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International Women’s Day 2019 – our views

by Sellick Partnership | 8 March 2019

International Women’s Day is a day that recognises the importance of diversity within all aspects of business. Here at Sellick Partnership we are proud to have a strong female workforce and an inclusive culture that promotes success, giving everyone the same opportunities, no matter their sex, age, sexual orientation or race/ethnicity.

To celebrate this year, we asked our people what International Women’s Day means to them and their sector and why they think this day is just as important today as it was over 100 years ago!

Jo Sellick – Managing Director

As a business leader with a strong female workforce I feel it is important to recognise the importance of International Women’s Day and why it remains as important today as when it was first celebrated on February 28, 1909. Still today some women face barriers in their careers, and reports suggest that the gender gap is still rife within many industries.

I believe the problem lies in the retention and promotion of female role models, or lack of in many cases, and as a result organisations are losing some of their best talent. If a female candidate or employee has the desire to progress and is committed to the work they do then there should be absolutely no reason for them to fall behind.

If businesses work closely together to promote strong female role models I believe we could instil more women with the confidence to achieve their full potential and help reduce the gender gap once and for all across all industries and sectors.

Kerry Norman – Principal Consultant 

"No longer do we need to call ourselves feminists to support gender equality but if that’s what I need to do to fight for respect and to strive for a better gender balance both in the workplace and out then I’m on board with that.

In my line of work I see women excel daily, working and being equal to the men around us. This, I believe is down to the trust and belief our MD has in women’s abilities which he openly speaks about. What does surprise me is the lack of gender balance I see outside of the workplace – often instilled by women themselves, conforming to very archaic gender stereotypes with their actions and words.

In order to achieve real balance we all need to believe in women’s abilities as equal to that of men’s. Respecting women’s rights to excel in the workplace and to strive to sit on the board. Respecting women to be women and not to be afraid of who we are. Striving to make decisions for us, making our own choices in terms of our careers or our personal lives, without judgement.

Whoever we are, whether we’re black or white, Muslim or Christian, male or female – we all have the right to be respected and should all in turn respect others. Only then will gender balance accelerate." 

Anna Williamson – Head of Marketing & Communications

For me, International Women’s Day is a celebration of all women and their achievements – however small or large they may be. It’s all about your contribution to society and how you are helping to pave the way to true gender equality. On Friday 8 March 2019, every single woman should celebrate and be proud of at least one thing they have achieved that is helping to shape future generations. So take a moment to celebrate being a mother, a leader, a business owner, a role model, or a wife this International Women’s Day and be proud of your achievements.   

Simon Briffa – Internal Talent Manager

"I find it fitting that International Women’s Day usually always occurs at the same time as National Apprenticeship Week. Apprenticeships are often perceived to be male dominated, and that could not be farther from the truth, and it its occasions like this that will help to change that view. At Sellick Partnership, almost all of our current apprentices are female and they are all doing incredibly well within our business. Some people might say that Sellick Partnership are the exception, but I really doubt that we are. We need to do more to promote this, and ensure that young women across the country know that undertaking an apprenticeship is a real option to them so we can support more women to reach their full potential!"

Kiran Purewal – Principal Consultant

Emmeline Pankhurst, Carol Ann Duffy, Elizabeth Gaskell, Caroline Aherne… In a city where women have done, and continue to do amazing and courageous things, it’s important to celebrate these and to inspire a new generation of women.

One day we might not need to have a special day to highlight the achievements and importance of women in the workplace, home, life and society and there will be simply a celebration of ‘people’ and the value they bring. Until then, International Women’s day brings some balance and highlights the need for gender equality.


Melissa Finch – Senior Marketing Executive

International Women's Day is an opportunity to reflect on how far women’s rights have come, however it also highlights issues that women still face. It’s a chance to remember women who have fought for gender equality and also to acknowledge the women and men who are still striving for change. It's a chance to celebrate the achievements and great work that women do every day in a variety of different professions.



Rachael Brooks – Senior Consultant

"The Wealth & Investment Management sector which I recruit for is an industry which has historically been dominated by men. Despite diversity improvements in recent years, it is disheartening to learn that less than 5% of funds are ran by women. The legacy of the male stockbroking sector still remains, and this is enhanced by many organisations within the industry remaining conservative and not offering benefits like maternity pay and flexible working arrangements. I believe that if businesses within Financial Services came up with more comprehensive benefits packages, then they would be able to compete with other sectors and would be less likely to lose excellent talent on the basis of gender."

Helen Dodds – Manager

"As a woman working within recruitment I feel it is important to not only celebrate International Women’s Day, but also promote its importance and relevance in today’s society. Most women will be subjected to some kind of discrimination in their lifetime, be that in work or in their personal life, and that simply is not acceptable in 2019. We need days like this to not only spread the message, but sing about the success stories happening across the globe to ensure women of all ages and backgrounds feel encouraged and able to reach their full potential."

Sahar Deshmukh – Reception Administrator

International Women’s Day is important because it’s a reminder of how much we still lag behind even in 2019. Women are fighting the world over for their right to education, their right to work, to receive equal pay and to not to be objectified.

At the same time, it’s a celebration of everything we have been able to accomplish and a motivation to continue to achieve whatever we aspire to.

Rebecca Douglas – Consultant

"From a young age many of us are moulded and shaped in every aspect of our lives, from what we should play with and what roles/jobs we will go for. Growing up I had the pram, the tea set and dolls and my brother had the Lego, race cars, and football. For my work experience at school I was only offered admin, hairdressing or nursery work, where the boys were offered IT and construction. I believe it is this upbringing that remains at the route of issues women still suffer today.

"Society has tried to tell women and young girls how we should act, what we should be and worst of all what we can’t become. However change is happening, and it is days like International Women’s Day that will eventually put an end to gender discrimination once and for all! It is amazing that now women have the opportunities to become a finance director as well as a mother. Young girls can play with Lego or have work experience in a construction site. This is because of strong women that have come before us and pushed back and make the changes we enjoy today."

Alice Cresswell-Hogg – Consultant

The Wealth & Investment Management sector historically has a reputation for long work hours, being male dominated and having a ‘cut-throat’ culture. Due to this reputation women in past years have been reluctant to join the sector. However, it is great to see businesses trying to combat these issues through offering flexible working and work from home days to fit in with family life and overall promoting a better work/life balance.

Michael Macfarlane – Senior PR & Content Executive

"International Women’s Day is no longer a day just for women, but a day for everybody to celebrate women who are paving the way and breaking down boundaries. In a world where women are still marginalised on the basis of their sex, and so much discrimination still occurs in all aspects of life, we need days like today to raise awareness, promote role models and inspire more to follow in their footsteps. So my message this International Women’s Day is to not simply ignore it because you do not identify as a woman, but embrace it, shout about it and help us all take one big step towards achieving true equality within our lifetime!" 


What are you doing to celebrate International Women’s Day this year? Get in touch with us on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn or drop us an email. We would love to hear from you!