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Inspiring Women – Can we have it all?

The ‘Inspiring Women- can we have it all?’ event was another success attracting 100 attendees. It was chaired by Professor Pam Thomas, PVC, and our diverse range of speakers provided illuminating and entertaining presentations with some valuable considerations.

So, can we have it all? Our speakers give their advice...

Sarah Ellis, Head of Corporate Social Responsibility at Sainsburys, said:

That by identifying and staying true to your values, are learning and are happy- then yes, you can. If this is not the case- it’s time to change your role. Being honest about your strengths, using these and getting paid for the things you enjoy doing will ensure you are happy. Don’t apologies for not being good at everything- none of us are. Getting used to stepping out of our comfort zone- and not failing but continuing to practice until we succeed. Consider yourself a work in progress."

Thanks to technology, global access and opportunities, careers are more like squiggles than staircases, requiring individuals to take ownership of their careers. Be ready to seize opportunities rather than following a career plan."

Lisa Dodd-Mayne, Director of Sport & Active Communities, agreed:

You can have it all as long as you’re willing to put the effort in. Don’t regret not trying hard enough if you really want something. Managing your time well and being punctual- respectful of others’ time is critical. Think flexibly – you may get what you want but you may need to look at how you go about achieving this, bearing in mind others’ agendas. It’s easier to work if you have kids-if they are being looked after outside the home they’re not making a mess to clear up at home. Being told ‘you can do more’ provided the inspiration needed to succeed at a higher level.

Work hard- but don’t miss your children’s sports days Be confident, not arrogant; take risks, know how to negotiate; communicate- talk don’t e mail; take reality checks from time to time; learn to juggle; keep physically active; don’t lose sight of what you’re trying to achieve."

Gillian McGrattan, Director of Human Resources, said:

Very few of us know what we want to do as we are growing up. Expectations of others up can lead you down paths that don’t suit. Be willing to deviate and follow your interests. Take opportunities that come along- including those you may not be qualified to do. Focus on what really motivates you. Be flexible and opportunistic. A career planning document is mostly irrelevant and may prevent you from seizing opportunities. Consider, day to day and year to year, how you build your stock of skills to develop your brand- ‘Me PLC.’ Never live the same year twice, and keep learning and growing. Having it all is about having the things that are important to you."

The next event will take place on Thursday 24th September, 12.30-2.00pm. Details to follow.4

Thank you and your team for all their work to arrange the Inspiring Women talks, which fully live up to their title. I really enjoyed yesterday’s event, as I am sure did all attendees. It was both thought-provoking and encouraging.” Session feedback