Saturday, 29 April 2017

Raise Me Up

It’s been one year since I began assisting @BrionyScott to organise the Renaissance Women Leaders' Network (#RWLN) and our past presenters are an amazing group of generous leaders. I place these women high on a pedestal, as I have the utmost respect for them because of their passion, empathy, wisdom, experience, and their willingness to build the capacity of others. They stand above; they stand out; they stand up. Some may argue that putting people up on a pedestal is not ideal, but this is what I have experienced.

Dr Nicole Archard, Jan Owen AM, Dr Briony Scott,
Christine Nixon APM & Lucy Clark.
When you hold people at a higher level, they will either raise you up to meet them or not. When I conversed with our female presenters from our last year- @NicoleArchard @JanOwenAM @chrisnixon1852 @lucykateclark, they all raised me up. They are genuine, down-to-earth, empathetic and generous. When I am in their company, they make me feel I can do more, be more and help others more. While the moment and feeling may dissipate, I know I have the capacity to rise to a higher level.

While they are all leaders in various fields, they have common traits.  

As I mentioned, when you hold people at a higher level, they will either raise you up to meet them at that level ... or not. I have also experienced the not. If it weren’t for another person who witnessed our conversation, I would probably have thought I misheard or misinterpreted. Regardless, that experience showed me that not all leaders are at the point in their career or willing to build the capacity of others. It was good for me to have this experience, as I value those generous leaders more. So when you have the opportunity to connect, learn and be in the presence of the leaders who raise you up, appreciate the moment. Surround yourself with people who have a positive influence and reach out to those who have the qualities you value. It's well worth the time and effort. 

The next #RWLN is 18 May with the amazing @chriscawsey. Please register for this complimentary event here. 

The learning continues...

Monday, 24 April 2017

Supporting Gender Equality

Throughout the years, I’ve typically handled everything associated with our children and my husband handled our finances. This worked for us. However, the other day my husband suggested that I needed to learn more about our finances. While visiting our accountant, the one thing I noticed was how she responded and spoke directly to me most of the time. I mentioned this to my husband who also noticed. This was a new experience and I wondered why. Was it because I said I was there to learn more about our finances? I don’t think that was it. She was never condescending and when I made suggestions regarding our finances, she listened attentively and responded positively. I felt respected. I reflected on other recent meetings, doctors, the vet, and a bank manager, everyone had addressed or spoke to my husband. Had we unconsciously accepted this as the norm?

Am I noticing this more now that I surround myself with people and literature that promotes equity? I thoroughly enjoyed reading 'Lean In' and am currently reading, 'Fight like a girl' by @Clementine_Ford. On 1st August 2015, I created and moderated a chat for Women as Educational Leaders. Through organising this Twitter chat two years ago, I became friends with and supported by Women In Education such as-

Recently asked to support @WomenEdAus, I’m excited that supporting Women in Education is gaining momentum and more global support. @WomenEd has expanded globally (UK, Canada, USA & soon Australia) as it connects existing and aspiring women leaders in global education. #WomenEd are celebrating their second birthday and have gone from strength to strength. Working at Wenona with @BrionyScott and focusing on Renaissance Women Leaders’ Network (#RWLN) have clearly influenced and broadened my thinking. More importantly, it has me questioning more.

It was wonderful that I learnt about ‘A conversation in gender equality’ from a male edu-friend, @Borto74. The Australian Human Rights Commission (March, 2017) provides information to advance equality across various sectors. Along with the link, Jason stated that ‘men also have an important role to play in promoting gender equality’. I agree with Jason for while it's important to educate and support women, it is just as vital to educate men and our youth so that they don’t value one gender over another. As a child, I remember my dad telling my brother to purchase a block of land as soon as he started working. I never got to ask him why he didn’t feel it was necessary for his daughters. I am glad times have changed and equity too...but we have a way to go. What are you doing to support gender equality? 

The learning continues...