Business Chicks 9toThrive Sydney
I enjoyed a beautiful two days at the amazingly inspiring 9toThrive event in Sydney held by Business Chicks. There were so many speakers, products and businesses that made me feel like I could do anything I could put my mind to. So many inspiring women that just made it all feel so energetic.
I went to this expo for the first time last year and loved it, I felt so inspired and energised after just one day at this event. This year I treated myself to a two-day pass as well as upgrading to a VIP ticket, which basically means you get some extra goodies. Let me tell you one day at the event last year was inspiring and energising, spending two days there this year changed my life. I had already started setting up this blog and chasing my dream life but after two days at 9toThrive, I was so set on my path to be the best person I could be.
I can’t truly express how much this event changed me, I have since joined Business Chicks as they hold multiple events through the year, but I am going to try and offer some key insights I walked away with in the hopes of helping someone else. If you have the chance to go I would highly recommend it is held each year in Sydney and Melbourne and well worth a visit.
These three beautiful women shared the things they do daily to nourish themselves in order to be better mothers, sisters, friends, lovers and business women. So much inspiration from three beautiful women but the key thing I took away from this panel was that sometimes we all just need to stop take a breath and ask ourselves what we want. Another thing was that sometimes we just need to indulge, ignore what society is saying and have that chocolate cake, indulge in your favourite TV show or pastime and don’t feel guilty.
Before the next main speaker came onto the main stage the host for the two days Magdalena Roze had a casual chat with the founder and global CEO of Business Chicks Emma Isaacs. Although it was all fun and insightful the key thing I took away from it was; don’t feel guilty about what you choose to prioritise. If your work and home life are priorities and you don’t have as much time for exercise or cooking that’s fine that’s what you need in your life now.
Donna Hay, the home cooking queen of Australia was up after these beautiful ladies and it was amazing to hear how she makes her decisions based on her gut. She trusts her intuition when looking at her next move whether it be in business or life or just the next thing to cook. She made some amazing points about how sometimes in business it’s smarter to hold then to go. She said that sometimes it’s smarter to hold onto that key idea or concept rather than rushing to take it to the world, the world may not be ready and a little time may help with its success.
I took a break from the talks after Donna as I needed to eat and also I needed time to process all the amazing information, I am still processing it a week later. I also wanted to check out some of the amazing products and businesses that had stalls and discovered some great new businesses to look at.
There were a few speakers that I was smart enough to use my voice memo app on my phone to record and so have laid out some the key learnings from their talks below.
The Emotional Economy with Hannah Barnes from The Lifestyle Group
There were some great insights from the research that Hannah Barnes and The Lifestyle Group conducted to get a better idea of their key viewers. There were some key points that I took away from the discussion were quite insightful with the major one being the age is less relevant today. Demographics are no longer as predictable as they used to be, with a larger selection of content available it now attracts a wider selection of consumers.
There is a big difference between women wanting emotional fulfilment and empowerment, women are more focussed on being emotionally fulfilled. But an interesting idea that also came out was that men are also seeking out emotional fulfilment. Australians overall are looking at living longer and living healthier lives more than ever.
Life Hacks with psychologist Melanie Schilling
A stress management technique of broaden and build. This is about getting in a positive and relaxed state. When were in a calm relaxed and in control state we have a completely different physiological reaction in our body and therefore emotional outcome.
When people get themselves into a positive state with positive emotions a whole bunch of positive outcomes flow. As an action for us all, when we are in broaden and build state we can see the bigger picture more. Peripheral vision is both literally and figuratively broader. When faced with a problem we can think more creatively and think of a range of solutions. We’re more resilient and better tuned into other people and better able to negotiate and get the outcome you want. There are also health benefits to having a more positive mindset.
Our body can affect how we feel just as much as we believe our mind affects our body. By putting our body in high power poses u can actually see some great results. This is all according to research done by Havard Professor Amy Cuddy.
We don’t laugh because we’re happy, we’re happy because we laugh
Meaghan Noble, CBA’s Executive Manager, Women and Advice
Meaghan had so many insights about how women work with money and how we can get more involved and get on board with investing our money to make ourselves more financially secure.
