Lucy Batley is a branding expert by trade. She owns a tech company and has just launched ALL WOMEN WELCOME which provides a holistic approach to women’s business and career needs by providing leadership development, coaching and support.
They want to get uncomfortable, challenge the status quo and make a positive change for generations to come.
Her ultimate goal is to rebrand feminism with positivity and collaboration.
What were your initial years of growing up like? Tell us about your life before starting your corporate journey/venture/initiative.
Ever since I was 12 years old I always wanted to be a Graphic Designer. My art teacher spotted that instead of drawing a beautiful shaded fine art apple I would literally design the Apple Macintosh logo!!! She was my first role model and her support and encouragement launched my early career as a branding specialist.
In my 20s lots of people suggested that I set up my own business but I didn’t have the confidence to do this. My first business was simply born out of a clash with my old boss; I thought (at the time!) that I could do a better job than him. My goal was to make the world a more beautiful place through design.
But my real passion is helping people and I am particularly driven by supporting women to excel in their chosen profession, career or business. I love solving problems and I am brilliant at connecting people either with other people with specific areas of expertise, or finding the right solutions to their problems – whether these are individual or business issues.
Tell us something about your organization. What is it about and how is it helpful for people?
ALL WOMEN WELCOME provides a holistic approach to women’s business and career needs.
Our services include:
Qualified Executive Coaches challenge and support women to work through issues / objectives, develop options and make decisions for themselves.
-Business Mentoring (Business Therapy)
Our business therapists understand business, strategy and people and will support you to overcome issues standing in the way. We provide business advice and mentoring; support the development of your strategy and we work with you to develop and grow your business.
-The Being Brilliant Club
A 24-month programme which focuses your time on group business therapy, quality discussions and learning. This includes monthly facilitated group sessions with 10-12 women: alternative sessions of peer/reverse mentoring and learning from esteemed experts at executive level.
-Provocations & Facilitations
What difficult conversations do you need to have in your organisation? An external provocateur can be a useful way to start these discussions.
We offer experts who draw upon research to deliver provocative presentations and facilitate questions and answer sessions and facilitated discussions. These take place on-line to enable focused one hour discussions on tricky subjects. Examples include: becoming an ally and a sponsor; equality versus equity; gender, race and intersectionality; micro-aggressions; inclusivity; and, challenging/changing your culture.
While the global pandemic of COVID-19 is associated primarily with adversities, it has also brought about a true boom in startups, with successful entrepreneurship in many countries. The pandemic has impacted all of us in one way or another. Would you like to share your experience on a personal and professional level?
On a personal level the pandemic was brilliant in terms of my working day hours which have completely changed and fit around my life rather than the other way around. I now have more time with my daughter, more energy for my work and feel fitter and healthier than ever.
On a professional level the pandemic coincided with an enormous period of change – I resigned from my own company after 14 years of hard work, I set up two new start ups and had an exceptionally negative experience with a local Venture Capitalist which provoked me into setting up ALL WOMEN WELCOME so that other women don’t go through the same thing.
On a positive note, for both of my start up businesses the pandemic has opened up a global market and we are now working with both clients and suppliers from all corners of the world.
What has been the response of the consumers towards your venture?
There have been some unexpected surprises since we launched ALL WOMEN WELCOME. We have been overwhelmed by ‘Men Allies’ who are supportive of what we are doing. Initial face to face feedback was that gender diversity is “complete” , that we have “ticked the box” and “why are we still talking about this?“
I have personally been surprised by the level of female misogyny – women blocking other women from progressing, not being supportive of other women and / or behaving like men. This is not the fault of the individual; it is a societal construct. By this I mean that the women have struggled so hard to reach positions of power or influence that when they achieve their goals they are reluctant to support others coming up behind them. They are climbing the career ladder and then pulling it up behind them. For me, this needs to change and will be brought about by education and raising awareness of the issues.
How has your life changed because of your venture?
Good question!! This is the first venture that I have made that has a true purpose and that has been a massive shift for me in terms of my personal sense of worth. Judging by the amazing feedback that we have had so far from the launch campaign, I know that we have hit the market at the right time and that there is a definite need for equality and diversity training and support.
Would you like to share with our young budding women entrepreneurs the change you would like to see in the world if given an opportunity?
That people in business treat each other with fairness and respect regardless of sex, creed or colour.
Give a motivational message for the audience/women who are reading this.
We are all equal, but not the same.