Thursday, January 11, 2018

From Facebook to Twitter, YouTube to Instagram – New Digital Marketing Courses On Offer!

So, it’s 2018 and we are BACK!

Stronger and better than ever, we have just launched a brand-new range of digital marketing courses here at The Women’s Organisation! Bringing our old courses up to date with the new advancements in the ever-changing world of digital marketing, we are delighted to announce we will now be leading masterclasses on…





These courses will be run slightly differently to previous times, so listen up! We have grouped courses together to make full one-day masterclasses which will look in depth at a variety of different topics over the course of the day and impact your wider marketing strategy!

The one-day masterclasses will cost just £90 for a full day of training and resources! Or you can choose to attend just the morning or afternoon session if you’d like to focus on the key areas where you’d like to upskill, and these will cost £50 each to attend – So booking the full day masterclass will save you £10!

Book onto these courses here!

So…What will you be covering in these courses!

First up:


Here you will learn about how…
  • The different blogging tools and platforms available
  • How to create great blog content and a following
  • Using search engines and how they rank websites
  • Keywords and how your content can be picked up by Google
  • How to create an SEO action plan
And so much more! To book onto this course and find out more about it, head over to our website and discover all the incredible skills you’ll learn as part of this masterclass!

Next we have:



Here you will learn how…
  • How to set up a Facebook business page and Instagram account
  • How to develop and choose content for Facebook and Instagram
  • How to build a following
  • Understanding insights and analytics
  • Understanding the apps available for video creation
  • How to live stream
  • How to use videos as part of your marketing strategy

And again, you will learn so much more…As well as leaving the masterclass and our other courses with a big handful of resources so you’re learning can continue! Check out the further details and dates on our website. 

And lastly:


Where you will learn: 
  • The purpose of LinkedIn and key functions
  • How to build your network and profile
  • Twitter and building your brand
  • How to use hashtags, tagging and images in tweets
  • How to use Twitter to find PR connections
  • How to use Hootsuite and develop and content marketing strategy
Check out dates and details on our website!

At the end of all of these masterclasses you’ll feel ready and prepared to put your new skills and knowledge into action and your digital marketing will look better than ever!

Book onto these courses here!

We are so excited to launch these new courses and hope you’ll join us and breath some fresh life into your digital marketing! All of these masterclasses are suitable for those right at the beginning of their digital marketing journey and also suitable not just for business owners but those managing the marketing within an organisation.

So – want to join us? Our courses run monthly, so get yourself booked on now! Just £90 for a full day or learning, development and knowledge building…We can promise, you and your business won’t regret it!

Monday, January 8, 2018

Manchester Businesses? Excelerate Labs Is Here To Help!

Is your business registered in Greater Manchester?
Are you looking to grow your business?

Do you sell to other companies?

If the answer is yes, then read on...

We believe in nurturing our businesses and giving them the support they need to develop.

That is why the Women's Organisation Growth programme ‘Excelerate Labs' offers a comprehensive range of business support to help companies to grow and thrive.

Set in the context of the fast-growing Greater Manchester region, we are here to help businesses by improving their systems, developing their people and helping to create great leaders and managers.  


We at The Women's Organisation along with Manchester as a city region is committed to entrepreneurship.

Manchester has for centuries been at the heart of shaping the UK’s economy. Since the days of the Industrial Revolution, Manchester has played a pivotal role in developing how the world does business. The ten metropolitan boroughs of Greater Manchester – Bolton, Bury, Manchester, Oldham, Rochdale, Salford, Stockport, Tameside, Trafford, and Wigan – represent the most significant city region economy outside London.

As the UK’s second-largest economy, Manchester is an important economic engine driving the country’s growth and prosperity and has a GVA of £59.6 billion. Since 2010, the city has seen an overall increase in employment of 68,154 jobs, which makes it the seventh best for growing employment in the UK.
Today, Greater Manchester’s economic growth is driven by its diverse industry base, which has specialisms in business, finance & professional services, manufacturing, health innovation and creative, digital and technology.  
Manchester’s business strengths have helped it to develop a strong reputation as a competitive place to do business. It is anticipated that the levels of job creation in Manchester could outpace that of cities such as Berlin, Tokyo, and Paris between 2015 and 2020.*(* Beyond the City 2015, Oxford Economics)


