International Women’s Day: From feminism to removing bias

With the rain was pelting down this morning across Sydney, we braved the weather to head to the International Women’s Day Breakfast sponsored by Hands Group. I was looking forward to being back at a live event that had people in the audience and speakers on the stage, which was wonderful to be at! With Peter Baines as the incredible MC, he shared the story of Hands Across the Water and Edwina McCann, the editor-in-chief of Vogue Australia was inspirational. Her approach and story were authentic, and she talked about the changes that have occurred in the media industry since she started.

To be honest, I was also excited about something else. Sitting beside me was my wife and my 2 daughters, Jasmine, 20 and Isabella 18. I watched as they participated in discussions with people that they had just met (as well as with a few that they have known for years). As I watched them interact with others, I realised that this is what International Women’s Day is trying to inspire, the future women of Australia and the world. I was thrilled to hear about the initiatives that Vogue Australia is doing to highlight different women and the positive stories that they can bring that go beyond fashion. Edwina made a very interesting statement in her presentation this morning, she said that today was not about feminism, but about eliminating any bias that can occur within our society. This made me smile.

I believe the next generation of women are also showing their unique abilities and stepping up like no previous generation. My daughter Jasmine in in her 3rd year of university, has just started a professional practice role as an employee starting to make her influence in the product design industry. 

My youngest daughter Isabella just returned from a trip to the US looking at different universities to play women’s soccer and get her degree. She is aware of the pay gap in women’s sport and as an elite soccer player she plans on showing the world how women deserve equal representation with men (although if you ask her, she believes both the Aussie Matildas and US Women’s soccer team should be paid more than the men due to their World Class ranking and results!) Yes, I have to say I am proud of the women in my household and look forward to them shifting people’s perspective around equality.

So, what can we do to create the equality that women deserve? I believe we all need to be more aware and have conversations and speak out when we see something that is not fair. We also need to celebrate and recognise the wonderful women in our lives and not forget to let them know how much we appreciate them and how much better our lives and society are because of them!

If you would like to see some amazing women (& men) speakers at the Future of Leadership and support Hands Across the Water, please click here to find out more and join us at one of the events across Australia occurring in May. Use the Promo code GETINEARLY to receive 10% off.