Submitted article–The Women’s Enterprise Centre and Haida Gwaii Community Futures are gearing up for the “Celebration of Women Entrepreneurs” event, Sunday March 19 at the Port Clements fire hall.
Women own and operate over 36-percent of all small businesses in BC, and start their own businesses at double the rate of their male counterparts.
The day-long business symposium brings together enterprising business women and aspiring entrepreneurs to network, share challenges and perspectives, benefit from a mentor match program, and access the latest ‘must have’ business skills.
Workshops and forums are designed around real life stories of successful local businesswomen who, as guest contributors, will help put the business topics into a practical context.
Several local businesswomen will share their stories, give advice and offer guidance. Their areas of expertise and types of businesses are as varied as the women themselves.
Casey Decock, Owner, Shipshape.
Almost 2 years ago, Casey Deacock had an idea for a new business that would save Port residents from having to travel out of town to get many of their basic needs met. Today, Shipshape is a thriving operation where you can get a hair cut, have a work-out, or get some cash from the ATM. Casey will share how she planned for the business to be successful from the start and what problems she has dealt with along the way.
Marlene Liddle, Manager, Rachel’s HaidaWay.
Marlene Liddle was a self-taught computer specialist for many years before setting up her own business, offering computer technical services in Ottawa. For the past 4 years, she has independently managed Rachel’s HaidaWay, a gas bar/convenience store/ice cream parlour/cafÃ©/bakery located in Old Massett, where she runs the business as she would her own.
Janet Gifford Brown, Owner, Northwest Coast Books.
Janet Brown’s Northwest Coast Book’s niche is specializing in books on the Queen Charlottes, North West Coast natives, and natural history. But how do they set themselves apart from other booksellers and still run a viable business that includes museums, galleries, retail stores, collectors and tribal nation libraries? Janet will share what she has learned over the years as an employee and an owner.
Kathy Pick, Artist & Owner, Shingle Bay Bed & Breakfast.
Both experienced and comfortable as a business owner, Kathy Pick has started and built up a variety of businesses, a few which she has sold to women and has trained in all aspects of the business. An artist, currently Kathy is operating a B & B in her home, does contract work for on-island organizations and creates beautiful art in a variety of media.
Lucille Bell, Owner, Haida Rose CafÃ©. Many customers refer to the cafÃ© as “their place.” The business plan Lucille wrote won both the BC Plan-It Contest and a BC Hydro Aboriginal business grant.
Lucille’s ability to combine her business and her cultural work won her the 2004 BC Community Achievement Award.
These are participants in the full day “Celebration of BC Women Entrepreneurs.” They will contribute to workshops including the “Starting Your Business” workshop that covers the key steps, pitfalls and tips of starting a business in BC, and a “Growing Your Business” workshop for established business owners. This covers the topics of strategic edge and strategic alliances, an approach that small businesses are using to grow their business. The workshops are followed by a “Business Unplugged” forum and peer mentoring event.
This exciting event will give women entrepreneurs the inspiration, insight and advice they need to continue succeeding in today’s business climate. The event starts at 9 am Sunday March 19 and runs until 5:15. During lunch, Joyce Bennett of Moonlight House will present a fashion show. There is no fee to attend; however pre-registration will help the caterer provide lunch.
All women who are thinking of starting a business, have started one or are growing their business are encouraged to attend. Register today!
Information-Skye Cantin, HG Community Futures, 626-5594
Or visit http://www.womensenterprise.ca/sessions/haidagwaii.htm