How to Juggle Life with a Business & Children

How to Juggle Life with a Business & Children

You may think that one of the most difficult and rewarding jobs is being an entrepreneur, but some might argue that being a parent tops it.

When you’re both a mother and a business owner, things can feel never-ending and you may find yourself short on time in both your work life and your home life which can leave you feeling guilty and frustrated.

In this blog we’re going to give all you working mums out there some top tips on how to juggle your working and home life and how to make the best out of your busy situation!

• Wherever possible, avoid multitasking. Try and focus on one thing at a time so when you get home, and you’re trying to help your son or daughter do their homework, put your phone away and let them know that they have your full attention for an hour.

• Build a community! When you have children, make sure you have a group of people you can trust and that will support you. You are certainly not the only one who is living life both as an entrepreneur and a parent so start building relationships with these people so when the time comes and you do need a helping hand, there are plenty of people to reach out to.

• Plan ahead and be organised, at home and at work. Although you never know what the day ahead will be like, planning will always benefit you. Start every day with a list of the jobs you need to complete whether it be, calling a contact you met at networking last week or remembering that you need to take your little one to football practice. Be aware of what is going on each day so you can be prepared for any changes.

• Focus on what’s important. Always remember that your work will never be as important as your children so when they’re crying in the middle of the night, don’t moan about how tired you’re going to be for work in a few hours, treasure what you have in front of you!

If you have any advice you feel would help other working mothers, feel free to share it on our Facebook page, Ladies 4 Networking and also Tweet us at @L4N_UK.

Business Networking Groups Forge New Relationship

Business Networking Groups Forge New Relationship

Exciting new developments in the works ladies!

A new partnership has been forged between two of Yorkshire’s fastest growing business networking organisations to offer a wider range of benefits to their members, Yorkshire Enterprise Network, one of the county’s biggest networking groups and us, L4N UK!

By joining up with YEN we are undergoing major growth and have extended our services, introducing new membership packages.

The new scheme will give businesses instant access to a broad range of benefits, ranging from online promotion, directory listings and access to business advice, events, sponsorship opportunities and tenders – including the unique L4N UK Passport to Success online resource, helping businesses to grow and increase profits.

YEN Director Sheraz Malik said: “We were in the process of putting together our new membership packages when I was introduced to the L4N UK directors and it was soon evident that our two organisations had a similar ethos and we’re moving in the same direction – so it made sense to collaborate and bring even more businesses together.

“We already have quite a good gender balance at our meetings, but we have been looking at ways of improving this even further and ensuring that our events are equally attractive to men and women. Although the joint membership will be only be available to women, there will be benefits for everyone, as all our members will have access to a wider audience and a broader range of businesses at our monthly meetings and online.”

L4N UK Director Judith Wright said: “Our group is dedicated to providing opportunities for women in business to network, gain support and confidence, learn new skills and develop collaborative associations with other women in business.

“There’s no denying that men and women network differently. Women like to build relationships first and the feedback we’ve had over the years is that they often feel more confident in a women-only networking environment when first starting out or returning to business after a period away.

“This new relationship will mean that our members can progress into mainstream networking, on a level playing field, building on the confidence they have gained and building on the skills they have learned with L4N.”

For further information visit www.yorkshirenetwork.co.uk or email [email protected]

This is a great step forward for both L4N UK and YEN and we hope you can all join us for this journey!

Four Skills that Smart Women Leaders Exhibit

Four Skills that Smart Women Leaders Exhibit

In business, women often bring a different set of leadership traits to the table than their male counterparts. These are considered more ‘feminine’ traits, such as collaboration, empathy, patience, and humility. Not all women leaders possess these traits and some women actually possess more stereotypical ‘masculine’ traits, such as strength and competitiveness.

At present, research suggests that, in a work environment, employee engagement is a concern. One of the major reasons that employees are disengaged is because they have poor relationships with their bosses. Utilising the woman-side of leadership just might help to improve these relationships.

Here are four skills that smart leaders exhibit and can improve employee productivity and contentment in the workplace.

1. Model Mutual Respect with Employees

Women often enjoy connecting and sharing and they have the ability to build meaningful relationships with others. This is especially helpful when building a team culture with employees. Demonstrating an honest level of respect for those with whom you work can go a long way in making employees feel that they are a meaningful part of the workforce.
Smart female leaders are able to genuinely demonstrate the respect for others that they expect for themselves. This is a feminine trait that some men also exhibit, but in a work environment where collaboration is often required, being able to respect one another is essential.

2. Listen Well

We have two ears and one mouth for a reason. You should spend twice as much time listening as you do speaking. Women leaders can use their conversation skills to elicit from their employees what is on their minds. Women tend to be more discussion oriented; men more action oriented. Listening to concerns of the workforce allows leaders to make more informed decisions and allows employees to have their voices heard, and thus opportunities for innovation will not fall between the cracks.

