This International Women's Day, we interviewed some of our team asking them to share their thoughts on how we can #EmbraceEquity.
Equity can be defined as giving everyone what they need to be successful. The IWD 2023 campaign theme seeks to forge worldwide understanding about why equal opportunities aren’t enough, and a focus on gender equity needs to be part of every society’s DNA.
International Women’s Day belongs to everyone, everywhere. Collectively, we can all help create a diverse, equitable and inclusive world.
#EmbraceEquity with Mark Thomas, partner and director at Eames Consulting in the UK.
1. What is one action companies can take to further balance their talent attraction strategies?
There are so many, but in my experience, women want to see other women doing the job and aspirational figures in senior roles so they know progression is possible. Getting potential new hires to meet the great women you have throughout the interview process so that they can ask questions and see someone that’s like them while going through that process is huge and should happen every time.
2. What does being an effective ally for women look like to you?
For me, it's about doing everything possible to consistently push our clients' thinking around gender diversity. Challenging thinking, providing new ideas and solutions and doing that consistently. There isn’t a simple solution or ‘quick fix’, it's about trying new things over a long period of time to gradually change people's mindsets.
3. What is your top advice for making job descriptions more inclusive?
Without a doubt, it's actually investing the time to get women to read them and provide feedback. Most companies invest in tech and spend a load of money on this kind of thing and forget the really simple task of testing them on women to make sure they actually work.
4. What advice would you give women in the industry you work in?
I have learned loads from my women in tech podcast, and in every episode, I ask this exact question to my guests. The two most common answers are, to find great mentors (male or female) to help you develop yourself and be proactive in driving what you actually want from your career. Don’t be afraid to challenge the status quo and put your views forward.
5. International Women’s Day is also about celebrating women and their achievements. What woman/women inspire you?
There are so many! I have had some incredible guests on my podcast in the last six months and all of them have inspired me in different ways. But I think the most inspiring for me most recently has been our new non-exec director, Kim Gray. She's super successful and working with her over the last six months or so (and having her as a guest on the podcast) has taught me loads and certainly changed my thinking on a lot of things DE&I related as well as broader work-related stuff.
6. What do you think is the most significant barrier to female leadership?
I’ve seen this first hand with my wife - it has to be flexibility in the workplace. Employers need to provide true flexibility to women, whether that be around them having children, returning to work etc and communicating that effectively so that women actually believe that they can have a family and do all the great stuff that’s attached to that but can also excel in their career – it doesn’t need to be one or the another.