Earlier this year, I joined the Women in the Pet Industry Network (WIPIN), a worldwide membership of women who are leaders in the pet industry. The membership roster includes a wide range of women in professions ranging from groomers, pet product manufacturers, artists and writers. Excited to make connections with other successful entrepreneurs, I signed up.
A few days after sending in my membership application, I received a welcome call from Shawna Schuh, the president and “Chief Pet Wrangler.” After speaking to Shawna, I knew I had joined a special group that would have a lasting effect on my business and life. Shawna’s energy and positive spirit is simply contagious! Over the past few months, I’ve participated in group share calls, moderated by Shawna. The calls provide a forum for discussion on a variety of topics and I always learn something new by joining a call.
The WIPIN mission is to help women-owned business by: Growing, Giving and Connecting. I had a chance to see these philosophies in action last week when I attended the Super Zoo, the national show for pet retailers in Las Vegas.
At the conference, I was able to personally connect with other members, some of whom I had already met online and on monthly share calls. I joined other WIPIN members on a Press Parade around the expo hall, where we met one-on-one with several of the members exhibiting. We also gathered as a group at an evening reception where Shawna enthusiastically rallied the crowd! What a treat to spend time with a wide range of smart, talented and successful business owners with a common bond: a love of animals.
What most inspired me at Super Zoo was the willingness of the women I met to collaborate and share ideas. It’s so rare in business to find folks willing to support and look out for one another. How utterly refreshing to spend time talking about genuine collaboration and sharing tools and ideas to help each other grow and prosper!
Since returning home from Super Zoo, I’ve been exchanging emails with a few new friends, discussing innovative ideas and projects.
At the end of August, I’ll be attending the Women in the Pet Industry Conference and Awards show in Portland, Oregon. If you’re a woman in the pet industry, I hope you will consider being part of this incredible organization. Check out their website and if you have any questions, Tweet me @PawsPR