Catching up with Ourselves

An Unbelieveable Journey

I have written before how our first event in Toome on the 10th January 2018 was a great success. Now we have had our Portglenone event at the Wild Duck and our Cookstown event at the Greenvale and our Belfast event at Crumlin Road Gaol and are preparing to go to Coleraine on Tuesday 27th to meet all the ladies there.

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It has been such an experience that I am finding difficult to put into words and tell everyone how this has affected both my life and the lives of other members of our group.

For some of the Guest Speakers, they have falled in love with their businesses all over again, gained new followers and supporters from a group of supporting ladies that they never met before, or realised they had skills that could take them further in their career by giving information to others. Some found speaking to other people who were in an earlier stage of their journey cathartic and emotional.

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No journey is easy and it has to be acknowledged by anyone giving straight talking advice to others. The struggle is real. Tears literally rolled down my face when Catherine MacKenzie told her journey and I felt like I had known her all my life.

 

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Guest speaker Kelly Neill from Panacea Drinks had so much real advice for business women, she kept it real and gave brilliant advice to women who are far too hard on themselves.

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For the attendees of the event, they met new people who have become friends, a support system in their week to week world, and gained some nuggets of advice on how to focus on their business. Whether they are business mums, mums who are thinking of what they need to do to earn more money, business women who have information to share, or friends and supporters of business mums, it turns out, we all have advice to help each other.

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Brigid Duggan from BD Consultancy has been able to mentor some of the attendees of the event funded through programmes – after she inspired them to take their business forward – a fantastic resource that they would not have thought about until they attended the event!

“The best advice you can take is the advice you give to others,” said Iris Rowntree, our guest speaker this Tuesday night.

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Cliodhna Fullen who runs life skills classes and a blog gave good advice on deciding where you want to go and taking the time to get your focus right. She spoke about her role as a social influencer and her brand which cannot be compromised by endorsing products that she has no connection with.

Cliodhna’s own determination came after a terrible illness. Another tear jerking story. Another amazing woman, wife, mother and businessperson.

 

Another aspect of our community is our group – from 30 people about 3 months ago to almost 1400 is absolutely amazing. The members are all amazing and so supportive of each other.

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I have made so many new friends and connections there is no reason why I should not be able to reach a level of success in my own personal life that I can be happy with. Work will always come in, but I want to make it easy and have a better work / life balance.

 

 

We all are constantly and evolving our work and business to suit our ever changing lifestyles and families. So this means changing our approach to our business, and while we set boundaries around our business versus home time, there are cases when we make sacrifices of our family time because we have no choice.

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Orlagh Moore from Ring O’Rosies in Dungannon told us all about her shop and business as a busy working mum and how she would be serving customers with a toddler in hand.. Her great sense of humour had us all in uncontrollable laughter as we have all been there, locking ourselves in a toilet to speak to customers in peace!

 

You are not alone if you think that you are. You are having the same problems as the rest of us. I know.

 

So don’t work in isolation, join our group, ASK for advice, have a moan, and be there for the other ladies. As Tara Grimes told the Cookstown group, don’t struggle, go and ask for advice from someone who has been there and done that. And keep a good network of people around you.

cookstownA good network of ladies at the Cookstown event

Speaker Joanie O’Hanlon who was giving advice for people selling from home – to sell with a personal style – be authentic to yourself and audience and add value.

The ladies in our group are so full of talent and skill. They have to pursue various revenue streams to make sure their business brings in money. It can be a brainwracking problem to constantly come up with new ideas and to get them out to an engaged audience who are going to put their money in their pocket. It is great to know that previous speaker Pauline Haughey has a fear of Facebook Live Videos just like me.

bronaghBronagh Duffin,  Bakehouse told us how she does just that, using her talent for cooking and baking, Bronagh has cookery classes, cookery nights, outside catering, provides scones for the local cafe and bakes cakes for birthdays and weddings.

 

For those of us who are not able to diversify in such a way, Ursula Murphy with a wealth of knowledge in social media, PR and Marketing, was able to tell us at the first event that you cannot sit and complacently posting on Facebook and boosting posts because it rarely will work, especially with Facebooks’ new algorithm. Ursula is the editor of Sugahfix.com and the owner of a cool app that saves you money on coffee, cocktails, cinema tickets, meals, gym membership and more – OhhSocial 

ursulaUrsula says you need to be where you audience is. Know what they want and where they hang out, be in Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or Linkedin; in the case they are on Facebook, using Live Videos and not adverts will create customer interest.

Yes, Facebook hasn’t got a penny from me since! And simple advice like that works. I never used Instagram before and now I know how to link Instagram to Facebook, use “stories” and remember to put the link in the bio. I feel like I missed out on a year’s worth of customers by not knowing this sooner, and yes I am still learning but now I know where I need to improve.

I could say so much more – how I have reconnected with an old friend Ciara Moore, made more contacts in the wedding business such as Fiona McToal, Catriona Corrigan, Catriona Briggs Evans, Sharon Cassidy and Patricia Pollard. How I watch Kim Constable every day in Instagram in her journey as the Sculpted Vegan. I speak weekly with Sinead McKeever, Ursula Murphy, and Orlagh Kelly as they have become a great support to me, and still watch Caroline O’Neill for snapchat tips.

Our Belfast event was intense. In order to do it justice, it needs it’s own blog post! Plus we videoed it so you will be able to see snippets!

It’s on my to-do list ladies so hold me accountable!

Sinead x

 

About Sinead Norton 83 Articles
Business Owner & Mum of 7 Children www.facebook.com/swiftchairs www.facebook.com/mumsatworkni

1 Comment

  1. Great blog post Sinead in which you really have captured so much from the speakers. You are a great woman for organising all of this. Keep up the great work and keep supporting mums in business x

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