Archive for the ‘Technology’ Category

Digital Expertise, Networking & Inspiration at Athena

Executive Lifestyle is excited to invite you to the monthly Get Found workshop series, in partnership with The Athena Network. Specifically designed for business experts and lifestyle professionals who want to build their profile online, we cover a range of topics around Digital Brand, Influence, Expertise and Reputation.

Get started with an introductory 2-hour session next week, where we will carry out a simple analysis of your online brand and what you need to focus on to improve your digital profile over the next 12 months.

We look forward to welcoming you.

P.S. Read on for October news and events.


Membership Pricing & Benefits

We have lots of exciting changes happening and we want to keep you up to date.
Do you have any questions about member benefits? We can give you a call!

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Upcoming Events 

The Athena Executive Club
Networking Lunch at Mandarin Oriental Hotel
  October 14th, 2015 Wednesday 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Cost – $76 visitors

The Athena Executive Club holds monthly networking and business strategy meetings hosted within an elegant and relaxed boardroom setting.

The Executive Club invites women from various professional backgrounds to participate in a structured and facilitated lunch-time meeting. We provide networking and business development training and a place to share professional objectives, make strategic connections and long-term relationships for greater success.

The Athena Executive Club provides access to a host of expertise and is perfect for women who are serious about growing, scaling and expanding their businesses and careers in a supportive and focused environment.

We have a maximum of 20 ladies from different professions at each Executive Club meeting, and this is open to visitors by invitation only. We only have five spaces for visitors at each meeting.

At this month’s meeting, Olivia Chiong Author of The Unbusy Entrepreneur will be giving us a preview into her talk:

From Solopreneur to Entrepreneur – Outsourcing and hiring tips for small businesses.

Visitor places are extremely limited, so please book without delay to reserve your seat.

Request An Invite

Request An Invite

Cappuccino Connections

Coffee Morning Networking at Mandarin Oriental Axis Lounge
October 30th, 2015 Friday  10:00 am – 12:00 noon
Cost – $30 members / $35 1st-time visitors

Cappuccino Connections are sophisticated, informal networking sessions for female executives and entrepreneurs held at the 5 Star Mandarin Oriental Hotel.

Join us and meet fellow professionals and entrepreneurs in a relaxed, business-focused environment. Cappuccino Connections is a great introduction for visitors to experience networking the Athena way!

At each meeting, a speaker shares an inspiring story of their journey as well as relevant tips we can put into practice in our businesses and careers.

Athena events are attended by talented and highly motivated individuals – their passion, energy and determination to fulfill their business goals make our networking formula truly unique.

Our members attend regular Cappuccino Connections meetings to build a portfolio of quality business contacts and for a dose of monthly inspiration!

Imagining a new world where everything we do makes a difference

Being an entrepreneur and mother of two, Masami started to question the astonishing inequality we have in our world. Years later, she came up with a simple way that would transform the way we see and connect with our world. The initiative she heads up today creates a world where every small business and their teams can make life-changing impacts just by doing what they normally do. Already it has created more than 60 million ‘giving impacts’ around the world. And it was all made possible through ’the power of small’.

About Masami:

Masami was born in Japan but her desire to expand her horizons took her on an incredible journey of exploration travelling throughout the world. Her way of travelling was all about connecting and sharing with people to gain new insights and understandings of different cultures, lifestyles and environment. She also became aware of the desperate need for support and change in certain countries in contrast with the modern lifestyles of developed countries. Her soul search became much based on the creation of real connectivity of all different cultures and people to realise the world full of real WIN-WIN relationships.

She has also gone through a journey as an entrepreneur since 2001 starting and running several commercial enterprises all aiming to transform the way businesses are operated today– supporting people in need and contributing to the increased awareness of the public. Her belief has always been the creation of real transformational business and charity model with a positive and empowering approach. By taking a completely new look at the power of connection and giving, she founded a novel concept – one that’s already dramatically impacting the way business, Worthy Causes and individuals connect at a deeper level. It’s called Buy1GIVE1 (or B1G1 in short). It’s giving businesses the power to change lives.

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Partner Events

Executive Lifestyle Experts Workshop
RedBank at Claymore Connect, Orchard Road
October, 21st 2015 Wednesday 10:00 am – 12:00 pm
Cost: $99 / $49 for Featured Experts
With a light breakfast
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Experts Workshop: Digital Branding 101
Open to: Executive Lifestyle Experts
 RedBank at Claymore Connect, Orchard Road
October, 21st 2015 Wednesday 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Cost: $99 for Experts / $49 for Featured Experts
With afternoon tea

These monthly workshops are designed to help you learn tips and techniques for building your online brand, influence, expertise and reputation.