There have been so many advancements for women over the course of history, our incomes are growing in line with our promotions and professional development but there are still things we need to address. Especially when it comes to finances, when we come to the table as investors on in any financial capacity we actually do a really good job. In fact, women are starting businesses at twice the rate of men. But with this, there is still things we need to work on to help get ourselves better prepared financially for our future.
3 key factors to economic security for women that we have to address
1 – Pay equity
2 – Financial literacy
3 – Superannuation
Women take more career breaks not just for having children more and more women are taking time out of the workforce to care for ageing parents. A surprising fact was that women retire sooner than men, Meaghan said the research put this down to a few things including women tend to marry older so when the man retires so will the woman. Another one is that with the younger generation struggling to cover childcare costs and break into the property market more and more grandparents are stepping back from the workforce to help care for grandchildren.
Men and women process information differently, women are more holistic and take in all the information to have a more comprehensive outlook before making a decision. Women will take in both verbal and non-verbal cues. Men, however, are more selective in how they process information they will hear something or see something and only pay attention or remember the key things.
Now there are pros and cons to both ways of processing information, with a holistic approach women tend to be more astute at picking trends in the market or society. However as they like to get as much information as they can before making a decision women also tend to take longer to make decisions, we are more risk adverse.
Women are more risk adverse when making decisions, which can make them better investors although slow to make a decision, the ones they do make may just be more effective.
Why do women share? with Mia Freedman, Kylie Rogers, Holly Wainright and Kate De Brito from Mamamia
Probably one of the most exciting and in the end most interesting, especially for an aspiring blogger, panels was this one with the team at Mamamia. I have followed Mia Freedman’s career from when she was editor of Cosmopolitan and love to check out what’s happening on the Mamamia website.
The talk went from the beginnings of Mamamia when Mia started it in her lounge room as a personal blog and then fast forward 8yrs Mammamia is now Australia’s largest digital women’s network. That is amazing growth and expansion. When asked how they do it the team put it down to they are all very passionate about creating great content for women by women.
One of the key things that really resonated with me as someone who hopes to build my blog was this quote from Mia.
I started with a really really clear desire to do something different to what traditional media was, which was to make women feel good about themselves and not in a namby pamby way but feel informed, feel reassured, not feel inadequate, not feel insecure and not feel guilty.
Then Mia was asked the question “starting the blog did u think it would be this beast?” and some really interesting insights into how it develop came out. She had always wanted it to be big she just didn’t know how it would get there. If had just been up to Mia they wouldn’t have she would be curled up in the foetal position twitching in the corner of her lounge room. About 18mths in after building a decent amount of organic audience but not knowing what to do with it, and she was really burning out, her husband came on board as a partner and that’s when they really became a business.
He explained that it can’t be a personal blog with all the content written by Mia it has to be bigger than that. It had to be this website with lots of voices, it has to be this network with lots of different sites, with podcasts and videos and stuff. That idea of business strategy and vision for the company has been him, he has always dreamed much bigger for the company than Mia ever did.
Mia finished this insight to how the business grew by say “Without these people, I wouldn’t be able to do it, I don’t” referring to her team on the couch with her.
The consumer is the disruptor and tech is the enabler – Kate de Brito, @AskBossy, @Mamamia #9toThrive
Holly Wainright who is the General Manager of Podcasts for Mamamia offered some key podcast advice that I thought might be useful to share. Mamamia as a network has grown their production of podcasts from one podcast a week to nine a week. They still stick to the same philosophy that made Mamamia a success in written form just translated it into podcasts, content is still key in podcasts.
It needs to be content that women are interested in, that they love, that they connect with, that they are going to want to share and translate it with people who know how to do great audio. Kylie Rogers, Managing Director of Mamamia, added she felt there’s a limit to screen time, especially for busy women. She said, “women have an insatiable appetite to be entertained and to engage in great content and to work but there’s definitely a limit to that screen time. We’re finding women are searching out for podcasts to learn and be entertained when they’re travelling when they’re exercising and when they’re cooking.”
Kate de Brito, Editor of Mamamia added, “the thing that’s amazing about podcasts and how they connect with ppl is they’re a very intimate thing the people talking to you, you trust them and know them…podcasts are a really trusting experience.”
