order to be able to streamline, adapt and grow your business or organisation and your brand, you need to know if what you are doing is working or not. Once you know this, you can scrap what is unsuccessful, put more energy to what works well and adapt weak areas to get better results in the future.

Naily Mak

I’ve just graduated from JCI Marketing Academy class of 2013. The training session was interactive and the trainers were “ace” and very energetic. Most activities were based on real challenges faced in our chambers. It gave us the chance to use the principles learnt to address them. We also had the pleasure to meet Anna Gril, JCI Europe vice-president, who gave a brief history of JCI origins.

The training session covered branding, social media, multimedia and more. It was interesting to hear about how to devise strategies to leverage the power of social media in order to raise the profile of an individual or an organisation. When commenting on the increasing usefulness of video content, Philip Cavalier-Lumley couldn’t have put it any better: “It’s just like garlic bread, it’s the next thing.” The session highlighted what we should be aware of when creating a promotional video that not only fits its purpose, but also adheres to JCI guidelines.

Other interesting tips included taking picture in a landscape format, and ensuring that they are at least one megabyte in size.

This weekend has been a success. I came back feeling positive and more confident about tackling my new role in JCI.

Laura Wing

The JCI UK Marketing Academy provided an excellent opportunity to share best practice and ideas with other JCI marketing directors from all over the country. Different techniques yield different results depending on your chamber, your members and of course, your marketing directors!

I was really impressed with the attitude of the group and its members; everyone was willing to get stuck in and help each other learn. It was particularly exciting that the whole JCI Cambridge marketing team was in attendance. We will now be able to draw on the knowledge gained from the weekend to form the basis of our plans over the next 12 months. 

There are some areas of marketing I am more confident with. For example, I know little about video, but was excited to see Naily getting involved and showing a interest in how we could make this work in our own chamber. Having experience in PR in my day job, it was great to be able to bolster what our trainers were telling us about the subject. It felt good to share the knowledge! 

JCI Cambridge cannot thank JCI UK and its trainers enough for the weekend. We learnt so much and came back to Cambridge ready to tackle our marketing challenges!

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4th Feb, 2013

JCI Cambridge kicks off the year in style with our ‘big weekend’!
by James Mitchell on February 4, 2013 13:00


Over the weekend of 26 and 27 January, JCI Cambridge welcomed members from across the country to the elegant Jesus College for what was aptly named ‘The Big Weekend’! Compromising of Inspiration Day, JCI Cambridge’s first Annual Gala Dinner, and Business Skills Day, the pressure was on to deliver an amazing event.

Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 216180_603930132957131_1185122047_n.jpgAs the first national event held by JCI Cambridge since it reformed just three years ago, we needed to show the rest of the UK we are a professional chamber capable of showing our guests a good time. An amazing effort was made by the JCI Cambridge council. Lead by immediate past president Patrick McCrae and unstoppable 2013 president James Mitchell, ‘The Big Weekend’ proved to be a huge success.

Inspiration Day is the first national event of each JCI year and is designed to get members informed, enthused and inspired about plans and goals for the year ahead. Delegates were able to catch up with the national board, attend talks from fantastic keynote speakers, see old friends and meet new members. The day started with introductions from members of the national board about their plans and projects for the year ahead. Headed by 2013 president Emma Eastwood, the morning brought everyone up to speed about the opportunities available in the coming year. We also saw the handing over of a cheque to ‘Save The Children’ raised by members who took part in the £1 a day food challenge at the beginning of the year.

Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 314829_603931669623644_368941346_n.jpgAfter a short break, we were treated to the first talk of the day from keynote speaker Patrick Knight. Presenting ‘Kick start your chamber’, Patrick delighted and inspired us with his tried and tested techniques to engage and activate current members, spread the word of JCI positively to the wider community and appeal to new members. Patrick was able to relate to the issues chambers face when trying to promote, engage and grow their membership and profile, and provided useful, targeted actions that every chamber could apply.

Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 391247_603933136290164_1700741685_n.jpgFollowing lunch, JCI Cambridge organised a treasure hunt to provide attendees with an opportunity to explore Cambridge. Delegates explored the city in teams, following a map and searched for answers to mini riddles, whilst looking for an opportune moment to take a winning JCI-themed photo. The hunt provided everyone with a light-hearted break, exercise and fresh air.



Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 521686_603932366290241_462054159_n.jpgPatrick Knight once again took to the stage, this time to tell us about his personal journey. Having worked hard to find career success and establish himself as an international speaker, Patrick thought his life could not get any better. Finding out his wife was pregnant with their first child was the icing on the cake. However, this happiness was quickly dashed when Patrick and his family were the victims of the famous ‘Thanksgiving Day massacre’ resulting in Patrick being shot. He was in a coma for three months before having to learn to move his whole body and speak again - without his wife and unborn child, who were devastatingly murdered on that fatal day.

Such a devastating, personal and inspiring story meant there was not a dry eye in the house. Patrick shared his story beautifully, really hitting home to everybody that you never know what is around the corner. The cornerstone of the story for most people was when Patrick described that sometimes you can never forget, or move on from an incident such as this, but you can decide how you carry the experience with you. He explained that he carries his experience and memories of the event as a ‘medal’ on his chest, as a proud, poignant reminder of what happened, and what he has achieved since of the experience. 

Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 533845_603932799623531_17422363_n.jpgA short round up of the day followed before Inspiration Day was officially closed and delegates retired to their hotels to prepare for the Gala Dinner. Returning to Jesus College for 7pm, delegates were treated to a delightful drinks reception where we saw the second cheque of the day being handed to our charity of 2012, Arthur Rank Hospice. A total of £2400 was raised throughout 2012 in a myriad of different ways meaning we, exceeded our £2012 target.


Events » Business events » Big Weekend 2013 » 25932_603936292956515_965253099_n.jpgAttendees then enjoyed a three course meal during which several ‘taking of wine’ toasts took place to raise money for charity. After several speeches, the ‘handing over’ of the presidents chain took place as Patrick McCrae handed over the reins to James Mitchell for 2013. Copious amounts of wine, gorgeous food and an exquisite venue ensured everybody had a superb evening. For those that could keep going, an exciting after party was booked at Cambridge’s best club, Lola Lo’s. Needless to say, people were still partying at 3am!


Business Skills Day kicked off on Sunday with a few short networking tasks, and a choice of two speakers. Garin Rouch presented ‘Building better business relationships’ covering topics such as the six principles of influence and how to apply these skills to be a better leader, as well as looking at our own ‘influence maps’.

Marcus Orlovsky offered delegates the opportunity to ask advice on any topics they felt useful, as well as discussing his career background and how he notices opportunities for business.

James Mitchell brought the weekend to a close ensuring everyone left feeling inspired, enthused and invigorated for the year ahead. An amazing event from JCI Cambridge to start 2013 - here’s to the year ahead and to next year’s Gala Dinner!

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13th Dec, 2012

Inspiration Day - Gala Dinner & Business Skills Day 2013!
by James Mitchell on December 13, 2012 18:41


People of JCI UK, Cambridge's time to host a truly wonderful weekend has arrived! We are honoured to be hosting a not to be missed weekend of what promises to be two days packed with networking, team building and first-class training.

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Saturday 26 January - Inspiration Day & Gala Dinner

New year, new JCI! This day will place focus on setting the scene for the next phase of JCI development. The theme for the JCI of 2013 is 'Inspiring action' and focuses on being bold and continuing to push for success at all times to ensure JCI and its members go from strength to strength.

A brand new JCI UK board will be introduced to members and the day will provide an opportunity to collaborate with people from across the UK as we enter the new year. The day will also involve plenty of team Gala Dinner, Jesus Collegebuilding activities to consolidate networks as well as wildly anticipated speaker Patrick Knight. Patrick's inspirational tale of how he made a full recovery after he was put in a three-month coma after being shot is not to be missed.

