As part of thier focus on Gender Diversity, KPMG is one of the main corporate sponsors of Going for Growth in 2017 and again joins Enterprise Ireland in supporting this very successful initiative.
Going for Growth is primarily focused on female business owner-managers from across Ireland that have been running their companies for two years or more. The unique initiative is designed around peer-led roundtable sessions. Each roundtable is hosted by an experienced business leader, known as a ‘Lead Entrepreneur.’ Going for Growth understands that entrepreneurs learn best from each other. Accordingly, the initiative is based on interactive roundtable sessions that are facilitated, not by consultants, academics or professional trainers, but by successful entrepreneurs. The Going for Growth Lead Entrepreneurs have the practical knowledge that comes from first-hand experience of owning and managing a business that has achieved considerable growth.
Since KPMG became involved over 130 women entrepreneurs have participated in a cycle of Going for Growth. The tangible outcomes for the 2016 cycle are exceptional. Participants report that the round table sessions have translated into practical changes within their businesses and they feel nearer to achieving their growth goals. Besides an increase in confidence, ambition and motivation, 73% increased their turnover over the six months of the cycle by an average of 36%, bringing the turnover of the group to €35.5 million. Their combined revenue increased by €7.8 million over the cycle. An additional 70 jobs were created, while 415 existing jobs were strengthened.These results highlight the importance of ‘Going for Growth’ and the success of this initiative for female led businesses looking to expand. This partnership is part of our focus on Gender Diversity and we join Enterprise Ireland in supporting this very successful initiative.
One of the strengths of the Going for Growth programme is the high quality of the Lead Entrepreneurs, including Áine Denn, Caroline Keeling, Heather Reynolds, Louise Phelan, Miriam Byrne and Oonagh O’Hagan, all of whom give their time on a voluntary basis to the programme. The idea came from recognition that while more women are being encouraged to start new businesses, there is a need to move beyond just starting into growing. The mission in Going for Growth is to support women entrepreneurs to achieve their growth ambitions and to get more women entrepreneurs into a growth frame of mind.
Being an inclusive workplace is very important to KPMG and helping all our people reach their full potential, both male and female, is particularly important. We have initiated a broad array of initiatives targeting female staff so that there is a more supportive environment for our female talent to reach their career objectives. To this end, we have listened to our staff and responded appropriately – showcasing role models, offering training and support, and introducing flexible work options.
The focus on Going for Growth as an innovative external CSR/Gender Diversity is a great marriage of what the firm is doing in its day-to-day workplace practice and showcases our hands-on support of female entrepreneurs. As well as helping address a very worthwhile marketplace objective, this initiative also provides real opportunities for our female staff to truly engage with an audience they would otherwise not be familiar with. In this way it develops their networking and personal development skill-set. The preparation and delivery of the workshops is a practical example of this. The challenge of delivering real value simultaneously to a diverse range of participants stretches the staff involved. The positive feedback coming from the participants involved and the Director of Going for Growth has increased the confidence and motivation of the staff involved, while increasing their networks of ambitious women.
To get a flavour of what Going for Growth is, check out this short video: