This morning I was fortunate to attend a networking breakfast with local career and business-focused women. I've attended many of these events in the past and to tell you the truth, I always have a good time. I enjoy the social nature of the get togethers, the casual approach and the ability to meet quite a few women all in a couple of hours.
This morning's session was a bit different, though.
The theme for this meeting was Marketing, and Nadia Cerelli from Plan B Promotions gave an informative presentation on the subject. She brought years of experience to the table and we were all grateful.
But it was the fellow participants that surprised me the most.
The energy was strong.
The women in this group were badass.
I love a strong woman. I pride myself on being one, and I plan on raising my girls to kick some butt, too. But without getting too rah-rah feminist granola on you, I was so proud to be among a group of women who are either running their own business, a family business, a personal brand or a franchise. These ladies are strong and confident, sassy, smart, witty and charming. What a bunch.
We all came from different worlds and experiences but we were genuinely there to learn and to feed off one another.
And then I thought: we're doing it.
We're doing the same thing men have been doing FOR YEARS.
This hive was not bitchy or cold -- quite the opposite, really. It was a support network, a tribe, a community.
For the longest time (and still today), the "Old Boys Club" created the deals, inked the contracts, and develop friendships and partnerships. This idea has been almost impermeable, and yet, despite the generations of advancement made for women, we are often left behind, and left out.
And sometimes, we are our own worst enemies. Woman-to-woman bashing is real -- it's prevalent and it's sad. Men feed off competition; they thrive on it. Women turn catty and shallow. (Massive generalization for effect!)
Well, today, it felt like we had our own club. We were wheeling and dealing, and making coffee dates and planning meetings and future opportunities. And we did it while being kind to one another.
We were doing it. Finally.
Cheers to this new ideal. I hope to see many of you in a similar forum, sharing your many well-deserved successes and tips. Together, the tribe will grow and blossom. Together we are stronger.
P.S. A special thank you to Laura Cannone and Josie Cannone for hosting this morning's session at Petite & Posh in Vaughan. Your generosity is always noted and always appreciated.