The day will finish with a sumptuous three-course meal in the opulent main dining hall at Jesus College; the perfect way to unwind after an inspiring day.


Sunday 27 January - Business Skills Day

Join like-minded, high-calibre and innovative professionals, managers and entrepreneurs for a day of education and inspiration. Choose from a range of carefully selected workshops that aim to hone and develop skills as well as inspire and educate. Over 120 young professionals are expected from Cambridge and across the UK so you're guaranteed an unparallelled mix of quality and fun throughout the day.


Speaker Profiles

Patrick KnightBlessed to survive - Inspirational stories

Patrick Knight - Saturday & Sunday

We are privileged to present Patrick Knight as our keynote speaker for the weekend. Patrick is jetting in from Miami to be with us and his inspirational tale of how he overcame adversity is not to be missed.

Patrick's amazing story of survival and recovery after he was shot by his brother-in-law is truly remarkable. It was Thanksgiving 2009 when his former family member turned up to dinner armed and shot four members of his family including his wife and her twin sister. Patrick was shot in the stomach and was in a coma for three months. When he woke, he had to relearn how to do everything from talking to writing. 

Now, three years on, Patrick shares his story of recovery and how he found peace in his new reality. Speaking on both days of the event, Patrick will be facilitating workshops as well as leading break out sessions.


Building effective business relationshipsGarin Roach - Building Effective Relationships, Business Skills Day

Garin Roach - Sunday

Garin is a regular JCI speaker who always pulls in the crowds with an entertaining delivery of his subject. This is guaranteed to be a highly interactive and challenging workshop designed to get members identifying, learning and applying the essential ingredients for successful long-term business relationships. Garin will advise members on lowering the costs of business, speeding up results and increasing profits to expand influence.


Marcus Olovsky, Are you a Participator or an Observer, Business Skills DayAre you a participator or an observer, a doer or a sayer?

Marcus Orlovsky - Sunday

This thought-provoking and entertaining workshop will focus on identifying if delegates are observers or participators or "I could have done that" people or "I have already done that" people. Renowned for his ability to start or close any conference on a high, participants will be stimulated by ideas and discussion and are sure to be talking about his workshop weeks after the event.


Jon Lockhurst, Overcoming challenges, Business Skills Day

Overcoming challenges in today's working environment - getting out what you
put in

Jon Luckhurst - Sunday

The business environment we work in today demands strong leadership and streamlined ways of working. Jon Luckhurst looks at how to create energised and engaged staff that can manage teams and provide fresh and innovative ideas to overcome obstacles in the workplace. Jon has worked with global brands such as HSBC and eBay, so his workshop simply must not be missed.


Sponsored Accomodation - Your Space Apartments

Weekend Sponsor - UHY-WKH Accountant

Weekend Sponsor - 7 Touches


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1st Dec, 2012

JCI National Conference 2012: Belfast
by James Mitchell on December 1, 2012 00:00



JCI National Conference 2012: Belfast

 - the lectures, the awards, the Titanic and the treasure hunts!

Each year JCI UK hold a national conference to allow members from UK chambers to attend first-class business talks, take part in competitions, enjoy social events, catch up with old friends and make new ones too. This year, JCI Belfast took the reins to host what promised to be a fantastic event. And oh, what an event it was!

Friday 30 November saw 13 members from JCI Cambridge rise well before the sun to catch their early flight to Belfast. This was of course conducted very professionally as the group approached security wearing stick-on moustaches and carrying a Mr Men suitcase! The idea was to extend 'Movember' with 'Faux-ember' and raise money for charity whilst wearing moustaches over the course of the conference weekend. Who knew you could get through airport security wearing stick-on facial hair?!

Upon arrival, the group went to sample the best of Irish food with a well earnt fry-up at St George's Market restaurant. After refuelling on many types of bread, it was time to join in with the JCI activities. Friday afternoon kicked off with a welcome talk from JCI UK National President Solveig Malvik followed by a motivating presentation from Feargal McCormack, managing partner and founder of FPM chartered accountants. JCI Cambridge President Patrick McCrae then took to the stage for the public speaking competition while James Mitchell, Harriet Bastiani and Howard Felstead joined in with a mentoring session with mentees from The Prince's Trust.

