This year for the first time ever the Commonwealth Bank Women in Focus team are offering an Australian business woman the opportunity to win an all expenses paid place at their Annual Conference.
As someone who has been fortunate enough to attend this conference twice, this is truly an opportunity that money can’t buy. The range of speakers is absolutely fantastic, with both local and international entrepreneurs and business leaders presenting. But the value is not just in the opportunity to hear from the incredible line up of speakers, it’s in the connections, relationships and friendships that form among the women who attend.
The first Women in Focus conference I attended was in Noosa in 2012, and was the first time I met Lisa Messenger. We initially bonded over Twitter as we furiously tweeted the rapid fire takeouts from the sessions using the conference hashtag, then sought each other out to meet face to face. In a truly ironic scenario, we then found ourselves on opposing teams in the debate on ‘The value of social media in advertising!’ We may have been arguing different cases for the purposes of the debate, but the reality was,we found that we had a real connection, and formed a wonderful friendship that has seen us share our experiences along the rollercoaster ride that our business lives have taken since that time. It’s been a busy two years, particularly for Lisa, and I’ve loved being able to follow the journey of the birth and growth of the Collective Hub empire! (If you haven’t discovered the Collective Revolution yet, check it out here). Our next adventure involves heading to Necker Island for a ‘Change Makers and Rule Breakers’ trip with Richard Branson this November along with our partners, and I can’t even imagine what will eventuate!
Catriona Wallace and I may have initially focused on each others feet when we first met at a Women in Focus Conference, but our shared love of fabulous footwear quickly moved to a friendship that has subsequently turned into a business partnership. I can’t recall whether our initial discussions about Flamingo actually took place on the rainforest stage in the Daintree at last year’s conference where we played the role of back up dancers to fellow delegate Andrea Culligan’s spontaneous vocal show stopper, but shortly afterwards, Stuart and I joined her seed funding round. This has now progressed to see us not only increasing our investment and working together on health applications for the Flamingo platform, but recently travelling to Israel together as part of a trade mission with the Australia-Israel Chamber of Commerce (you can read more about that here).
These are just two illustrations of the opportunities that have come my way courtesy of engaging with Women in Focus community, but in the words of the indomitable Karen James at one of those very conferences: ‘Opportunities are like doorways, we are presented with them all the time, but if you don’t open them and go through you’ll never know what is waiting for you on the other side.’ It may not always involve tropical islands or dodging rockets, but I can guarantee it will change your life in one way or another!
Your first doorway is here: click on the link, complete your entry and take your chance at being one of the 140 women lucky enough to be holding a ticket to Port Douglas this October.
While there will only be one lucky winner, attending the conference is not the only way of engaging this this fantastic community of business women. Just go to the Women in Focus website , where it’s free to sign up and join the community. A wealth of opportunity and inspiration awaits.