Dreams for your future

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evolution for women

Dreams for your future

What are your dreams for your future?

Unlike me at her age, my daughter is not really a dreamer for the future if I ask her. She is very much about the here and now and even though a part of me wants to hear her talk about her dream job (knowing that it will change), I actually like the independence that she shows in not being under pressure to talk about growing up.

As a child, one of my dreams was to work in Africa saving animals, partly influenced by watching the Diane Fossey story in Gorillas in the Mist and others like it. Back then, before the days of social media, if you wanted to help a cause, you went out and got involved, you couldn’t make a difference in the world via facebook and perhaps you still can’t. I still hold on to that dream a little, perhaps one day I might go to Africa for a time when my daughter no longer needs me quite as much and offer my services to an animal charity.

Our Dreams May Have Changed

Our dreams may have changed since we were little as our responsibilities have grown, what’s the dream that gives you the reason to get up, work hard and do what you need to do in your career or for your loved ones every day?

  • Retire early?
  • Get a better work/life balance?
  • See more of the world?
  • Spend more time with or caring for your loved ones?
  • Buy that holiday home or move abroad?

Is this just a dream or are you making the plans that you need now to help this to become a reality?

Saving for The Future

When we are in our 20’s or 30’s it can be easy to not look too far into the future while we are busy focusing on the financial demands of the here and now, juggling work and family life and the additional living costs at this time. For many, this is the reality, well into our 40’s with big mortgages and low disposable incomes. Saving for the future seems impossible. In our 50’s, some have managed to get to point when we can start seriously planning for our future though the task ahead of them to achieve that dream can seem quite daunting at that time.

Savvy Choices with Your Spending & Borrowing

Whatever stage of life you are at, savvy choices with your spending & borrowing can help you to make your dreams a reality sooner than you think. Planning for your future in other ways such as protecting your income and family, can help you to cope better with the curve balls that life may throw at you. It’s not too late to start. We want our clients to have fun, be happy and spend quality time with loved ones with the peace of mind in knowing that your finances are in order, you have a financial plan for the future and your family will be provided for during some of the more difficult life events that can happen. If you know or think you need help in all or any of these areas to make your financial future more certain, please get in touch with me or your local Evolution for Women Adviser and see how we can help you.


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Business networking 1-2-1 meetings 10to12 Business club

Unleash The Power Of Your 1-2-1 meetings

Here at 10-12, we are big fans of 1-2-1 meetings. So much so, in fact, that we include a special slot for them in our networking events, right at the end. This means that everyone has had a chance to find out who is in the room and what they do, so they can figure out if they want to talk to them further. 1-2-1’s are arguably the most powerful tool we have as networkers, but why?

Why We Have 1-2-1’s In Our Meetings

One of the things our visitors and new members always comment on is the fact that we hold 1-2-1’s within our meeting. For many networking groups it is a bit unusual, as most spend that time doing longer pitches, feature presentations or passing around slips of paper. But we prefer to dedicate time to having short 1-2-1s because it creates a stronger bond between our members and allows us to get to know each other a little better. For visitors, 1-2-1’s allow you to get 10 minutes of someone’s attention and ask them all the burning questions you thought of during their 40 seconds. For members, they help you reconnect and find out new things about your fellow members. The thing that networking is famous for (and women’s groups in particular) is creating meaningful relationships that generate business for everyone involved, and the way to really maximise the chances of that is by utilising those 1-2-1’s.

