my week as an international woman

Picture taken at The Oakland Museum. No rights reserved by me.

I am spending much of International Womens Day this year on an international flight. I have been in California for a week  buzzing about at various meetings and gathering good ideas.

Last year on this day I wrote a blog post too.

This year at work, in my new role and new division I am involved in a new set of gender equality initiatives. I am the only female Director in Information Services, I am a mentor within the department and an Aurora role model for the Leadership Foundation.  Information Services is exploring approaches to using an Athena Swan-like framework to improve the working environment for all and my teams are working hard to figure out how we can usefully make it a success.

In the last few weeks we have carried out a staff survey in my division to gather feedback from colleagues. I am very pleased to say that despite having gone through a number of restructuring experiences and quite a bit of change, the majority of LTW staff say they are are satisfied with their jobs; receive appropriate praise and recognition; are treated with equality and respect and understand their role within the organisation.

In my new role I have been at pains to ensure that I do not send email to my staff outside of working hours. This is a deliberate attempt to send a signal that balancing work with family or home commitments is expected and ok.  When I travel I keep my wrist watch tuned to UK time to help me remember what time it is at home and to ensure that the experience of working for, or with, me is one based on mutual respect. I admit I have lapsed occasionally, mostly by mistake because the email conversation is interesting, so I apologise to my team leaders for that.

I feel like I am continuing to do my bit to ‘Make it Happen’. Do you?

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