2016 is a big year for The Women’s Organisation – it marks our 20th birthday and we have plenty of interesting and exciting things lined up throughout the year to celebrate this! And some fantastic interviews will be part of this! To mark our 20th birthday, throughout 2016 we will be interviewing some incredible women and sharing their stories with you.
These women may have been long-time supporters of The Women’s Organisation, women who accessed our support during our very early years, women who have been instrumental in the development of the organisation and gender equality as whole, or simply women who we think are frankly marvellous, and want to know more about!
We hope that you enjoy these interviews throughout 2016 and celebrate with us the incredible lives and journeys of the women that we interview. This series of interviews will be called ’20 Year Reflections’ and we always want to hear your thoughts and views! Join in the conversation on Twitter using the hashtag #WOWeAre20
Last week we spoke to the Vickie Anderson from the institution that is, Liverpool Cheese Company shortly after she received the award for Business of the Year Award at Downtown’s Women in Business celebrations for 2016. This week we have another #WIBA16 winner to celebrate – Lauren Greene, Founder and Managing Director of Chic PR & Events and the North West Fashion Festival! Last week we were delighted to be alongside Lauren as she scooped up the award for Best Newcomer of the Year!
|Lauren and her son; Carter|
Lauren has been working closely with The Women’s Organisation over the past four years, having first worked through our Start-Up programme, then graduating to our Growth programme and then moving into 54 St James Street as one of our tenants! So we thought it was about time that we got to know the woman behind Chic PR & Events; the Superwoman who we see dashing in and out of 54 St James Street all week long, and the brain power behind so many of this cities Fashion & Lifestyle’s PR & events. Here’s what we found out…
Lauren started Chic PR and Events back in 2013. When she began back then, she mostly ran large networking events for women in the business of fashion, beauty and lifestyle, but since then the business has changed and grown. Now Chic PR and Events works with clients across the North West providing them with; ‘A wide selection of services, from Social Media strategizing to marketing campaigns, all hand tailored to meet your needs in terms of business growth and vital exposure.’ To name but a few, Lauren is currently working with the internationally renowned skin-care brand Crystal Clear and up and coming beauty and health and wellbeing businesses such as The Brow Club and Kapucia Yoga.
As if this wasn’t enough, she has also developed The Chic Blog – a digital news platform for everything fashion, beauty, health, wellbeing and lifestyle in the North West. The Chic Blog acts as a fantastic additional service for Lauren’s clients, offering them columns, articles and interviews for their business and currently averaging over 1000 hits a day!
But wait, there’s more! Lauren is also the owner and Director of the North West Fashion Festival, an annual occasion focused on fashion and beauty, inviting designers and creatives from across the North West to collaborate and show their designs to the city of Liverpool. Last time, the event was held in Sefton Park Palmhouse and this year it’s getting bigger and better as Lauren and her team will take over St George’s Hall for a 2-day event in September.
|She Shea Bridal Launch at Restaurant Bar & Grill|
You might think with all of these businesses under her belt that Lauren has been working in the PR and Events industry for decades, but in reality the start of Lauren’s working life was wildly different. She told us; ‘I had finished studying Law at University and was in a secure well paid job with good prospects. I worked at a Law Firm full time and studied part time of a evening’ But then I got offered an amazing opportunity.’ Lauren was invited to go and live in Marbella, Spain and run Prestige events, organising massive entertainment and nightlife events all across Marbella. She says; ‘It was one of the best things I’ve ever done. In terms of progress, the contacts that I built over there were unbelievable. After that I was asked to run events at the Ocean Club in Ibiza.
Lauren is happy to say that working within the nightlife industry was massively rewarding, but believes it does have a shelf life and openly admits that it was difficult being a woman in a very male dominated industry; ‘Being a woman in that industry was hard. Even when I left Prestige, I became a PR manager in a club and I was the only woman there. It was a fabulous lifestyle but there was a horrible side as well. In the end I stopped, I didn’t want to be in that world anymore.’
From there, Chic in its first inception was born. Lauren began putting on big networking events for women in the fashion and beauty industry and first met with The Women’s Organisation. ‘I firstly did a lot of training at The Women’s Organisation, taking part in the Planning for Success course with Bernie and writing a Business Plan with the advisors. Back then Chic was more of an events company, but it’s developed over time. As it’s developed I’ve been able to come back to The Women’s Organisation and get more guidance and I took part in the Growth programme after finishing the Start-Up programme.
‘Working on growing my business with The Women’s Organisation was amazing because I was at the point where I just didn’t know which way to go with my business. I was able to sit down with Fran (Business Adviser; Francine Taylor) and get everything down on paper.’
From there, Chic PR and Events has gone from strength to strength as she graduated from the Growth programme, moved into an office at 54 St James Street, took on more staff, graduated to an even bigger office and began growing her team again! As well as this Lauren has also helped out The Women’s Organisation, acting as a sponsor for our first #IAmEnterprising programme with Liverpool City College, offering the winner of #IAmEnterprising a launch event package for their business.
2015 was a big year for Lauren - in fact you could say it was life-changing, as she gave birth to her baby boy; Carter! ‘Having Carter has completely turned my life upside down. But I was back to work within 2 weeks of having him!’ – The Women’s Organisation can confirm this is true as we nearly couldn’t believe it when we had responses to our work emails just mere days after Lauren gave birth! Now Carter is nearly a year old, Lauren is perfecting the balanced art of being a ‘Mumpreneur’ as shown in her article on The Chic Blog here!
|Ben Mak Designs at the North West Fashion Festival 2014|
‘The great thing about PR and Events is that you can do a lot of work from home if you need to. I do prefer coming into the office, but I can do bits and pieces from home. It’s great to be able to work around him and his routine, and luckily he’s a good kid. I took him to a photo-shoot a few weeks ago and he had a great time!’ Lauren is adamant that she wouldn’t change being self-employed for the world, fully relishing the flexibility and freedom that it allows for herself and Carter.
But as with anyone who works for themselves, Lauren does face some challenges. She told us; ‘Sometimes it’s a bit tough not having that extra bit of guidance, not having someone to ask those difficult questions. But my team are great, and I always ask them and get their opinions on things, and also I have a mentor which I couldn’t do without.’ Lauren reiterated the importance of having a mentor both for her work and personal life; ‘It’s important to have someone to speak to, someone who has been there and done it.’
So what does the next year hold for Lauren and Chic? Events are a staple in the Chic Team’s calendar, having already recently hosted the She Shea Ladies Lunch, Just Bella’s Launch Party at Isla Gladstone and the opening of Smudge Boutique in West Kirby, and scheduling many more events in the diary for the upcoming months. The Chic team will also be working hard to pull together an amazing fashion and beauty extravaganza for the North West Fashion Festival and continue to build their client list across the city and country.
Just as 2016 is going to be a great year for The Women’s Organisation, we know that it’s also going to be great for Lauren Greene and Chic PR & Events, so keep your eyes out for what she gets up to!
Congratulations again to Lauren Greene from Chic PR & Events – the winner of #WIBA16 Newcomer of the Year Award! To get in touch with Lauren and find out more about Chic, use the contact details below!
Website – www.chicnetworking.co.uk
Phone Number - 07841935690
The Chic Blog