It hit a nerve. My Instagram posts reflect both my own personality and the Thomson & Scott brand, with a focus on fun parties, healthy hedonism recipes (I still haven’t met a granola and fruit bowl I haven’t liked), fitness and empowerment. When you work hard and like to play hard there’s a big world out there to be interested in, especially now that Thomson & Scott Prosecco and Champagne bottles are making it to all corners of the globe.
Last week on Instagram I ran a quote by Sheryl Sandberg:
I’d just returned from 48 hours with an incredibly dynamic bunch of inspirational women, all members of EY Winning Women. This mentorship program builds leadership skills, confidence and introduces female business women to others for their mutual benefit.
I was invited to join the EY Winning Women in 2017, and the organisation has been a huge help to me, not least giving the opportunity to meet other women in business. Because there aren’t that many of us. To quote just one fact that will always stay with me: there are currently more people named David running FTSE100 companies in the UK than women.
This fact was the basis of my Instagram post because I am keen to drill down into why so few women go into business. Research reveals that young girls are indeed termed “bossy” when they try and take charge in a classroom or playground. “Bossy” boys, on the other hand, are given early leadership roles, such as reading in school assemblies and praised for being organised.
Brought up by a health food entrepreneur mother as a child I was lucky because I was never told I was bossy. However, as an adult I’m often referred to as feisty and outspoken. I’m not ashamed to be either, but are both words synonyms of ‘Bossy’, with all the connotations of someone needing to be put in their place?
As a business woman who has benefitted enormously from mentorship by both men and women, I’m now more passionate than ever about passing what I’ve learnt on, especially to other women. If we don’t speak up then we’ll never reach a time when there are simply leaders, and not male and female leaders, and that is absolutely a world I’d like to hand over to my teenage daughter and her friends.