“Working women are the backbone of the Gordon County Chamber of Commerce,” said event organizer Debra Guinter. “Over half of our committee members are women … We do thank our women members for what they do and all that they contribute.”
Guinter explained the various aspects of the Women in Business initiative, as well as some upcoming events designed to strengthen the initiative.
“The Women in Business initiative is to provide women a platform for exchanging ideas on business and professional women,” she said. “We hope it will help women build confidence and improve their chances for success, increasing their economic impact, and ultimately creating more jobs… ”
“We’re hoping the initiative really makes a difference in our community. It can offer women positive role models, and hopefully encouraging young women through mentoring to pursue careers in business.”
“Some proposed events that would be part of the initiative,” Guinter said, “include investing in financial management, confidence and self esteem, self-defense for women, a roundtable on domestic violence, work and family balance, women’s health issues, dressing for success and yoga and relaxation.”
“These are just ideas to get the ball rolling,” Guinter said. “It’s up to the women who choose to participate what the ultimate direction of the program is. It will be what you want it to be.”
The initiative’s first event, Guinter said, is a speed-networking workshop, or a “speed-meet” that will take place the Thursday, July 21, at 6 p.m. in the Chamber of Commerce.
“Bring lots of business cards, because you’ll become acquainted with everyone there,” Guinter said.
“We are going to open this up to non-members as well as members,” she said, “which is kind of a first for the Chamber. They (non-members) will pay a nominal fee to participate. We’re hoping that any revenue that’s generated will be put towards a scholarship to give to some woman who chooses a career in business.
“We’re trying to invest in our community and invest in our young women so that they’ll be business leaders of the future,” Guinter said.
Be yourself …
Dr. Angela Harris of Dalton State College addressed Chamber of Commerce members during the Women in Business Booster Breakfast Friday.
She began her speech with the Maya Angelou poem “Phenomenal Woman.”
“I feel that to celebrate women and our contribution is pretty phenomenal,” she said.
“It’s all about women here, today,” she said, “phenomenal women.”
Harris also spoke about the barriers facing women in business.
“With these barriers that we face, we’re not in the business of bashing men, because we need each other,” she said. “The higher women advance, the greater the barriers. I’m talking about the glass ceiling. And there are techniques for crashing through that glass ceiling.”
“Be yourself, honey,” she said. “Look pretty like you want to, wear your pink. We don’t have to compete with men. And we can use the attributes that are ours to crash through that glass ceiling.”
Harris also spoke about the future of for young women in business.
“There are initiatives that can be done, because there are opportunities before us, for you to impact our young people,” she said. “That’s what I really want to express to you as you go out and impact my young people.”
Did you know?
The following facts were distributed by the Chamber of Commerce at their Booster Breakfast for Women in Business. They came from sources like “Forbes,” the Atlanta Journal Constitution and The Wall Street Journal: