Female leaders from across the UK recently came together in Birmingham to celebrate International Women’s Day at the Tribera Talks roundtable event. Hosted by creative agency Tribera, the event saw female representatives from big brands such as Eon, Midea, Shakespeare Martineau LLP, St James Place, and Baxi come together to discuss the most pressing issues affecting women in the workplace.
One of the main topics discussed was the gender pay gap and pay equity. While every attendee had managed to progress to c-suite level, they had all faced struggles to feel included by their male peers and were not always paid fairly. However, attendees acknowledged that improvements had been made in the last 10-15 years, mainly attributed to HR actioning effective consequences for employees and instigating zero tolerance policies.
The roundtable also highlighted the challenges faced by women who go on maternity leave to have children, with some participants describing it as “career suicide” in certain corporate environments. High childcare costs in the UK make it challenging for women returning from maternity leave, although shared parental leave policies are slowly starting to appear. However, attendees acknowledged that a cultural shift in the UK still needs to occur to accept that men can take longer-term parental leave and share responsibilities.
The Covid-19 pandemic was also discussed, with attendees noting that women generally took on more than their fair share of childcare, home schooling, and Covid-related redundancies. However, there were also positive changes that emerged from the pandemic, such as a shift to hybrid and flexible working arrangements that enabled men to be more involved with school runs. This was evidenced by the clear change in demographic at the school gates.
At the event, attendees also discussed the importance of male allies in promoting gender equality in the workplace. Many men were seen as strong allies who stood in solidarity with their female colleagues by sharing childcare responsibilities, rearranging meetings, volunteering others for tasks if they were aware of someone who may have issues with childcare, calling out inappropriate comments in the workplace, and ensuring that women got credit for their ideas.
However, attendees also acknowledged that more work needs to be done to promote inclusive workplaces and support women’s career progression. They called for effective mentoring and sponsorship programs to increase the talent pool of women that climb the ladder, rather than forced quotas to create diversity and inclusion on boards and management teams.
The roundtable event showcased the importance of International Women’s Day and the ongoing efforts to promote gender equality in the workplace. By offering unwavering support for each other’s progress, women can push the dial to equity even more and pave the way for a brighter future for the next generation of female leaders.
Fran Nolan, founder and managing director at Tribera, facilitated the event and said, “Throughout my career, I’ve been committed to raising awareness of inequalities women face in the workplace and pushing for change for women leaders of the future. Our roundtable event was a great way to bring together women I admire from all backgrounds and provide a platform to discuss the most pressing issues impacting women in the workplace today.”
The Tribera Talks roundtable event provided a platform for female business leaders to discuss and highlight the most pressing issues affecting women in the workplace. The event showcased the ongoing efforts to promote gender equality in the workplace and the need for effective mentoring and sponsorship programs to support women’s career progression. By working together and supporting each other, women can continue to pave the way for a brighter future for the next generation of female leaders.
If you want to learn more about Tribera and their work to promote gender equality in the workplace, visit their website at https://tribera.com/. Together, we can continue to work towards a more inclusive and equitable future for all.