Everywhere around the city development is taking place delivering new office blocks and homes. The north-west is now home to major broadcasters such as the BBC and ITV at MediaCityUK in Salford Quays. Additionally, Greater Manchester Internalisation Strategy (GMIS) has plotted a course for success by 2035 centred around eight critical priorities including being the global gateway for the UK and the North and becoming a magnet for foreign direct investment in key growth sectors. Upgraded transport, affordability and a digitally skilled workforce are helping to bolster this strategy.
Helping your business grow

Whether you are an SME, global company, trading charity or a location consultant, our team will work with you to build your strategy and business case for growth, find the investment routes, source the ideal property, recruit the right staff and introduce you to networks on the ground to help your business grow.

Through ERDF funding, The Women Organisation has been providing support to Companies with steady incremental to dynamic high growth strategies that have created and safeguarded jobs for the last few years.

At the beginning of  2017, we have been rolling out a new business growth programme called Excelerate Labs. With partners including DownTown In Business and The Princes Trust, we are already creating more new jobs for Companies we support; as well as further increasing their GVA (Gross Added Value) 


Excelerate Labs offers support for Greater Manchester SMEs across a range of sectors including manufacturing, digital, creative and technology, food, education, low biomedical carbon, and environment.

Our Excelerate Labs impartial specialists, Mike Marsden and Ameena Ahmed, have a reputation for understanding diverse business needs and helping to remove barriers for companies looking to grow. 

All of our services are tailored to your business and will save you time, money and effort. Some of the areas covered are:

Business Plans
Bank Loan Applications
Developing a strategy
Grant Searches/ Applying for tenders
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Social Media Training
Sales Training
Develop Marketing Strategies
Recruiting the right staff
Relocation Plans
Brainstorming idea generation to grow your business

So are you driven to take your Company and team to the next level?

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

The Advice Corner | Top 10 Myths About Starting a Business

We're back again with more from The Advice Corner!

Introducing...The Advice Corner!



We'll be regularly sitting down with our team of skilled Business Advisers, picking their brains and sharing their knowledge with you right here on the blog. Our Business Advisers have helped thousands of women get started into the world of enterprise. From bakeries to bookkeeping, from hairdressers to handywomen - Businesses are their bag...So they've got a lot of advice to share with you!


Next up on the blog, we've got a bit of a twist - We're not hearing from a Business Adviser, but one of our talented Trainers; Jenny Wallwork! 


Jenny is a Training and Development Specialist here at The Women's Organisation with a responsibility to deliver Enterprise training and Change It, a personal development programme, both here and out in the community. She is also part of the Business Club team within the organisation. She says; 'I have a passion and drive to support and guide women, helping them to believe in themselves and follow their dreams.' 

So, let's here what Jenny has to say on the myths of starting a business!

When starting your own business you are often given advice and guidance by anyone that knows you, what you should or shouldn’t do.  There are lots of myths about starting your own business, here are just a few;
Myth 1 - You need lots of money to start a business…
Startup costs can differ depending on what type of business you are going into, if you can aim to start your business with as little money as possible that would be an advantage. Use what you’ve got; borrow if possible, buy second hand or trade with other businesses, only buy if necessary. You will probably have to use your own money; maybe family can give you a small loan to help. Grants and loans from other sources can be difficult to come by; Crowdfunding can be a solution for some start-ups and is becoming more popular, a local business called Wreckfish Bistro, successfully opened after £200,000 was raised from the local community.

