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News Enterprising Women

Happy International Women’s Day 2017

07 Mar 2017

‘Be bold for change’ is the theme for this year’s International Women’s Day on March 8. Here at the IoD we are fortunate to meet inspirational women on a daily basis. Here’s some of our favourite advice from recent Director magazine interviews with pioneering female business leaders...

Sarah Brown, founder of TheirWorld


Sarah Brown, founder of TheirWorld and executive chair of the Global Business Coalition for Education

“Look at your own employee base, at the opportunities that you give to women as they come into the business and the opportunities that they get to rise up through it. Look at subtle ways you can be sending out messages through your products and services. Advertising may be more thoughtful than it was 25 years ago, but there are other subtleties. Look at the images on your website or in your brochure –make sure you’ve got pictures of women leading a group, not just listening. And make sure that what you are doing is friendly to women and giving them opportunities."

Read the full article here

Talita Ferreira, former CFO BMW


Talita Ferreira, former CFO BMW

“If you don’t create a higher level of self-awareness and understand your own behaviour, what drives and motivates you, you can’t connect with people in a way that creates trust and emotional safety.”

Read the full article here

Gabriella Somerville, founded ConnectJets


Gabriella Somerville, founder ConnectJets

“True leadership means you listen, empower and encourage. As an entrepreneur, a danger is you keep walking ahead and forget that people are walking behind you. One thing [Sir] Richard Branson is very good at is that as he walks ahead, he looks behind to make sure people are following.”

Read the full article here

Dame Stephanie Shirley, technology pioneer and philanthropist


Dame Stephanie Shirley, technology pioneer and philanthropist

“I was motivated to go into business [starting women only Freelance Programmers in 1962] purely for gender issues. I was sick and tired of being patronised. To be honest I am bitterly disappointed [about women’s lack of advancement]. What I hear young women talking about today is so similar to the gripes that I had when I started working at 18.

One time the law said you [women] couldn’t work on the stock exchange, drive a bus or fly an aeroplane. That has gone but the culture remains. It’s not nearly as good as I hoped it would be.”

Read the full article here

Jo Malone, perfumer


Jo Malone, perfumer

"Everyone assumes you’ve got fairy dust if you have a global success under your belt – you haven’t. You’ve just got two per cent inspiration, 98 per cent perspiration. You build your first business with naivety, which makes the second the toughest. Everyone is looking at you and judging you against the first one, especially if you’ve been successful."

Read the full article here

Jane Wurwand, Dermalogica founder


Jane Wurwand, Dermalogica founder

“A few years ago I had the great fortune of meeting Gloria Steinem. I asked her what I could do to advance gender equality. Her simple reply was ‘do more’. I took her words seriously and [her foundation] FITE is the result. I am passionate about being an advocate for women’s financial independence and the global empowerment of girls and women. This is essential on an economic, social, political and human level. Every study shows that women are economically independent, they invest more than 90 per cent of their income back into their families and communities – as far as global issues of suppression and poverty go, financial independence is the game-changer. It’s that simple.”

Read the full article here

The IoD's Enterprising Women Campaign - upcoming events

2017 sees the launch of the IoD’s Enterprising Women’s Campaign, a year-long series of events, content and networking which celebrates, nurtures and inspires the UK’s female business leaders. 

How to blog for business growth: 5 April, 116 Pall Mall

The first in our new IoD Enterprising Women Seminar series will be hosted by world leading expert on blogging, Natasha Courtenay-Smith.

Book Tickets

The IoD Enterprising Women Summit 2017: 16 June, St Paul's Grange Hotel

Now in its 10th year, The Enterprising Women Summit 2017 will once again bring together some of the country’s most inspirational and influential business women.

Book Tickets

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