Women in Business: how do we women get on in what is still essentially seen as a man’s world? This is the question that Ian Timms will be posing on the BBC Radio Cumbria breakfast show tomorrow morning (Thursday). If any of you are listening at around 8.15 then I shall be talking to Ian about whether women can be effective as leaders in business.
Here at Sally’s Lake District Cottages, it feels entirely natural to be a woman with my own business and I must admit that before I won the Cumbria Women’s Business Woman of the Year award in November I didn’t give the gender issue much thought. This could be partly because in our business we find that it is often women who have the final say when choosing a holiday cottage. Our brochure and our website are both designed to appeal to women (and to me in particular). We deal with women every day, not only as people coming to stay in the cottages, but also because the Lake District cottages that we let are often owned by farmers’ wives and other women.
I always try to treat people with respect. I’m not sure if that’s because I’m a woman or whether it’s just a personality trait. I believe that a single small business can make a difference in an area by providing opportunities for other small businesses to succeed. Since setting up Sally’s Lake District Cottages we have grown along with a network of other small businesses, all of us sharing values of exceptional service, approachability and a commitment to the local community and economy. And perhaps it’s because I’m a woman, but it makes me happy to think that people who come and stay in our holiday cottages get enjoyment from staying there and from being on holiday in the Lake District.
We’ll see what happens tomorrow – hopefully Bruno will be listening to his mum on the radio while he’s on the school bus!