Friday night was spent socialising to the music of a traditional Irish band at the Ulster Reform Club in the heart of the city. After a buffet and several drinks, Howard Felstead bravely stepped up and took part in the Extempore competition, getting through to the final round! The Extempore competition requires participants to take the stage and speak off-the-cuff about a random object chosen by the host. The night was spent meeting new faces, catching up with old friends and generally having a great time.

Despite being slightly delirious from lack of sleep the previous day, nine JCI Cambridge members formed a team and took part in an organised treasure hunt around Belfast on Saturday morning. Possibly one of the funniest JCI tasks to date, this mission saw JCI Cambridge squishing seven people into a phonebox and adopting all sorts of ridiculous poses around the city. And yes, there is much photographic evidence, do check out our facebook page if you'd like to see seven people on top of each other or breaking out into dance in the middle of the street.

Saturday afternoon saw JCI members get down to some 'serious business' as they gained an understanding of how to become an effective leader from Professor Jackie McCoy of Ulster University. JCI Cambridge favourite Derek Reilly then took his networking expertise to the next level and lectured on 'networking for leaders', which provided the next step from the 'sex and networking' presentation he gave to the Cambridge chamber earlier in the year. The debating competition then took place, with JCI Cambridge President Patrick McCrae forming part of of the southern debating team while Immediate Past President Jen Little sat on the judging panel for the contest.

After a long and hilarious day, everyone was looking forward to the Gala Dinner, hosted at the amazing Titanic Belfast. Held in the dining suite, where a replica of the dining room aboard the ship formed the stage for the event, it was truly a special evening. A fantastic three-course meal was followed by an elaborate awards ceremony where JCI Cambridge won a whole host of awards for its work this year.

These included:

Most outstanding member award - Harriet Bastiani

Most outstanding regular publication - Engage/Laura Wing

Employee mentoring scheme - certificate of merit

Debating competition - second place

Extempore - second place, Howard Felstead

Public speaking - runner up, Patrick McCrae

Best first timer - Ben Goddard

Belfast treasure hunt - first place

A perfect evening was completed when JCI Cambridge Immediate Past President and chamber founder Jen Little was awarded her JCI Senatorship, meaning she is now a JCI member for life. This was a really special moment for Jen and proud moment for JCI Cambridge.

Finally heading to bed around 5am, a few hours of sleep were had before gathering on Sunday morning for a spot of lunch at quirky haunt 'Made in Belfast' before beginning the journey home.

It really was a fantastic weekend meeting lots of great people, hearing some inspiring speakers, eating great food at luxurious venues, and most of all laughing from start to finish.

The focus now turns to JCI Cambridge as it prepares to hold its first ever Business Skills Day, Inspiration Day and Gala Dinner weekend at the end of January. To find out more and book your place, visit our events page now.

Harriet Bastiani, JCI Cambridge Community Director said: "The whole weekend was an amazing experience I will never forget, but Saturday in particular was a highlight for me.  Having had only a few hours sleep, JCI Cambridge used its "creativity" to win the treasure hunt by taking photos squished in a phone box, dancing in the street, playing "splat Howard" and creating a window display in Jaeger!  I now have a six pack after laughing so hard!  The award ceremony in the evening was a particularly special evening for me and I am still very much in shock at receiving my award.  However, even better than my award, was seeing Jen our immediate Past President being made a senator for her work in re-establishing JCI Cambridge- something so well deserved and so warmly received."

Finance Director Ben Goddard said he enjoyed learning about the JCI outside of Cambridge. "The National Conference was a great way of learning how JCI functions at a larger scale. I was fortunate enough to talk with Emma Eastwood at the very start of the event; she seemed to know absolutely everyone attending, which was a great advantage during the signature bingo, as she was able to introduce me to all the relevant people (and help me get their signatures!), which allowed me to win the Best First Time award."


