The Women In Business Martinhal Entrepreneurship Event brought together speakers from around the world to talk about building families and businesses. The annual event was held at the Martinhal resort in Cascais, Portugal, and included a lineup of women business, leadership positions and tech. The event was introduced by Chitra Stern, owner and founding board member of Martinhal Family Hotels & Resorts, who spoke about the need to promote female leadership, support female founders in business, and engage with female and male entrepreneurs equally.
Hey MAMA founder Katya Libin started the day speaking about the motherhood advantage: how the skills we learn through motherhood are transferable into the business world. Being a mum often means being in charge of the family budget, planning and scheduling, as well as everyone’s health and wellbeing and long-term progression. Petra Ondrušová, Director of Erste Premier, talked about the importance of learning to delegate efficiently, let things go and allow yourself time to work on personal development. A panel of venture capitalists discussed the rise of female entrepreneurship and the focus on competency rather than gender when deciding who to invest in. Colm Reilly, a board member of three start-up companies in the biomedical sector, argued the difference between men and women entrepreneurs is that women have the ambition to change the world rather than sell out in a few years.
Birte Gall of Asgaro GmbH addressed the importance of going digital and the changes to the framework of the business this requires in order to thrive in the digital environment. Luxury Lab founder Thaya Marcondes spoke about how continually putting herself out of her comfort zone has made her the successful businesswoman she is today. Founder of Prescription Lab spoke of how the late bloomer is the entrepreneur with 42 years old being the average age of a tech founder. A panel discussion of Motherhood vs. Entrepreneurship followed discussing how the two things can go hand-in-hand. Charlie Rosier, entrepreneur and founder of Cuckooz Nest, a co-working and childcare space for parents, spoke of her business journey and never being able to shake the feeling of imposter syndrome. Sister The Agency founder Jennie McGinn talked about failure in business, knowing when to ask for help and money, and choosing the right business mentor. The session closed with Aparna Aurora, founder of Chutnify, the Indian dosa restaurant that expanded from Germany to Portugal.
The day of speeches and discussions, followed by great opportunities meet the founders and ask questions, was a great success in that everyone, even the speakers, left having learnt something new about business. For us, the highlights were that it doesn’t matter at which stage in life you decide to start your own business; failure is part of the journey; and motherhood skills do deserve a place on your CV.
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