Taking It Outside

10-12 meeting 1-2-1 meetingsOf course, within the confines of our monthly networking meetings, you only really get 10 minutes to chat – 5 minutes each really. And while that’s really useful for building a foundation and understanding of someone’s business, it’s the external 1-2-1’s they lead on to that are truly powerful. You see, there’s a reason most structured networking groups encourage 1-2-1 discussions and meetings. During these external meetings you have more time, are often in a more comfortable environment and can really dig deep into meaningful conversations about you and your business. The power of 1-2-1’s isn’t really about business – it’s about getting to know someone and making a deep connection that strengthens trust and builds a rapport. All sorts of things can come out during a good 1-2-1, and many friendships have blossomed from them as well. In getting to know other business owners, you get to know who you like, who thinks in the same way as you and really come to understand how you can help each other. Without 1-2-1’s, all you would have to go by is your 40 second pitch and a few brief moments of casual networking, and not much business comes out of that. But with that added trust and bonding that only comes from a one on one meeting, you have a much more powerful tool at your disposal – a networking partner who actively wants to get you business.

10-12 Business Club Networking ReadingUltimately, everyone who comes to our networking group is there for the same reason – to build connections and do business. But expecting someone to want to do business with you and refer people they know to you when they don’t really know you themselves is a bit like expecting to be able to swim after reading a book on it. You can apply all the right techniques and still end up floundering. But by taking the time to get to know someone, showing an interest in their life and business, you can start to build up the trust that leads to fruitful business. Want to see the power of 1-2-1’s in action? Come along to one of our meetings and discover just how good 1-2-1’s are for relationship building.

 


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Don’t Treat Networking Like The Gym

At one of our recent meetings, a member commented on the fact that many people would book places on her free workout sessions but not turn up, often without any notice that they weren’t going to be there. This is something of a trend across the fitness world, and I have noticed similar things happen for paid, pre-booked gym classes. It’s also something that tends to happen a lot with business networking sessions. Particularly over the summer months, when the number of no-shows soars dramatically and many meetings are postponed or cancelled so everyone can enjoy their holidays. But for the rest of the year, it’s important to remember not to treat your networking like your gym membership.

Commit Regularly

gym membership

Commitment brings results

There is common saying that nothing worth doing in life is easy, which for many things is true. Getting in shape, learning a new skill or starting your own business are all great examples of worthwhile things that are in no way easy. But there are some things, like networking, that fall into the ‘easy’ category while still being incredibly valuable.
The biggest issue people find with networking is not that it’s hard, but that it requires The biggest issue people find with networking is not that it’s hard, but that it requires commitment to see results. Just like you don’t do one session in the gym and expect a six pack, you can’t expect to go to one meeting and come away with dozens of new clients right away. In order to see the long-term results, you need to commit to turning up regularly and interacting with people. If you can do that, the rewards will soon follow.

Don’t Throw In The Towel

I read a very interesting article about gym memberships in the process of researching this blog. It turns out that a staggering 80% of new gym members don’t make it past the 5th month. So even if an average individual has neglected their body for years and wants that ‘beach ready’ body, they are only willing to commit 5 months of their life to trying to get in shape before giving up. This struck a chord with me, as it’s something I often see with networking and even business ownership in general. Business owners are willing to try out networking for a few months, but if they have not seen any results in that time they give up on the whole idea. Networking, just like getting in shape, is a long process that doesn’t happen overnight. So just because you’ve been going to a meeting a week for a month and not got a single referral doesn’t mean it’s time to throw in the towel. Stick with it and you will see those amazing results.

Tell Someone If You Can’t Make It

We all understand that life gets in the way, and sometimes something crops up at the last minute and ruins your plans. But no matter what the situation, it’s important to always tell the person or group that you will be unable to attend that day. You see it a lot with gym classes – you’ve booked in to a class at 7pm and you’re super excited, but by 6.30 you’re exhausted and don’t have the ‘get up and go’ that you did when you booked in that morning. After 5 or 10 minutes of pep talk, you realise you can’t get there in time anyway and just stay at home instead. Meanwhile the instructor at the class is waiting for you, irritated that she could have given your space to someone else if you’d just told her you couldn’t make it.
don't keep it a secretThe same applies for booked networking. Maybe you slept in because you had a long night, or had an emergency issue or your childcare fell through. When you realise you can’t make the meeting, whatever the reason, you should let someone in the organisation know you can’t be there. Often they will be able to find someone to hot seat for you at the last minute – so you can still have your pitch read out and reap some of the benefits of the meeting.

