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Widening Reach

Social and professional networking is now an essential part of our everyday lives. Find out how Bizladies Bahrain is increasingly helping professional women use these tools in a strategic manner.

Organisational and executive coach
Dr Clare Beckett-McInroy has headed the Bizladies GCC chapter since 2011. In her role as facilitator, she helps business ladies connect with likeminded professionals and keep these relationships alive.

Having previously taught at St Christopher’s School, the Royal University for Women and at Strathclyde Business School, Clare is now committed to promoting women’s networking and has even authored a book on the subject. She shares with us her aspirations for the group.

Woman This Month (WTM): What does Bizladies aim to do?
Dr Clare Beckett-McInroy (CB): At Bizladies, our objective is to increase professional networking on the island. Every month we bring speakers who share their knowledge and experience with us. Our meetings are at five-star locations, where members can network over breakfast, afternoon tea or cocktails in a relaxed manner. Having said that, we are not about cupcakes and coffee mornings. We’re here to share expertise and experience as professionals.

WTM: Which forthcoming events are you excited about?
CB: We’re flying in Guillaume Larronde-Larretche, the global accounts director of LinkedIn on November 20, which is open to Biz Gentlemen as well. He will speak about the benefits of using LinkedIn as a social and professional networking tool.

We’re in touch with officials at Twitter for a similar event in early 2014. In December, we’re sponsoring an event hosting American coach and bestselling author Marshall Goldsmith in Bahrain.

Sometime next year, we expect a visit from the founder of the Bizladies franchise
from Vienna. We have our Gala Dinner and Dance at Capital Club on November 28, which is a mixed event too.

WTM: As the president of Bizladies Bahrain, what’s your vision for this club?
CB: We’d like to have more presence around the Gulf region. We aspire to achieve this with a road show comprising likeminded businesswomen across the GCC. For our meetings, we aim to bring speakers with an international profile. Another aspiration is to have more Bahraini presence in this group. We’ll shortly increase our online presence
as well.

WTM: Do you see the need for lessons in navigating the social media networking tools?
CB: Absolutely. This is a rapidly evolving arena, where the rules are being rewritten every day. But for a start, social media tools have to be used with a strategic intent. Success depends on the quality, quantity, place, time and even the manner in which messages are posted.

WTM: Tell us about your forthcoming book.
CB: My book, which will be out by end of November, is about networking. It’s the first in a series of 10 volumes that focus on business and education/training delivered in a Coach Me style; this is the name of the series. It includes professionals’ experiences and lessons to develop skills, knowledge and behaviours as well as case studies on widening your net and making it work for you.

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