Networking events – are they worth it?

Helen and Francesca attended the inaugural FSB (Federation of Small Businesses) Women in Enterprise Brunch on Thursday at The Kings Head in Bessels Green.  Whilst the FSB has been around for 40+ years it has not been a feature in West Kent or Sevenoaks and had a reputation for being ‘grey, male and stale’ – not our words!

Andrea and Kirsteen of Ten 2 Two fame and fellow #SevenoaksMums of course, were approached to bring a ladies only bi-monthly brunch to Sevenoaks and to format it in a way that suits local attendees.

We attended the launch and we’ll be back.  Why?

  • It’s at a time that suits – 10am-12midday so it doesn’t clash with school drop off.
  • It’s in a location that suits with free parking – The Kings Head at Bessels Green.
  • It’s full of ‘people like us’ – other women running their own businesses or departments within larger operations.  Some at the start of their business journey, others well established.  And no men talking about golf, yawn.
  • There was clear cross over between our business and those of others in the room.  Bloggers, well-being and parenting experts and family law professionals to name a few.
  • The format is not dictated to us, we can influence how the sessions will be run.
  • It’s not expensive to attend – £10 for non FSB members and £5 for members including a cuppa and nibble bits.
  • The FSB also lobbies the government on matters affecting small businesses having taken on board what their members feedback to each regional director.  An example being the recent U-turn on increasing NI contributions for the self employed.  The FSB played an integral part in that process, that’s pretty impressive we reckon.
  • It’s not a ‘peacocking’ atmosphere.  No one was saying they knew it all and everyone was saying they’d like to learn from each other.
  • It felt fun and relaxed, but useful.

Next event is in July, come and join us.  Watch this space for more info.

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