A business woman who runs a UK wide avian pest control company from Mid Wales will be in Cardiff today - with her hawk.
Layla Bennett is participating in National Mentoring Day at the Senedd when she will talk about the business benefits of mentoring and how it has helped her business - Hawksdrift in Builth Wells.
Her company specialises in the use of hawks and falcons to keep pest birds at bay at airfields, factory and industrial sites, public buildings and city centres.
It is the first National Mentoring Day to be held in Wales and will showcase the diverse mentoring that is being offered and delivered across Wales and the UK and aims to raise awareness of the invaluable and rewarding contribution that mentoring makes and the huge impact it has on the economy as well as society.
Sponsored by the Welsh Government and supported by the Federation of Small Businesses Chwarae Teg, Business Wales, and Swansea University, it is open to anyone interested in becoming a mentor, being mentored or keen to develop a mentor group in their organisation.
Layla began trading in 2006 when she decided to turn her hobby into a thriving business. It is now an award winning company providing commercial bird control solutions throughout England and Wales.
Although Layla had considerable experience of running her own business she values the input of others and said the Business Wales Mentoring Service (external link) was invaluable in developing and growing her company.
Her mentor Adrian May, a Sales and Marketing Director with a reputation for delivering business growth and sales team development and Chief Executive of the Institute of Spring Technology, an international trade association, will also be speaking at the event.
The event includes panel presentations and discussions with Helen Walbey (Diversity Policy Chair, FSB), Siwan Rees (Director of the University of South Wales Exchange), Louise Button (Senior Participation Partner, Chwarae Teg), Lee Sharma (Simply Do), Shazia Awan (Women Create) and Bronwen Raine (Business Wales).
Economy Secretary Ken Skates said:
“Mentoring is an extremely valuable method of supporting individuals, businesses and organisations and something we do very well in Wales. The advice, experience and expertise that a mentor can bring to a business – whether a start up or an existing business - can be considerable and I am delighted the Welsh Government is supporting and celebrating National Mentoring Day.”
Helen Walbey, National Chair for Diversity, Federation of Small Businesses, said:
“Mentoring can be particularly effective for women, in building self-confidence and challenging perceptions of their own skills and capabilities, we are very happy to be supporting National Mentoring Day".
Panelist Siwan Rees, Director of USW Exchange at the University of South Wales, said:
“USW Exchange exists to offer access to first-class business advice for companies of all sizes.
“We work closely with the FSB to build lasting relationships and give students the tools necessary to make connections with business mentors, which will in turn help guide them towards success.
“We are delighted to support National Mentoring Day and back the efforts to give the next generation of business people the best support available."