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by Louise Deverell-Smith

Balance for Better

On Friday 8th March we celebrate International Women’s Day, and throughout the week we will be celebrating women’s achievements!

This year’s official hashtag is #BalanceforBetter, which calls for a more gender-balanced world. Amen to that! It’s so wonderful to see the rise of International Women’s Day and the noise surrounding it highlighting the key issues that globally women face.

The #BalanceforBetter focus is one that Daisy Chain is totally behind, as sadly we see the need for gender equality in big brands and businesses all too frequently. And by this, I don’t only mean equal financial remuneration for the job levels, but equal promotion and training opportunities, and equal access to mentoring and growth systems alongside equal job entry opportunities. 

The recently published Global Talent Trends 2019 Report from LinkedIn reports a 26% increase in gender diversity for leadership roles, but acknowledges that this is nowhere near enough, especially when the traditionally ‘corporate’ careers can be vastly under-represented by women in senior roles. 

However, we have seen encouraging movement from none other than Starbucks, when last year it announced it had achieved 100% gender pay equality throughout all its roles in the U.S, and plans to make this global during 2019! They are already seeing their talent acquisition levels rise and staff retainer levels stable. It’s a no-brainer for others to follow, surely!

On a more grassroots level, here at Daisy Chain we’re constantly speaking to employers and organisations about gender diversity and the importance of supporting women in the workplace. This can be by offering transparent maternity packages, shared parental leave options and a clearly visible progression package for all. Alongside, of course, flexible working opportunities. 

The power of offering flexible working is a strong addition to any employers’ remit and often attracts, and most importantly retains, great candidates. 

Many of our mums have stories of previous employers that did not offer this, or even see the benefits of it which left them no option but to leave their roles, stagnating their career path, and more damagingly, leaving a wide gap in the employer’s workforce. 

We are seeing more and more that employers who don’t understand flexibility and gender diversity issue are falling to the back of the line. In this respect, it’s not only an expectation, but a necessity that they get on board – and fast. 

As International Women’s Day approaches, I am particularly enthused about the wonderful women out there who have gone out and done it. They’ve stood up against the status quo, challenged ideals and questioned the norm with great results. I love hearing about women who have started their own successful businesses, who have built their own way of working that fits in with them and allowed their skills and wonderful experience to shine for them alone. 

As for me, I’ll be kicking off IWD Week next Monday with an event at the House of Lords celebrating the #IAlso Top 100 f:Entrepreneur campaign, which I’m hugely honoured to be part of.

I’ll not only be in a great venue (one that is finally understanding the value of women too, may I add!) but surrounded by 99 like-minded women who are really owning their worth and value. I can’t wait. Happy IWD to you all! 




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