Some quit their jobs and others got celebrity selfies – all in our Web Summit Stories

Want to talk about your experience? 

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No event is perfect. We’ve all heard the stories about the WiFi, but it’s important to remember that, at its essence, Web Summit is all about individuals coming together to make new connections.

Web Summit Stories is our way of sharing the experiences of some of those individuals who’ve made the most of the event, bettering themselves personally and professionally.

That can mean meeting your son’s childhood hero, getting the inspiration to start your own business or exploring a pantheon of disruptive new companies. From skating fans to investors, to speakers and first-time attendees, these people revealed why they came to Web Summit and how the experience was for them.

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Name: Mary Cloonan

Company: Marketing Clever

Web Summit Story: I attended the Web Summit in 2014 for the first time, with a niggling concern that it might just be for the serious techies. So I went along with an open mind, with the vague idea of changing my career direction in the back of my mind, after working steadily in marketing roles for almost 20 years. Well, in short, I loved it.

The energy, the excitement and such open and honest presentations from world leaders was infectious. Most importantly, the Web Summit isn’t just for techies but for courageous individuals who have an idea and are optimistic about how technology can facilitate the delivery of their goal. Put simply, clever people using clever ideas.

For me, I’ve given notice in my job and am delighted to introduce Marketing Clever, my marketing business that I was inspired to be brave enough to start.  Roll on Web summit 2015!

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krzysztof burzynskiName: Krzysztof Burzynski

Company: Biznes Innovation

Web Summit Story: My older son is a determined skater who, at 15, promised everybody that he will build the first proper vert ramp in Poland.

He obviously noticed Tony Hawk’s tweet about his plans to visit Dublin, and he said: “Dad, he will be in Dublin too, but I guess you will be too busy at your conference to see Tony…”

A couple of days later I was sitting at one of startup meetings that was coming to an end  when I got an email notice from the Web Summit organizers, a reminder of the afternoon events. And there was Tony, just across the hall! It took me five minutes to get there, grab his signature and take the selfie with our family hero!

But that was just an added bonus, not the reason for me to come to the Web Summit. Working with Enterprise Ireland and a couple of Irish companies who develop their business in Poland, I learned that Dublin is not only famous for pub crawls! The city is full of creative, open minded people, sharing ideas to find new business opportunities together. Web Summit is a super condensed form of creativity and entrepreneurship, so I had to be there!

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Name: Darian Shirazi

Company: Radius

Web Summit Story: I met Paddy Cosgrave in 2011 at the British Embassy in Paris for a casual event. After spending a number of hours with him, I knew that he was creating a conference where the most impressive and forward-thinking leaders would meet and discuss innovation.

Whether your startup is just getting going or is on the brink of IPO, Web Summit values your company’s innovation equally. We’re all here to build great things and Web Summit harnesses that sentiment. I’ve been to four Summits and without a doubt plan on going to the next four!

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543211_431429916928698_1941760233_nName: Bianka Siwinska

Company: Perspektywy Education Foundation

Web Summit Story: I am journalist and activist involved in empowerment of girls in STEM, so I came to Web Summit to meet inspiring women in technology. And I did! It was a great opportunity to expand my IT horizons and build a network of potential female role models.

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Jan 800 x 700Name: Jan Claussen

Company: eCapital Partners AG

Web Summit Story: I went to Dublin to find new exciting technology startups within our primary investment area, the DACH region, and frankly was overwhelmed by the volume of high-quality companies. This was probably the most fruitful event I have attended so far in terms of meeting teams and fellow investors. Keep them coming, Paddy and team!

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Kate_HeadshotName: Kate Krukiel

Company: Microsoft

Web Summit Story: I came to the Web Summit purely to get outside of my day to day “box” as they say.  I was self paying and wanted a week to learn, expand my boundaries and have different discussions that would help me think in new ways in my current job.  As the date approached, I was then asked to speak on a panel around humanitarian partnerships which was an incredible experience – an area I hadn’t realized I knew quite a bit about.

In the end, not only did I expand and connect with a slew of new people, but was also pleased to be able to share my experiences with others.  It was by far one on the best events I had ever been to – from breakfast through dinner there was something new!

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Read: Web Summit – the action in Vines

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