NEW’s Expert Speakers Help Women Grow their Businesses – May 17, 2011

Bend, OR – May 17, 2011 – If you’re a woman in business, the Network of Entrepreneurial Women (NEW) features expert speakers who will help you expand your vision along with your professional skill set. At the June 15 meeting, for example, Tara O’Keefe shares why branding is so critical.

She should know. In 1994, after years of experimentation at her kitchen sink, the Bend pharmacist finalized her formula to help repair her father’s split and cracked hands. She called it Working Hands, geared the product to “workers who rely day-to-day on their hands and feet,” and sold it through hardware stores instead of the more typical venues.

The Sisters-based start-up hit with a bang. O’Keefe received many acknowledgements including the Austin Family Business Award for Women Owned Business of the Year, the Dupont Gold Award that recognizes the most innovative plastic in the world, and the 2009-2010Oregon’s Business Person of the Year. Even more importantly, she attracted a devoted fan base. And that, along with the effectiveness of the product and how it was distributed, attracted the notice of an Ohio-based company called Gorilla Glue. When they made her an offer in May, 2010 that she couldn’t refuse, she sold.

During the NEW meeting, O’Keefe discusses the vital importance of branding and explains that adaptability is the key to success. “You have to be willing to honestly analyze what’s working and what’s not working,” she says. And while it’s much easier to acknowledge what’s working, by creating a successful brand rather than just a product, service or business, you’re actually building an asset that you can sell down the line.

The quality of insights that O’Keefe will share are typical of the content provided by NEW’s steady lineup of first-rate speakers. This year has featured:

  • Author, entrepreneur and Opportunity Knocks founder Jim Schell on the top ten business mistakes.
  • Executive coach Amy Green on how language can help or hinder business success.
  • Counselor, hypnotherapist and author Jane Meyers on how to move through life’s traffic jams.

“Many of our programs are focused directly on business skills such as marketing or networking. Additionally, we periodically offer trainings in certain areas with experts in business,” says NEW president Lisa Sloan. “Businesses grow because the businesswoman tries new approaches. That’s why every NEW meeting that you attend will include specific tips for enhancing your professional skills.”

For more information, please call Laura Skinkle at (541) 390-9960, check out our website at or come see us in person. NEW meets on the third Wednesday of every month except for August and December. You can attend up to two meetings without being a member.