Businesswoman fights off stiff competition to win prestigious award for Doncaster networking meetings
Businesswoman Nicky Thomas is celebrating after being named the networking organisation Business for Breakfast’s franchisee of the year, fighting off fierce competition to secure the award.
Nicky won the award following her success in setting up successful business networking groups in Doncaster, near where she lives, Grimsby, Beverley and Gainsborough.
By her own admission an accidental franchisee, Nicky only attended her first BforB meeting 18 months ago, but enjoyed the experience so much, and the opportunity to link and support the local business community, she bought her first franchise in January last year.
“I immediately fell in love with BforB,” said Nicky, whose background was in corporate marketing and communications before quitting to have a family, and setting up her own small business as a PA which she could run from home. “I loved the concept of BforB, I loved everything about it.”
One big change that Nicky immediately implemented was the timing of the meetings she ran, organising them from 10am to 1130, rather than the 7am start in other areas of the country. “All my meetings start at 10am,” said Nicky. “It flies in the face of ‘Business for Breakfast’, but the BforB management in Manchester were very supportive.
“I wanted to differentiate myself and do something different; I’m a mum, and I do a school run each weekday morning, so for me an early morning start was out of the question,” she said.
“There are a lot of other working mum’s in a similar position to me – they were fully aware of the importance of networking, but had nothing that worked for them; there are also a lot of people, men and women, who don’t want to do the early start networking, so 10am once a fortnight is perfect for them.”
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Nicky says that, for her, running a networking group is a fulfilling way of becoming part of the local business community.
She said: “I love supporting people who are new to business networking, and seeing the progress members make after becoming members – one guy has quadrupled his business in a year since joining one of my groups, and that is so rewarding to hear.
“Not only that, there’s so much knowledge around the room at our meetings, and so much great advice given: being in business can be a lonely existence, and having a place to pick other brains, and listen to the experience of others, is so helpful.”
It is clearly a winning formula. And Nicky is making a big difference to the health and well-being of local business all around the community. And she has made a big impact with the Business For Breakfast management. “Nicky has been awesome since she came on board, and is a very worthy winner of franchisee of the year,” said BforB managing director Mel Fisher.
“She works incredibly hard, cares passionately, and that is reflected in the vibrancy, efficiency and popularity of her meetings, which are doing great work in bringing together members of the local business community.”
For more information about Nicky’s BforB business networking meetings at Doncaster’s Best Western Mount Pleasant Hotel, which meet every other Thursday at 10am, call her on 07803 050724.