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Second Meeting - Supporting Women's Entrepreneurship

Opatija, 23-26 September 2014 – Under the umbrella of the project, "Women Entrepreneurship - A Job Creation Engine for South East Europe", SEECEL organized the Second Women Entrepreneurs Working Group (WE WG) Meeting.

The aim of the meeting was to bring together representatives of national associations of business women and women entrepreneurs from nine participating countries to review, reflect and build upon the outcomes from the First WE WG Meeting, held earlier this year in Tirana, Albania.

Together with the Key Experts, Ms Lucia Usurelu , Mr Jakob Otto Modeer and the SEECEL team, the WG Members assessed the methodology used in preparing the training modules: pluses, minuses and lessons learned. The information and ideas were conveyed by using the Community of Practice (CoP) tool. Following the evaluation, the WG focused on finalizing the three training modules.

Another task on the agenda was to identify “Criteria for good practice examples”. Each Member Country presented their good practice example(s) from real life stories. Given the elements to help define a best practice, separate group discussions and activities followed focusing on the training module topics: Financial Literacy; Customer Centricity; Leadership and Motivation.

Ms Zdenka Lončar,-Assistant to the Minister at the Ministry of Entrepreneurship and Crafts addressed the Working Group by presenting the Strategy of Women Entrepreneurship Development in the Republic of Croatia.

Ms Efka Heder, SEECEL Director, addressed the group and spoke about what is meant by ‘best practice’ what are the criteria and basic elements which should be taken into consideration when determining the ‘Good Practice’. Other SEECEL team members were alos there to support the work of the WG, namely Ms Maja Ljubić, Assistant Director, Ms Sandra Rončević, Assistant Director, Ms Željka Mrkša, Entrepreneurial Expert and Ms Sonja Šegvić, Office and Event Manager.

The event culminated with a “Business Breakfast”, where Ms Nataša Smokrović, voted “Woman Entrepreneur of 2013 in Social Entrepreneurship” and the owner and manager of facilities for medical care and rehabilitation in the home “Helena Smokrović” presented her success story. She also reflected on many obstacles that every entrepreneur is faced with during development periods. Also, Ms Gordana Nikolić, PH.D., Dean and Founder of the Business School PAR (Poslovna Akademija Rijeka, Ltd. (P.A.R.) spoke about the goals of supporting and developing the connection between higher education and the economy. 
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