Have your ever gone to a networking event only to be trapped once there? Perhaps it was the infomercial-like presentation you had to sit through, or the endless stream of consultants trying to “sell” you, or maybe it was the hefty entry fee you paid only to talk to someone you already knew all evening. Whatever the reason, let’s face it: most networking events can really suck.
Those were our frustrations, too, back in 2011 when we decided to try to rethink networking. After attending yet another boring networking event, we asked ourselves “Why can’t we just skip to the fun part of networking events?” You know; the part where people actually get to connect, learn from others, start real relationships, enjoy a beverage or two, listen to some great music, and try delicious food (hey, as much as we love cheese platters and hotel lemon chicken, the culinary has many options).
Why can’t we? WE CAN. WE DID.
Since that first humble event that featured a few pizzas, a cooler of beer, an iPod on shuffle and a few score of our life science friends, UNWIND has grown into a massive annual event with a wonderful following that reflects the life science and healthcare ecosystem. Last week’s UNWIND 2018 organized by CG Life in partnership with Women In Bio (WIB) saw nearly 500 life science professionals come together to network and chill.
Great street tacos from Tacquizas el Unico, delicious craft beer from 32 North Brewing, and live music from The Manic Brothers. Moreover, even after its growth and duration, we have managed to keep the event free to attend thanks to sponsors like BASF, California Life Sciences Association (CLSA), EBD Group, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News (GEN), MacDougall Biomedical Communications, Rady School of Management at UC San Diego and STAT.
What does it take to pull off an event like this? Well, beyond a positive attitude and an amazing team of people to organize and manage it, it takes 480 pounds of ice, 232 bottles of wine, 4 kegs, 1,400 tacos, 975 solo cups, 2,610 handshakes, 4,011 hugs, 88 Diet Cokes, a service dog, and 1 name tag stuck on the floor.
These days, it seems as though everyone is searching for a tribe to belong to. We stopped searching. Instead, we started our own: cool people who live and love science. Join us, won’t you?