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A real buzz in the room this morning as twenty-three business women – a mix of new and returning guests and members – took their places around the table at Judd’s Folly (and no, it wasn’t just the thought of those Divine Cheesecakes waiting for us at coffee time!). Something amazing has happened in this group in the four months since we launched. It’s hard to define but we seemed to have reached a critical velocity and individual members cannot help but be carried forward personally and in their business.

This month’s Learn Session was presented by Louise Pepper, a chartered financial planner, who told us everything we needed to know about pensions, investments and savings, but were afraid to ask. Louise also outlined a few of the different options available if the unthinkable should happen and we were unable to work, something many of us are guilty of sticking our heads in the sand about.

Louise is relatively new to self-employment and started her own business, Bespoke Financial Planning, in August. Her presentation was slick and down to earth, and everyone learned something. Following the meeting there were lots of positive comments on the members’ Facebook page and she looks to have a few potential clients in Metis Women.

Beverly Adams-Reynolds then gave the 10 minute member presentation showcasing her Exquisite Vintage Teas and the room lifted as she took us back in time with photographs of vintage bone china and her mouth-watering baking. Alison Carter asked the question we were all thinking: “What do you do about breakages?”

Replete with cheesecake (Baked Chocolate or Key Lime, plus a gluten and dairy free option) we went into the Collaboration Spot.

First, Julia Robinson gave her feedback from last month. She told us how in the month between volunteering to do the collaboration spot “What have I just done!?” and actually doing it she had come up with an idea for a viable business, and a question for the group on how to take it forward. In the last month she has acted on much of the advice and comments she received, and has started trading. She has plenty more food for thought.

Cathy O’Mahoney from Deal Mediation Services then took the podium and asked how she should spread the word amongst SMEs about her new workplace mediation service Work Nicely. Again there were lots of ideas about how she should set about becoming the “Go to” person for local businesses in need of mediation. We look forward to hearing her feedback on May 15.

Meanwhile the first Metis Women group in Deal is meeting next Tuesday evening (see events page for more info), and pop-up meetings in other areas are planned for the near future. If you know of anyone who might benefit from our potent mix of support and collaboration, or who can’t make the morning meetings in Faversham, please spread the word.

Other exciting news is Metis Women TV begins filming on 12 May, with Claire Hulott, Griselda Mussett, Julia Robinson and Beverley Adams-Reynolds telling their stories for the camera. Deborah Turner will provide the links and Gillian Smissen will make sure everyone looks their best.

Next month the meeting theme will be ‘Embracing Change’: Caroline Love will give an overview of the seven habits of a highly effective person and how you can apply them to yourself and your business, and Gillian Smissen will present the 10 minute member talk complete with Live Demonstrations.