It's International Women's day once again and it is as important as ever.
Our freelance consultant Katy has shared her thoughts on a fairer workplace for all.
"Being a woman is tough. Being a man is tough. Being trans, or transitioning, or part of LBGQT+ is tough. Today on International Woman’s Day we need to recognise that everyone experiences struggles and hardships that can affect our everyday lives.
It’s clear that women can face their own set of obstacles, regardless of where we are in the world. We can be shouted down, told that we can’t achieve our ambitions, or fear walking home alone. So many of us will be told to act like a ‘lady’, which perfectly showcases the oxymorons that become ingrained in us from birth. This brings doubt to nearly every action we take and leads us to question our identity and place in the world.
On International Women’s Day, it’s a time for me to reflect upon how incredibly lucky I am. I work in an inclusive environment where my colleagues are allies and friends, respect my judgement and are eager to be a part of my support network. But not everyone has these kinds of opportunities available to them.
Working alongside the advertising and creative industry reveals problems that are ingrained into its zeitgeist. There are far more men in the FTSE Top 100 than there are women. The same holds true in Digital, Film, Technology, and even Creative leadership positions; there are a minute number of women and those who identify as women. At the 2020 Oscars, there were no female directors nominated in the Best Director category, even though Greta Gerwig, Melina Matsoukas, and Lorene Scafaria’s films were critically acclaimed.
However, the tide is beginning to turn.
Last year, the UK Government introduced the Apprenticeship Levy for companies who take on apprentices, which encourages young women to find a different educational route other than university. This opens up new, previously unexplored avenues for young women to learn practical skills as they take their first steps into the working world. Its progress, and its something that brings a new sense of optimism for the future of working women.
It's easy enough for us to get on our soapbox on days like this; the issues that we face in the creative industry are thrown into sharp relief as we continue efforts to create an #eachforequal world. I wouldn’t call myself an expert on gender in the workplace, but as a woman, I can acknowledge and reflect upon the experiences I’ve had. All of us can choose to challenge stereotypes, fight bias and broaden perceptions, today and every day.
As we look to the future, we need to have open, transparent conversations about gender and equality in the workplace. Only then can we continue to move forward in establishing a fairer working world for all."
We have also asked the women of become to share some empowering quotes that resonate with us, as sometimes all it takes to keep the motivation and determination going is some wise words.
“Always aim high, work hard, and care deeply about what you believe in. And, when you stumble, keep faith. And, when you’re knocked down, get right back up and never listen to anyone who says you can’t.” ~ Hillary Clinton
"I think the girl who is able to earn her own living and pay her own way should be as happy as anybody on earth. The sense of independence and security is very sweet." ~ Susan B. Anthony
“I have learned that as long as I hold fast to my beliefs and values – and follow my own moral compass – then the only expectations I need to live up to are my own.” ~ Michelle Obama
"I do not wish women to have power over men, but over themselves" ~ Mary Shelley
If you’d like to talk to any of us about gender in the workplace, do feel free to give us a confidential call. It’s something we feel incredibly passionate about, so we’re more than happy to take some time out for a chat."