The Scottish Chambers of Commerce practiced what they preached in February when they partnered with the Scottish Government and the Association of Scottish Businesswomen to announce a new mentoring programme specifically aimed at developing the next generation of Scottish business women.

The Future Female Business Leaders programme will provide participants with an unparalleled network of experienced women in business who will mentor, guide and support the growth of women-led businesses and senior women in the corporate and public sector. The partnership is the most recent of a number of examples of how the Scottish Chambers works with public sector organisations to run cost-free programmes for the benefit of Scottish businesses.

The scheme adds another string to SCC’s mentoring bow – the Chambers of Commerce have run Mentoring programmes at a local and national level for a number of years, working with a variety of distinguished partners.

Chief Executive Liz Cameron is keen to continue to build upon the SCC’s impressive reputation for business mentoring that helps unlock opportunities for women in the business world. She said: “This is a perfect example of playing to the strengths and connectivity of both the public and private sector. It is an economic priority

to ensure that we create an infrastructure which will unlock the outstanding opportunities which exist for females in the workplace enabling more of us to progress to the very top.”

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon was enthusiastic about the prospect of the programme, praising its potential for delivering positive effects on Scottish society. She said: “Helping more women to set up and succeed in business is both an economic and a moral imperative. By encouraging and supporting women to create and grow businesses, we can create greater equality which in turn builds a stronger and fairer economy.”

Ms Sturgeon, who will speak at SCC’s Annual Business Address in Glasgow in September, also took the opportunity to comment on the strength of the SCC network, noting the size and scale of its membership and the mentoring programme, which has over 1,000 mentors signed up.

Lyndsey Greer-Phillips, President of the Association of Scottish Businesswomen, believes the mentoring project is unique in its ability to create a climate for success. She said: “For many women in business, these talents and ideas can often be overlooked, holding them back and limiting their contributions to our economy. That’s why this partnership is so appealing. It’s led by women in business and is for women in business”.

You can find out more about the Future Female Business Leaders programme by visiting the Scottish Chambers of Commerce website, or calling 0141 444 7500.