8th March 2023International Women’s Day – striving to continue to grow and “be better”

The aim of this year’s International Women’s Day #EmbraceEquity campaign theme is to get the world talking about why equal opportunities aren’t enough

At HW Fisher we will be marking the day by reflecting on our progress to date, but also addressing where there is more work to do. In the past, we’ve arguably been seen as a bit “male, pale and a bit stale”, but as a firm – we have made positive progress in the last few years.

However actions speak louder than words, and we recognise that, like many firms in the profession, we are a work in progress. We’ve recently formed a representative group leading a firmwide diversity culture project. As part of this initiative, over the next few months, all staff will complete inclusion training and learn the importance of creating and encouraging a safe, happy and secure work environment. 

Driving gender equity isn’t just limited to women. Allies are incredibly important for the social, economic, cultural, and political advancement of women. I’ve previously shared my thoughts on why allyship continues to be important at our firm and how we can all become better allies. Here are a few points I think it’s worth remembering as we celebrate International Women’s Day this year. 

  1. Don’t be afraid to get it wrong – this is such a common theme, with many people worried about saying the wrong thing, or acting as an ally to someone who might not want help. We’ll never progress if we don’t learn together. As a firm, we believe allyship is about being kind and compassionate – it’s about listening and it’s vital that everyone is given a voice as part of this.
  2. It’s ok to speak up how can you approach speaking up without jeopardising your job? It’s not easy to challenge leadership, but organisations have a role to play in leading from the top and creating a culture of safety where people can speak up without the fear that their job is at risk. From an internal perspective, if staff feel there’s a meritocracy and the business is diverse, it’ll be a happier and more motivated environment, which in turn can contribute to positive business outcomes.
  3. The ability to listen –  To make meaningful change, we need to understand what obstacles we face – we need to share our learning experiences and truly listen to one another. This is one of our core values – we prioritise taking in what is happening around us, knowing that only once we have listened and truly understood the problem can we make it better.

I am determined that we all continue to challenge each other to “be better.” There needs to be a unified attempt by all firms to improve social mobility, diversity and narrow the gender pay gap; we can learn from each other. 

For example, we’re proud to continue to work with WealthiHer this year – a brilliant partnership on a mission to drive the economic advancement and empowerment of women on a global scale. This is a platform where we can connect with peers, share best practice and continue to grow as a business.

I’m also proud to be working alongside a leadership team who are committed to creating an inclusive firm. It’s not just something we say or write about. It’s something that we know, value and continue to embed as part of everything we do as a business. In the year ahead, we commit to striving for even more progress, and importantly listening (and learning!) from others as part of this journey.

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Andrew Rich
Managing Partner

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