Myth 2 - You need lots of business experience…
You don’t, it can be gained, here at The Women’s Organization we can support and guide you through your journey.  There are plenty of people just like you who started their own business whilst in education, work or were unemployed. Drive, energy, passion and commitment are essential – and arguably more valuable than many years of business experience. Many successful entrepreneurs had no business experience before starting up. 
Myth 3 - You must know how to write a business plan….
A business plan enables you to set aims for your business, decide a strategy to achieve them, judge your performance and stay on track. But how would you know what to do if you’ve never written a business plan before? It requires research and effort, but like many other business people – you can do it.  Here at The Women’s Organization we run a training course called Planning for Success, available through our Events Planner which takes you through step-by-step in writing your very own business plan, along with the invaluable support of our Business Advisors
Myth 4 - You can be too young to start a business…
Multimillionaire online entrepreneur Jamal Edwards (@jamaledwards) was just 16 when he founded online broadcasting channel SBTV, and Mark Zuckerman was just 20 when he launched Facebook. Age is no barrier – if you’ve got a great idea, it doesn’t matter how many years you’ve been around.  .
Myth 5 - You must be comfortable with risk…
There are no guarantees and things may not work out. Possibly your business idea needs work, but there’s nothing wrong with that. You don’t have to spend lots of money when launching your business nor do it as a full-time venture. To minimise risk, try and start your business with as little money as possible. Many entrepreneurs will start as a part-time business, whilst continuing with part-time work, testing the water before making a bigger commitment. You don’t have to do anything risky.

Myth 6 - Your business will take over your life…
Working, studying, friends, family and social life – it’s not always easy to fit everything in and making a success of a business does require hard work, commitment and sacrifice. It is possible to start a part-time or even seasonal business to begin with, which will have less of an impact on other parts of your life. Having good time-management skills is an advantage, self-discipline is crucial, being able to walk away or if working from home shut the office door at a given time to allow for family time, is important.   Online businesses, in particular, can require less of their owner’s time, although much depends on what you are selling.

Myth 7 - You need to be a marketing genius…
You might know more than you think, after all, you’re a consumer and probably remain loyal to some brands rather than others. You can quickly pick up marketing know-how or perhaps you could swap skills with others. Social media is a great way to market a business and you’re probably already active, so why not use it to raise the profile of your business? Remember, nobody’s more of an expert on your business than you, which makes you the ideal person to promote your brand.  The Women’s Organisation can help you by attending our Build a Social Media Strategy course to help with your marketing strategy.
Myth 8 - People like you don’t start their own business…
Wrong. There are 5.5 million small and medium sized businesses in the UK. Businesses are now started and managed by a diverse range of people from all parts of the community and all manner of backgrounds. That includes people who have come from very humble beginnings to rise to become some of the most successful and capable business people in the UK. People like you do start their own business. 

Myth 9 - You need to have groundbreaking idea…
You don’t need to invent something completely new to start your own business. Many great entrepreneurs have made a lot of money by simply improving an existing product or idea. Indeed, this approach might enable you to create a highly successful new business, as long as you can find ways to be better.
Myth 10 - You’ll be rich in no time…
If only this were true. You may one day become very rich through running your own business, maybe not, but most people have to spend many years working very hard and often going without to eventually earn a very good wage. Be realistic about your goals, work hard to achieve them and appreciate some of the other benefits that come from being your own boss.
The REALITY IS...Starting a Small Business is Rewarding! 

One other common belief about starting a small business is that starting a small business can be an incredibly rewarding experience. But unlike the common beliefs presented above, this one is true.

The independence and the satisfaction of turning a business idea into a successful enterprise are probably what most small business owners find the most rewarding, but there are all kinds of other satisfactions, too, from creating a new process through hearing from a satisfied customer.

Thank you Jenny! If you've enjoyed this be sure to check back on the blog for more tips from The Advice Corner or you can subscribe and receive them straight to your inbox!

If you're thinking about starting your own business, and would like to receive one-to-one support and advice from ourselves, get in touch with us! Email us on hello@thewo.org.uk or ring us on 0151 706 8111 to see how we can help you.

Catherine’s Story: ‘How Change It Changed My Life’

In 2017 we launched Change It: Progress to Success for the women of Liverpool. This confidence-building programme has a mission to help women develop their confidence, feel more positive about what they can achieve and begin building the future they want.

As we enter 2018, we’re preparing for the next round kicking off in January (more info here!).

Now, let us introduce you to previous participant, Catherine, to find out how ‘Change It’ changed her life ..

“For a long time I lied to people. Whenever somebody would ask what I did for a living I’d pretend I was in paid work. I was too ashamed to tell the truth that I was unemployed and losing the hope of ever finding full time work. I had seen how people on benefits were portrayed on television programmes like Benefit’s Street as idle, crude and dysfunctional and was afraid that people would stereotype me the same way.

