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What does International Women's Day mean to me?

07 Mar 08:00 by Clare Beresford

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When I was asked what International Women’s Day means to me, I took the opportunity to reflect and offer my thoughts below, knowing that International Women’s Day (IWD) means different things to different people.  For me, IWD is a great way to remember the importance of women in life and a day to celebrate every female on earth. Initially, the day was started as a socio-political event, but I love the way we can use this day to show love and gratitude towards women.

When I led the buy-out of my business from a private equity company 3 years ago, I knew that along with the responsibility of leading the business I also had a responsibility to use the platform I had to highlight how we can improve inclusion in businesses. I am an active member of the 30% Club https://30percentclub.org/ and know that there is talent in the market that is still not reflected in boardrooms across the globe.  We consistently ask our clients about their D&I policies as part of our due diligence.  But that happens as part of our day-to-day business, so I was intrigued to reflect further on what I can do to make a difference personally. Even though my diverse multi-lingual, multi-cultural team at Laurence Simons Search know the value and contribution of women, sadly some women in the workplace continue to face various forms of gender disparities and continue to be under-represented in leadership and decision-making positions. 

As a specialist legal, compliance and legal operations search firm, partnering with businesses across the world to source the best, and most sought after, talent, I am determined that Laurence Simons Search will play a part in eliminating bias, whether unconscious or not. In doing so, all talent will shine and flourish.

Reflecting on this, I’ve come to appreciate that grand, sweeping gestures are not needed, we all just need to start doing the little things, as employers and colleagues.  Not just to promote women, but to promote everyone.  And not just today, on IWD, but every day of the year.   And let us remember that we should also support International Men’s Day in November, too. (https://internationalmensday.com/)

The compound effect of each and every one of us doing something means that incremental steps and change to a more equal, diverse, and inclusive world – in all senses – will happen.  This IWD the theme is Choose To Challenge.  I challenge you to take further, little, incremental steps to create a gender equal industry.  Together we can make a difference, for us, and future generations. 

Clare Beresford, CEO, Laurence Simons Search