I have no doubt that you’ve heard today is International Women’s Day. A day dedicated to celebrating women’s achievements, raising awareness against bias and ultimately taking action in the name of equality.
The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is #EachforEqual, with a number of specific missions surrounding it. Two that really hit home for us here at Born + Raised are:
Please follow the links above to learn more about what these great initiatives are doing and how you can get involved.
We decided to ask the team:
- What did you think of this year’s theme?
- What does equality means to you?
- Can you name one woman you admire this International Women’s Day?
- What more can be done in the workplace to achieve #EachforEqual?
I for one would like to make special mention of Chanel Miller. I recently finished reading her memoir Know My Name, the most important one written in modern times (in my opinion). She was formerly known to the world as Emily Doe when her victim impact statement was published by BuzzFeed, in her sexual assault case against Brock Turner, after he had been sentenced to just six months in jail. The statement instantly went viral, being read in Congress and leading to a change in California Law. Chanel uses the memoir to take the reader from the assault itself, the aftermath and the painful trial in order to reclaim her identity and name.
I cannot stress enough how much I think everyone needs to read this memoir. Chanel will forever be my hero for coming forward and genuinely changing the world with her emotional, impactful writing.
A few submissions from the rest of the team:
Charlotte, Client Services Director
There are many women I admire, both fictional and in real life! Serena Williams: she’s a legend, simple as that. Her guts and determination in facing prejudice and other obstacles throughout her incredibly successful career – all the while being the most amazing role model – just takes my breath away.
I love the #EachforEqual theme! It completely resonates with me as someone who believes everyone is an individual and everyone deserves equal opportunity, but also that as individuals we should take responsibility for our own actions and how they impact everyone from those around us to everyone around the world.
Steve, Head of Copy
For me, equality means to treat everyone with equal respect and value, without bias towards gender, sexual orientation, ability, ethnicity, nationality of background. Simple really. So why is is so hard for some people to grasp, I wonder?
Tamaris, Office Manager
At Born + Raised, we are an equal community across disciplines, roles and senior management. There is no fear of feeling out of place or worry about speaking up and being heard. We are all classed as equals in any situation: we challenge each other daily to get the best results and always work collaboratively.
Equality is getting there in our country, I think. It may be slow in places but we should also remember that the best person for the job should be based on their ability and attitude to do the job, not their gender, age, race or sexual orientation.
Andy, Client Relationship Manager
Without doubt a woman I admire is my wife (gold star at the ready!) Every day, I see the battles she faces and how she tackles them on her own. She’s independent, works in a very male-dominated environment and still manages to be heard. It’s not always the big things that matter. Individuals like her lead the way in making sure that women have just as equal a voice as men do.
Across all countries, equality means eradicating any perception that others aren’t equal. That’s no easy task. Opinions are engrained and class privilege (especially in the UK) is a path to success. However, everyone can continue to challenge those perceptions and make sure that, at every point, everyone is given an equal opportunity to be who they are and to succeed in their own way.
AJ, Production Manager
I have great admiration for the late, great Ada Lovelace. A pioneer in the field of computing, without whom I am sure none of us would be here today, hammering away at our keyboards.
She had the forethought and vision to see the vast potential of the ‘computing machine’ in the early 1800’s – not a time in history we often associate with computing breakthroughs. Her belief in the humble computer has gone on to permeate fields as diverse as medical science and graphic design.
IT and Computing is often wrongly seen as a male-centric industry and she stands as a great example that women have had a huge impact on this industry, and continue to do so to this very day.
Gemma, Account Manager
I guess #EachforEqual is about the little things that you can do as an individual to represent another way of thinking where you see inequality, ignorance or prejudice.
It is about when I tell my daughter she can do anything that boys can do. When I tell her to question everything – she doesn’t have to just enjoy the colour pink, or just wear dresses, if she works hard she can choose to do whatever she likes. There are still a lot of messages around us telling us to do the opposite – it’s about encouraging women to challenge and question them.
I admire so many women it is hard to choose just one. I love that there now seems to be more female representation in comedy, and we’re seeing them more regularly in lead roles and/or writing for new shows, like: Sharon Horgan, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Lindy West, Kristen Wiig, Lena Dunham, Aisling Bea and more. I watched Fleabag, Bridesmaids and Girls I really felt like I was watching things with a whole new depth and more layers of female voice.
A lot more can be done in the workplace to achieve #EachforEqual. It’s not enough to wait for the dinosaurs and the uneducated to just ‘age out’ of the workplace. Every company needs to commit to making a cultural transformation from the top down. That means making gender equality (and just equality in general) a top priority for corporate social responsibility agendas, and giving it dedicated representation at board level. Salary transparency, education on inclusivity as well as support and even protection for those who speak out against their colleagues and managers – these are all things that should be top priorities for any self-respecting business leaders.
One woman that I admire is a friend of mine that I’ve known for nearly 15 years (I won’t mention her by name because she’d hate it if she knew I was talking about her). Neither of us have had the best start to the year, but she’s been a constant source of patience, advice and support, and if I can provide a tenth of that in return I’ll be lucky. She’s got a strength, resilience and grace that is just alien to me. If you read this, please don’t murder me!
I really admire female musicians like Stevie Nicks and Kim Deal who rose to the top, even though the odds were stacked against them in the male-dominated rock and punk scenes.
I also think that the marketing industry can do more to stop perpetuating harmful stereotypes – it’s not enough to just call out ideas that reinforce the issues – we can strive to create work that promotes equality.
Megan, Account Director
A woman I admire is Nicola Paviglianiti, an IPF powerlifter and Lift4life programme coordinator. She’s strong as hell under the bar, and also uses the sport of powerlifting to help solve gender inequalities and uplift underprivileged communities worldwide.
Here’s to strong women. May we know them. May we be them. May we raise them.