Monday, July 29, 2013

"A Day at a Time We Can Achieve Anything" Katie's Story Setting up The Gordon Café

Katie as pictured by ST84Photogrpahy
For mum of 2 Katie Adams, surviving a turbulent few years only made her more determined to achieve her goals. With 20 years in the catering industry, setting up her own café and catering service seemed like the obvious next step for Katie.
“I knew it wouldn’t be easy,” said Katie, “It’s hard being a single mum and running a business, but it all just comes together, especially if you have the help of a supportive family.”

With ideas buzzing around her head Katie knew she would need some advice to make sure she started her business off on the right foot. Her first stop was the local community centre.

Katie said “I got in touch with Kirkdale Community Centre, because I was looking for advice around funding. The woman there mentioned that they had an empty kitchen there fully fitted ready for someone to take on.  The centre is right by my house, by my daughter’s school so it felt like ‘maybe this is where I am meant to be’.”

Katie was keen to ensure she was making sounds decisions, and wanted to look at any help she could get with getting her business up and running.

“Someone told me about The Women’s Organisation, so I went along to get some advice. My adviser gave me loads of help to put me in the right direction. With that support and having found the right place, setting up the business, although it was a hard slog, has not been a stress to me, I’m in a groove with it.”

Being a local resident, Katie had watched businesses start and fail on the site, and she felt she could see where they went wrong and how to learn from their mistakes.

“The café premises has been there for years. I’d seen it open and close a few times.  I knew it just needed someone to be consistent, so I dedicated to open every Monday to Friday. That way people know exactly when we are there, and I get to spend the weekends with my kids.”

“I am local myself," reflected the LMH resident, "so I am glad that local people are my customers – without customers I wouldn’t have a business. I like chatting to the young kids that come in. I want to instil goodness in them and let them know I’m not there to judge. We also have local pensioners pop in, and I am glad to be there to check on them and give them their scouse to take home for their tea. It’s not just a café, it’s a part of the community.”

Having faced real lows in her personal life, Katie knew the timing had to be right and told us:

“I opened the café when I was ready, and it was what I wanted. I wanted to achieve my goals. I’d had a very unhappy few years, I’d been in a bad place, but I have come out the other end and know now if I give my best to everything I can achieve. The things I have been through have made me the strong woman I am.”

Things are going well so far for Katie and her business ‘The Gordon Café’ which offers outside catering as well as a community café.

The mum of two told us “I love working for myself. It’s hard work, but everything is falling into place. I work with great girls, there are two part time staff (one is my cousin) and me. I enjoy it that much it’s like work is my social life. Saying that, I am a perfectionist. A business is like your baby. So I take it seriously and make sure everything is how I want it to be.”

Since opening the doors of the café Katie has felt the real life changing effect of taking charge and working for herself.

“Time has flown. Every day that a problem comes up, I just get on and deal with it. It makes you stronger and you can learn from those experiences. My kids are really proud of me”

To experience The Gordon Café for yourself pop in Monday-Friday at Kirkdale Community Centre on Stanley Road, Liverpool.

Katie’s motto is “A day at a time, we can achieve anything”.

If like Katie you feel the time is right to achieve your goal of running your own business, why not contact The Women’s Organisation for advice, grants and support on 0151 706 8111 or

From building confidence to developing a business plan and accessing business start-up grants, The Women’s Organisation offer a friendly FREE and supportive service to help you make your dream a reality.

FREE Legal & Excel Surgeries with @SuperLawBoy @TraciAWilliams & @WeMentorUk

FREE Legal & Excel Mentoring Surgeries

Thursday 8th August @54StJamesSt

Do you have a legal issue your business is facing, or would you like advice around protecting your intellectual property rights?

Francis McEntegart
Liverpool law practice, McEntegart Legal Ltd will be holding a free legal surgery on 8th August here at The Woman’s Organisation. The 30 minute sessions are confidential and free for you to seek advice or guidance regarding your business. McEntegart Legal Ltd specialise in business, commercial, contract and intellectual property law. Francis McEntegart is a barrister and is also director of Super Lambanana Ltd, Cavern Records and Good Idea (UK) Ltd.

Do you wonder if you could be using spread sheets more effectively for business book keeping, client tracking & other activity?

Traci Williams
Expert in helping businesses get organised, Excel whizz Traci Williams from ExcelAce will be offering free excel advice surgeries on 8th August.  Bring along your business spread sheets and over your 30 minute session, whether familiar with Excel or a spread-sheet phobe - Traci will show you how powerful Excel can be…….Simply!!