Catherine

I was made redundant at the end of 2014. Although I felt disappointed to leave a job I loved I wasn’t unduly worried about my future prospects. I had good qualifications and several years of work experience under my belt. I imagined I would have few problems finding a fulfilling full time job and I immediately set to work looking for roles that matched my experience and interests. In the meantime, I kept myself busy volunteering at a mental health charity and used some of my redundancy pay out to study an English MA with the Open University.

I started 2015 full of optimism. As the New Year’s fireworks set off as I remember feeling really happy, I still had a good chunk of redundancy money left, was making good progress with my studies and had secured a couple of job interviews. By March my new year’s optimism began to wear thin, I still hadn’t managed to find any work and my redundancy money was dwindling fast. I applied for Job Seeker’s allowance the following month, I was entitled to benefits but found the whole process demeaning and felt like a failure.

As the year progressed things seemed to get worse, I was victim of a crime, my grandmother died and a relationship I was in broke down. It wasn’t long before depression set it, I began to lose hair and spent hours in bed unable to face leaving the house. Thankfully a friend pestered me to see a doctor. The doctor was really good and put me in touch with a counsellor, I was also temporarily put on a Health Related Benefits programme.


Within time I became stronger. The counselling gave me fresh hope and I felt able to look for work again. Within the next few months I came off sickness benefits and sent off what must have been hundreds of application forms. I would spend hours honing my personal statement and seek advice on how best to sell myself to prospective employers. Most of my applications forms went unanswered and I was rejected for roles at the few interviews I had managed to secure. With each set back, my hopes of finding work began to diminish, I became increasingly frustrated and there were times when I felt like giving up.

A work advisor told me about a course at Liverpool’s Women’s Organisation called Change It, which claimed to ‘help women overcome barriers to change‘. I applied but I felt cynical at any claims it could inspire my confidence. A week later I started the four-week Change it Course. The course was in a bright, glass building minutes away from Liverpool’s China town. I was a little nervous but walking in the room I received a warm welcome from the course coordinator, Jenny. 

The course examined the way we as women thought about ourselves. I came to recognise that I had developed very negative thought patterns about myself. I believed that I was a failure and unworthy of any employer’s attention. I also believed that my needs were not as important as other people’s leading to a lack of assertiveness. Having recognised these negative thoughts we worked on how I, and the other women in the room, could adapt the way we thought about ourselves. How could we transform such negative thoughts to a more healthy and positive thought process?


Slowly, through group exercises and the support from other women on the course, I began to change the way I thought. I could feel myself grow in confidence and learned more about myself than I could imagine. The course offered a safe environment where we were all able to be candid about our lives. It was the first time I’d been honest to a group of strangers about my unemployment status knowing I would not be judged.

Having completed the course I feel more confident and assertive. I have been able to say no, when appropriate, to things that I didn’t need or want to do. A couple of weeks ago I went for a job in Liverpool which involved a group exercise. In the past I’ve felt drowned out during group exercises, too timid to stand out, however, this time things were different. The Change It course had taught me that I, as well as others matter, and I confidently spoke and even collaboratively led in a group exercise. Later in the day I got the news I had longed to hear, I had got the job. The employer also mentioned that she was impressed by the confident and inclusive way I approached the group task.

I feel that without Change It’s help I would not have felt so confident on the day. I honestly believe that Change It has given me the tools to Change my life.”

Thanks to Catherine for sharing her inspiring story!

For more info on the next dates and venues for Change It: Progress to Success, click here.

To book your place or to speak to a member of our Engagement Team, contact us on 0151 706 8111 or hello@thewo.org.uk.



Monday, December 18, 2017

The Advice Corner | So You Want To Start A Training Business?

We're back again with more from The Advice Corner!

Introducing...The Advice Corner!



We'll be regularly sitting down with our team of skilled Business Advisers, picking their brains and sharing their knowledge with you right here on the blog. Our Business Advisers have helped thousands of women get started into the world of enterprise. From bakeries to bookkeeping, from hairdressers to handywomen - Businesses are their bag...So they've got a lot of advice to share with you!

This time we're hearing from Cynthia Bosafola!



Cynthia is a Trainee Business Advisor at The Women's Organisation and has had a varied career in the media and start-up industry. Cynthia a lover of all things creative, delicious and inspiring, and in helping make women’s visions a reality! She is launching her own business  making bespoke wedding veils.

