Another roaring success last night for '35 Women Under 35', the exclusive networking club for high-flying young women in business presented by MT in association with Accenture. The glitzy venue - Jaeger’s Regent Street flagship store - teemed with bright young things. The evening was a mixture of networking, advice from Belinda Earl, CEO of Jaeger, and Cilla Snowball, chairman and chief executive and chairman of AMV Group, plus a bit of shopping. Who could ask for more?
Snowball’s keynote speech resonated with everyone present (who included alumni of the 35 Women Under 35 lists and contenders for the 2009 list). As well as speaking of the need for more female role models in business, she also gave her ten tips for getting ahead. First and foremost, she said, it’s critical to enjoy your job. ‘If you don’t absolutely love what you do, and who you do it with, you’re almost certainly in the wrong job,’ said Snowball. Second, she added, always do the right thing – the good guys (and girls, obviously) do win in business. Other words of wisdom included having the courage to fail, always doing your best and developing a rhino skin to cope with career knock-backs.
The keynote speech sparked a great deal of noisy discussion, not least about Snowball’s wish that she had taken longer maternity leave when she had her three children. Her demand that the '35 Women Under 35' alumni see themselves as valuable role models to a younger generation (which perhaps might be tricky for Tanya Budd, who’s reached the ripe old age of 21) also created a bit of a stir. But we guess it’s never too soon to help the younger generation…
Meanwhile Accenture speaker Liv Sandboek emphasised the importance of taking every opportunity that is presented to you, and being unafraid to take a job abroad to learn how other people do things.
Jaeger celebrates its 125th anniversary this year, and Belinda Earl generously gave away Jaeger’s specially commissioned 125 handbag to one of the delighted women at the event. It capped off a brilliant evening, and was a great precursor to the publication of the 2009 '35 Women Under 35’ list - coming up in the July issue of Management Today.