Belonging means something different to all of us, but it’s that sense of belonging – the where, who and how – that shapes our world.
We asked Silvana Schenone – Partner, Minter Ellison Rudd Watts and Cathy Parker – Publisher, Adrenalin Publishing to share their perspectives.
Belonging to me is the feeling that I have when I am not just “me”, but I’m a respected and appreciated part of “us”. When I feel that I’m connected and integrated with my community and the world – from the smallest things to the appreciation of the impact we have in each other’s’ life and the planet.
I feel that I belong when I don’t need to make an effort to “fit in” but instead my true self is valued and adds something to the group. I want to connect because I feel happy when I belong, and in that environment my emotions are not an obstacle to my intellectual and interpersonal skills, but instead my emotions become enablers. The power of belonging is that you are respected for who you are, accepted and encouraged and therefore you are a better “you” for “us all”.
Belonging for me is the sense of finally being and belonging to the gender I always was, but did not belong to for a significant part of my life. For those that don’t know me well I am a Transexual women (You can see the talk I gave on Privilege for IWD in 2018 ). I always felt I was on the outside looking in, but now feel comfortable on the inside, even though there is a continual concern that some may reject your belonging (And in fact that did happen to me recently in a group I belonged to).
I am pleased that since I became a member Global Women has specifically noted that it welcomes members of any sexual preference or identity and I have been made welcome and feel I belong. The feeling of belonging and being who I am helps make life complete.
Claire Amos – Principal, Albany Senior High School
— What do you hope to bring to the Global Women community?
Two key things I hope to bring to the Global Women community is my perspective and my experience of the New Zealand education system. I hope to shine a light on both the challenges and the opportunities that exist within our schooling system and how we might address and leverage these to benefit our society as a whole.
Having experience that spans from being a school teacher, subject leader, school leader and tech industry director. I hope I can share my insights, my energy, my passion and my experience with our network. I also look forward to bringing my commitment to being a disruptor, activist and change leader to the group.
— When you look to the future, what do you want to change for women in New Zealand?
I want young women to experience an education system that genuinely offers and supports every subject, skill and pathway they might wish to pursue, in an environment that accepts them for who they are and doesn’t demand them being defined by historical gendered norms. I want them to leave school and have equal access, equal opportunities, equal pay and equal rights. I want them to expect a place on the leadership team and a space at the board table in an environment where diversity and inclusivity is a norm rather than an aspiration. Basically I want them to live in a country that sees them fulfil the potential they so clearly demonstrated they had in school.When we look at school-based academic achievement in New Zealand young women consistently out-perform their peers, yet when they enter the workplace we see this slip away. I want to change their lived experience so that ALL young women transition from school to life beyond school feeling safe, respected and empowered to create the lives, careers and communities they want for themselves and those around them.
Sophie Moloney – Chief Executive Officer, Sky New Zealand
— What do you hope to bring to the Global Women community?
I’m grateful to have the opportunity to be the CEO of Sky, Aotearoa’s biggest sport broadcaster and pay TV company. My goal is to use my privileged position to push for change for women and girls. As ‘girls cannot be what they cannotsee’, at Sky we will continue to increase the number and role of women on screen. This includes actively encouraging women into non-traditional roles, continuing to increase the hours and prominence of women’s sport on our channels and increasing the number of female presenters.
I’m thrilled that we sent an all-female presentation crew to cover the Tokyo Olympics. They did an amazing job. Outside of sport, we aim to put a spotlight on females from all walks of life, and I personally want to use my media access to discuss the issues around where we are now, and where we need to be.
–When you look to the future, what do you want to change for women in New Zealand?
My aspiration for the women of Aotearoa New Zealand is that we achieve the same equity as is achieved in our political sphere across all aspects of society. In the future, I don’t want to be one of the few female CEOs on NZX50 companies (I despair that there are as many men called Mark who are CEOs of NZX50 companies as there are women right now). I want adequate provision for women to continue their careers during or after having children, and I want the gender pay gap of 9.5% to be a thing of the past.
Global Women Highlights
Upcoming Members Events
Our Activate participant, Kirsty McVicar has been named as the CCNZ Hynds Women in Contracting Winner 2021!
Over in Breakthrough Leaders, our participants have raised over $35k in their community challenge! They’ve walked the length of the country and back. Not only did they raise enough funds for First Foundation to give one woman a scholarship, the cohort was also able to leverage their influence to offer another outstanding woman a place on their programme. Stay tuned for more about the initiative!
Champions for Change
Over the past 12 months we have been working alongside the Champions for Change, transitioning the way we work to ensure we leverage the greatest value to return the highest impact. The group have agreed to focus on four key areas, critical to the advancement of this work is the collaborative and collective nature of working together.
- Leading inclusive cultures
- Increasing gender diversity
- Influencing the outside world
- Increasing Māori and ethnic diversity
Alongside this, the 2021 Diversity Impact & Inclusion report is in the final stages of its development and will be released shortly. This is an annual report that looks at gender and diversity trends across our Champions.
Impact Series Webinars
Thank you to everyone who has contributed to our Impact Series Webinars this year! It has been an amazing rich series with lots of thought-provoking korero. We will continue this in 2022.
Amanda Ellis is joined by Andrea Thompson, Mavis Mullins and Dr Caralee McLeish with a focus on the UN Sustainable Development Goals and Actions.
With COVID-19 wreaking havoc with economies, health systems and communities across the world, it is more critical than ever that leaders step forward to use their skills to make change on a global stage.
Join Audette Exel AO, Ilana Atlas AO, Anna Bligh AC, and Guy Ryan to learn more about what is happening in the wider world, and how business and other leaders can play a part of that change.
If you have a topic / focus you think is important and are interested in our webinar series for 2022 – please get in touch with Chantelle.firstname.lastname@example.org