Guest speaker at the event was Lorraine Heggessey, one of Britain's leading broadcasters and producers, who became the first ever woman to hold the post of Controller of BBC One. With a career that has encompassed some of the most prestigious posts in broadcasting, including Chief Executive of Talkback Thames and several key jobs at the BBC, Lorraine was able to provide some fascinating insights into her career and the role of women in senior positions. She is currently Executive Chair of Boom Pictures.
Lorraine shared some of her enlightening moments, together with some of the lessons learnt along the way. She also highlighted the differences between the sexes in the business world: "I believe women still hold themselves back - generally men move into more senior roles two years before they should and women two years after they should."
"As women in the workplace we still tend to be good at putting ourselves down and not seizing opportunities. Networking is good because you can learn by talking to people and discover outside influences." Her thoughts certainly resonated with the audience of senior women PR practitioners at the lunch.
Working outside your comfort zone is something that Lorraine also firmly advocated: "It can prove to be extremely rewarding and by not giving up and going with your gut instinct you start to get noticed." And on the plus side: "Women have an advantage over men who usually have to wear suits, we can be the image of what we represent and live our brand."
"Women need to follow their dreams and passions and you will probably do well, but you must enjoy what you do."