Happy International Women’s Day! We’ve come a long way here at Platform81 since the last International Women’s Day, with the gender ratio in our office being pretty much 50/50.
In celebration of this year’s theme, #BalanceForBetter, we asked the women of Platform81 what they think about the gender balance here at Platform81 and their experiences of gender equality within their respective industries.
How did you get to this point in your career?
“Hard work, perseverance, and determination. Coffee and Gin.” – Amanda Childs, Head of Social Media
“By applying for jobs based on my interests and skillset rather than what I studied at university.” – Bridie Daniels, Digital Marketing Coordinator
“It wasn’t always a clear path and has had the odd bump in the road but it’s been one of hard work, tenacity and some good luck along the way.” – Fiona Gunning, Digital Accounts Manager
What has your experience of the digital industry been as a woman?
“I presume the same as it would have been for a man? I think the people you surround yourself with shape your experience and, on the whole, I have been lucky to work with some fantastic people.” – Caroline Meredith, PA and Projects Manager
“As a growing industry that’s still very much in its infancy, I feel no limitations as a female!” – Fiona Gunning, Digital Accounts Manager
“I know plenty of women, myself included, who’ve had negative comments made about their ability to do their job based on their gender simply because they were representing a brand an individual wasn’t happy with.” – Bridie Daniels, Digital Marketing Coordinator
Have you ever experienced gendered treatment within your industry?
“Yes, but nothing I couldn’t handle or anything that made me think twice or feel uncomfortable. The thing I struggle with more is people completely misjudging my age and therefore questioning my capabilities and experience which is very frustrating.” – Amanda Childs, Head of Social Media
“I have only been in the industry 8 months and I’ve already been mistaken for a receptionist.” – Jenny Byrne, Digital Marketing Apprentice
“There have been occasions where I’ve seen women standing up for something they feel strongly about in their industry and, instead of being listened to and respected, they were described as emotional and defensive. I’ve never heard a man described this way.” – Fiona Gunning, Digital Account Manager
What do you think about the gender balance at Platform81?
“I think it’s great that the gender balance has shifted within the last year! When I was waiting to attend The Juice Academy to find my employer, I’d obviously researched Platform81 and I saw in the blog from last year’s IWD that only four women worked within the company. Now, with the addition of myself and Bridie, there is less of a gender divide. To be a part of an all-girl digital team is incredibly empowering, especially in an industry which is seen as predominantly male.” – Jenny Byrne, Digital Marketing Apprentice
“I really enjoy working in such a balanced environment. From a digital marketing perspective, it’s very helpful to have input from a range of people with different lived experiences. We’ve all seen marketing campaigns or advertisements aimed at women that have left us shaking our heads because we can tell there wasn’t a single woman involved in the creative process.” – Bridie Daniels, Digital Marketing Coordinator
“Its great! I am the only female on my team and this is never a problem for me, we are all supportive of each other, male or female. I don’t think it makes a difference either way. None of us take ourselves too seriously and are all respectful of each other.” – Caroline Meredith, PA and Projects Manager
What words of advice would you give a woman looking to work in your role?
“To be honest, it’s cliché but I’d say believe in yourself. If you do, other people will too. Be assured of yourself. Probably above anything though, prove/demonstrate that you are determined and that you want it.” – Amanda Childs, Head of Social Media
“In a client facing/ project manager role, my best advice would be to treat people as you would like to be treated, believe in yourself and have a thick skin. Not because you’re a woman but because your role can be tough and you’re on the front line.” – Fiona Gunning, Accounts Manager
“Just go for it. If you have the determination to succeed, then your gender certainly won’t stop you.” – Jenny Byrne, Digital Marketing Apprentice
“The same advice I would give to a man, work hard, be organised and be open to learning new things.” – Caroline Meredith, PA and Projects Manager