We know it was International Women’s Day earlier in the week and we are bang in the middle of International Women Month…
And we think it’s important to share with you our experience of how a number of ambitious women are helping our business to reduce cost, become more efficient, provide a better service to our customers and all of this is having the collective impact of increasing our profits.
Don’t get me wrong, we also have a fantastic group of ambitious men too. But us males do take some organising and to get the best out of us (in our opinion) and to create a fantastic team, it takes a group of ambitious women.
For us, it’s been very important to create a culture where both women and men are equal. Our whole team has a set of unique talents and when combined in the most optimised way for our organisation, the magic starts to happen.
It wasn’t always like this, some years ago our business was very different, and rightly or wrongly, dominated by males. And I can’t really tell you why this was, it’s just the way it happened. But to be brutally honest, it never really occurred to us back then, that a group of ambitious women would make such a difference.
We have women right at the top of our organisation, as well as bringing through young women on apprenticeships, who have fresh new ideas and bring renewed energy.
And yes, our women have made a huge difference. The organisation skills and attention to detail they have brought, have allowed us to analyse many areas of our operation, to become much more efficient, leading us to reduce our operational costs.
Further more, these skills have also led to the implementation of new systems in both our sales and service areas, allowing both teams to be much more efficient with their time, allowing them to spend much more time directly with our customers and ultimately increasing our profits.
Over the last few years we’ve learnt many things about creating the right team, and now understand the importance of having the right balance of individuals, whether they are women or men.
To be honest (in the past) we may have shied away from employing strong ambitious women, but not now we have been educated. We understand the fantastic skills and mindset women bring to the team.
Today, our organisation is managed by an ambitious woman, and I’m proud about that. But it’s not because Jodie is a woman, it’s because Jodie is the best person for the job.
So for us, it’s important that our working environment is not just attractive to men, but also to women too. And allows the whole team to thrive. Here are some of the things we feel are important…
Level the playing field
Treat women as equal to their male colleagues. Starting at the beginning of the recruitment process. For example, make your advertisement for new jobs gender neutral. Also, eliminate any gender bias. If needed you can perform blind assessment tests on applicants where their gender is unknown and the decision is based solely on the results.
It still amazes me that this exists. But it’s still an old and prominent fact that the gender pay gap does still exist, and it’s a very de-motivating factor to women. In order for a woman to thrive at her job, pay her just as much as you would a man in the same position. This will boost her productivity and competitiveness, all well as allowing you to create a team of equals who smash through walls for each other.
Monitor results, not attendance
Although us men play a role in raising a family, whether you or I like it being said or not, women still do most of the family work. It goes a long way when you are a bit more flexible for the working mum. You should focus on the performance and outcome of her work, not just her presence at the office, as there will be times where the children come first.
Women want to feel represented in positions of senior leadership. When you welcome female leadership in your company, women will be inspired to work with you, as they feel accommodated. And recognise their efforts, just as you would the efforts of male team members. Give credit where it’s due, which will empower and motivate your workforce wholly.
It’s hard to believe that many of these are still not common practise in 2018. But any organisation looking to attract the best female talent, needs to ensure that they offer these as an absolute minimum. And if you do, I can assure you benefits will follow, such as reduced operational costs, much more organised, more time focused on customers and increased profits.
…as is happening now to our organisation.