The inaugural Erris Enterprise Week, which was staged at various venues in Belmullet last week, proved a resounding success.
More than 70 people attended the launch by motivational speaker Sue Stockdale, the internationally-recognised author, businesswoman, entrepreneur, and executive coach, and an overflow number of applications were received for the advice sessions. The week of activities was organised by the Corrib Gas Partners as part of its initiatives under the Erris Development Fund.
The primary objective of Erris Enterprise week was to provide support, information, and advice to local enterprises and new start-up businesses. Traditionally events such as this are organised by the advice/enterprise agencies in venues outside Erris and this can make attendance problematic for many business people.
“Speaking to the participants at the various events, many commented in particular on the fact that the enterprise sessions took place in Erris, as it made attendance much easier. The feedback we received from the evaluation forms was very positive,” said Shell E&P Ireland Limited’s community investment advisor Fiona Togher.
Sessions organised during the week included Tourism Marketing given by marketing consultant Padraig Cleary; Strategic Marketing and Business Development with specialist Finola Howard who also conducted one-to-one sessions; and Business Communications presented by Mayo TV and Irish TV founder Piaras Ó Raghallaigh.
Darina Loakman, owner of iamawahm.com, presented a Social Media/Digital Marketing workshop and also gave individual sessions in digital marketing while local accountant Thomas McHugh presented on Finance and Business Administration and also provided individual finance/business advice sessions.
Positive comment received through the evaluation forms included “excellent opportunity for learning and networking”; “excellent and very informative workshop”; “gained a much better understanding of different aspects of marketing and the value of each”; “important to understand the message you are sending to your customers and the consistency of the messaging”; “excellent workshop – did not expect it to be so simple”.
Erris Beo – the Erris tourism promotion company – through one of its members who attended some of the sessions, was the winner of a €5,000 package of business support.
A planned session for Young Entrepreneurs with Limerick University lecturer Dr Patrick Walsh, scheduled for Friday evening, was postponed, as a large cohort of young people locally were travelling to Dublin for the All-Ireland final the following morning. The session will be re-scheduled for a suitable time in the next month.