International Women's Day: Celebrating women in the workplace.
International Women’s Day (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women.
This day is all about unity, celebration, reflection, advocacy, and action. Companies are encouraged to participate in the conversation around gender parity and empower their employees to promote equality at all times.
How will you be celebrating International Women’s Day? Find out how you can make a difference in your workplace.
International Women’s Day was first celebrated by The United Nations in 1975, and by 1996 they had started to adopt annual themes, the first-ever one being “Celebrating the Past, Planning for the Future”
Now, women from all around the world are joining the business industry and we are here for it. This year, the theme is ‘breaking the bias’ which allows us to break stigmas such as gender biases for a better and equal tomorrow. The women of this generation are rightfully claiming the “Boss” title with inspiration coming from Rhianna, Victoria Prew, Sharmadean Reid, and many other entrepreneurs which are paving the way for many businesswomen.
The Importance of celebrating the women in your workplace
So what’s the big deal? A bias is an inclination, prejudice or being against one person or group which might be considered unfair. Breaking the bias makes us aware of the current gender biases within the workplace.
Our brains are hardwired to think the way they do, our self-identity is largely based on whom we know and empathise with. Being biased can sometimes cause us to create prejudices against other people, which can ultimately lead to treating others unequally. Breaking the bias encourages you to think outside the box. Teaching is essential to create a safe environment that allows us to form our own opinions, promote growth, opportunities, motivation, and hard work.
There are heaps of resources on how to recognise inequality within the workplace. Companies such as Forbes (SOURCE ) have created resources that educate others on sexism and inequality in the workplace. By dismantling inequality, we can strive for a better tomorrow.
International Women’s Day celebrates women’s achievements by increasing visibility, while calling out inequality. Get involved and be part of the movement, help build a workplace where women thrive.
Here’s 5 ways in which you can promote quality and celebrate your female workers in the workplace:
There are many ways we can celebrate women in our workplace but it is important to note that these celebrations should be practised every day. This shows how your company is committed to promoting equality and respect. Inclusivity is incredibly important, and the more you practise challenging gender biases the more inclusive you will be. Equality is not a choice, it’s a right.
Celebrate the history, achievements, and culture of the women in your workplace and industry.
Most companies have plenty of history and stories, and most of these stories will involve and include women. Discuss these to bring importance to their achievements. This can be done in many ways, such as internal email campaigns to staff, company newsletters, social media, and posting on your company website.
Support younger women in your field.
Offering advice, guidance, and personal experience can help create opportunities for young women looking to start a career. With only 1 in 3 entrepreneurs only being female in the UK, this does not mean women lack ability or ambition but highlights gender inequality in the industry. According to ‘The Alison Rose Review of Female Entrepreneurship’ states that this is equal to a gender gap of 1.1 million missing businesses. (SOURCE)
Of course, there are charities and groups that help young women get started in their careers.
- The Women’s Organisation.
T.W.O focuses on career development with advice, training, and opportunities to help women discover their ambition. Check them out here.
You can find more information here.
Activities that are centred around the women in your workplace.
Encouraging your colleagues or employees to enter discussions with their fellow female employees can help them understand social issues and experiences.
Engaging in literature, attending art shows, supporting female athletes, as well as discussing female shows, music, etc… can create knowledge on the female experience.
Purple symbolises International Women’s day.
Purple is the colour of strength, confidence, wealth, creativity and dignity. And is also the universal colour of IWD. Ask your employees or colleagues to wear purple as a sign of solidarity and support. Take pictures of staff involved and post them around the office, as a reminder that you support and encourage everyone, regardless of their gender.
Join the conversation online with other companies.
Many companies are jumping at the opportunity to share how their businesses support women and equality. The International Women’s Day group has prepared a pose and a hashtag, for you and your staff to get involved in. Additionally, on their website, they have resources and activities to take part in.
Thank you to all the women who stop at nothing to grow within their career, breaking the biases and roles, you are truly inspiring.
How can you get involved? Use the hashtags #BreakingTheBias and #InternationalWomensDay to join the conversation online.
Give a shout-out to a colleague and show your appreciation by completing a short form Let’s celebrate the amazing women in our industry – nominations will be shared with the network.