Women For Impact 2019 Conference Successfully Held in Beijing
On Saturday November 2nd, about 120 participants gathered at the Zhongguancun Chuangye Tower in Haidian District, Beijing, for the first-ever 北京 Women For Impact Conference. Organized by Think, Share, and Create Hub (TSCHub), a Beijing-based social enterprise dedicated to the social empowerment of women and youth, the conference served as a platform for learning, sharing and bridge-building among aspiring and established leaders coming from different fields and different nationalities.
The event kicked off with opening remarks by Gaelle Ayamou, C.E.O. of TSCHub, and Mr. Zhao Xinliang, Director of Haidian Pioneer Park, the main sponsor of the event. In her address, Ayamou highlighted the importance of creating platforms that help to equip and empower women and youth for their own personal and professional development, and for the growth of the economy as a whole, especially in places like Africa. “We actually hope to see the Women for Impact Conference become one of the flagship events that provide inspiration and opportunities for collaboration and learning to women, youth, and other stakeholders in Beijing, across China, and in the longer term, across Africa.”, she said. Similarly, Mr. Zhao emphasized the important contribution of both women and men in the society, and the need to make the same opportunities available to both male and female entrepreneurs in order to allow them to thrive.
Another highlight from the conference was the panel discussion during which participants got to hear from and engage with four inspiring women leaders, who, through their works in different fields, contribute to creating a positive impact in their communities. The discussion was moderated by journalist Zoon Ahmed Khan, and centered around the theme “Women in leadership: opportunities and challenges on the road to economic empowerment”. During the discussion, participants Elaine Zhou, C.E.O. of CNEW International; Olivia Nadine, Co-Founder of BlackExpo; and Rhea See, Co-Founder and COO of She Loves Tech; drew from their own experiences and personal stories to provide insights on issues as diverse as the importance of purpose and intentionality for entrepreneurs and leaders, how to achieve work-life balance, how to learn and be transformed throughout your entrepreneurial journey, and the lack of leadership skills as one of the major barriers to professional empowerment.
Following up to the insightful and engaging panel discussion were interactive mentoring sessions that ran throughout the afternoon. Divided into small groups, participants had the opportunity to get answers to their questions related to topics as varied as starting a business in China, improving one’s public speaking skills, design thinking abilities, networking and team management skills, as well as cross-cultural communication and financial management. The mentoring sessions were hosted by seven experienced mentors, namely Alexa Zhang, International Cooperation Officer at Haidian Pioneer Park; Martin Barnes, Founder of Mountains of Imagination; Ines Janssen, Product Owner at Daimler China; Joslyn Ma, Co-Founder of the World Law Forum; Juanita Pardo Carrasco, Project Manager at Expat Connection, and Deshawn Peterson, Financial Planner; and Charlotte Smith, Senior Partner at Venture Education.
All participants also had the opportunity to learn about the work of some extraordinary women-run startups that were featured at the Women for Impact Expo, and to connect with other like-minded participants, some of whom had traveled from Shanghai, Tianjin and Hebei Province to attend this first edition of the Women for Impact conference.