3. Embrace Passion for Their Work

Often, women have a propensity to identify a passion and follow where it leads. If they are going to become heavily involved in a project, they want their energy spent on making a meaningful difference. Women are more likely to exhibit passion for their work, or a project, or a team activity. Embracing such a positive energy can inspire others.

4. Opportunity Driven

Looking for the opportunities available from a glass half full perspective is going to produce more positive choices. But, when considering opportunities, the masculine traits of competition and striving to win can be important in a cut-throat business environment and cannot be discounted. However, the feminine trait of building strong relationships and collaboration makes teams run smoothly, and provides a more comfortable work environment. Blending these ‘masculine’ and ‘feminine’ traits will create the best outcomes.

According to research, women seem to feel a need to prove themselves. Women often state: “In order to get the same recognition and rewards, I need to do twice as much, never make a mistake and constantly demonstrate my competence.” Yet, in a business environment, where the style of leadership is more transformational than transactional, the feminine skills that many women bring to the table are highly valuable to the company’s well-being.

Expanding the number of women in leadership roles can only help to meet the diverse needs of a diverse culture.

How to Become More Confident in Business

How to Become More Confident in Business

For some people, being confident can be very difficult, especially in business. Confidence is not something you are born with; it can be built and improved on just like anything else!

The fear of failing and the fear of being ridiculed have held us back over the years and it’s all due to not having that right amount of confidence – the nerve to live our best life. By building your confidence little by little, you will transform your life.

So, let’s get to it! Here are 5 ways to improve your confidence:

1. Identify your strengths and integrate them into what you do everyday

This is a great one to do, write down what you know to be your strengths, memorise them and think about them every day. If you play to your strengths, often you will feel more engaged and energised.

2. Identify weaknesses and continuously work on them

This is the opposite of the last point. As you did with your strengths, write down your weaknesses so you’re aware of them and can work on them. You shouldn’t concentrate purely on them, but just making yourself aware that they are there and making a conscious effort to overcome them, can help boost your confidence.

3. Monitor your success

Start each day by writing down a realistic to-do list which you can follow and tick off one by one. Every time you tick a job off, you will gain a sense of achievement and you will form a pattern of ‘Yeah, I can do it!’ – This will help improve your confidence, making you believe you can do and achieve.

4. Test yourself

Accomplishing tasks and assignments which you never thought you could do is a perfect way to boost your confidence! Find projects which play on your strengths but also make you work just a little bit harder, stretching yourself to achieve the objective. Try something new but refrain from comparing your performance to someone else or judging yourself too early into the task, everyone has different strengths and sometimes baby steps are the way to start.

5. Talk to people/ask for advice

Don’t be afraid to talk to new people or ask for advice from existing contacts, we all need a little help every now and again. Regularly talking to people and asking for different opinions and perspectives will ultimately boost your confidence as you’ll see generally, people are nice and always happy to help you in a time of need!

Let us know how you boost your confidence in business by tweeting to @L4N_UK and we’ll retweet your advice to all the ladies connected on Twitter!

Why You Should Use Twitter in Business

Why You Should Use Twitter in Business

Twitter is one of the most popular social media platforms, with over 241 million monthly active Twitter users and 350,000 tweets sent out every minute (2014), and it’s still growing.

Social media is a huge part of any business nowadays and with an estimated 1.96 billion people using social network platforms this year (statista.com), if you’re not using the likes of Twitter, you’re missing out on a potentially huge market.

Read the list of points below which tell you why you should use Twitter for your business!

Connect with customers

Connecting with customers is a huge bonus when using Twitter because your customers are most likely to be on it! The social media platform has become part of some people’s daily routines, the first thing they look at when they wake up, and the last when they go to sleep and you can coordinate your posts to align with this schedule. By connecting with your customers, you can create a relationship, which will bode well for your business. If any of them are unsatisfied, you will hear them and can easily respond to them and publicly showcase your customer service talents! As a result of this, they can rave about your product or service and mention you in their posts, therefore alerting others to what a great business you have!

Free marketing

Who doesn’t want free marketing? Social media is one of the best ways to get your business out there, and it’s free! Twitter is perfect for marketing as it’s so easy to gain followers and get your message out to millions of people… as long as you keep that message to a maximum of 140 characters, so stick to the important, eye-catching stuff!

Looking at competition

Twitter is great for checking up on your competition and looking at what they’re doing. It’s not just their tweets you should be looking at though, look at the people tweeting them and what they’re replying with. You can learn a lot from a company just by looking at their social media!

News

Being on Twitter means you can keep everyone following you up to date with what your company is doing and what events or offers are coming up. You can also keep up to date with your industry news, find out what’s trending now and what people are currently interested in. In today’s environment you need to be on the ball and offering what people are wanting now.

What are you waiting for? Create your account now!

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