A recap of the 10th annual BWT Marquee: How you (yes you) can help spark change.
Spark Change. We recognize we are early in the journey towards gender equity. With this action-oriented theme we ask: how can individuals create change in big and small ways? At our tenth annual BWT Marquee event, we coincided with International Women’s Day topic #EachForEqual.
Here is a brief recap!
Stephanie Redivo (advocate for workplace diversity, proponent of allyship and our MC for the afternoon) introduces Tina Strehlke. Tina is the CEO of Minerva BC, an organization dedicated to advancing women in their lives and careers whilst simultaneously preparing workplaces to support them. More information: https://minervabc.ca/
Tina summarized three things that get in the way of change:
- Lack of empathy: not understanding that other people have different experiences because of unconscious biases — similarity bias, experience bias
- Lack of accountability: hesitance to commit to D&I in the same way as other priorities because there isn’t a clear reward or consequence
- Fear: remaining in a comfort zone
We can push through these!
- Have curiosity: slow down, ask questions. Instead of jumping in and providing your own POV, ask the other person to tell me more.
- Have humility: push outside of your comfort zone while creating spaces for others. Be bolder and take risks.
Our panelists answered several questions from their own personal experiences. A virtual tool called Sli.do was also used to solicit audience questions.
L-R: Stephanie Redivo, Marilyn Tyfting, Jenna Nowson, Roy Budhai and Robin Matthews-Kanhai
Here is a sampling of their stories:
Robin Matthews-Kanhai: Director of Member Experience Initiatives, Vancity
Little decisions can improve everybody’s workdays. Intersectional issues, such as violence against indigenous women, are some of the biggest challenges for gender parity today.
Roy Budhai: Vice President, Software Engineering, SAP HANA & Analytics, SAP Canada
Roy purposefully builds his teams, including intern allocations, with representation in mind. His teams must have women and must have women at the hiring table.
Jenna Nowson: Managing Director, Accenture Canada
Jenna does not laugh off or minimize prejudiced behaviour anymore. Let people know when they do something wrong, and talk about issues openly with others to raise awareness.
Marilyn Tyfting: Chief Corporate Officer, TELUS International
A trusted mentor can be your advocate and sounding board for life decisions. Look for them and be one.
Thanks to Sophia Wang for taking photos.