2018 has been a huge year for us here at Cambrian Web – as you may have seen, I won the Regional award for Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2018 at the Forward Ladies National Awards and Summit back in October. I wanted to share a little about the experience…

I was really surprised to receive an email (that initially landed in my junk folder) saying I’d been shortlisted for the Regional finals which were to be held in Manchester on the 12th of October. Emlyn and I travelled up on the day, looking forward to networking with a range of business people, and not expecting to come away with anything at all. It was a shock and complete honour to win the award on that day, and then realise I had the live judging and National Final to attend!

What to expect of a live judging day? Was it going to be Apprentice style-grilling? I travelled up by train to Manchester from Aberystwyth (a journey that took just over 5 hours!) in time for lunch and a spot of networking. It was great to meet the winners of the Regional again, and catch up with some newly made contacts.

My interview slot was mid afternoon, which meant I had some time to enjoy a panel session without stressing too much! The panel was great – discussing change within a variety of industries and how important that is. The woman on the panel were inspirational – I was hugely impressed (as I always am) that many were mothers juggling this inspiring life while trying to reach swimming classes..! It showed me that if you put your mind to it, you can achieve anything.

My interview arrived, and I probably talked far too quickly but really enjoyed the conversation we had – many a great question posed of me, which got me thinking and planning on my journey home.

National Final day arrives on the 7th of December in Leeds, in a fantastic venue on the Docks. I wasn’t lucky enough to win the National award, but sitting there in a room full of amazing women (and next to a lady who makes toffee vodka for a living) was inspiring – and then the realisation that I was in the top 4 Young Entrepreneurs of the UK!

So what has Forward Ladies taught me?

Back to the reason I wanted to write this blog in the first place. What has Forward Ladies taught me? Overall – anything is possible. More specifically, I learned so much from the live judging experience that I wanted to write this blog as a thanks. The questions posed about what I want to do in the future, my “5 year plans”, where we’re at now – in an amusing way, where I usually push my clients to think big, the judges did to me. I have plans in the pipeline, ideas of where I want to be when I’m 35 or 40 – but why wait! Probably the only question where I didn’t have an answer…

So, Forward Ladies has taught me not to hold myself back. Get stuck in and go for it! I’d highly recommend this process to any woman in business, because I can guarantee that you will learn something about yourself. 2019 is going to be another busy year for me, and for us here in the office – I’m already excited and can’t wait to see where the future takes us!