Places are limited so priority will be given particularly, but not exclusively to:

•Women who have been running a business between 1 & 4 years

•Businesses who have at least 1 member of staff

•And on a first come first served basis

 To show an interest and to book contact Jo on

0151 706 8111 or email


Could You Do with 'Boosting Sales'? FREE Session with @JoBoomerang & @WeMentorUK

Invite you to our group mentoring session

‘Boosting Sales’

On: Tuesday 13th August 10am-12.30pm

At: The Women’s Organisation

54 St James Street, Liverpool, L1 0AB

Do you need to review your sales strategy?
In need of creative ways to close the deal?

Sales and business development expert Jo Copoc, Managing Director at Boomerang Business Solutions, has worked with businesses across a diverse range of industries, particularly within sport and media to develop sales and management strategy.  Boomerang’s clients include premier league football clubs and large corporate’s UK wide.

Jo will be sharing her key tools to maximise sales success.

Places are limited so priority will be given particularly, but not exclusively to:

•Women who have been running a business between 1 & 4 years

•Businesses who have at least 1 member of staff

•And on a first come first served basis
To book contact Jo on 0151 706 8111 or

Friday, July 26, 2013

@54StJamesStreet Tenant of the Week: @Interview_Room Creative Training Ltd.

Our brand new £5.3mil centre at 54 St James Street is home to a number of fantastic local businesses, so we have decided to hi-light a different one each week.

This week our 'Tenant of the Week' is Creative Training Ltd. owned and run by Steve Baker & Simon Squires, creators of 'The Interview Room'.

Creative Training Ltd was established 8 years ago with the aim of providing innovative quality training programmes to help unemployed people find work. The company has contracted with numerous organisations throughout the UK to provide pre-employment courses as well as a portfolio of commercial training solutions. Their clients have included: Jobcentre Plus, Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council, Liverpool City Council, Halton Borough Council, Conwy Council, North Tyneside City Region Employment & Skills.

Creative Training seek to train and find employment for clients and their success has come through understanding employers’ needs and matching the right clients to them.

Creative Training Ltd. believe in developing new, creative and innovative solutions to support people in finding and securing work. With this in mind they have developed 'The interview Room' as an innovative idea to help both young people and employers. This empowering tool enables young people to be far more competitive and present their strengths directly to employers. This creates an opportunity to demonstrate skills and abilities which are not easily communicated to potential employers via standard application techniques. The Interview Room, in its current format, is the result of four years research and development that have resulted in the creation of a powerful tool that is able to present more candidates to potential employers.

The Interview Room is a unique tool that enables employers to preview potential candidates via a professional video CV. It enables the candidate/jobseeker to introduce themselves to the employer and demonstrate their communication skills, showcasing their strengths.

For more information on Creative Training Ltd. and The Interview Room contact: 0151 706 8136 or, or visit

For more information on our venue here at 54 St James Street, our meeting and conference rooms to hire in Liverpool, contact our team via or 0151 706 8100.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

The Business of Saving Energy is a Family Affair for @HalogenFairies

For Rechelle, Karen and Nadine the idea of working together came to them like a light bulb moment, an energy saving light bulb.

After hearing about The Green Deal, a new scheme available to anyone that wants to improve their property, they felt it was the perfect time to combine their knowledge and “go it alone”. With plenty of prior experience in the energy efficiency sector between the three of them, they said “we're all family and trust each other completely so we arrived at the decision with ease.”

Although this decision was considered an easy one, what followed was much more challenging for the two sisters and cousin.

They told us “It was scary at first! We had accountants and banks that we had to speak to on a regular basis. We had to look into Tax and National insurance. We needed systems to work from and Codes of practice to abide by. All things that were new to us.”

Rechelle, Karen and Nadine also had to use every resource they had to gain the finances needed, which at times was a slow process. However, this was turned into a positive by using the time to research everything they needed to know about their chosen field.

They said: “We knew that we were going into a male dominated industry and wanted to prove we could stand next to all the other companies and hold our own.”

Feeling that they needed support to shed some light on the grey areas, they contacted The Women’s Organisation, where they were paired up with a business adviser.

“The Women’s Organisation is where it all began for us! Without their guidance in the initial stages we would've found it so much more difficult. We wouldn't have had that crucial starting point that was so important in the beginning. We got so much help with our business plan from our business manager.”

As well as The Women’s Organisation, the two sisters and cousin also had their family for support. They commented that “[we are]…blessed to have our family, who never doubted us even when we did.”

