In honour of International Women’s Day, The European Business Review wants to recognise all the strong women who have not just broken the glass ceiling – but paved the way for others to do the same.
In many parts of the world, women still face significant challenges. They’re denied equal opportunities in education, employment and political representation. Some of them are subjected to violence, discrimination and harassment. Despite these challenges, women continue to make their mark in the world. They are breaking down barriers and shattering stereotypes that have long been enforced in society. Women are leading businesses, running for office, and making their voices heard despite all the forces preventing them to do so.
This year, the International Women’s Day 2023 campaign theme is #EmbraceEquity, which aims to get the world talking about ‘Why equal opportunities aren’t enough’. It focuses on creating a more inclusive world, challenging stereotypes and addressing discrimination.
In line with this, we asked a few female leaders in their respective leading industries to impart their wisdom to our readers, hoping to inspire others to do the same.
Kathleen Enright, Global Managing Director of Salterbaxter on Gender Equality
“Gender equality needs to evolve towards values-led, empathy-based leadership – regardless of gender. This (traditionally female) leadership delivers inclusive social policies and a collaborative workplace. For sustainability, gender-equitable leadership drives a holistic view of environmental and social issues and will unlock a just transition. What an opportunity!”
Kathleen Enright is the Global Managing Director of Salterbaxter, the creative consultancy pioneering business progress for the global agenda and Publicis Groupe’s global centre of excellence in sustainability.
Takayo Takamuro, Managing Director of Telehouse Europe on Aspiring Leaders
“My advice to women considering leadership roles is not to be discouraged. Accept there will be hurdles but know they can be overcome by remaining hungry and eager to learn. It’s also important to have mentors, either inside or outside of your organisation who can support you, and to always communicate openly with your peers.”
Takayo Takamuro is the Managing Director of Telehouse Europe. With over a decade’s worth of experience in the telecoms industry in Japan, she moved to Europe to further her career. Aside from being a strong advocate of female mentorship in tech spaces, she’s also responsible for staff welfare, client satisfaction, and the company’s ongoing sustainability efforts.
Rachel Delacour, Co-Founder and CEO of Sweep on Self-motivation
“Women aiming for leadership roles have to understand this: The only one that can best serve you is yourself. Once you start thinking like this, you’ll start fighting for the role you deserve. Your intuition won’t fail you and you shouldn’t wait either for the offer to come. Go get it.”
Rachel Delacour is the co-founder and CEO of Sweep. A strong advocate for climate change, she used her previous expertise in SaaS to help clean the climate mess with Sweep. Delacour is a leading female figure in European tech, and through her platform, she has backed several female-founded US and French startups.
Any day of the year is a perfect opportunity to support and celebrate the women in your life. But on International Women’s Day, we celebrate the progress that has been made and recommit ourselves to the work that still needs to be done. We choose to challenge gender stereotypes, promote gender equality, and create a world where every woman can reach her full potential.
The European Business Review celebrates women who have come before us, who have fought for equal rights and paved the way for success. We hope this inspires you to commit yourselves to creating a future where every woman can thrive, where every woman is valued and where every woman is empowered to reach her full potential.