College staff support Lanarkshire Women in Business initiative

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Staff from New College Lanarkshire helped support a new initiative encouraging more women into business.

The Lanarkshire Women in Business network was launched with a free event at Bothwell Bridge Hotel last month.

The event, designed to help grow the local economy through offering start-up support, involved bringing together existing and aspiring business women for a series of talks and information-sharing opportunities.

The New College Lanarkshire stall offered advice on available training options, and was staffed by Margaret McNeill from Regional Business Development and Deborah Mooney from the Digital North Lanarkshire project.

The network was established to tackle the gender imbalance that exists in Lanarkshire’s business sector, where only 25% of self-employed people are female.

Partners in Women in Business include North and South Lanarkshire councils, Business Gateway Lanarkshire, New College Lanarkshire and the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB).

The launch was the first in a programme of quarterly networking events.

Ann Baxter, Acting Vice Principal of New College Lanarkshire, said: “New College Lanarkshire was pleased to attend the launch of the Lanarkshire Women in Business network and hope that it will be possible to share the learning from Market Day, an entrepreneurial project for students of New College Lanarkshire, which provides support to student progression into further or higher study or into employment or self-employment.

“We look forward to continuing to work with our partners.”

Speakers on the day included Professor Lynne Cadenhead of Women’s Enterprise Scotland, Carole Atwell from Firefly Business Solutions, and Laura Birrell, the founder of Sticky Heelz.

The speakers shared their top tips and business lessons that they’ve learned from their own personal experiences.

Topics covered included confidence, resilience and networking, with an emphasis on knowing your own worth.

The event’s opening and closing remarks were given by Yvonne Weir, Enterprise Manager at North Lanarkshire Council, and Councillor Collette Stevenson, Depute Provost at South Lanarkshire Council.

Deborah Grant, Commercial Development Manager at New College Lanarkshire, said: “The Lanarkshire Women in Business network is a fantastic initiative designed to support local economy growth.

“We were delighted to be part of the first event, offering advice and guidance to women looking to start or grow their business on the training available to support them on their journey.

“There was also a great deal of interest in the Lanarkshire Business Hub, which is a free forum designed to offer knowledge transfer and business networking opportunities, and are looking forward to welcoming all those that expressed an interest at our future monthly business events.”

To find out more about the Lanarkshire Business Hub, visit the LinkedIn group or email lanarkshire.businesshub@nclan.ac.uk

The next Lanarkshire Women in Business event is due to take place at New College Lanarkshire’s Coatbridge Campus on Wednesday 27th November. To find out more, please contact businesssupport@northlan.gov.uk

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