Let's hear Cynthia's wisdom on how to start a training business...

So you want to deliver challenging, inspiring and amazing training courses or programmes, start with asking yourself, why, how and with who?

Here are a few questions to get you started, are you passionate about people’s growth and development? Do you get excited when developing, creating or delivering training courses? Do you feel you have a wealth of wisdom & knowledge that individuals and companies need to know? I hope you answered yes to those questions; however the big question is, whether that is enough to start your own training business? Sorry no, it isn’t.  

But, this is a great foundation to start with, we just need to dig a bit deeper, so imagine this blog to be your own personal training material, which you need to work through, chew on and answer as honestly as possible.

What’s your WHY?


Answers like, why not, just because and someone said, aren’t good enough. The why will open up a whole host of other questions that will determine your commitment to the business, the value you give to an individual or a company. It will make you look at your credentials and what makes you unique.

When you clearly define the reason why you want to start a training business, for example you may have created a distinct way of delivering training sessions that has been really effective. Or you may have seen a skill gap in individuals or companies that you can pass on to help them grow and develop.

Let that drive you, when your two months in, you haven’t yet got a contract or things are slow. Starting your own business will need you to be fully committed, all in hands, feet and head. There will be moments when you want to give up, but when you have a solid reason why, that will keep you going.

The why also helps you shape what value you bring to an individual or company. Why is your training plan valuable to your clients, why must they choose you or your specific training programme? First of all, you will need to look at your credentials, what experience do you have, is it enough? Do you have any skill gaps that you need to work on before you teach or train others?

As a training professional, you are aware that there is always room for improvement and that’s how you have to look at yourself too.

So the answer to ‘what’s your why?’ should visibly communicate your passion & drive, what keeps you going. Your value, what benefit and experience do you bring to your clients.

HOW, will you?  


Training covers a whole host of subjects and fields; don’t be a jack of all trades! What makes you unique, it might be your background, or your style of training, find what works for you and go with it.

Be clear and precise, clients buy specific products, they want to know what they are buying into, so while you are drafting, creating developing your training services, be very clear on what you do and what you will do for them. Will you come in and do a two hour training course on IT or train a managerial team on how to use social media effectively? 

Another how to consider, is how will you market yourself, how will you show case that you talk the talk and walk the walk.  People buy people, how are you a thought leader in your area? What have you got to showcase it?

Three words, publish, publish and publish some more. Whether that is with training videos via Facebook/website or YouTube, it gives your clients a taste of you and your style. It doesn’t need to be too fancy, a short and precise clip of you giving some tips or strategies on benefit of certain training for their business or development. Start simple.

So how will you? Through delivering clear and precise services and showcasing the quality of your knowledge through written or filmed training advice you have published.

With WHO?


Who are your clients? Who are the people you can partner with or swap services with to help each other grow?  And how will you find these people? Who do you already have around you?

Networking, and networking wisely! It is important to attend networking and business events; however the goal should be to meet as many people as possible who buy your kind of products and services. Meeting the same people may never lead to a contract or client, so be clever in how you network.

Relationships are key to growing your business, that is also

who you have around you, are the relationships you have growing your business or just making you feel good? It’s important to have business relations that encourage you and lift you up when you’re down, but how much of that will grow your business?  

So be wise and clever in your networking and in your business relations, we want your business to grow and develop just like you want the people who come to your training courses to grow and develop.

So what’s your why? How will you attract your clients and who is helping you grow your business? If you can answer these questions, Fantastic!  As it is a key ingredient to the start and the success of your business. 

If you need further help in answering the why, how and with who for your business, here at The Women’s Organisation we run a course called  ‘Planning For Success’ that goes through the business plan model and will help you answer these questions and also surround you with other people who are on the same journey as you.


We just loved this fantastic and informative blog from Cynthia! If you've enjoyed this be sure to check back on the blog for more tips from The Advice Corner or you can subscribe and receive them straight to your inbox!

If you're thinking about starting your own business, and would like to receive one-to-one support and advice from ourselves, get in touch with us! Email us on hello@thewo.org.uk or ring us on 0151 706 8111 to see how we can help you.


Friday, December 15, 2017

Meet Sophie, Our New Trainee Receptionist!