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Infographic: Tech-savvy business women want more training #Twitter4Women


We know Twitter is an incredibly powerful tool but our survey of 108 aspiring entrepreneurs, business owners and professionals from the Connected Women community showed many don’t use it effectively.

Out of those surveyed 61% said they were interested in social media for business, 67% said they wanted to grow their online presence, 72% to grow their client base, and yet only 45% were using Twitter!

It’s with these stats in mind we want to create more awareness of the benefits of Twitter for business and we have partnered with Twitter to run #Twitter4Women, a training program to support growth and development within the female business and startup ecosystem.

The partnership is the second programme under our Connected Women initiative, following last year’s successful Powering Women in Business #PWIB13 event which was focused on cloud and productivity.

The first #Twitter4Women workshop will be held on May 7th, kicking off with a #Meet&Tweet social for participants on April 10th . #Twitter4Women will be centered around the Connected Women theme ‘community, entrepreneurship and technology’ and will bring top digital strategists, business experts and tech influencers to deliver the most relevant content to entrepreneurs and executives.

There are only 50 seats available for the first event so register your interest now! Places will be offered in order of registration.

Join the conversation! #Twitter4Women

Thanks to Intuit and Brew Creative for teaming up to create this awesome infographic:

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Technology: reliability, professionalism and location independence


Guest post by Francesca Geens from Digital Dragonfly.

Francesca shares the story of how her client Jenny Costello from Skylark Consulting leveraged productivity tool Office 365 to achieve not only efficiency and reliability but location independence.

Catch Jenny of the productivity panel at the Powering Women in Business conference this Tuesday 26th November. For the full line up visit

I don’t think there has ever been a better time to be starting or running your own business. Let’s just ignore the fact that we are in the middle of a recession at the moment and focus on how technology has made it possible for businesses of every size to operate from a home office and do business with the world.

Take a look at Jenny Costello, based in Singapore, who I recently worked with. She was looking for a better solution to allow her to work from anywhere and across devices and I was able to help her from the UK. Jenny recently setup Skylark Consulting – as CSR and Communications consultancy and wanted to use Office 365 for emails, calendar and contact data so she can work seamlessly across her laptop and mobile devices.

I was able to advise her on the most appropriate Office 365 license so that as her business grows she can bring on associates and start using SharePoint online to work as a team and do the work remotely from the UK. We were introduced via Gina Romero who I connected with on Twitter, communicated via email and Skype, I used remote access software called TeamViewer to connect to her computer and got the job done. The most complicated part was figuring out the time differences. If that isn’t an example of the ‘new world of work’ then I don’t know what is. From twitter to global business in a matter of days all done using a range of free or low cost cloud based technology platforms.

Jenny now uses Office 365 to manage all her Outlook data and work freely across her various mobile devices. Cloud services like Office 365 cost only a few dollars a month and are easily scalable giving independent business owners like Jenny (and myself!) access to the same reliable and professional services that the big globals are using.

Do you want easy syncing of Outlook data across devices? Delegated access to your inbox? Calendar sharing? Out of Office? Sharing documents with a virtual team? I do! Why would I want to bother with unreliable email settings, email in a different place to my calendar, not being able to access email folders from any device? I see business owners put up with all sorts of inconveniences which are costing them precious time as they duplicate effort and create workarounds. Are you still BCC’s emails to yourself? Having to reply from a different email address when working from your phone? I’ve seen it all too often. Stop and invest a little in your technology setup. Your business will thank you for it.

Technology is not only giving us reliability and professionalism but also location independence. As independent business owners we are very lucky to have been freed from our desks. We can work from anywhere, be it a home office, co-working space, school-gate or as I am currently writing this on the train. We are also able to grow our businesses in new ways. Forget having to employ staff and move into offices – current trends are for growing virtual teams all based in their own home offices/co-working spaces across a range of time-zones and using cloud based technology to share data and stay in touch. Solo business owners like myself will typical start outsourcing to accountants, bookkeepers, virtual assistants and other independent business owners who can help with marketing, branding, social media etc And I see many of my clients, mostly consultants and coaches, who will grow by working with associates- some of which grow substantial teams delivering contracts across continents.

Office 365 is a great example of the kind of low cost cloud solution that makes a huge difference in the day-to-day life of a small business owner. Take one laptop, a simple but well designed website, some decent branding, a business email address add Office 365 for your email, calendar, contacts and data sharing and bring it all together with social media marketing and your micro-business is ready to take on the world. So what are you waiting for?

Francesca Geens

Francesca Geens setup Digital Dragonfly to offer technology advice to the growing number of independent professionals. Working with freelancers, coaches and consultants from all sectors (and across the world) Digital Dragonfly gives those running their own businesses confidence in the tools they rely on to run their business- from email to backup to cloud working.