To see more pictures please see our Facebook Page

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28th Jan, 2012

Inspiration Day 2012
by James Mitchell on January 28, 2012 21:48


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JCI Cambridge Vice President Lisa Bredahl Thomsen, writes about JCI Inspiration Day held in Birmingham at the end of January.

JCI Cambridge had 7 delegates who went to Birmingham to attend INSPIRATION DAY 2012. 

The big inspiration for 2012 started with an introduction by our National President 2012 - Solveig Malvig. We then had an introduction of Marketing, personal development, and international opportunities coming up in the first half of 2012.

Richard Tong and Emma Eastwood then had three minutes each to talk about why we should select them to be the Deputy President 2012 and President 2013. This was a really good way to get to know more about where they want to take JCI UK in 2013.

An important part of JCI is community projects such as "World Clean Up - 13 May 2012. The hours we all contribute to the community can now be logged and we get awarded for the hours we give back.

A mentoring training opportunity is available for JCI members at  - Here we can attend training, or get a trainer to come to our local Chapters before the end of March. This compliments JCI Cambridge's mentoring of Anglia Ruskin's University students.     

The key note speaker of the day was Noam Kostucki, who made some great points how to "Turn Passion into Actions". Mr. Kostucki made us aware about how important it is to talk about what we didn't achieve last year, and what we learned from it. Did we really want it in the first place?

It's important to think about the next step, how can we take the next step?

Mr. Kostucki also spoke about how important it is to not only to put words on your visions, but to actually be able to draw pictures of your visions. This will make your visions more clear, and touchable. Another point about your visions is to share them with others, not just your plan on how to get there.

It's always important to remember to get feedback, and to get both negative feedback and positive feedback. So, know your friends, who will give you unbiased criticism of your ideas to help you gain clarity.

After lunch we have a short introduction to JCI Active Citizen Framework, which is to help the local Chapters to understand the local community, identify areas where we can help in either big or small ways.

Our big task of the day was to go out in our teams and raise awareness of JCI in Birmingham, especially regarding the re-launch of JCI Birmingham on the 9 February 2012. This was approached in different ways by each team, Many people in Birmingham saw JCI logos and talked with current members of JCI about the work of the organisation. We were very pleased that we did a fantastic job of making JCI more visible in Birmingham.

JCI Cambridge finished the day by passing over a gift to Jen Little, our past president 2009-2011, to thank her for her amazing work restarting JCI Cambridge and building it from just two members to a thriving Chamber of around 60 members in two years!

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30th Aug, 2011

Book now for JCI Presenter Course
by James Mitchell on August 30, 2011 10:38


Looking to enhance your skills as a presenter? JCI London are running their much acclaimed JCI Presenter course!

Then JCI Presenter is for you!

This one-day course on Saturday 17 September will equip you with all the tools you need to develop and deliver an effective presentation, using visual aids and competent delivery, while keeping in mind the needs of your audience. You can use it as a one-off presentation skills course or as the first step to becoming an accredited JCI Trainer.

Why do JCI Presenter?

People who have strong presentation skills are promoted faster, paid more and are generally more successful than those who are less proficient. Learning to present yourself and your ideas effectively can improve your negotiation skills and also lead to stronger interpersonal relationships.

JCI Presenter forms the first rung of a structured global programme designed by JCI to equip members with all the skills you need to deliver first-class training in the workplace or outside.

Read more about JCI Presenter on JCI London's  blog


JCI members - £35
Non-members - £90

Places are strictly limited and advance booking is required.  Price includes training, lunch and materials.


The head trainer for this course will be Lina Derkeshli, a JCI Trainer since 2007 and Certified National Trainer since 2009.  Lina was an active member of the JCI Syria National Board for several years before her move to London. 

Lina will be assisted by Simon Bucknall, JCI London Business Director and Deputy President. Simon is a professional speaker who runs his own consultancy called The Art of Connection.  He won the JCI European Public Speaking Competition in 2008.




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