The Proactive team is split exactly 50:50 male to female. It’s not something that we actively set out to achieve – we simply hire the best person for the job and gender really doesn’t come into it.
As a Marketing consultancy, we work with a lot of entrepreneurs and very often we meet them at the initial stages when their businesses are just ideas. When it comes to Entrepreneurship the gender balance isn’t as neatly divided as it is in our office. While most organisations recognise that women and men have an equal place in business, can the same be said for entrepreneurs? The latest Global Entrepreneurship Monitor (GEM) Report shows that men in Ireland outnumber women by more than two to one in starting businesses each year. Is it just that women are less likely to take risks or is there more to it? Is it an attitude that needs to be changed? Why do so many women with great ideas hold back from starting their own business?
The Empower Programme
Proactive recently worked closely with one of our clients, GMIT Innovation Hubs, to develop the logo and website www.empowerher.ie for the new EMPOWER Programme which highlights the lack of female entrepreneurs and introduces initiatives to encourage women to start their own businesses. The “EMPOWER Programme” has just been launched to encourage more women to engage in start-ups in the Galway, Mayo, and Roscommon area. We really enjoyed working with Maria Staunton, GMIT Innovation Hub (Mayo) Manager and we were even more delighted to see one of our other Clients Evelyn O’Toole from CLS being invited to speak at the EMPOWER launch conference where she will share her entrepreneurial experiences.
The idea of the EMPOWER Programme is to pinpoint the strengths and weaknesses of female entrepreneurs and to identify the challenges that they face and more importantly effective ways to overcome these challenges and become the business leaders of the future.
There are two parts to this Programme – EMPOWER Start and EMPOWER Growth.
EMPOWER Start provides an opportunity for 20 females from the region who are at the early stage of a business, or in business less than 1 year. It provides them with a one-half day a week over 12 weeks where they will learn Soft Skills Development along with business modules and skills, and it tests innovative ideas for market acceptance.
EMPOWER Growth offers an opportunity for 12 females from the region who have been in business more than 2 years and fully understand value proposition and customer segmentation. The programme is one-half Saturday a month over 11 months with the aim to grow the existing business.
Official Launch of the Empower Programme
The official launch of the EMPOWER Programmes will take place on Wednesday 13th Sept in the Connacht Hotel in Galway. Guest speakers such as Chanelle McCoy (Chanelle Pharmaceuticals), Breege O Donaghue (ex CEO of Primark and Chair of the Design Council of Ireland) and Evelyn O’ Toole (CLS, 2017 E&Y Ent of Year Finalist, and long-standing Proactive client) will be joined by a panel of female entrepreneurs to share their knowledge and experience.
We will be booking tickets and we also hope to see the mix of our entrepreneurial clients becoming more balanced in the coming months!
For more information or to apply for either programme, visit www.empowerher.ie.