Passionate about productivity and getting things done with the right tech tools she loves helping her clients achieve tech nirvana. She is the author of The Ultimate Guide to Technology for Independent Professionals available for free from the Digital Dragonfly website.

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Gaining enough knowledge to avoid the technology trap

The first step in setting up and getting in control of our businesses is understanding our framework: the infrastructure, the industry, the competitors, the value proposition, the team and logistics.

The beauty of technology, although it also comes with its own set of requirements, is that it spans across and contributes to all these elements of business. But to really get the most out of technology requires investment. It requires our precious time as well as financing. But if we invest smartly, it will inevitably power up and transform our businesses.

Most importantly, is understanding what technology and tools are available and how they affect and benefit our business. In the sea of information that’s available, this can be challenging and easily overlooked. The purpose of the Powering Women in Business event is to bring this dialogue and understanding to the forefront; to see what technology is available, what entrepreneurs are using to mobilise and sustain their businesses, and what’s best and can be adopted for within our own businesses.

We asked Wendy Kerr, Corporate Crossover researcher and business coach, to share what the most common IT pitfalls are for Women in the Corporate Cross over.

Wendy talks about the technology trap – the myth we need to implement by ourselves. Leveraging technology doesn’t mean we have to implement by ourselves, it’s about being equipped with the right understanding to make the best decisions for our businesses – whether that’s learning new skills, sourcing new software or putting the expertise and tools in place.


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The Technology Trap
by Wendy Kerr

It’s 3pm. Your printer isn’t talking to your computer. The big client pitch is in one hour and you need 30 minutes to get ready. Stress levels rise and you long to call the IT help desk. Except, you left that behind, when you departed from your corporate life to that of an entrepreneur, and became a Corporate Crossover.

Sadly the scenario above is all too common for Corporate Crossovers. Research I conducted among 300 women who left their jobs to start their own businesses, discovered that the IT Help desk and infrastructure was something they all missed about their previous lives. Yet without the low cost and relatively easy technology solutions we enjoy today, many of us would not have created the businesses we now have. We can create our own websites, connect virtually with clients and teams globally, and market ourselves to the world.

The accessibility of all types of technology solutions can be a blessing and a curse. We have the ability to make our small business run from the kitchen table appear to be a global player, all at the click of a button. Yet many of us succumb to the temptation to do it all ourselves. It is a technology trap.

Being intimately involved in the technology can be a curse and a huge hidden cost of running our business. Because we think when we do something ourselves, it is free. Or because we haven’t paid someone else to do it, we assume we are saving our business money.

This is a fallacy. A myth that many of us our run our businesses by. We think that when we spend time updating our website, or figuring out the intricacies of moving to the cloud, or a new service, this is a cheaper option than outsourcing it to an expert. The cost is an opportunity cost of our time. As business owners, we must spend our time adding real value to our business, actively involved in tasks to grow it, generating new opportunities and prospects. Spending time on these activities is guaranteed to generate a positive return on investment. Yet when we spend time in the detail of running our business, including implementing the latest IT innovations, we aren’t adding value. We are spending our precious time keeping the business ticking over. And worst still, often when we try and complete these supposedly easy IT tasks, they can end up frustrating us, causing us emotional angst and losing us precious time and energy. We can end up resenting our businesses instead of loving them and enjoying spending time on them.

This is the trap of technology, thinking we can do it ourselves, but if we had outsourced it to an expert, it would have ultimately cost us less, not only in emotional frustration but also in the opportunities missed for our businesses. Next time you want to upgrade, or try a new technology, ask your self “am I really the best person to be implementing this?” or could I invest my time in adding value to my business and outsource this to an expert? Time is the most precious resource a business owner has. It is finite; once it’s gone it’s gone, so ensure you spend it wisely

About Wendy Kerr:

Wendy Kerr

Wendy is the founder of Corporate Crossovers and is passionate about working with women who leave their jobs to set up their own business, at any stage of their journey. Offering coaching, mentoring and workshops, Wendy is an expert on women entrepreneurs and the support they need, having a deep understanding and experience of why women leave the workplace and the highs and lows of running your own business.

Wendy has had over 18 years’ experience in senior corporate roles around the world, and for the last ten years has been working with clients to help them achieve their goals and thrive. She has worked with hundreds of business owners and a range of corporate clients globally including IBM, Expedia, ACCA, and The Economist.

Visit for your free e-book on “How to Make the Money You’re Worth” if you have your own business. If you are still thinking of leaving, there is a great self-assessment tool, to check how ready you are to leave your job and start up your business. Wendy also offers a free consultation for her coaching and mentoring.

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Tech challenges within the Startup Community

We see women from various points in their business and their career journey at The Athena Network – from concept stage, to global roll-out, to corporate escalation and career growth. There’s a diversity of expertise and experience within the community – women covering the whole professional spectrum.

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