8th March 2022 – International Women’s Day 2022
Roundtable discussion : Break the bias!
Last week on International Women‘s Day, Iwibdus had their first event for March with a Roundtable discussion: Break the bias! As a new member to the group and therefore my first event, I was both intrigued and uncertain in equal measure; intrigued to know from the six professional women (who made up the panel) what type of biases they had encountered throughout their careers, and perhaps more importantly, how they dealt with them. And ‘uncertain’ as to what I could bring to the discussion, as I’d been out of the workplace for a number of years. I needn’t have worried!
It was such a great evening! The host asked a number of questions to each of the panel in turn. There is nothing extraordinary in that, but there was an intimacy to the evening that I hadn’t expected. Perhaps it was due to the openness and candour of the panel – from the frustration of having to explain (once again) that your husband is in fact your wife, or ‘justifying’ why there are ‘gaps’ in your employment record and actually you don’t need to be aggressive to be successful! But it was the ideas of how ‘to break’ the bias that I found most interesting.
We all have biases, in one shape, form or another. Being made aware of them through these types of discussions is the first step to ‘breaking them.’ It’s no different for the workplace. It was generally agreed that women need to support each other, to ‘speak up’ when confronted by bias and in doing so be a role model for everyone, both men and women. And on that note, the absence of men from the discussion was acknowledged and that it would be remedied next time!
By Tina Purvis
Tina is a new volunteer in the Events Team for iwibdus. She come from an amazing varied professional background including acting and a professional biographer. She is originally from the UK but hasn’t lived there for a long time! She is in Dusseldorf with her 3 teenage boys via Asia and Europe a few times.