They say you should do something every day that scares you. I definitely ticked that box on 13 March, when I appeared as a guest speaker at the University of Surrey’s ‘Women In Business: The Journey To Success’ event!
After listening to two keynote speakers, the 200 delegates had a choice of four seminars. To my consternation, no fewer than 75 of them picked mine: ‘Your Personal Brand and Successful Networking’.
I only had an hour, so I walked them through basics of building a personal brand, and gave them some insights into successful networking drawn from my own experience. The one they liked most was the story of how I met Karren Brady, told her flatly I wanted to come and see her about redesigning her website – and ended up doing both.
It was a fantastic evening, and got me thinking about a lot of things. It’s clear to me that, even today, many women still want – and need – help and advice on how to present themselves in business. We’ve come a long way, but the old fears, insecurities and inequalities, both real and perceived, are obviously still out there. At the same time, I was really encouraged to see so many women determined to take charge of their lives and careers in this way. It was both humbling and inspiring. I hope some of them went away having learned something about themselves, and feeling ready to take on the world. I know I did.