We recently introduced you to T’shana, one half of our ‘double trouble’ reception team – now, meet Sophie! Sophie and T’shana have breathed new youthful life into our office and keep us smiling all day. If you’ve visited us at 54 St James Street recently, they are the friendly faces running our front office. 

Sophie is definitely part of the W.O family now, and we want you to get to know her too. Have a read of Sophie’s blog below to find out more about her and how she ended up here with us at The Women’s Org – and be sure to say hello to her next time you visit us.



What’s your full name and where are you from?

My full name is Sophie Kathryn Taylor. Born and raised in Liverpool, I’ve never even moved house.

Tell me how you first found out about The Women’s Organisation and become part of our team?

I heard about it through word of mouth. Lots of people I knew had heard good things about it and the events ran here. I was interested to learn more so looked them up on the website and started looking into the vast array of events ran here. It seemed like something that suited me perfectly, so I looked into the job vacancies and applied.

What kind of things have you done prior to coming to The Women’s Organisation?

I left school in June 2017 after completing my A levels while working a part time, evening and weekend job in Matalan to earn some money. I studied Graphic Design, ICT and English Language at A level. The Women’s Organisation is my first step into the “real” world.

What has surprised you about working at The Women’s Organisation?

How in demand business advice for women is and the constant need for advice services for women. The wide variety of things that go on internally and externally and the constant evolution of the company what they offer as the wider community grows and changes.


What’s the best thing about working at The Women’s Organisation?

All the staff, clients and tenants are so friendly, everyone makes you feel so welcome. You can enjoy your job while still learning new things everyday not just about what we do as a business but about the importance of women in business too.

Could you describe one of your typical workdays?

There are so many different things that go on in our work day, beyond the stereo typical receptionist role of answering the phone and greeting clients. The day could start by doing the post, followed by filing and then setting up for events the following day while keeping reception occupied to greet and direct clients and take the countless phone calls we get every day.

What might (someone) be surprised to know about you?

I have an online Etsy shop where I sell jewellery, headbands and floral crowns I make by hand.

(You can visit Sophie's Etsy shop here)

What do you do when you aren’t working? 

I spend a lot of my free time with friends and family. I find it to be the most relaxing way to spend my evenings and weekends.

Thanks Sophie! Welcome to the team, it’s great to have you here.  

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Rounding Up One Fantastic Year of Change It: Progress to Success and Preparing for the Next!

In 2017 we launched a three-year programme, Change It: Progress to Success, designed to help the women of Liverpool see their true potential, and turn that potential into success. As the year draws to a close, we’re reflecting on a wonderful 12 months and looking ahead to the next round kicking off in January.

Losing confidence at any stage in life is normal. Women tend to look after or prioritise those around them, so self-development doesn’t come naturally. However, here at The Women's Organisation, we believe that building confidence is the first step to making change.


Through Change It: Progress to Success, we’re seeing first-hand women taking the time to build a more positive outlook in life  . And the feedback has been great! Just look at what some of our participants have to say ..

“I’ve finally got my confidence back”

“It has helped in all aspects of life, including my family life, my career goals and my self-worth”

“I have more self-belief, confidence, motivation and determination in my career and future plans”

“I now know that we women DO matter”

“I can be someone”

You can also read the message previous participant Maureen has for the women of Liverpool here.


‘Change It: Progress to Success’ covers many topics including becoming more assertive and breaking negative thinking habits in order to develop a more positive outlook in all aspects of life. ‘Change It: Progress to Success’ enables you to identify the clear and practical steps to take in order to build a better world for yourself at work, at home and in relationships.

If you think that this programme could be for you, we have a new batch of programmes starting in various venues around the city, and you can book your place now!

54 St James Street, 17th January, 10 – 3pm  (4 sessions)

Stoneycroft Children's Centre, 18th January, 9:30 – 11:30am (8 sessions)

Picton Children's Centre, 26th January, 9:30 – 11:30am (8 sessions)

Everton Children's Centre, 19th February, 9:15 – 12pm (5 sessions)

If you’d like to find out more about the programme or if you’d like to book your place, please contact our Engagement team on hello@thewo.org.uk or 0151 706 8111.

The same contact details apply for organisations looking to make a referral!