Women’s development crucial in credit crunch

Liz Castle and Vanessa Boon, founder of Energise, have teamed up to run a special development programme for women.

Boon explained, “the credit crunch has prompted many women to re-assess their careers and financial position. Daily reports of redundancies, recruitment freezes and budget cuts make this a challenging time. However, it also presents new opportunities to shine or to change direction”.

With headlines such as ‘Two women sacked for every man’ and ‘Women hit hardest by recession’ and the gloomy ‘Pregnant women and new mums targeted for redundancy’ it is easy to see why women’s development and income is crucial to economic recovery.

“It can be hard to see the upsides at a time like this,” says Castle, “but harnessing a fresh, largely untapped source of enterprise potential is exactly what employers need”.

The dynamic pair, with a host of HR experience, have facilitated over 20 Springboard women’s development programmes around the UK. They will be facilitating a special Springboard programme in the context of the credit crunch in January 2010.

The programme, which has attracted a National Training Award, combines impactive workshops, inspiring guest speakers, a self-study workbook and coaching over a three-month period to help participants to fulfil their potential.

Designed to enhance personal leadership, the programme explores strengths, values, networks, goals, self-confidence and how to promote oneself positively.

The programme takes a practical approach to ‘making it happen’ through influencing skills, assertiveness and topical issues, such as appropriate chance taking and managing change.

The programme can also be run as an in-house course, which has been enjoyed at BT, HSBC, Inland Revenue, the BBC, several Universities, the Police, NHS and many others.

Though some employers may be tempted to achieve budget cuts through training cutbacks, Boon asserts “those businesses and individuals who develop themselves as we enter 2010 will be well positioned to hit the ground running and seize new opportunities as the economy starts to recover”.

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