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Calling all women in digital! Are you looking to take your career to the next level?

Guest blog from Caroline McGonigle of TRC Media

Now in its 6th year, TRC’s flagship personal development programme for women in digital, ‘Special Edition’ has gone from strength to strength. With former delegates successfully starting their own businesses, securing significant job promotions, salary increases and board positions….Want to join them?

“Previous delegates had told me Special Edition was ‘life-changing’, I wondered how one course could really impact a life in such a big way. And it wasn’t until closer to the end that I saw how much it’s changed mine. I wish every woman in digital across Scotland could go on Special Edition and realise their dreams too” – Laura Thomson, Strategy and Comm Director, Cause & Effect.


Before I joined TRC as a Project Manager last year, I had heard about the “Special Edition” programme in passing. Whisperings from women across the creative industries, the grapevine of sisterhood strongly recommending this personal development training.

With the sheer number of groups across Linked In, Facebook, Meet up etc that have been forged by women working in the male-dominated digital and tech sector – the appetite we all share to re-address the gender balance in this area is clear to see.

TRC created the Special Edition programme with that exact aim – to help talented women working in digital/tech to fulfil their potential and reach the top of their industry. Now in its sixth year, Special Edition has gone from strength to strength. With former delegates successfully starting their own businesses, securing significant job promotions, salary increases and board positions.

Sounds good doesn’t it? But don’t take our word for it, here’s what previous Alumni have said about Special Edition:

“The most inspirational experience of my career to date, both from a learning and development perspective.” – Cat Leaver Project Director, Brand Scotland (Special Edition Alumni 2013 and named as one of The Drum’s 50 Women in Digital Under 30 in 2014)

“Special Edition is a life-changing 6 months, both professionally and personally. I never thought I would see this much change in myself in such a short period of time and I learned more about myself than I thought I ever would.” – Laura McHard, Lead Creative Soluis, BIMA100 Rising Star.

“Special Edition has completely transformed me. In just six months I’ve gone from a girl with some ideas but lacking in confidence, skills, contacts and knowledge to push those ideas further, to a confident, driven, focused woman making things happen, with an ever-ready toolkit of skills, a quickly expanding network and incredible support group! – Lynsey Briston – Sustainably


100% of Special Edition delegates from last year said their confidence had increased as a result of the programme. With three of the women receiving a promotion in the few months since the programme wrapped – not bad!

With the words of these women ringing in my head, you can understand why I can’t wait to kick off this years’ Special Edition programme.

The Programme

Applications open on July 1st and this year TRC would like to connect with women across all areas of the digital and tech sectors – digital agencies, software development, games, data, animation, mobile apps, augmented/virtual reality…….. if you are a woman working in the digital/tech industry in Scotland then we welcome your application!

Special Edition runs over 6 months – September 2019 – February 2020. Each month there is a one full-day training session delivered by leading industry trainers. PLUS at the end of the programme there is a field trip to meet with inspirational leaders in the sector. Previous Special Edition delegates have travelled to London, Berlin and Amsterdam to meet with business leaders and entrepreneurs doing exciting things in the world of digital, from global names to innovative start-ups. The programme is funded by Scottish Enterprise, BBC Nations & Regions, Channel 4 and Screen Scotland. There is a delegate fee of £345.

This mix of professional development training and creative expertise will help boost your confidence, improve your entrepreneurial skills, expand your professional networks and progress your career in digital.

So what’s stopping you? Apply now!

What to expect

Session topics for this year are being finalised, highly rated training sessions from previous Special Edition programmes include:

  • Personal Branding and goal setting
    Assess yourself as a brand, develop goals for the future and commit to a definitive plan of action
    “I can only describe my experience on the day as a complete and utter epiphany. I can confidently say, after only one day, that this course is going to be life-changing for me.”
  • Work-Life Balance
    Strategies for achieving a successful work/life balance.
    “I learned things about myself I will use to bring my life into balance and hopefully be a more effective, happier person in my work and home life.”
  • Dealing with difficult conversations
    Advice and useful tips mixed with practical exercises to hone and perfect your communication skills for a range of challenging scenarios.
    “I will use the techniques I learned with immediate effect. I’m dealing with a difficult relationship in the workplace, and I now have a clear strategy to engage in the challenging conversations which need to happen for any improvements to happen.”
  • Networking and pitching with confidence
    A practical session that will take you out of your comfort zone in order to achieve real results in presenting with confidence.
    “I’ve always been a bit nervous about introducing myself to strangers, but when you are developing a business it’s such an important skill to have. The session will directly impact how I get my business out there and make contacts, meet clients and pitch myself”.
  • Creative Problem Solving
    Using a powerful and persuasive shared questioning approach, the group will work to achieve the life and career goals identified in earlier sessions.
    “[The trainer] very skillfully took us through a process that changed my whole perception of listening, communication and responding to people. After the training day I felt truly empowered to take my career forward in ways I hadn’t previously thought possible.”
  • Leadership
    Identifying the kind of leader you are, and how best to use your skills for leading a successful team.
    “The session completely demystified the concept of a leader. It equipped me with a hugely practical set of leadership skills and toolsets which will allow me to lead a team with confidence.”

Over the duration of the previous 5 successful years of Special Edition, we now have an impressive alumni group of women that continue to support one another, far beyond the end of the programme itself:

“This group have helped each other through some major personal and professional changes, including the inception of new businesses, new directorships, new roles, awards and several babies.” – Cat Leaver

“We talk over Slack and WhatsApp, about everything from conferences that others in the group might be interested in to shared opportunities to meet investors, to choosing an outfit to deliver a presentation at a conference. I think that we’ll continue to be friends for a very long time.” – Laura McHard


So if you are a woman working in Digital/Tech with the ambition to take your career to the next level, then what are you waiting for? Find out more and apply for Special Edition today!

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