It wasn’t easy for the three Liverpool women to balance their personal life with business. They said “we all have roles to juggle outside of the office. We're mothers, daughters, partners, sisters, aunts and friends! Sometimes it can be tough, especially with our children whom we adore.” However, together they have overcome all of this and the business is going really well.  

“We feel amazing. It's been months of hard work and sheer determination and belief. We've found out things about ourselves that we never knew before! Like how strong we are, how close we are and how far we've come. There's no other feeling like it. We're all extremely proud of each other. Money will always come secondary to how we feel as family and as 3 women making it in a male run industry.”

Rechelle, Karen and Nadine’s advice to women considering starting up a business is to “get yourself down to The Women’s Organisation! From there you'll be given the tools to build a brighter future.” Furthermore, they would advise you not to rush, research everything about the specific field and be sure to have faith in what you’re doing.

Halogen Fairies is now certified as a fully-fledged Green Deal Organisation, which has been a major task for the business. ‘We're now recognised by OFGEM and The Oversight Registration Body (ORB). Something we're extremely proud of in the fact that we're fully accredited to work under the scheme and can use the Green Deal Approved Logo.’

Newly qualified as Green Deal advisors, the Halogen Fairies are full of energy and raring to build on their success in an industry that they have proven to be just as rewarding for women.

If you would be interested in utilising greener technologies in your property visit or contact Halogen Fairies directly on 01925 599 333 /option 1 or

And if you have a bright idea for business that you would like support to develop, contact The Women’s Organisation today on 0151 706 8111 or

Friday, July 19, 2013

Women in Business 'Know Your Value' with @TheWomensOrg & @Hampson_Hughes

This week The Women's Organisation Business Club teamed with Hampson Hughes Solicitors to support women in business to 'Know Your Value'.

The positive networking event held at 54 St James Street focussed on encouraging women to know their personal and professional value, and to translate that through marketing their USP (Unique Selling Point) and in their pricing strategy.

Marketing and business development manager for Hampson Hughes Solicitors Lisa Pearson (pictured above left with Denise Chilton & Bernie Cox) shared how their firm had built on their success in tricky economic times by increasing marketing activity. PR and Media Relations Manager Laura Hampson talked about the importance of utilising free PR opportunities, building relationships with the press, knowing the value of a good story.

Warm and knowledgable guest speaker Denise Chilton shared tips she had learned through "Getting it right and oh so wrong" on her journey to business. As a business coach Denise gave strategies for tackling the tricky issue of pricing right.

Training co-ordinator at The Women's Organisation Bernie Cox finished the evening off with her 9 tips for pricing.

Some feedback from the event included:

“Fantastic networking opportunity, great audience and really useful sessions. Thank you”

“Good practical tips. Friendly. Focussed on topic. Thanks”

“Helpful tips as always. Thank you”

“Amazing event. I loved Denise”

“Pricing is such a thorny subject for us, so thank you for boosting the confidence”

“Really interesting. Raised some good questions to ask myself”

“Loved the ‘from the heart’ talk from Denise. Thanks”

“Fab as always. Informative, easy going and friendly”

“Terrific talk – very interesting with lots of helpful advice. Thank you”

“Always like coming to these events”

“Great! Given me loads to think about”

“First time here and found it really useful. Loads to take home and think about from the presentations”

“Nicely done, thanks. Positive and reassuring”

“Picked up some great tips and met some lovely people”

“Just a quick note to thank you for arranging a really good networking session this evening with Denise Chilton and the ladies from Hampson & Hughes. I have just been motivated to review my marketing and promotion strategy with costs as a result!”
The Women's Organisation offer FREE membership to their business club, holding networking events and masterclasses throughout the year for women in business. If you are a woman running a business in the north west of England who would like to find out more please contact 0151 706 8111 or
Next month's business club networking evening will be our 'Summer Social' on Wednesday 21st August 6pm-8.30pm. Contact us via the details above to make booking enquiries.

@54StJamesStreet Tenant of the Week: @FierceLiverpool - Fierce Management

Our brand new £5.3mil centre at 54 St James Street is home to a number of fantastic local businesses, so we have decided to hi-light a different one each week.

This week our 'Tenant of the Week' is Fierce Management owned and run by Jen Corrigan (@Jen_Fierce) and Karl Connor (@Karl_Fierce).

