The TRMC 2020 team took the opportunity to interview Annette Lawrence, a committee member for the first TRMC conference in 2010 and a delegate at TRMC 2011. Annette discussed her experience at the very first TRMC conference, what the entrepreneurial spirit of Ted Rogers means to her, and her advice for current students.
Annette is currently employed as a Human Resources Generalist at Broadridge Financial Solutions.
Your TRMC Experience was almost 10 years ago, what were your favourite memories from the conference?
You are calling me out here – can’t believe it has been 10 years! TRMC is not like any other conference I had experienced before. TRMC focuses on the delegates’ multicultural traditions, entrepreneurial spirit, creativity and innovation. I enjoyed the Multicultural Night, the case competitions, Ryerson Business Forum and other social events in between. TRMC never aimed to target a specific type of individual – it had various elements to it to bring together great people. From my experience being on the committee, and as a delegate, I was able to meet a lot of interesting people that I still talk to even today.
What does the entrepreneurial spirit of Ted Rogers mean to you?
The quote “The best is yet to come” is a mantra I live and breathe by. It helps motivate me to do more, become a better version of myself, and push myself beyond my limits. Ted Rogers represented a level of strength in the telecommunications industry and his other professional endeavors. He was always looking to evolve and be the best in everything he took on which is how I would describe the essence of his entrepreneurial spirit.
How has TRMC impacted your life professionally or personally?
Through my position on TRMC, I was able to improve upon my communication, presentation, and networking skills. These skills helped me step into my role as Executive VP of the Ryerson Commerce Society, then eventually land my first full-time job out of university. I learned how to lead and motivate large, diverse groups towards a common goal. TRMC’s inaugural year planted the seed, and I’ve grown so much since because of it. I still talk about the conference to this day. During interviews, I am asked the question “What is your biggest accomplishment?” and proudly say the work put into producing this conference as my response. It makes me feel good to know that I was a part of something that will last for years to come, 10 years and counting!
What would be a piece of advice you would like to leave current students with?
Network, network, network! Don’t be afraid to go out and say hello to someone. When people reach out to me on LinkedIn, they tend to mention how nervous and scared they are to network. However, if you go into it with the mindset that you are going to meet two new people or come up with a couple key things you want to learn from your interaction with someone, it will make it much easier. Set a goal for yourself. It’s hard to go to networking events and to meet new people, but most likely, the people there are just as nervous as you. At TRMC, you are there to learn, which will go a long way when developing a connection that has the potential to last a lifetime.
You can check out Annette Lawrence on LinkedIn.