Now with over 1400 members and 30 groups every month. This amazing networking organisation was started by accident by. Groups can be found in the UK, Europe, Australia and Singapore.
Frustrated by the cost, membership and limitations of the timings networking, one afternoon Sharon Connolly drafted an email to about 30 women she’d previously met at networking events to see if they just wanted to have an informal coffee without the cost, agenda or speaker and without it taking out a whole chunk of their day. Without giving it any thought she titled the email “Lets be Ladies Who Latte” and with that simple email she had the accidental conception of Berkshire's biggest networking success in 2007.
Like most successful ideas a very simple one - ladies loved the concept and one by one new groups were formed. After one year there were over 700 ladies on the mailing list who meet on a regular basis. Ladies Who Latte (LWL) has never been advertised, our business has grown by word of mouth and is stretching far and wide - at present we operate in 24 areas along the M4 corridor and are expanding all the time – even internationally.
There are a lot of excellent networking concepts currently available to women, and some, like LWL are aimed specifically at women. Mostly they revolve around lunches and breakfasts. As a working mother Sharon felt that there were no groups that were friendly to entrepreneurs who were mums and whether or not you are a mum, if you are starting out in business the joining fees associated with most groups could be prohibitive. So LWL bridged the gaps - no one competes with what we have to offer - we are child friendly – during the school holidays LWL groups still run and the children are welcome; we are local - we meet at a mum friendly hour, usually 10am in the morning; and above all else – the meetings are free.
Our Leaders are very special ladies, their business is supporting women who would like to start their own business, no matter how small and to offer friendship, advice, contacts and business leads. People do business with people they know and women are such great communicators - there is no problem getting down to business as soon as you arrive and meet all others in the group. You can chose to have a 'round-the-table' chat and introduce yourself to everyone attending, or just move around groups which seem to form naturally. Our venues range from coffee bars to hotels and restaurants, we have been welcomed everywhere, after all we are bringing business into some places at a very quiet time of day. All the ladies have to do when they turn up - is purchase their own coffee and join in, it is as simple as that.
Larger companies are beginning to approach us with special offers for days out and discounts, all of which are being passed on to our members. One year after it’s conception Sharon asked “Networking Queen” Mary Flavelle to hop on board and assist with the running and promoting of the organization which continues to thrive, and grow. We have amazing success stories of women making connections and being given opportunities that they never could have dreamed of finding on their own.
We are women with imagination, drive, enthusiasm and hope and we are enjoying sharing out success: "Because there's no point being fabulous on your own!"