MORRIS – There’s nothing like getting a group of women together to get a conversation going. That is exactly what Jennifer Olson thought after discussing with a group a friends the need for a women’s networking event in Morris.
“Some ladies were talking about getting together to network on Facebook,” Olson said. “We started a group with 10 women, and now we have over 150.”
From that conversation, the group Girls Lunch Only, or GLO as they call themselves, formed and a monthly lunch was planned for women of Grundy County at area dining establishments in Morris.
“We meet once a month for lunch, they can stay as long as they want,” Olson said. “If they need to get right back to work they can order as soon as they arrive. It’s really informal.”
The idea appealed to area women who started attending when they were able to. There is no attendance taken so people may attend once or every single month.
“I knew Jennifer and she invited me to attend,” Tammy Alvarez said. “It’s a great way to get to meet new people.”
Alvarez said she even found a new insurance agent through the group of women who attend.
“I think it’s a good idea to get together and showcase what you do,” Alvarez said.
On Thursday, the lady lunchers switched things up and held their first “after hours” event at GiGi’s in Morris, where those who attended were treated to snacks and wine while being able to shop with a special 10 percent discount just for them.
“I’d been talking to Jen and wasn’t able to make the lunches because of work, so I thought it would be nice to have one in the evening for those who can’t do lunch,” Heidi Kindlespire, owner of GiGi’s, said. “It’s great to be able to bounce ideas off one another and intersting to hear about what everyone else is doing.”
The informal nature of the get-togethers seems to be what members like most about the events.
“It’s super informal; we just talk about what we do,” Olson said.
Alvarez said women are in charge of and involved in a lot of businesses, plus they make a lot of the buying decisions day to day.
“It’s fun while networking,” Kindlespire said. “It’s light, fun and comfortable.”
The networking has paid off for many of the women. Some said they found volunteers for projects they are working on and others found new clients.
The events aren’t just for working women though. Those who stay at home also are encouraged to attend to find out about women-related topics going on in the area.
“Girl’s rule, we get stuff done,” Olson said. “It’s important as women in our community to band together to get things done.”
The monthly events are announced on their Facebook page at www.facebook.com/GloGirlsLunchOnly and any woman in Grundy County is invited to join.