If you scratch your own itch you have a guaranteed audience of at least one, that’s a good place to start from – @MiaFreedman @Mamamia #9toThrive
What started out as a personal blog in Mia’s lounge room is now a general site for women that discusses anything from politics to the pelvic floor and that creates content in all forms whether it be videos, podcasts and written posts. They reach 4million women a month and have about 7 million social fans.
Another aspect of Mamamia that they have been able to do so well is native advertising. The key to this it seems is when the ad isn’t an ad it’s content as well, this will bring the most success for brands. Brands or content creators who work with brands need to learn the skill of being the content not interrupting the content.
Key points to Mamamia’s success
- Maintain the start up spirit
- Stories that are authentic
- Digital first and women first
The ladies also had some other killer advice for any brands wanting to work with content creators. They said the biggest mistake brands make in content is not being authentic and playing in a certain space because they feel they have to. They also go to publishers like Mamamia and platforms like Facebook to ask for help but never actually truly trusting them. Great content is great content no matter whether it’s meant to sell or just entertain, you just need to know what the consumer wants. For women, the key is to entertain her, indulge her, teach her.
For any content creators to create engaging content the first thing you need to think about is the reader. Walk in her shoes. Women love things that make them laugh, things they can learn and things they feel strongly about whether it be deeply or very passionately about. When creating a piece of content think about, how would you sell this to an audience? What’s the in for the reader? How would u sell it to them? Is this the sort of story we should be writing? Is this the right tone? Is this the right message we want to give?
What you really want to do to grow any content creation business is produce content that’s so dynamic, so engaging that it makes people have to stop and make that click. There is so much out there in the digital landscape that you need to make sure your content can stand out from the others. Take the content where the people are where your audience is.
6 principles of why women share
- They’ll share if it makes them feel something – if there’s strong emotion
- They’ll share if they’re put first
- They’ll share if it says who they are and what they think
They’ll share if it’s the public mood
- They’ll share if it’s just entertaining
- (Couldn’t remember the 6th)
- They won’t share if it makes them feel negative, guilty or inadequate
The team mention that they don’t shy away from their mistakes. One of the core values of Mamamia is to measure twice and cut once. They need to do their due diligence but they will certainly give it a red hot go. One thing that seems to be evident not just in the world but the Mamamia office as well, women like to know all of the things.
Biggest mistake people make is try and make the content aspirational, authenticity is the new aspirational – Kylie Rogers @Mamamia #9toThrive
One way Mamamia likes to differentiate themselves from the standard media and news organisations we look for the emotional entry point into each story. They have a content sharing agreement with the ABC so get all the up to date news stories from them but then adapt it for the Mamamia audience. A key factor to ensure you remain successful you need to stay up with the consumer. As long as you are in line with the consumer you then you need to ensure you have the platforms, processes, technology to deliver it to her or them. You need to have your eye on the ball and then have the framework around you in order to deliver it. The best way to be and stay successful in digital media is by knowing what the consumer wants.
When it comes to getting involved with social media all the women said you shouldn’t force it, yes it is helpful to build your personal and business brand. But if it’s not you don’t force it. If you want to test it out first, choose a few platforms you like and have a play and see where your audience and your colleagues are
Emotional Intelligence with Nicole Wales, The Human Tribe
One of the most intriguing, engaging and by far the talk that made me want to learn more was Nicole Wales’ talk on emotional intelligence. Emotional intelligence (EQ) plays a key role in engagement, trust, individual performance and business performance.
A key takeaway from Nicole’s talk was something I think more businesses need to consider and take into account when they think about office culture, “when people thrive businesses thrive”.
There is some focus both in the business and larger community about emotional intelligence at the moment. Unfortunately, despite this wide discussion, a lot of people still think it’s a lot of fluff, however, there’s a lot of neuroscience behind emotions and emotional intelligence.
Our emotions and feelings impact 3 things:
- They impact our thinking and decisions this can be referred to as mood congruent thought which is when our thoughts and feelings impact our decisions.
- They impact our behaviour, they impact our facial expressions, our body language, our tone of voice our choice of words. This impacts the way we communicate, the way we connect, the way we collaborate.
- They impact the way we perform if you think about it when we feel trusted when we feel consulted when we feel part of something bigger our performance is enhanced.
