Aston Business Network 

Aston Business Network

Next Date: Wednesday 22 November 17.30-19.30

Are you looking for an informative and enjoyable way of expanding your professional network? 

The Aston Business Network is our regular networking event that provides an opportunity for local businesses to meet each other in a friendly and informal setting.

Join Aston Business School for a short insightful and topical presentation from a guest speaker. 

Network with like-minded professionals as we serve a selection of drinks and canapes.


Our guest speaker is Denise Morris, CEO and Founder of TAG Network Midlands, a networking community that celebrates and supports Trainees, Apprentices, Students, Intrapreneurs, Entrepreneurs, Graduates and Young Professionals across all industry sectors within the Midlands.

Denise is an entrepreneur, speaker, coach and mentor who has worked for many years within the professional services sector. Her passion is working with individuals and helping them develop themselves personally and professionally.

She will be sharing her story and experiences of 'The Importance Of Connectivity.'

Get well connected. 

HMRC Speed Networking


The Aston Business Network is our regular networking event that provides an opportunity for local businesses to meet each other in a friendly and informal setting, and hear from a topical guest speaker.

Join us from 17:30 for canapes, wine and soft drinks. 

Event Format

 Network with local business people. Hear from a topical speaker. A friendly informal environment.

17:30 - Registration and welcome
18.00 - Guest speaker
18:30 - Networking with canapes and drinks 

The Aston Experience

Future Aston Business School Events

Fresh Perspectives; The Power of Collaboration to bridge the skills gap

30th November 07.30-09.30

Join us for an interactive “breakfast brainstorm” event to discuss the skills that SMEs are currently lacking in their workforce and/or struggling to recruit for.

There is a growing gap, locally and across the UK, between the skills businesses need and the skills job applicants have.

A new project called Higher Level Skills Match (HLSM)* has been set up to support SMEs in accessing the talent and skills they need, but we want to hear from you to find out what it is you want and need to grow your business.

Are there skills/roles you struggle to recruit, or areas that your current staff struggle with?

Come along and tell us what you want and need.

Fresh perspective

The HLSM team will be on hand to answer questions about what’s currently available, and we will work together as a group to brainstorm ideas about how we can address other potential problem areas.

Benefits of attending

  • Gain a project overview

  • Meet project staff & find out how the HLSM service can be accessed

  • The opportunity to discuss SME skills shortages in a group environment

  • Look at ways this could be addressed

Book your free place! 

Aston Business Network

Fresh Perspectives; “Living” the brand: An unachievable, outdated and irrelevant distraction? 

12th December 08.00 - 09.30

Many marketers and organisations set themselves the challenge of wanting their stakeholders, particularly their employees, to “Live the brand” and in doing so create a distinct “brand experience” for their customers.

Some would like to think they’ve achieved this objective but many don’t. Why is this, what are we “really” trying to achieve, what can we do differently and by addressing “Living the brand” are we really addressing the core underlying phenomena of “brand experience”.

Join Aston Business School and SimkissGuy Recruitment for this short workshop led by Dr Keith Glanfield. Keith will ask your views on living the brand, arriving at what it means and trying to achieve. We will then explore how to get employees to do this, what the difficulties and challenges are and how achievable this all is. Keith will share the latest thinking on the “identity perspective” to branding and we will finish with a short discussion.

Fresh perspective

Applying organisational psychology to branding uncovers an alternative way of “creating an environment” for brand experience to evolve and develop. In a workshop style we’ll unpick the conventional “living the brand” approaches to arrive at an alternative perspective on developing brand experience.

Benefits of attending

  • Walk away with a new set of questions and a different approach to evolving and developing “brand experience”.

  • Think behind the conventional models and terminology to see if they work in your organisation.

  • Debate and develop this important topic with other senior managers, marketers and entrepreneurs.


Book your free place! 

students networking

Fresh Perspectives; Systems thinking for strategic operations management improvement

13th February 08.00 - 09.30

Join SimkissGuy Recruitment and Aston Business School for this interactive discussion led by Professor Ben Clegg. We will discuss the basics of systems thinking and how it can be used to improve strategic operations management.

This session will give you an opportunity to develop your systems thinking skills to make you a more holistic thinker and become more prepared to become an innovative manager of change. A new technique will be demonstrated and an example given.

