5 Reasons Why Hampton Roads Businesses Should Be at Burn Both Ends

If you've been following The Chop Shop's social media, or have seen me in person in the last few months, you know that I am co-hosting a small business growth conference alongside Campfire & Co. on May 4th in Richmond called Burn Both Ends

This conference is focused on growing businesses who take joy in what they do, and want their professional development to be as laid back and fun as the work they do passionately every day. It's also for businesses who understand that they no longer get to just do one job. Business owners and small business teams wear many hats, so you have to reach out and get training and information on those areas where you're not an expert.  

While the conference is being held in the Scott's Addition section of Richmond, VA, I am encouraging businesses in Hampton Roads to attend. I guarantee that it will be worth the 1.5-2 hour drive, and here are a few reasons why. 

1. To get out of your zone

It's incredibly valuable for businesses to get outside of their own market every once in awhile and take an objective look at how they're operating within it. Interacting with other business owners from another region may just give you some fresh ideas and perspectives. Those ideas may turn into a little edge over your competition once you come back and implement them. 

2. To learn a new skill

This conference is focused on actionable, useful information that you can take back to your place of business and put to work. From google analytics to microlending vs. investment to client relations to corporate culture - our three keynote presentations, panel discussion and nearly a dozen different workshop options provide tons of opportunities to expand your knowledge and skills, which will only help you grow your business and work more efficiently. 

3. To rep your business

If you're a growing business, it may be that you're ready to start reaching out into new markets and regions. Richmond is the perfect close-but-not-too-close place to start doing that, and this conference will put you face to face with dozens of other business owners, potential clients and colleagues from the city. The day is designed so that you'll have plenty of opportunities to interact with the other attendees and presenters, so bring a bunch of business cards and come tell people what you're all about. 

4. To commiserate 

Only other small business owners know the exact kind of struggles other business owners have. It's difficult as someone who is self-employed or part of a small business to explain the pain of invoicing, dealing with clients, managing employees or drafting contracts to friends who work for a major organization or large company. Come find your people, commiserate and hopefully glean some good advice on how others have dealt with the same issues that keep you awake at night. 


Second only to learning super important, useful stuff is HAVING FUN. It is possible to work hard and have fun doing it and this day has been carefully crafted to be enjoyable, energetic, creative AND informative. Our event location for the day is Studio Two Three - an incredibly cool and inspiring artistic space where you'll get to discover how artists make a living with their craft. Our food all day will be provided by Richmond's own Mean Bird so you know everything will be delicious. Bad Ass Booth will be on hand with fun props and their photo booth for pics to take home with you. A complimentary happy hour at the end of the day is being sponsored by Belle Isle Moonshine and St. Killians so there will be delicious cocktails and beers on hand. Activities and workshops throughout the day and in various locations in Scott's Addition (including a few breweries) will keep everything moving and interesting. This is your opportunity to work hard and play hard - at the same time. 

This list doesn't even get into how you might as well make a weekend of the whole thing - stay at the new Graduate Hotel downtown, go see the Steinlen Cat's exhibit at VMFA, visit any of the (literally) hundreds of amazing eateries in the city, chart your course on the Richmond Beer Trail, or just enjoy the mighty James River with a walk through Belle Isle - part of the James River Park System. Go on and Burn Both Ends of that work/play candle!