The eight packet of the PopCorn Series was held on September 18, 2020 in the title “Effective Business Networking”. The session was facilitated by Thomas Wavering, Instructor of Entrepreneurship & Economic Development and Executive Director, Tom Love Innovation Hub with the objective of discussing ideas on effective ways of networking.
In a session for around 2 hours, Thomas discussed ways of Networking, tips to Networking and use of social media in Networking. For the last 30 minutes he dealt with the queries of the participants and then the program wrapped up.
Feedback from Participants:
- Very interesting person and he gave really practical tips that can be applied instantly
- The session was very useful for me in developing myself. This might also be helpful in leaving a very good first impression. An amazing session in a nutshell
- It was good the way he told us everything and the importance of it.
- It was an amazing session filled with valuable insights.
- Insightful session- Would love to attend more in the near future. !! 🙂
- I find it really useful to be prepared for growing the things through effective networking.
- Very descriptive analysis to the tips that you have shared, Thomas. It was so clear that it all came through his professional experience, and not just some lines from textbooks.
Bio of the Facilitator
Tom Wavering is an accomplished researcher, educator and executive, leading technology from conception to commercialization, workforce development and business growth. Wavering joined the University of Oklahoma in September 2016 as the founding Executive Director of the Tom Love Innovation Hub (I-Hub). The I-Hub’s mission is to increase innovation and entrepreneurship across Oklahoma through a mix of resources, programs, services and collaborations. The I-Hub inspires, educates and promotes innovation and entrepreneurship and supports thousands of OU students, staff, faculty and broader community members to prototype their concepts through unique facilities and access to expertise. In 2018, the nationally unique I-Hub was recognized as an EDA University Center and began expanding ideation and related programing to Oklahoma City, Tulsa and across Oklahoma. As a national expert in the federal U.S. Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program, Wavering founded and leads the I-Hub’s Oklahoma Catalyst Programs through funding from Oklahoma and federal (e.g. SBA) partners. The Oklahoma Catalyst Programs provide SBIR-related networking, training and mentoring efforts across Oklahoma including the SBIR Accelerator and SBIRx programs. The Oklahoma Catalyst Programs also support women’s entrepreneurship and organize the annual Oklahoma Women Impacting STEM and Entrepreneurship (OK-WISE) Conference. In 2019, Wavering joined the faculty of the Price College of Business, creating and teaching the course “Entrepreneurship for Science and Technology.”
Prior to founding the I-Hub and associated programs, Wavering was Vice President, Strategic Technologies for Intelligent Automation, Inc. (IAI), working to shift organizational culture toward a product/transition focus. Wavering led IAI’s business development and technology transition efforts (e.g. license, product, spin-off, etc.), grew IAI’s technology portfolio and identified new growth areas. Wavering supported IAI staff in developing proposals, managing programs, identifying transition opportunities, understanding market potential, defining business strategies, building partnerships, protecting IP and securing funding. Before IAI, Wavering was Vice President, Technology Development for Luna Innovations and held various technology management positions as the company grew from 15 to more than 220 employees, spun off multiple successful startups and went public. Wavering was second in command of Luna’s Technology Development Division and its 135 personnel across five locations. Wavering worked with the president and corporate officers on operations, P&L, business development, investment strategy and commercialization, and led Luna’s activities as a national leader in the SBIR program. Wavering started with Luna Innovations as a Principal Investigator on more than 30 R&D programs and has six patents. Wavering received his BS and MS Electrical Engineering degrees, as well as a minor in Creative Writing, from Virginia Tech.