At 10-12 we believe in a structured networking approach combined with a more informal attitude to create the perfect networking environment. Our meetings are structured, but allow time for individual development and conversations to take place. Like all networking groups, it can take time to see results, but our members have all been extremely impressed after building strong business connections and friendships. For more information or to book your place, get in touch today.


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networking visitor month

Business Networking Visitor Month

Visitor Month at 10-12 Business Club Networking

Try business networking for women in Berks, Bucks, Surrey

June is the month for visitors at the 10-12 Business Club. Come try our friendly structured networking events in Berkshire, Buckinghamshire and Surrey. Normal visitor rate is just £15 but in the month of June you can save £5 and come visit for just £10.00

Come try our new Bagshot and Camberly networking group that launches on the 17th of June or consider one of our established groups such as Reading, Marlow or Maidenhead.

Reading Networking Group is held on the first Thursday of the month at Bearwood Lakes Golf Club

Marlow Networking Group is held on the second Friday of the month at Harleyford Estate Golf Club

Maidenhead Networking Group is held on the fourth Wednesday of the month at Monkey Island Hotel

For more information on our network agenda, visit our meeting agenda page or email for more information.

We look forward to welcoming you to one of our groups in the month of June.


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Womens Networking

New Womens Network Meetings

Womens Networking group Bagshot Camberley

The 10-12 Business Club are delighted to announce a new womens business networking group that launches on the 17th of June at the Windlesham Golf Club.

This new group will meet on the 3rd Wednesday of each month from 10am to 12noon using our structured network meeting format.

The group launches in the month of June which just happens to be the visitor month for 10-12 Business Club which will allow you to try out the 10-12 format for just £10

Visit the meeting page for more information on our Camberley and Bagshot Network Group

Bagshot camberley womens networking


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erin_Kurt

Fabulous Speakers and Presentations in Berkshire

This month at the 10-12 Business Club we have been treated to some fabulous speakers at each of our events. We kicked off the tail end of this month at Maidenhead with a presentation by Abi Woolhouse from Stratagem IPM on Trade Marks and Copyright. Abi covered the different types of work that could be considered under the copyright law and pointed out the pitfalls in not considering ownership of copyright. It certainly made us all think about what we do in a day to day basis in our working day. If you missed this excellent presentation, don’t worry, it was so good she will be back to do another presentation for the Marlow group in May.

jacky-bloomfield-1364382515-logo1Our Reading Meeting continued with another great presentation on the issues when using images and copyright laws. Jacky Bloomfield of M and J Bloomfield gave a great insight on how to use other peoples images and how to respect their copyright. If you need to know more about using other peoples images, then Jacky Bloomfield  is the person to contact.

Images are often shared through social media, but just make sure you know what copyright applies to that particular and comply where necessary to avoid a charge for using the image.

 

Alix HorneOur Marlow meeting continued the theme as we had Alix Horne of Amax Designs for her very interesting presentation on ‘The Essence of Logo Design’. Alix walked us through the process of choosing a logo and how a designer creates the logo design from the brief given. If you have never gone through the process of choosing a logo, then Alix provided some great tips and feedback on what to do and what to take into consideration.

Alix walked us through a design that she had created for a client, taking the concept of black and white into the chosen colors and eventually the final logo. A long, detailed process that provided the perfect results for the client.

 

erin_KurtTo top off the month Erin, Kurt of Erin, Kurt gave a great presentation “Personal Branding” on the image that you project to those that you meet including . Erin talked about the way that we displayed our personalities at networking events, online, in social media and gave some tips and pointers to consider for our own business image.

A great insight into just some of the things that a business coach can help you to achieve. For more information, contact Erin, Kurt

 

 

If you would like to present at one of the 10-12 Business club Meetings we would love to hear from you. Contact Karen Livingstone for more details on availability to present to our business groups.


