In celebration of International Women’s Day 2019, and this year’s #BalanceforBetter campaign that shines a light on the importance of creating gender balance in the business world, V Formation considers what the day means to our female-led team of marketing and PR experts, and reflects on our recent work that has helped to contribute towards bettering the balance in business.
At the helm of the V Formation ship are two Directors, Hilary Campton and Sue Carr, who inspire the team every day with their ambition and commitment to the business and V’s clients. When asked about her biggest influences, Sue said: “I come from a family where work and careers have always been important. Growing up, I always admired my Auntie who set up her own translation business and was very successful.
“In recent years I find I am influenced by, and admire, those that have successfully led or grown a business, created employment opportunities, or done something out of the ordinary or remarkable.
“I also admire my business partner Hilary, and everything she has achieved – before we even worked together as business partners at V Formation, she was a huge influence on me, the choices I made and how I shaped my career.”
On advice for young women who want to succeed in the workplace, Sue suggested: “To succeed you have to work hard, have goals and ambitions (whatever they are). Anyone in business has to make sacrifices to get to where you want to be, but it is possible to maintain a work life balance. Also, be kind to yourself – something I remind myself often!”
Hilary believes that workplace culture also plays a big role in achieving balance in a business, as she explained:
“Whilst women in business can now take for granted many of the areas of equality that our mothers and grandmothers had to fight so hard to achieve, there remains a battle to be fought on the cultural front, both in and out of work.
“There are simple things we can do to help reinforce the idea that girls can do whatever the boys can do – should they wish! Such as, when talking about a ‘boss’, a doctor, a scientist or any other role that is often assigned to a man, make sure you use the feminine, so describing the doctor as she / her. It sounds a small thing, but we all need to be aware of the unconscious bias that exists in us all.”
Here at V Formation, we have enjoyed a number of successes in the last year, and International Women’s Day 2019 would seem a perfect opportunity to celebrate some of them and look at the ways in which we’ve contributed towards a #BalanceForBetter. Take a look at some examples:
BioCity’s Ada Lovelace Day: Promoting careers in STEM to women
Women make up 4% of all people working in STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) in the UK, making it one of the key areas that needs to become more gender-balanced. V Formation led the PR around BioCity Nottingham’s Ada Lovelace Day event, which aimed to encourage girls to consider STEM careers and support women already working in the industries. The event sought to tackle gender stereotypes and inspire young women to see themselves as future computer scientists, mathematicians and researchers. Read more about the event and the PR coverage we achieved here.
Women in Business research: changing workplace culture
Most recently, V Formation has been working with accountants and business advisers Friend Partnership Ltd to carry out a substantial piece of research into the challenges facing women in business, and how these have changed over generations. Initial findings show that, while having to choose between a career and having children is still a widespread issue, 68% of participants believe the working environment for women has improved since their career began. However, more than 80% said that fulfilling a senior role on a part-time basis is a challenge.
Results of the research will be unveiled in full in the Spring, where a number of the women in business who took part in the research will share their stories and views on how employers, educators and policy-makers can help drive a more balanced working environment, and discuss the findings of the research.
Nottingham Post Women in Business Awards
Here at V, we love supporting our clients in entering awards that will give them well-deserved recognition for their work, so we were thrilled when our client Rebecca Bull, Founder and Managing Director of My HR Hub, was crowned Sole Trader of the Year at the Nottingham Post’s Women in Business Awards – just two years after launching her consultancy business. Thirteen awards were presented on the night, eleven of those chosen from nominations by Nottingham Post and Nottinghamshire Live readers, while an independent judging panel selected three finalists and award winners for each category. V Formation offers support on award submissions and we have a great track record of success. Drop an enquiry here if you’d like to know more.