Emotional intelligence is a skill that can be learnt, your not born with emotional intelligence. – Nicole Wales @humantribeau #9toThrive
Your EQ increases naturally over time, but it’s like a muscle that can be worked. It’s about forming new neural patterns in your brain. And you are never too old for this we can form new neural patterns well into our 90s.
The Genos model of emotional intelligence has seven core emotional intelligence skills. These are; self-awareness, awareness of others, expression or authenticity/vulnerability, emotional reasoning, self-management, ability to have a positive influence or management of others, and self-control.
Being authentic and genuine shows someone with a high IQ.
A study performed of CEO’s showed that emotional reasoning is a skill that high-performing CEOs have that low-performing CEOs don’t. So EQ is a good skill to develop to build up your life and your business.
Wow! Friday was a big day of great speakers who inspired me to be a better human, a stronger woman and to go out there and make sure I am showing the world my best self.
This incredible feeling of inspiration, support, joy and energy carried on into Saturday with another stellar line-up of speakers. The expo opened a little later on Saturday, which I was not complaining about as I needed to recover from Friday. I arrived as early as possible in order to get a chance to properly look at some of the amazing businesses that had stalls.
Now onto the speakers, there were less of them Saturday but in no way were they any less. The first speaker I was fortunate enough to see was the amazing Theresa Kerr who along with her daughter Miranda created a 100% certified organic skincare range. Although everything Theresa mentioned in her talk was eye opening and mind blowing it also made me a little overwhelmed at what is it that I put on my body every day? How are the chemicals in your everyday beauty, skincare and general personal hygiene products affecting your internal systems? It was all very enlightening and made me really think before buying any new products.
Lorraine Murphy was inspiring as I knew she would be as I have purchased her book and am in the process of reading it so I will not go into depth on her talk. The below quote, however, should be etched into the minds of every woman on earth. We need to remember that we are allowed to own our achievements, we are allowed to accept praise when we do good things. Please spread this word around.
Please own your achievements as this gives other women permission to do the same -@lorrainemurphy1 @TheRemarkablesGroup
To go back to the businesses that exibited at the expo there were so many new and beautiful companies that I had not known before but will definitely be using in the future. Below is a list of some of my favourites you should check them out.
- Nature Care College
- Inspired Careers Coaching – all about helping you get the career you want.
- Great Walks of Australia – an amazing travel company with some cool but unique trips.
- Oleria Emporium – the most beautiful candles I have ever seen, they were housed in some amazing vessels that once the candle is used can be used for some amazing things after. I got myself a little one but will be getting more, also the melted wax can be used as a skin cream when melted.
- Caring Canary – this is the most beautiful idea, they create specialised care packages with a personalised note and inspiring quote card inside. Will definitely be using this company for some presents in the future.
- Nailed at Work – got myself a super quick manicure, that I obviously ruined straight away, but this is an amazing business that brings the manicurist to your office. So you can take a break from the grind and get your nails done.
- N2 Extreme Gelato – now I may be slow to the gelato bandwagon, I know what I like in frozen desserts, but these guys were awesome. They make their gelato on liquid nitrogen but the biggest brain explosion from this stand was the idea of adding Fruit Loops to your ice cream as a topping.
- Redefine your Medicine with Dr Naomi Findlay & Tammy Guest
- The Divine Company – Theresa Kerr’s fully certified skincare range
- A&TA – Melissa Browne and her team are working to help women be more financially literate with her awesome books like More Money for Shoes
- Lorraine Murphy – Lorraine created The Remarkables Group which is the first blogger influencer talent agency in Australia and just released an amazing book
- For Me – a different way of learning leadership and business with their Mindful Leadership Program
- The Leadership HQ
- Positive Real Estate – I had an enlightening conversation with Jessica Blake who opened my eyes to a different way to look at real estate as she has a background in life coaching
- Alchemy Financial – helping grow the lacklustre financial literacy found in modern society
It was amazing to walk around and speak to all these amazing and successful women. As I mentioned I got a lovely manicure at Nailed at Work’s stand, ate some delicious gelato from N2, got a skin examination from the lovely ladies at the Dermalogica stand. There was so much positive energy over the two days it was amazing to just be in the presence of all these amazing people.
As always it was another great expo full of great energy, fun times and most of all inspiring women. I cannot wait for next year or the next event that gives me this kind of feeling.