SME owner and Inspiring Women Awards founder Jacqueline Hughes Lundy offers her advice for SMEs

POSTED: 15th March 2013
IN: Business news

Jacqueline Hughes Lundy has learnt a great deal about what it takes to achieve success as an SME.

The entrepreneur not only runs The Inspiring Women Awards, but also manages her own marketing business, Olivia John Associates. Speaking to Aldermore, she advises small businesses that, while they should be careful to manage their finances wisely, they shouldn't be wary of seeking out support.

"Count every penny," warns Hughes Lundy, elaborating, "Treat every penny as your last penny so you don't squander any money and think 'oh we've got all this, we can just go and buy new computers and stationary and all the rest of it.'"

Despite this message of frugality, Hughes Lundy states that often SME owners must take on an element of risk in order to grow their business and should not be too cautious, citing Ultimo founder Michelle Mone as a role model.

"Don't be afraid to make mistakes. Don't be afraid to ask for help." asserts Hughes Lundy, relating, "I had the pleasure of meeting Michelle Mone a few years ago. I thought her story was fascinating. She took everything to the brink. It was just a very determined, inspiring story. It's a drive that I recognise in a lot of entrepreneurs where they are risk takers and drive the economy because of that."

Mone is one of the many female entrepreneurs to have taken part in The Inspiring Women awards since their inception over 20 years ago. The highly respected event was set up by Hughes Lundy to raise money for charitable causes while celebrating female business and community leaders.

"It was meant as a one off charity fundraiser," states Hughes Lundy, "But three months after the event, where we raised a lot of money, I had a phone call from someone saying they'd take a corporate table next year."

The awards have since gone from strength to strength, and have recently been extended to include several new categories.

"We've introduced an entrepreneurs' category as well as a business category," shares Hughes Lundy, explaining, "We're looking to recognise younger businesses, not just necessarily younger women."

Aldermore shares this dedication to providing support for promising small businesses and is strongly committed to creating lines of communication with SMEs to discover the challenges they face in today's business climate.

Through this open dialogue, Aldermore have been able to tailor the Bank's financial products specifically to the needs of SMEs, providing a vital source of credit to allow many small businesses to achieve their goals.

The Bank is therefore delighted to see events like the Inspiring Women Awards recognising the contribution entrepreneurs and SME leaders make towards the UK economy.

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