One of the barriers for women entrepreneurs is the lack of women role models.
As a woman entrepreneur myself I understand how important it is to surround yourself with inspiring role models and feel that when you find and surround yourself with these positive and inspiring influences that whole new world's and approaches open up to you.
Everything becomes more possible. If they can do it maybe you can too!
So I've been reaching out to successful women entrepreneurs to ask if they would share their stories
Dawn Evans founder of training providers Ajuda, and Female Entrepreneur of the Year gladly obliged as inspiring other women was also something that she is passionate about
I was privileged to meet with Dawn and interview her. It was an amazing conversation and there were so many questions I wanted to ask about her journey of entrepreneurship and her secrets of success. Dawn has received multiple awards and is a shining example to women entrepreneurs everywhere
You can read the interview here:
Can you tell us about yourself and your business?
My name is Dawn, I am 45 years old, married my husband Darren in 1998, mother to Bethan, 16 and Thomas 14.
What prompted you to first set out into entrepreneurship?
Lifestyle was my main reason, My outlook on my career changed after I became a mum. Having the ability to create a life of flexibility and freedom, whilst enjoying a work / life balance.
How many years have you been in business?
Next month I will be celebrating 10 years in business.
When did you consider yourself to be successful and how do you define success?
Success is measured in many different forms; to me I guess success came when I could spend unlimited amounts of time with my family whilst still earning passive income.
You have received a number of awards, can you tell us what was your first and most recent?
My first award was back in 2012 when I won the Welsh Business award for Community Contribution, my most recent award was last month when I was announced as Female Entrepreneur of the Year at the South Wales Business awards.
Can you name a woman who has had a tremendous impact on you as a leader? Maybe someone who has been a mentor or role model to you along the way? Someone who inspired you?
I have met a few inspirational women during my journey into entrepreneurship. Nicola S Morgan is one lady who has had a definite impact in my journey, I met Nicola at a Networking event about 3 years ago, she is now my business partner for our new business venture The National Education Show.
Why and how did this person impact your life?
Nicola and I have recently set up a new company together which I am really excited about. She is a go getter, and always has a very positive outlook on life. Nicola has now written 10 books and has agreed to mentor me on publishing my first business book in the very near future.
What has been your experience of being a woman leader in business?
I seem to be outnumbered by men in similar roles to me, the business world seems to be a male dominated environment, however I know exactly what I want, and I just go and get it. Male or female, we are all people at the end of the day.
Why is it important to you personally that you inspire other women?
I think if women who are less confident, can see me succeed, then hopefully they will believe it is possible to follow their dreams too. Wales and the economy could benefit greatly by having a stronger female presence within the SME a corporate communities.
Which is most important to your organization--mission, core values or vision?
I would say all 3 of the above are equally important, I am on a mission to upskill and educate the masses, I feel you need a very clear vision in business, if you can't see where you're going, how are you expected to arrive at your destination? Finally, core values are important, the core of Ajuda is honestly, quality and integrity, customers will stay loyal, if you can deliver what you say you can, treat them as you would like to be treated and strive to exceed expectations.
What is one characteristic that you believe every leader should possess?
What advice would you give someone in business and stepping into a leadership position for the first time?
Stay true to what you believe, be honest, and never over promise what you can't not deliver.
What are you doing to ensure you continue to grow and develop as a leader?
Continually educating myself
Do you have success habits, if so can you tell us what they are?
Non-judgmental, I believe that everyone deserves a chance in life, I try to help others where I can, remain focused and professional at all times
What is your favourite quote?
I have 2 favorite quotes;
Life is about the journey, not the destination.
If you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its whole life believing it is stupid
What keeps you motivated?
Watching others that I have helped succeed.
'If I were to ask your friends, family or employees 'Give me three words that best describe you,' what would I hear?
Good question, I put this one to my friends and family, you can see the response I got back set out below:
Witty, heartfelt, loving, Thoughtful, caring, Inspirational, motivating, Loyal, Caring, inspirational, dedicated, Loyal, determined, mindful, Supportive, kind, integrity, Knowledgeable, approachable, kind, Ambitious, caring, strong, Inclusive, focussed, fun, Driven, inspirational, kind, Hardworking, thoughtful, generous, Driven, focused and fun, Approachable, Listener, Reliability
What advice would you have for other women starting or running their own businesses?
You need good Structure, good support and good finance.
What advice would you give to someone who wants to be successful in business but who is coming up against some challenges too?
Take on the challenge, deal with it, move on.
Tell us about any new ventures or projects within your business you would like us to know about?
The National Education Show
What do you need to ask for? What do you want? Who are you looking for to take your business forwards? How can we help?
The National Education Show is an exciting new event coming to Cardiff October 2017.
There will be 140 stands full of services and products that will benefit the Education Establishments of Wales, there will also be 20 seminars on the day, all the topics again will be of benefit to teaching staff within the education Sector. I am really excited about this new venture. You could help by spreading the word to anyone you know that works within the education sector
Ajuda Limited is a multi award winning company based in Cardiff. We provide companies with affordable Health and Safety Courses such as First Aid Training, Manual Handling, Health & Safety, Food Hygiene Training, Fire Safety and many more courses throughout Wales and the rest of the UK.
The National Education Show
As part of The Womenspire Leaders Network and my commitment to increase the number of women role models. I am helping women role models to be more visible. I am reaching out to successful women, interviewing them and sharing these interviews to inspire millions of other women too
If you would like to recommend an inspiring woman entrepreneur who is passionate about helping other women to be interviewed as part of Womenspire Leaders
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