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International Women’s Day: Thoughts on Diversity & Inclusion

With International Women’s Day last weekend, we wanted to ask some of the Webgains team what their thoughts are on diversity and inclusion in the workplace & our industry. Along with what we as an industry could do better to support equality & inclusion when it comes to our industry events & panels.

What does International Women’s Day mean to you?

Beatriz, Account Executive – It means empowerment, inspiration and a sense of gratitude to so many role models we have. Women that have contributed and are changing this world into a better place for all of us by having

their voice and their causes heard and inspiring millions of people every day.

Celia, Finance Assistant – To be honest, for me it is a sad day. Because we have a specific day for Women, this to me means that we don’t have equality yet between men and woman. I know we do have an amazing situation currently and are more fortunate now, but we still have a lot to do before we can become equal.

Melodie, Junior Account ManagerThat Feminism is increasing, and the subject is present everywhere nowadays! International Women’s Day is more than just this. It takes into account history, cultures, races, ages, sexes, ideas and actual positioning in our society. It doesn’t matter which part of the world you are from, it’s a way to express and remind society of what women’s position still is and was in society and that it is still unbalanced and marginalised.

Viktorija, Publisher Director – I have been celebrating International Women’s Day since an early age and think it is a great way to appreciate all the female individuals out there regardless of their age, ethnicity or religion. Obviously being a woman and a mother myself I am a little bias, however women all over the world are the most precious creatures and bring the balance to nowadays society. Unfortunately, there are still occasions where women are not being appreciated and tolerated in the way they should be.

The theme this year for IWD is #eachforequal, do you think equality is still an issue in the workplace?

Mumtaz, Global Head of Strategic Growth  – Yes absolutely. We may be relatively lucky as we work in key cities like London but in rural parts of the world, and in certain sectors e.g. Hospitality, equality and harassment are still major issues when it comes to roles such as waitressing.

BeatrizUnfortunately, yes. This is still a big issue in many companies worldwide. We can’t deny how much things have changed for the better, however, there are still lots of companies that treat women inferior to men, where they get bullied and mistreated. Some of them go as far as sexual harassment and sexual assault promoting a culture of silence in the workforce and contributing to a culture of women not feeling safe or supported.

We read cases like this so often that it doesn’t come as a surprise anymore, for example in the New York Times there was an article published yesterday (02/03/2020) about women being sexually harassed at Bloomingdale’s and Mr Bloomberg was quoted as saying “ If women wanted to be appreciated for their brains, they’d go to the library instead of to Bloomingdale’s”. 

This is just one of the millions of cases we read about, but unfortunately, there must be so much more that doesn’t go public and we will never know of, and people suffer in silence.

Jack, Commercial Services Director – I think equality is still an issue in the workplace across specific industries however I’d like to think the Affiliate marketing industry is one that bucks the trend. Within Webgains, aside from the CEO all of our leading management team are female. Looking outside of our workplace we also have strong female leaders such as Hannah Wharrier (AS) and Helen Southgate (AP) driving the industry forward which is massively encouraging for anybody, no matter their gender looking to make an impact in their chosen field. 

For you what does an ideal, inclusive organisation look like?

Mumtaz – Where there is a good representation of staff from all backgrounds, this extends across all levels including senior management.

BeatrizAn ideal organisation would have gender equality and inclusion treating women the same as men, giving them equal opportunities for career development and progression as well as equal salaries for the same work 

Shayan, Account DirectorAn ideal organisation should have a mix of multiple races comprised of both genders evenly working in all levels of the organisation 

Celia – For me, the most important thing is what exactly a company looks for when they look for a new employee. As some companies may look more at the person and their traits rather than the experience or knowledge they have.

How important is diversity to you? And what value does it bring to the workplace?

Mumtaz – An understanding of different cultures and with that a better understanding of commercial opportunities from all parts of the world

Rosie, Account Director – Diversity is hugely important for me in the workplace, as it offers a chance for everyone to learn and develop from each other. When it comes to our clients, our employee diversity increases our relatability and understanding of our individual client needs which is at the core of Webgains values.

Chloe, Senior US Account Manager – Diversity is one of the top things that I look for in a company, be it for a job or looking to purchase something from somewhere. While there may be comfort in the familiar, bringing people of different backgrounds, genders and races helps to challenge the status quo, and allows for creative problem solving, as someone may have experience in a similar issue with a solution you could have never thought of.

BeatrizDiversity is very important in a world full of inequalities and discrimination, it is empowering to see women having a voice in changing the world for the better and being an inspiration for millions of people. Diversity is not only about gender but also age, race, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, etc so having a diverse workplace is important as it gives everyone equality, the sense of belonging and the chance to experience and embrace different cultures.

ShayanUnity in diversity is the strength of Webgains. We have individuals from all over the globe who bring their own unique perspectives and strengths which helps us build a stronger team to provide the best possible service to our advertisers and publishers.

How do you think Webgains encourages inclusivity & equality in the workplace?

BeatrizWebgains encourages both inclusivity and equality by welcoming all people from different places and cultures. Webgains have international teams across all offices in the UK and abroad and encourage a diverse and equal workplace. So is a good place to work as the company doesn’t discriminate or differentiate you by your gender, age, sexual orientation or the country you come from, contrary to that Webgains motivates you and helps you to progress in whatever you want to do. For example, here in Webgains our Managing Director and COO are women, the company has given them opportunities to be in higher roles, and this not only motivates us but also inspires us to want to be more like them.

ChloeI am thrilled to work for a company with so many women in leadership, and such a diverse array of colleagues. I learn something new every day from them, which helps me grow both as a person, and in my career.

What could the affiliate industry do better to support equality & inclusion when it comes to industry events & panels?

BeatrizThe Affiliate industry could better support equality and inclusion by giving opportunities for a diverse selection of people to represent and pitch on their events and panels. We still see a lot of men taking the lead on events and panels, so having more women presenting on events, gives us a better representation of the workforce and the industry we are in.

Vicky – Collectively if we endorse and support gender equality within the industry including equal rights to speak at CEO level, equal pay including company benefits such as maternity pay and more senior management involvement. We can achieve an industry full of aspiring female individuals who can really strive and are motivated to bring the industry up to the next level. At Webgains we constantly encourage all employees regardless of gender or position to participate in internal and external events, public speaking and getting their opinion heard.

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