SPRINGFIELD — Western Mass. is known for many things — its beauty, its many distinguished colleges and universities, its recreational facilities, high quality of life, and much more.
It is also known, historically, as a region defined by entrepreneurship and innovation — people who started business ventures, and people who created better products and ways to do things. Examples abound, from the Blanchard Lathe and the M1 rifle, both invented by those working at the Springfield Armory, to the monkey wrench, ice skate, automobile, and motorcycle — all either invented or first manufactured here.
This legacy of entrepreneurship and innovation continues today, and it is visible in every corner of the region, from Williamstown to Hampden; Greenfield to Great Barrington. And this is what is being celebrated at the Business & Innovation Expo of Western Mass., produced by BusinessWest and HCN and presented by Comcast Business. The event takes place on Thursday, Nov. 2 at the MassMutual Center.
The event’s exhibiting businesses and educational seminars will reflect and spotlight the many aspects of entrepreneurship and innovation and leave attendees both inspired and better able to confront the many challenges facing those in business today — and those they will face tomorrow as well.
The day will get off to an an inspiring, energizing start with a fund-raising breakfast for Revitalize Springfield’s JoinedForces program, with master of ceremonies state Rep. Aaron Vega. Later, at the luncheon, keynote speaker Ron Insana, senior analyst and commentator with CNBC, will present a talk titled “Trumponomics,” which will address how Washington will affect the economy in the years ahead.
Throughout the day, there will be informative seminars and special programs tailored to address the issues and challenges facing all those in business today. Highlights include an “Ask the Expert Roundtable” that will feature area experts answering questions on subjects ranging from employment law to social media; from the Affordable Care Act to becoming a better public speaker; from family businesses to interviewing job candidates. There will be a number of informative seminars on subjects ranging from cybersecurity to marketing myths to innovation in continuous improvement, as well as programs to introduce attendees to the transformative technology of virtual realty, robotics, and machine-tooling demonstrations.
Attendees can also take part in the Springfield Regional Chamber’s Speed Networking event; a match-making program featuring corporate sponsor MGM Springfield, which will be opening its $950 million casino in less than a year; the day-capping Expo Social, featuring a best-in-show food-sampling competition; and much more.