Women in Business – Where Did Your Journey Begin?

We are proud to have helped launch a brand new product with our lovely client Business Chicks. They have clearly established themselves as one of the most unique professional networks around and have a very sizeable membership base here in Australia and abroad too. They provide online and offline ways for professional women to connect, share with, learn from and inspire eachother.

We helped Business Chicks develop a new student membership package. We recognised that while professional women face many challenges and opportunities in their careers, younger women, or those that are just starting their careers often face even more significant hurdles.

The student membership package provides a way for these business leaders of tomorrow to get a head start in their career

Reflections On My Journey

Throughout this exercise I have reflected on my own experiences. I spent much of my time at university within the social sciences and I graduated with a Masters of Economics from the University of Sydney. I came out of university with a great deal of academic experience, but relatively little practical working experience. Entering the workforce was a big change from the study halls and libraries I was familiar with.

It was very hard to start networking from scratch. While I wanted to meet with and learn from others, it was difficult to begin. When you don’t know many people it can be rather daunting to start meeting them. We hear about those individuals who can ‘work a room’ or are master networkers, but unfortunately it didn’t come that naturally to me.

I started off by networking via my university lecturers, many of whom had either worked in industry or were still involved in consulting. This started the chain by which I met other people. In time I was able to get my first job as a research assistant at the University of Technology, Sydney. From there I made my way through different roles in a range of industries before setting off on my own entrepreneurial journey in 2004 when I founded Brainmates.

Thinking back, I see that there were many areas which were challenging. With my product management hat on, I’m sure you’ll agree with me in identifying these as customer problems.

Into this space, Business Chicks, with their new student membership package will provide today’s students with many opportunities that I did not have. Their offering provides resources on how to prepare for job interviews, tips and guides to networking as well as a vibrant community of women who are inclusive, enthusiastic and willing to share.

How did you get your career started? What challenges did you find in the transition from education to the workforce? What do you think students of today would benefit most from?