Business in Mallorca

International Women’s Day

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Every year for the past five years I’ve organised an International Women’s Day celebration to mark the official day which is March 8th. This year it falls on a Tuesday. I want to invite businesses, organisations and individuals to come together to commemorate this important day. I also would love to see charities, associations and businesses run by women or for women. Would your organisation like to participate? We’ve had all sorts of different events, treats, speeches, workshops, lunches, emotional moments and flash mobs, what will happen this year?

The world has witnessed a significant change and attitudinal shift in both women’s and society’s thoughts about women’s equality and emancipation. Many from a younger generation, like myself, may feel that ‘all the battles have been won for women’ while many feminists from the 1970’s know only too well the longevity and ingrained complexity of patriarchy. With more women in the boardroom, greater equality in legislative rights, and an increased critical mass of women’s visibility as impressive role models in every aspect of life, one could think that women have gained true equality. The unfortunate fact is that women are still not paid equally to that of their male counterparts, women still are not present in equal numbers in business or politics, and globally women’s education, health and the violence against them is worse than that of men. However, great improvements have been made. We do have female astronauts and prime ministers, school girls are welcomed into university, women can work and have a family, women have real choices. And so each year the world inspires women and celebrates their achievements. IWD is an official holiday in many countries. The tradition sees men honouring their mothers, wives, girlfriends, colleagues, etc with flowers and small gifts. In some countries IWD has the equivalent status of Mother’s Day where children give small presents to their mothers and grandmothers.

A global web of rich and diverse local activity connects women from all around the world ranging from political rallies, business conferences, government activities and networking events through to local women’s craft markets, theatrical performances, fashion parades and more. Many global corporations actively support IWD by running their own events and campaigns. For example, on 8 March Google often changes its Google Doodle on its global search pages to honour IWD. Year on year IWD is certainly increasing in status.

So make a difference, think globally and act locally! Make everyday International Women’s Day.  Do your bit to ensure that the future for girls is bright, equal, safe and rewarding. The theme this year is “Make It Happen”, can you help me make it happen this year? Please contact me at vicki@moodbeach.com if you can.

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Developing island networks in 2015

Glynis German, Happiness Cafe, Mallorca

I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Glynis German this week on her show, The Happiness Café, for Sunshine Radio 106.1FM. It’s a bit strange to be interviewed when you are normally the interviewer so thankfully she asked me questions about subjects close to my heart: my family, Mallorca and blogging. As she was asking me why I had started my blog www.familymattersmallorca.com back in 2006 I realised it was because of my need to make sense of events that had happened to me since moving to the island. My husband, then boyfriend, and I moved here in 2004, we set up a business, he got reactive arthritis, we got married, we had a baby, I was run over by a car, the business went bust, and then we struggled with debts and then the crisis. Through it all I’ve written my blog and subsequently found a lot of kindred spirits and travelling companions through my favourite social media channels, Facebook and Twitter.  When you blog you enjoy the freedom of speech that not everyone around the world enjoys, so I think you should exercise your rights and sign up for a free blog at WordPress or Blogger or Tumblr. If you want some help organising your blog then there are courses online that you can do, or you can come to one of my courses, the next beginners’ course will be in February, or you can just learn as you go. Blogs aren’t just for sharing funny pictures of your cats, or writing about how your two year old loves to defy you (was one of my recurring themes when I first started) but you can also help to build your business up by writing articles about what you do. But we’ll examine those ideas a bit more in next week’s column.

It was when we set up our photography and P.R. business www.phoenixmediamallorca.com in 2008 that we really started to learn what it took to be successful in business in Mallorca: grit, determination, a sense of humour, flexibility, an understanding bank manager, a good gestor and a wide network of people.  This year I’m hoping to expand that network of people to include more and more residents (part and full time) of our lovely island, because really, together we are stronger. To facilitate this I’m going to start going to a new social and business networking group on the island. It isn’t just for women, or just for men, it’s not just at lunchtime or dinnertime or just drinks, or at 6 am in the morning when I am tucked up in bed. You don’t have to pay a grand a year to be a member, and you won’t be excluded because there’s already someone with the same profession as you in the group so you can’t join. It meets at places around the island at different times on different days so there’s a chance to meet new people you haven’t met before. Sounds really good doesn’t it? Well, at least I would like to go to that group if it existed. But as far as I can tell, it doesn’t. So, let’s form one ourselves. If you want to attend a new networking group then let me know by emailing me phoenixmediamallorca@gmail.com and judging on the responses we can take it from there.

Let’s get something off the ground that we can all benefit from!