For over twenty years, I worked for the motion picture industry. Networking has always been the lifeblood of Hollywood – even while it was maddeningly difficult.
Take film industry conventions.
Hollywood has a couple of typical industry conferences, but most gatherings revolve around film festivals – often in glamorous, expensive places. There’s seldom a big exhibit hall with vendors – instead, filmmakers show clips of their work in private rooms, writers “pitch” scripts in one-on-one meetings, and deals are made at unadvertised parties.
There’s a secretive, fluid mystery to everything that’s happening, and always the sense that you are missing something. That uncertainty is complemented by the chaos of autograph seekers, paparazzi, and publicists all jockeying for attention. Unless you know how to “work” a film festival, you might as well stay home.
While networking at film festivals and association conventions may seem to have little in common, there is one key aspect in which they are similar: if you plan to network at either, you’ll need to have a strategy and go prepared.
The coffee industry depends on the work of millions of workers who arrive to coffee farms all over the world during the harvest to pick coffee. Labor represents the largest portion of cost of production for coffee farming all over the world.
Although they represent millions and are key to the production of coffee, as an industry, we do not understand their situation, challenges, and opportunities enough.
From painting to planting to power-washing, volunteers pitched in to help with much-needed school beautification and maintenance projects. (One overwhelmed teacher shared that she and her husband had been working on weekends and spending their own money to make classroom repairs.)
In one afternoon, the NCA team made the kind of progress only possible when a committed (and well-caffeinated) community comes together for a common cause.
Here are a few highlights from the NCA 2019 Coffee Gives Back Day of Service:
Inside the community-driven mission of The Coffee Trust, NCA 2019 Origin Charity of the Year
The National Coffee Association recognized The Coffee Trust as the recipient of the 2019 NCA Origin Charity of the Year Award, sponsored by Mother Parker’s Tea & Coffee, during the NCA 2019 Annual Convention in Atlanta.
Two Award finalists – meriting special mention – were Pueblo a Pueblo, Inc. and Strategies for International Development.
Here, Bill Fishbein, The Coffee Trust Founder and Executive Director, explains from the field what makes this organization so special – and how they are happily working themselves our of jobs in communities at origin.
Leaders, experts, and entrepreneurs from across the coffee industry came together for the 2019 NCA Annual Convention in the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel in Atlanta, GA. The 3-day event was themed “Coffee at the Crossroads” and sponsored by Community Coffee, which is currently celebrating its centennial anniversary as a family-owned company.
From networking events to specialty coffee education, the jam-packed (and highly caffeinated) conference offered something for everyone.
Here, we’ve highlighted a few of our favorite moments, with more to come in the weeks ahead.
(If you attended #NCA19 and want to share what you’ve learned, share a comment below or tag @nationalcoffeeusa in your photos!)
Blue Donkey will host a specialty coffee cupping session at the 2019 National Coffee Association Convention in Atlanta, March 7-9
Atlanta Coffee Shop is Making Waves with National Coffee Leaders
As Atlanta grows, so does the city’s specialty coffee scene – and one of the hometown favorites is about to make a big splash with coffee executives from around the world.
Despite this excitement, Atlanta’s Blue Donkey Coffee remains true to its commitment to specialty coffee, personalized for coffee lovers. The latest Blue Donkey café is just their second location, opening last fall in an upcoming area east of downtown on the edge of Grant Park.