Hi my vibrant Venusians, phew, where has the year gone, seriously it was April then July and school holidays again! Winter has pretty much set in around the country but I just like to think that makes summer a little bit closer – wishful thinking for this summer girl!
So what have I been up to since you heard from me?
Well, firstly apologies it’s been so long since you’ve heard from me but Venus, as you know is now a registered charity and I made a decision earlier this year to bring in a Loyalty Plan and some more payment plan options for our members, that has taken a lot of time and work to get to the stage where we’ve been able to launch to you.
I’ve been asked a couple of times what being a charity means to Venus. There are about 7 different flavours of charity, all with different rules and regulations. Simply we are still a limited liability company. This means we charge for our services as any other company does. Our tax status is ‘registered charity’ which simply means that any money the business makes MUST stay in the business. That is the reason I’ve been able to put the Loyalty Plan in place, simply I wanted to be able to reward those members that stay in Venus year on year. These women (and that’s a lot of you!) are the women that work with Venus and through Venus to grow themselves and their businesses.
You’d never believe the amount of work that goes in to something like that – the ‘I dotting’ and ‘t crossing’ was unbelievable (and seriously hurt my brain at times!) but well worthwhile long term.
The other big project for me has been looking not only at our pricing in Venus Networking but also in the Venus Academy. As a result of our charitable status I’ve been able to drop some of the pricing there as well in an effort to make our workshops and programmes available and more affordable for everyone.
Venus Training Academy
Things have been taking off in the Academy also with our workshops being delivered now both on line and in person. We’ve been getting some really good feedback from those that have done the workshops thus far which is great and makes it all worthwhile
Venus Virtual are our on line workshops and these are delivered by our Venus Academy Manager, Jen Myers, a very experienced Venusian and business coach.
We’ve rewritten our Venus Business Essentials to be an on-line programme. This programme covers all the basics you need to be on top of when it comes to running your business and will be available on very shortly to both Venus and non-Venus members. Obviously Venus members will get the cheaper pricing (under $100) with members of the public paying a little more. This programme is a series of workbooks/modules and video’s and can be done at your own pace.
Obviously we also have our selling, marketing and business planning workshops available and we are writing new workshops around the financial side of business as have almost completed a two day presentation training course and have some branding workshops and a financial programme in the pipeline as well. Obviously where we can we we are using members to write and/or deliver these. Letting the network help the network!
We then of course have our Business Mangement programme which has been run very successfully, and next month we are launching our Growth Accelerator programme which is all about building and growing the business to the next level.
All the detail about what is on where can be found via the Eventbrite tag on the website, it will show you what is going on where. Payment plan options are available for workshops and programmes, we want to make it easy for you to do these. If you’re keen get in touch with your Regional Manager and she’ll get the ball rolling for you, alternatively contact either myself or Jen Myers, our Academy Manager.
2019 started well for us with an influx of members which is pretty normal but as we get in to the cold dark days of winter the registrations on the website have tended to end to stay up.
As an added incentive for you our members we’re running two competitions for referrals – all those that give us a referral and the resulting guest joins will go in to a draw to win a box of wine. Additionally we’re running one for RAVES and referrals – the more you do the more entries you get. Just make you’re your Facilitator is logging on to our system after the meeting and recording everything!
Loyalty and Payment plan options seem to also be having a positive effect on incoming members. Remember Loyalty plan is available on one year memberships and renewals. We are rewarding those members who are making a commitment not only to themselves and their businesses but to the community as a whole. Payment plan is available on 6 and 12 month memberships.
Member Success, Power Hour and Collaborative Teams workshops are also being run by the VRM’s and Academy coaches nationwide – get involved and you’ll benefit! Keep an eye on the ‘Eventbrite’ tag on the website, also the reminders will be given in the Venus news at your meetings.
Zoom Power Hour and Member Success workshops are very popular – this is a great way to network from the comfort of your own home/computer with the wider network – because of that we are going to be running more using Zoom as a delivery mechanism. Collaborative Teams is also running in most regions as well but isn’t really a workshop that translates overly well to Zoom.
Please, please, please register your guests rather than inviting them along to the meeting. You don’t know who else is booked to turn up, the last thing we want is two people in the same category in the same meeting!
Think about the women you do business with. The power of the community is the community and as we grow and change our ability to work alongside, help and collaborate with one another increases as well. The more of us that there are, the more we can support, encourage and motivate one another, step up and run amazing businesses. You and your business will benefit from the community as it grows.
A reminder that for each person you refer to Venus you get a one-month free membership when they’ve joined and paid their membership fee. Get them to register online or put them in touch with your Regional Manager. They MUST mention you in their registration (which is why I would personally do it myself!) Also remember you run the risk of winning a box of Winefriend Wine!
You will have noticed no magazine came out in May/June.
Fortunately we had a lot of people wanting to submit articles but not quite so many wanting to advertise – and it’s the advertising that funds the magazine.
I’m currently reviewing how we do the magazine and will hopefully be doing one towards the end of the year – but we may need to do it a little differently.
Inspiring Business Women
We want the world to know you exist! Remember that Inspiring Business Women is a way to promote yourself and your business to the wider network. We feature these on all our social media (FB regional and national pages. Instagram and Linked In) and get good attention on them all.
Why are we doing all of this – to build the Venus Foundation. This is where any money we make goes, simply any profit CANNOT be taken out of the business.
We are building the Venus Foundation not only provide help not only to you our current members, but also for those that will come after us. By getting involved and supporting the Foundation you are helping build a legacy for businesswomen in NZ.
If you know a woman who is running a business that she wants to grow and develop she needs to get involved in Venus.
The Venus Foundation will provide scholarships and interest free loans for women to grow and develop themselves and their businesses – that is our charitable purpose.
Why? We want to be the one stop shop for businesswomen in NZ, the place they go for advice and support in setting up, running and growing their businesses, among a community of women like you, wonderful supportive like minded businesswomen.
We want to be the organisation that helps businesswomen with their personal and professional development. We want to make our services and our training and development affordable for the majority.
Simply we want to be the business that makes the difference with them and for them.
There are lots of government departments and private businesses doing similar things – our USP being no one person is going to be making money out of doing so, we are working for the good of the community as a whole.
Any profit will be reinvested into the Foundation. Venus will be moving forward to be working alongside those private businesses and government departments and coordinating those within our network as well as those outside the network around what our members need.
My main goal is to promote Venus, grow the community and deliver to our members from through both Venus Networking and the Venus Academy.
How can you help? Whether you’ve been in Venus 5 minutes or 5 years you have something unique to contribute to this community – you. Your support of Venus is what we need to help us help whomever we can. The skillset, business and life experience each of us brings is what is important and what can helps the community as a whole.
Support us, refer us, train with us – tell everyone who will listen about our wonderful community, invite them to get involved. By doing that you’re not only helping Venus, you’re helping yourself.
We have amazing member businesses, a community of amazing businesswomen who want to succeed and help others to succeed as well. The strength of the network is the network, by helping others we help ourselves, after all a rising tide lifts all boats!
Remember Venus is here for you – if you need help with something ask.