Women in Business: School Event

To celebrate International Women day this conference explored and investigated topics such as:

Female entrepreneurship, leadership, business, enterprise and creativity

Furthermore the conference aimed to enhance the business curriculum and raise aspirations for further studies and professional journey.

The conference took place on Friday 10th March 2017 at the Plymouth University Main Campus. It was the first outreach ‘Women in Business’ conference organised by Plymouth Business School.

We had many renowned external speakers as well as prominent academics and authors:

Academic and Author Alison Theaker – The Spark

Academic Jasmine Kelland – Plymouth Graduate School of Management 

Creative Director Sybille Schiffmann – Director, Developing Futures

Entrepreneur Anne Walker MBE – Founder International Dance Supplies LTD

Rachel Jagger-Thomas – Diversity and Inclusion Lead, Plymouth University

Rebecca Lee – The Plymouth University’s Digital Manager

Dr Jodie Fisher, Technician, School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences

Talks and Workshops offered at the Conference:

Sybille Schiffmann’s ‘Leading Differently – Sharing Leadership ‘ talk was about unconventional way of leading within organisations, applying direct experience with leaders from public sector. She introduced and explored some key leadership and coaching principles, models and practices, to enable pupils to work and develop their leadership skills. Pupils learnt about different leadership styles and techniques; discovered unconventional and creative leadership designs and styles and developed and enhanced their creative and leadership skills.

The talk by a prominent academic Jasmine Kelland ‘Challenging Gender Stereotypes in Career Choices‘ highlighted the current research on women in workplace, gendered stereotypes and pay. It also explored further the challenges and obstacles in the area.

In Alison Theaker’s talk and workshop ‘Communicating Confidently’ pupils learnt about some of the things that hold us back form being assertive and learnt techniques for being heard.  Pupils learnt about the different response styles we use every day, participated in self-affirmation exercises to increase confidence and to develop techniques for getting their point across.

“We have all encountered situations where we found it difficult to make ourselves heard or get our point across. We may get side-tracked by another person, rather than being able to put our requests simply and clearly. Whilst in some situations we feel confident and relaxed, in others we can feel frustrated or angry. This may be down to the response style of the person we are trying to communicate with.  By recognising the main response styles that we all use, we can take control of the conversation” Alison Theaker.

Entrepreneurial talks offered pupils an opportunity to share an entrepreneurial story and discuss what it takes to run a successful business.

Anne Walker MBE – Founder International Dance Supplies LTD

Dance teacher, choreographer, business woman, mentor and coach Anne Walker MBE will talk about her inspiring entrepreneurial journey of setting up and successfully running her company and achieving her goals. Her inspiration and energy will motivate you to grow bigger than your dreams.

BIO:  Anne left school at 16 to go to dance college and very soon was giving dance classes in the local church hall in order to make the money to pay for her own dance training.  By the time she was 21, she was renting a dance studio of her own where she taught 150 pupils ballet, tap and modern dance. Anne created a dance school and established a dance wear business. She runs business seminars, mentors students and sits on the board of local business group and  export group and a national mail order group. In 2010 Anne was honoured with an MBE for Services to Business in the Queen’s Birthday Honours and she has also been awarded a First Women Award, an Every woman Award and a Stevie Entrepreneur Award.

Plymouth University Women’s Network

Talks by a various members of Plymouth University Women’s Network covered a personal and profesesional experiences of working in Higher Education sector. Members of the Plymouth University Women’s network talked about the very different types of roles that they undertake in Higher Education. A short talk ‘A day in the life of…’ or  ‘How I got here…’  offered insight into a very different roles within the HE. Rachel, Rebecca and Jodie told the audience a little about what they do and the very different career journeys they have taken after completion of their degrees!

Rachel Jagger-Thomas – Diversity and Inclusion Lead, Plymouth University

Rachel works as the Diversity and Inclusion Lead for the University with a particular interest and focus on gender equity in Higher Education.  She also is also co- chair of the Plymouth University Women’s network.  Rachel has spent over 20 years working in the UK and overseas with organisations in the public, private and third sectors.  In the last 7 years, she has specifically focused on applying the skills and knowledge she developed as a Human Performance Director for a global management consultancy to the embedding and development of equality, diversity and inclusion in further and higher education, as well as delivery of a range of community engagement and NEET educational engagement projects.

Rebecca Lee – The Plymouth University’s Digital Manager

Rebecca Lee is the Digital Manager for Plymouth University, responsible for digital marketing and communications across web, social media and other digital platforms. Before being appointed to this position, she was the Web Editor for the University for 6 years. Rachel Jagger-Thomas is a Diversity and Inclusion Lead, promoting equality and eliminating discrimination for our staff and students, applicants and visitors.

Dr Jodie FisherSchool of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences (Faculty of Science and Engineering) works as a technician for Earth Sciences, supporting staff and students in practical, research and fieldwork activities. With a passion for communicating science she also undertake workshops and geoscience sessions for schools.

Plymouth University




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