Fierce Management is an artist management and event production company based in Liverpool. The company is owned by Karl Connor and Jen Corrigan who between them have over 13 years experience within both the Music Industry and Event Management. From working for record labels, management companies, in publishing and with large scale chart acts, the pair have also worked for Industry Music Group, the official booking agency for The X Factor and Britain's Got Talent! They have both returned home to Liverpool and have many exciting projects in the pipeline, including programming Liverpool Pride and also provide the event management for the Liverpool Music Awards. They are working with some of the biggest players in the music industry and some of the best emerging talent. Karl and Jen are working hard to make Fierce Management one of the biggest artist management and event production companies in the North West.
For more information about Fierce Management and the artists and events they work with visit or contact / / 0151 706 8122. Follow @FierceLiverpool on twitter for their latest updates.
For more information on our venue here at 54 St James Street, our meeting and conference rooms to hire in Liverpool, contact our team via or 0151 706 8100.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Britain And China Join Forces To Harness The Power of Women

A joint initiative to promote and enable women to achieve success and prosperity worldwide was agreed at a high-level seminar between the Liverpool based The Women’s Organisation and a delegation from the Shanghai Women’s Federation.

The six strong group was visiting Shanghai’s sister city in the UK and was greeted by Lord Mayor Gary Millar at Liverpool Town Hall before attending the event at The Women’s Organisation’s headquarters at 54 St James Street, located adjacent to the city’s famous China Town, the oldest Chinese community in Europe.

The delegation was led by Madam Li Rong, vice-chairperson of the Shanghai Women’s Federation, accompanied by Madam Xu Xiufeng from the Office of General Affairs of the Federation and Madam Kang Binqin, director of the Women’s Working Committee of the Art Centre of Shanghai’s Grand Theatre.

Hosted by The Women’s Organisation chairperson Gill Moglione, chief executive Maggie O’Carroll and chief of finance and operations Helen Milne, other speakers included Cllr Anna Rodery who is deputy chair of Liverpool City Council’s culture and tourism select committee and Mrs Deng Jing Liu, managing director of Harvest Land Education.

The Women’s Organisation chief executive Maggie O’Carroll said: “It is crucial that societies globally harness women’s enterprise and encourage and support women to start their own businesses.


“We first established links with the Shanghai Women’s Federation when we staged a seminar at the Liverpool City Pavilion at the Shanghai Expo. The delegation’s visit underpins our continuing strong relationship and determination to promote the interests of women in both our nations and worldwide,” she added.


Madam Li Rong (pictured here with Maggie and Helen from The Women's Organisation) commented: “It is important that we share our views and expertise in promoting women’s rights and we are delighted to be taking part in such a forward looking plan with The Women’s Organisation, the foremost group of its kind in the UK, and Europe.”


The group later toured the Women’s Enterprise Centre and Liverpool’s Central City Library where it was given a briefing by Madaline Heneghan, director of Liverpool’s acclaimed Writing on the Wall festival. It was also given an outline of the city’s plans for The International Festival of Business in 2014, when The Women’s Organisation will host numerous seminars promoting women’s equality and enterprise.


The Festival’s programme director Andy Snell said: “We are keen to attract women entrepreneurs globally and particularly from China because of Liverpool’s close ties with Shanghai.”

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Call to businesswomen to ‘Know Your Value’

Female entrepreneurs keen to maximise their business profits can get expert advice at a special event held on Tuesday 16th July at 54 St James St.
Women attending the event called ‘Know Your Value’ will also learn more about understanding their value both personally and professionally and can consider if it is time to review their pricing strategy.
Inspirational Merseyside businesswoman Denise Chilton will be guest speaker at the event which is sponsored by Hampson Hughes Solicitors.
Maggie O’Carroll, chief executive of The Women’s Organisation, organisers of the event, said: “It is really important that women recognise their true value if their business is to succeed.
“Women can undersell themselves and it is crucial that they have the confidence to take an honest look at their pricing strategy to ensure their expertise, hard work and creativity is being properly rewarded”.
Lisa Pearson, Marketing and Business Development Manager at event sponsor – Hampson Hughes Solicitors, said: Hampson Hughes Solicitors provide expert legal advice to the local business community and is therefore delighted to support the pipeline of female talent here in the city. We understand the challenges of setting up and building a business and pricing plays a crucial part in running a successful company.”
‘Know Your Value’ takes place on Tuesday, 16th July between 6-8:30pm.
Tickets cost £10 and the event is open to any North West women in business.
To book click or contact The Women’s Organisation on 0151 706 8111.
For more information on event sponsor, Hampson Hughes Solicitors, contact Laura Hampson on 07739 034 699 / 0151 242 1064.