Fresh Perspectives

Management thinking is all too often constrained by linear and hierarchical thinking, but as we all know organisations and business are usually more complex than this and should not be thought of in this way; so why do we persist in doing so?

The answer is simple - because we rarely know of any alternative.

Professor Clegg will provide you with an alternative by giving you an introduction to systems thinking and prepare you to become an effective agent of improvement.

Benefits of attending

A taste for systems thinking, learn of a specific technique, and a have a chance to become a systems thinker; this could give you an advantage over more traditional thinkers.

  •  A new way to think about challenging and complex issues in operations strategy


  •  Gain a competitive edge on your peers


Book your free place! 


Aston Business Network Future Dates

*Save the Dates*

Wednesday 22nd November 2017 17.30 - 20.00

Book your free place

Wednesday 21st February 2018 17.30 - 20.00

Wednesday 17th May 2018 17.30 - 20.00

Deutsche Bank Speed Networking

Wednesday 21 June: True Gravity

The guest speaker for June's event was Bart (B.D) Dalton II, sharing insight into his True Gravity process. Author, business owner and guide, B.D. Dalton, spent 20 years building businesses in the US and UK to 1000 clients in a 4 year period in each country building million pound businesses. He learned so many tips and tricks and secrets and has written True Gravity to give you insights and save you from who B.D. calls Blackholes and other obstacles to your success. B.D. Dalton’s True Gravity presentation helped attendees focus their energy to get back the time and energy to do the things in business they want to do – and achieve more profits.

We were also be joined by Downtown in Business, a business club that provides leadership to the private sector, by articulating the views of its members to the public sector agencies that govern the city, and to create networking environments that would attract entrepreneurs, high growth companies and the regions big hitters.

Wednesday 23 November: Business Branding

Our first guest speaker was Lauren Bansal, general manager at ORB, Birmingham’s fastest growing branding agency. Lauren manages ORB’s operations and looks after their team of creatives, strategists and brand managers. Lauren was one of the finalists in the Marketing and Communications category of BYPY Young Professional of the Year 2016. Lauren shared her insights into the importance and benefits of branding and how companies can leverage their brands to grow their businesses.

Our second guest speaker was Dr Keith Glanfield. In collaboration, Dr Keith Glanfield, Aston Business School and Harris Interactive have taken a long hard look at what makes a brand relevant and sustainable in a modern day context. Keith presented the thinking and research foundations behind the brand sustainability model, to address the question, “How sustainable is your brand?”. In revealing the results of the hi brands™ research study, shared how measuring sustainability changes the way we think about category and sector success, along with how this new set of measures supports brand managers to manage and track future brand success.

Wednesday 22 February: Small Business Growth

We welcomed the new Aston Programme for Small Business Growth cohort to Aston Business Network. Aston Centre for Growth presented the opportunities they provide small businesses for growth and development. The programme managers explained the cohorts journey ahead; developing their leadership skills and building a targeted growth strategy in the company of other ambitious business leaders.

The first guest speaker was programme alumnus Petra Gale, sharing her highlights of working with Aston University. Petra is an experienced corporate trainer, qualified executive and life coach with over 15 years of experience in commercial functions, both in the UK and globally. Petra has a passion for and thorough understanding of commercial strategy, focusing on talent development, quality standards and the successful achievement of organisational goals. Petra is qualified ISO 9001 Lead Auditor. She has project managed the implementation of ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 in a number of environments and has seen these through successive audits. 

The second guest speaker was John Holder from Profit-Growth Unlimited. John will present Stop wasting money on ineffectual marketing,, introducing you in a practical way to the fundamentals of marketing and the buyers journey. 

Further Information 

The event will take place at:

Aston Business School
Aston University
Aston Triangle
B4 7ET

Please see Conference Aston for information according to your mode of transport. 

Car parking is available at the Millennium Point multi-storey car park, which is situated opposite the University Campus. The car park charges £2.90 for 3 hours and £3.60 for 4 hours. The car park can be accessed via Jennens Road. If using a sat nav please use the following post code: B4 7AP. A precise description of how to drive to this car park and then walk to the campus can be found by clicking the following link.

For more information please contact Beth Sadler, Business Partnerships abs_partnerships@aston.ac.uk 

In pictures

In pictures

Aston Business Network