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Young Entrepreneur

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#YECApproved: The Best Events for Young Entrepreneurs This Fall

For the last year and half, I’ve been jet setting around the country to top business- and entrepreneur-focused conferences, as well as hosting private events at these conferences for the YEC community. You might even say I’m a professional conference go-er.

At this point, I’ve racked up enough miles, badges and hours at conferences and networking receptions to confidently share some tips and tricks with our YEC family and friends. Fall and Spring are now unofficially dubbed “conference season,” and below you’ll find recommendations for some of the best ones out there for startup founders, business owners, and anyone interested in leveraging jam packed days of learning and connecting to accelerate their business.

Dreamforce YEC member Ryan Francis, in town for Dreamforce from Chicago, with fellow member and SF entrepreneur, Tony Scherba, at our private event at JAX Vineyards. | Photo Credit: Pretty Instant

Salesforce Dreamforce

Dreamforce takes over San Francisco. So much so that hotels and AirBnBs run out and Salesforce brings in cruise ships to house attendees. You’ll be hard pressed to walk the streets of SF this October 4-7 and not find someone rocking a Dreamforce badge. You should attend Dreamforce if you 1) are a customer and want to dig deeper into how you can use the software, 2) are on the fence about being a customer and want to meet with experts and users to help make the decision, 3) want to party and meet SF’s finest in tech, sales and entrepreneurship. There are plenty of smaller events and parties around Dreamforce (even competing Marketo host’s a week long series of events!) and no shortage of people to meet that close to Silicon Valley.

Protip: Book your travel early. If you thought SF hotels were already expensive, you haven’t seen anything yet. Check out the bottom of this post to learn more about our exclusive travel deals through Priceline.

YEC Members: Escape the crowds and join our private YEC SF Connections event on October 5th. Join a hand selected group of 75 of San Francisco’s most exciting young founders and those in town for Dreamforce for cocktails, entertainment and more. YEC members can RSVP at events.yec.co.

Under 30 Summit Ministry of Supply co-founder Aman Advani, both a U30 honoree and YEC member, with guests at our private event at The Union League of Philadelphia | Photo Credit: Pretty Instant

Forbes Under 30

The Under 30 Summit is “the world’s largest gathering of young entrepreneurs and game-changers” and is heading to Boston October 16-19 this year where it will triple in size! If you are a believer in the old adage, “If you are the smartest person in the room, you’re in the wrong room,” then the U30 Summit is for you.

Every U30 honoree and conference attendee is doing something innovative, world-changing and inspiring. Forbes has also gone above and beyond this year, bringing in speakers like Sir Richard Branson and Tony Robbins. This is a conference you don’t want to miss. And while the Under 30 crowd is impressively young, you do NOT have to be Under 30 to attend.

Protip: When you register for the conference, definitely download the U30 Summit conference app! With a built-in newsfeed of conference happenings and a private messaging platform (powered by Tinder!) to connect with other attendees, it’s a powerful tool to get the most out of your U30 experience.

YEC Members: Our friends at Forbes have extended an Early Bird Forever rate to all YEC members. ($395 - even if you book last minute!) Access the discount in our Conference + Events marketplace in your member dashboard.

INBOUND Boston members Enrico Palmerino and Jordan Fliegel with the CoachUp team | Photo Credit: Pretty Instant


Whether you’re a marketing executive running campaigns for the world’s biggest brands or a small business owner looking to transform your business, there’s something for you at INBOUND. Boston tech’s ‘bell of the ball,’ HubSpot hosts this industry event for 14,000+ marketing and sales professionals and the party pours out into Boston’s Innovation District, where partner events, coffee meetings and more will be buzzing this November 8-11.

Protip: This year’s Inbound Rocks event features comedians Sarah Silverman and Ali Wong. Inbound Rocks is a highlight of the week and gets packed fast. Get to CLUB INBOUND early and grab a drink while you wait to get in line because seats will fill up.

YEC Members: The good people at HubSpot have extended $200 OFF the All Access Inbound Pass to YEC members. Redeem your discount here. Dozens of YEC members head to INBOUND every year and we’re hosting a private party at one of Boston’s newest luxury buildings, Watermark Seaport. Join fellow Boston members, those in town for the event, and invited top entrepreneur and marketer guests for an open bar, entertainment and a little break from the “hugeness” of INBOUND. Members can RSVP at events.yec.co.

Me with YEC member and Inlist Founder, Gideon Kimbrell, who co-hosted last year’s YEC Miami dinner pre- Summit at Sea. (Photo taken at Villa Azur, an Inlist venue partner)

Summit at Sea

Summit at Sea has been dubbed everything from “Burning Man on a boat” to “Davos for Bros.” Truly, Summit at Sea is a who’s who of the world’s biggest thinkers, game changers and do-gooders. And this year, they’ll all be on a boat together November 9-12.

Programming tracks are jammed with everything from “Are Aliens Real?” to fireside chats with Travis Kalanick to workshops on feminine vs. masculine energy. FOMO hits hard at Summit at Sea, as there are just too many incredible people to get to know and experiences to share. What I love most about the event is that it makes the normally unattainable, best in the world easily approachable.

Protip: I have a few for this one. First, prepare for no wifi. Don’t panic, put your phone away and let serendipity settle in. Second, there are full service, high end restaurants on the ship. After you board, check them out and make some group reservations. Tell your friends to meet you or grab whoever is closest for a beautiful dinner and skip the cafeterias. Third, Summit at Sea is strictly invite-only. If you’re interested in attending and feel you can “bring something to table,” you can apply to attend at sas.summit.co. But your best bet is getting introduced to a Summit curator by a friend who has already attended.

YEC Members: Over 100 YEC members are attending Summit at Sea this year, so we’ll be hosting a hospitality suite in Miami the day before the event sets sail. Come grab a drink and connect with fellow members so you have some friendly faces on board. Members can RSVP at events.yec.co.

Under 30 Summit YEC member and U30 honoree, Deckard Sorenson, celebrates with girlfriend Christina. | Photo Credit: Pretty Instant

These are my favorite high-impact events. But is there another event or conference you think members should know about? Or are you interested in hosting a cool experience to connect with our members? Let’s chat! Email our team at events@yec.co with more information.

YEC Members: Drop us a line at concierge@yec.co if you're headed to any of these events -- or any other conferences -- so we can help connect you with fellow members! As well, if you're booking travel and trying to find great deals, head over to travel.yec.co. (We've negotiated the best travel packages online through Priceline so we can help you get to whatever conferences you plan to attend -- at a steep discount.)


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