Vote Manchester Digital

After two years of service, my post on the Manchester Digital council is up for re-election next week, so I’ve been forced to ask myself - is the organisation worth my time?

When I first put myself forwards for the council in 2011, I did so from a soapbox of well-meaning rhetoric. Looking in from the outside, I thought our trade association was out of touch with the majority of the people it represented - the designers, developers, marketers and other digital folk that gave our region such a great reputation. This wasn’t just my view - I heard the same thing time and time again - “what do they do for us?”.

After a successful election campaign, I found myself in a position to answer this question. Long-standing contributors Shaun Fensom, Richard Hudson, Tony Foggett and Mike Ryan donated a substantial amount of time, successfully building relationships with businesses and other organisations, all with the ultimate goal of promoting digital business within our region.

The problem was primarily down to engagement - not talking to practitioners within the sector about the things that they dealt with on a daily basis. Over the past two years, this has changed considerably. With the Cartologie eBusiness network, the invaluable Skills Summit and the thoroughly enjoyable Harder, Better, Stronger, Faster talks, the organisation is demonstrating that it can engage with businesses, producers and educators equally.

And how has all of this great work been achieved?

Hard graft.

There have been some changes to the dynamic of the council and board, but the majority of accomplishments can be put down to the many hours donated by the council and the members that support them.

“Our vision is simple, that by working together we can make Manchester and the North West an even better place for digital business.” - Manchester Digital

So who should I vote for?

I’ve been asked this a couple of times over the past few weeks, and my answer is simple - whoever you believe can continue Manchester Digital’s drive to make the North West a better place for the digital sector. For me, that means re-electing the existing council members, who have demonstrated beyond a doubt how much they have to contribute (Chris Marsh, Richard Hudson, Mike Ryan, Jon Grant, Mike Carter).

But in the scheme of things, who you vote for is not what matters - you have a wealth of worthy individuals to choose from. What makes a difference is that you participate with Manchester Digital by becoming an advocate, a contributor and a member.

What matters, is that you vote Manchester Digital.