Seventy local women dined together last Wednesday, helping each other overcome business hurdles and hearing advice from the Aussie Gourmet.
The networking event, at Coffee Bar on Central Avenue in Lawrence, marked the first anniversary of the Five Towns/Far Rockaway chapter of Jewish Women Entrepreneurs.
Joy Glicker Lieber was named entrepreneur of the year for her accomplishments running the Bridal Secrets shop and Nip & Tuck alterations, at 415 Central Avenue in Cedarhurst. Working with brides inspired her to create the Perfect Matches board game, now sold in Judaica stores around the world, to help newly engaged and married couples get to know each other better.
Lieber shared her top ten tips on how to make and keep a local business strong. First, she suggested, never give up. Second, take risks, leave no stone unturned. Third, ask for help, and network. Fourth, keep your eyes and ears open all the time. Fifth, have emunah, remember you are not in charge.
“Envision your goal from the very beginning,” was Lieber’s sixth point, “just like a diet.” Seventh, be honest, be kind, be nice. Eighth, stay away from negative people and don’t obsess about the competition. Ninth, be trusting, but also be careful. Tenth, look for every opportunity for free publicity. “We pay for advertising and pray for publicity,” she quipped.
Attendees participated in “Business Brainstorming,” sitting at tables of six with ladies they did not already know, to ensure networking.
After brief introductions, each tablemate posed a problem that has been holding her back in business, and the others offered solutions based on their own business experiences.
Many of the challenges related to work/family balance, getting a new business off the ground, adding or prioritizing between several businesses to produce additional income, finding investors, promoting a new product, and finding new clients.
During the dinner entree, attendees situated themselves at different tables, again with new tablemates, for another round of challenges and solutions.