International Women’s Day

  • Written by The Women's Magazine
Inga Latham, Chief Product Officer at Shippit: “Despite the strides we’ve made, female representation is still a problem in the tech space. Anecdotally, if you ask young women, many feel they are not discriminated against - but just when you are feeling optimistic, you encounter one with a horror story. For me International Women’s Day is about drawing attention to the lack of representation, ongoing bias and discrimination, and striving to create an environment where everyone is treated as an equal and feels comfortable. We have this day because we still need it. If it wasn't an issue, we’d stop talking about it. There’s still work to do and it extends way beyond the workplace. At home we need to treat young boys and girls as equals. At schools, everyone should be encouraged to take part in STEM or art or whatever they're passionate about. There's a long way to go, but I'm optimistic; I can see a palpable difference between the attitudes of 20-30-year-old men and 50-60-year-old men.”

Tamara Oppen, Vice President of English Markets at GoDaddy: “To me, International Women’s Day is a celebration of the immense contribution women make to communities, workplaces, families and societies everywhere. My gender has never counted against me, but that’s because I actively seek out companies that align with my values; where the business is making a real impact, and the leadership has strong, progressive and empowering values. Workplaces where our personal lives are just as important as our professional lives. Ending the notion that women have to choose between a career and a family is imperative. The post-pandemic hybrid workplace enables the pursuit of both, but it also creates pressure for working parents. They’re always striving for an unachievable goal. However, I’m thoughtful about how I spend my time and make choices that are right for me personally and for my family. Being a mother doesn’t detract from my ability to do my job at a high level; in fact, it enables me to do it better, giving me new skills and perspectives that are essential in large, global, diverse teams. So this International Women’s Day, let’s celebrate all the women and all the mothers enjoying rewarding and empowering personal and professional lives.”

Lyra MacKay, Evangelist at Zoho: “For so long women have been underrepresented in certain roles and industries, resulting in gender disparity. This is especially evident in the tech sector, where it is commonly regarded as a male-dominated industry. To me, as a woman still in the comparatively early years of my career, International Women’s Day is about not only acknowledging and celebrating how far women have come and the incredible contributions from all of us, but bring to fore ways everyone can help forge more gender balanced societies and workplaces. But what does it really mean to create a work environment where everyone feels heard, valued and safe? It starts with fostering a culture of respect and inclusion, by promoting diversity, equity and empathy. When people see each other as equals, it allows for more perspectives to be heard, leading to more innovative and creative solutions. It creates a foundation of trust among people to work together towards common goals without judgement – this is key to creating a world that is free from discrimination and prejudice.”

Ana Wight, GM of Retail at Lightspeed: “International Women’s Day is about creating awareness of the need for equity and equality, celebrating progress and the contributions women everywhere make, and reflecting on the commitments we must continue making individually and collectively to close the gap. That gap exists everywhere, including in the technology industry. We must empower and encourage more young women into STEM. We must create pathways for young women, excite them about their career potential, encourage them to follow their ambitions and sponsor them to have a successful and fulfilling career whatever they do. I’m proud to work alongside inspiring and industry-leading women, who are proof that gender has no bearing on our ability to do our jobs at an elite level. Discrimination of any kind has no place in today’s society. The highest performing workplaces are inclusive and diverse, attracting and retaining the best talent in the market.”

Lisa Virgo, Chief People Officer at Tic:Toc: “Equity has been part of our DNA since inception. As a fintech company working to enable the industry, we know that diversity drives innovation and change, and for us, cracking the code starts at the very beginning. In recognition of different applicant behaviour, we include a statement encouraging people to apply even if their skills or background doesn’t tick all the boxes. Our job ads are gender decoded, and a diverse range of stakeholders are involved in the hiring process. Not only are the women at Tic:Toc contributing day in day out to our successes, but paving the way for young girls and women to normalise working in technical roles that have traditionally had a higher representation of men. What you can see, you can be! Tic:Toc is proud to have extraordinary women in a range of technical and digitally-focused roles at all levels, including data science, software development, infrastructure, and testing. We’re passionate to continue shaping and driving the digital era, and are committed to cracking the code for a better world.”

Madeleine Grummet investor and Wade Institute VC Catalyst Moderator: “As a mother of four daughters, a startup investor, mentor and the former founder of girledworld and Future Amp, International Women's Day (IWD) holds a special significance for me. It's a day to acknowledge and celebrate the next generation of women, and to reflect on the education and skills they are developing for their future careers, which will shape our world. However, the reality is that the world they are entering is still unbalanced. Australia's national gender pay gap persists at 13.3%, and women-only founding teams received only 0.7% of funding in 2022. Moreover, women are still underrepresented in decision-making roles. Achieving equity requires us to confront the systemic biases, stereotypes, and discrimination that have long held women back in boardrooms, businesses, start-ups, public office, and beyond. IWD provides an opportunity to highlight these inequalities and engage in challenging, constructive, and inclusive conversations about how we can level the playing field and reimagine our world so that women can thrive in their chosen careers, and our society can benefit from their contributions.”

Gali Arnon, CMO at Fiverr: “Embracing equity is all about giving females the power to chase their goals and succeed in all aspects of life. When it comes to succeeding in the workforce, it’s about making it work for you. Flexible and remote work, and knowing your worth benefits not only you, as an employee, but benefits other marginalised groups around you that have been historically disadvantaged by the traditional workforce. The success of numerous female identifying freelancers in our research is proof that autonomous work can provide a vehicle to foster a more diverse, inclusive workforce. I am thrilled that Fiverr can play a role in empowering women to build a self-driven career, accelerating and expanding their scope of opportunities, and rewarding their hard earned skills. International Women’s Day to me signifies the work women have put towards creating more equality when it comes to the gender wage gap, how women are essential to the improvement and growth for all businesses, and how they have the power to take their career paths into their own hands.”

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