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1st Birthday Party

Network Groups First Birthday Party

10-12 Business Club goes golf crazy to celebrate networking group’s first birthday

It’s celebration time for members and supporters of the 10-12 Business Club as they mark the Thames Valley networking venture’s first birthday.

They will be joining forces on 20 September at Caversham Heath Golf Club, near Reading, for a networking lunch plus the chance to either check out nine of the 18-hole championship course or have a lesson with a club pro.

Since the 10-12 Business Club was launched in September 2012 more than 100 members have signed up in four groups — Reading, Marlow, and Sunningdale, which are for women only, and Twyford, which welcomes men as well.

Behind the venture are three local business owners — Karen Livingstone, of Little Acorn Marketing, Lucie Robson, of Off The Red Tees, and Issy Wiggins, of Goeasy Travel and Where’s Your Website.

Issy Wiggins said: “It’s been an amazing year and we’re delighted at how quickly the club has grown and the commitment and support we’ve had from the business people who have got involved.

“We wanted to mark this important milestone with something just a little different and as we’re all keen golfers, this seemed like a great way to celebrate!

“We’re combining some serious business networking with a great opportunity for everyone — members and non-members alike — to have a bit of fun, whether they’re seasoned golfers or absolute beginners or just want to join us for lunch.”

The day — which is open to all — runs from 9am until 2.30pm, with three options on offer:

  • Lunch and networking only between 12.30pm-2.30pm (£12.50)
  • Lunch and networking plus a one-hour golf lesson with a Caversham pro between 11am and noon (£19.50)
  • Lunch and networking plus nine holes on Caversham’s 18-hole championship course between 9am and noon (£22.50).

Issy added: “Caversham has excellent changing facilities, so you can switch from your golf gear to smart casual in time for lunch.”

To find out more or reserve any of the options, go to www.10-12businessclub.co.uk and follow the “1st Birthday Party” links.

ENDS

 

More information from Karen Livingstone on 07988 676 219; karen@littleacornmarketing.co.uk

Notes to editors

The 10-12 Business Club was founded in September 2012 to offer structured networking at convenient venues across east Berkshire and south Buckinghamshire and now has a membership of more than 100].

Meetings are hosted once a month at four venues, with women-only groups at Reading, Marlow, and Sunningdale, and a mixed group in Twyford.

The club’s name derives from the 10am start and midday finish times, and meetings follow a carefully structured approach that includes short presentations and valuable one-to-one networking. Membership is not restricted by profession.

From September 2013, the club is also hosting 10-12 BizClub Lite, a monthly unstructured networking event in Shinfield open to all.

Behind the 10-12 Business Club and 10-12 BizClub Lite are three local business owners:

 

Karen Livingstone runs her own marketing consultancy, Little Acorn Marketing, and works with SMEs in the Thames Valley to help them grow their businesses using a range of approaches, including social media/digital marketing. She comes from a strong corporate background with over 20 years of experience in planning, strategy, tactical implementation and evaluation, particularly in the technology sector.

Lucie Robson has a background in promotional marketing and product management across the retail and travel IT service sectors and now runs her own golf events business. Through Off The Red Tees, she focuses in particular on encouraging women new to the sport as well as organising bespoke charity and corporate events. In 2013, she organised the UK rounds of the Ladies Golf Cup, a prestigious event leading to an international final.

Issy Wiggins is the owner of two businesses — Goeasy Travel, a boutique travel consultancy, and digital agency Where’s Your Website.  She founded Goeasy Travel — now part of the Global Travel Group consortium — in 1999 and specialises in organising complex multi-centre holiday itineraries, bespoke packages for honeymoons and weddings, and group ski-ing and golf destination holidays. Where’s Your Website was established to offer a complete service to SMEs, including web design and build, digital marketing and social media training.