liverpool business advice


This week is Global Entrepreneurship Week. Here at The Women’s Organisation, our mission is to support and empower women to reach their potential.

Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW) takes place each November and is recognised as one of the biggest celebrations of entrepreneurship globally.

For more than 25 years, we have campaigned tirelessly to endorse the economic power of women and promote their equal participation in business and community life.

Since we first launched as Train2000 back in 1996, we have helped more than 70,000 women across the Northwest to start and scale a business. We have been proud to watch so many of those businesses, and those women, flourish and thrive.

We revisited some of those women now making waves, and asked them what their advice would be for today’s budding female entrepreneurs. Here’s what they had to say.



Professional beautician and former beauty salon owner Jody Riley is now CEO and founder of Pamperbook, a digital platform designed to help find, book and pay for beauty treatments.

jody riley pamperbook

Jody featured in Hello Magazine earlier this year, they described her platform as “revolutionary” and suggested it was “taking the beauty industry by storm”.

Jody says her advice to women starting a business would be: “Keep consistent, never give up and treat all hurdles and mistakes as lessons in order to grow.

“Treat rejections as motivation and believe so hard in yourself that failure is never an option.”


Hayley Murtagh is owner and manager of Bonnie Bear Day Care – a family-run nursery and day care centre for children aged between 12 weeks and five years, based in Walton.

Bonnie Bear Day Care was set up in 2020, in loving memory of the Hayley’s daughter Bonnie, who they sadly lost in February that year.

Hayley says her main piece of advice before starting a business would be to create a rigorous business plan -she suggests engaging the help and support of specialist organisations in order to do this.

She adds: “A business plan helps to determine the demand for your business. You should include financial requirements for everything involved in your business, i.e. start-up costs and a forecast for your business’s future to assess its viability.

“Following this you can create your own business structure and this is a good starting point to visualise your business on paper.”



Lauren Caffrey from West Derby launched The Zone fitness centre and personal training facility in 2021, and despite challenges presented by COVID managed to double her client list within months of opening.

lauren caffrey the zone

She offers: “If you are going to set up a business make sure it’s something you love and something you have a passion for. Running a business is very challenging and loving what you do makes it that little bit easier getting through the harder times.

“Every business has ups and downs, and they will come and go all year round so keep pushing through the hard times, and don’t give up. Every challenge might be different, but you learn to cope with it a little better every time.

“I used to get really upset but I just keep in my head it will all work out and stay positive looking for quick wins to help the business at that challenging time!”



Natalie Holden is owner and founder of Natalie Holden Interiors. She worked with the Women’s Organisation to establish the business in 2021 and has since worked with leading brands in the retail and hospitality sectors.

Natalie says: “Starting a business is so exciting at the start, but soon reality hits and the first two years can be tough to navigate. There are lots of uncertainties, and you can often find some people aren’t very supportive and doubt what you are doing.

“Surround yourself with other like-minded people who are in a similar position to you, or get to know other experienced businesspeople who can act as a mentor. They will be your very own cheerleaders and you can help each other out.

“If you think that you’ll work best doing it all on your own, you are wrong. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, advice or a second opinion on your ideas. This is not a sign of weakness; this is the best thing I did when starting out.”


Michelle Waterfield is the brains behind A Slower Space, independent lifestyle store located on Liverpool’s iconic Penny Lane, which she runs alongside her husband Mike. They offer beautiful collections of carefully curated pieces that portray a relaxed lifestyle.

a slower space

She advises women thinking of setting up a business to “trust their instincts”, adding, “Think about what makes your business unique and build on that.”


Georgina Feeney set up Dare2Dream Mortgages and Financial Services with the help of The Women’s Organisation in 2021. She says: “Patience is not the ability to wait, it’s the ability to wait with a good attitude.”

georgina feeney


Lucy Byrne owns and operates Dot Art, an independent art gallery and consultancy based in Liverpool.

lucy byrne dot art

Her advice for women thinking of starting a business is: “Ask for help – fellow female businesses owners especially, in my experience, are always willing to offer advice and support. We’ve all been there!

“Tenacity, determination and self-belief are also vital, as there will always be days when you question what on earth you are doing!


Rebecca Keegan is owner and editor of Good News Liverpool, an online publication that aims to promote positive news from businesses and communities in the Liverpool City Region.

“Just ask!” says Rebecca, “Don’t skirt around the question with potential clients or customers.

“Ask them to buy from you, or work with you – the worst they can do is say no, but they might say yes.

“Don’t be scared of rejection, it’s part of the process.”



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