Barcelona is working hard on attracting talent through multinationals and research projects and by promoting itself as the ideal open-minded international city with California lifestyle and start-up creativity in Europe.
“Talent attracts capital far more effectively than capital attracts talent”
Last Thursday Barcelona Global hosted its third Hola Barcelona Networking Event at the beautiful Palauet Albéniz at Montjuic: a beautiful, exclusive location that strikes me as miniature Paris Versailles with breath-taking views over the city and the National Art Museum of Catalonia in its background.
The cocktail event was opened with inspirational words and testimonials from several dignitaries welcoming (new expat) Barcelona citizens by choice or birth. And they did a fantastic job! I felt warmly welcomed and appreciated. And I caught myself thinking yes, it’s the right choice living here (and spending my pennies).
Expats rely on networking and it is so much easier when the city is actively welcoming and encouraging to expats:
- Networking events are crucial to meet like-minded people be it in business or to make friends with other expats and the local community to learn the ropes.
- They are a potential source of new business contacts.
- Expat life can be lonely, especially in the beginning. Socialising is the first step to closer integrating and finding your place in the new country.
- You pay more attention to one another than when you would randomly meet elsewhere. You’re also more likely ready to exchange and connect or just to have a good time.
- You’re likely to be in the same boat. Isn’t this why you are here?
- There is neither a rush nor expectation.
- Create your own networking group and actively find your crowd.
- Networking events are usually attended by open-minded people with a natural curiosity and often cross-cultural backgrounds.
I like to see the splendid and welcoming side of Barcelona city, which is marketing itself more than any other city I can think of.
And it was almost soothing the soul after experiencing some of the day-to-day struggles most locals know about, relating to the work situation in the city. – Average salaries and lifestyle seem far away from the exclusivity and location of the event, unless you would have an expat contract! I guess this is where the California lifestyle / Silicon Valley marketing strategy should fill the gap … 😉
Between the 1200 people attending the event I was glad to hear a lot more Catalan (vs English) spoken than last year, which made it a bit less expat exclusive and hopefully more inspiring for the locals as well.
Barcelona Global, thanks for an inspiring event and great networking opportunity!