Last night the Honourable Louise Asher MP hosted a 'Women in International Business' networking event in Mumbai, India sponsored by WE Connect International. The purpose of this event was to give Indian and Victorian women an opportunity to build the foundation of solid relationships and collaboration to further contribute to the growth of both economies. Minister Asher shared that small business can survive and will benefit to have access to new markets like India.
As part of this event an extraordinary and inspiring group of women stepped up to form a panel for open discussion. These women included:
Chair of Sustainability Victoria - Dr Gillian Sparkes, PhD, MBA
Managing Director of Infoactiv - Helen Jarman
Vihaanm Natural Healthcare - Pryaa J Parab
Women came from across the country to be with us in Mumbai. Some insights to share:
- Australia is a small nation in population and small business can survive but will benefit to have access to new markets like India.
- Easiest way to increase the nations productivity is to retain talented women
- Understanding the diversity that women bring to the the table has huge advantages when hiring women in leadership positions.
- We are greatly limited by our priorities
- If you are looking for growth in your business or career you must be focussed and prioritised.
- Instead of thinking what can't I do - start thinking what CAN I do.
The ladies on the panel shared their biggest challenges in setting up a business. Insights and advise they shared for other women entrepreneurs included:
- Immediately network and think of the solution you are providing
- More women role models create a much more attractive phenomenon for other women
- It is important to make a conscious decision about your priority and what you are willing to sacrifice. That choice may come at the cost of other roles we want to play however as long it is your choice you are empowering yourself.
- Women think differently - our biggest issue is our self doubt
- We are good at doing lots of different things sea laws have been and we don't have to choose just one thing.
- Have a mindset for growth and make a conscious decision about what you go for.
- There is a phenomenon across the world and woman can join hands to recognise significant similarities. Look at particulars in market, policy, compliance and be conscious as that in itself can lead to opportunity.
- Challenges for men and women are the same around capital and resources - it could just be support in the beginning - don't be afraid to ask and surround yourself with the right people.
- Networking is king seek collaboration and opportunities - do more and more networking and seek each other out.
Would love to hear from you - what are your challenges, your insights and advise you are experiencing and/or would pass on to your fellow sisters?