March the 8th is International Women’s Day, and this year the theme is #EachforEqual so I thought it would be great for us to spend some time in this issue reflecting on this theme, and the daily actions we can take to live this theme, and so make a difference in our workplaces and in the communities around us. And any difference we make does have an effect on the community at large, so let’s start here and now where we can.
I think sometimes we think that if we are not going viral on social media, or our Instagram posts aren’t attracting hundreds of likes and shares, or we haven’t won any industry awards, then maybe we aren’t being significant and making a difference. Well that simply is not true. A difference in this world is made and can be made one conversation at a time, one person at a time, one customer service encounter at a time and one beauty treatment at a time. Yes, there is power in that. So don’t delay bringing your best game while you are waiting for the big stage or the bigger audience or more exposure, bring the best of you now, show up and know for sure that what you say, how you say it and what you believe and communicate does make a difference. Your individual conversations, actions, behaviours and mindset not only impact whether people do business with you, whether they buy from you and whether they come back to you… but they also impact the community in general. Yes, it really is big!
We are reminded that each and every day we are all responsible, yes responsible… because I think some of us forgot… we are all responsible for our own thoughts and actions. Yes, you are responsible for the mood, attitude and energy you bring to work… yes you are responsible for the way you choose to react to a comment from a customer, some negative feedback from a follower, a friend or a boss… your reaction, your responsibility. Are you being the change that you talk about, that you advocate, and that you post about on social media? Because we can talk the talk, but are we walking the walk? It is in the actions we take that real change happens.
We then have a choice to challenge stereotypes; each for equal is about just that. We can fight bias, broaden perceptions and celebrate each other. Are we doing that within our workplace? Are we have empowering conversations with our clients… are we lifting each other within our teams to success. We are an industry dominated by females… are we truly lifting each other to success and celebrating each other? Because there truly is great power in that. Power to change the world our little girls are growing up in, power to gift dreams to people who thought they weren’t worth the dreams, power to give equality to those who forgot they deserve it.
Do you truly have a workplace that celebrates diversity and knows that true inclusion is not about making people fit in, but in fact giving them and supporting them to stand out… and that, right there, is good for business. The people that are winning in business are not the ones that are beige and blending in, but in fact those that are colourful and standing out.
So, as we move through this IWD month of March and further into 2020, I challenge you to reflect on how you are moving through the world, both personally and professionally. Let us really be in the moments we are in, listen to what we are saying, how we are saying and to whom. Is what we are saying somehow contributing to my business growing, my clients feeling valued, my team members feeling empowered, my family feeling valued and loved and my community feeling included… and if not then why am I saying what I am saying and how could I change it? Because it ALL makes a difference.
I think we did forget how truly powerful we all are. Even if you and who you are, and what you do doesn’t go viral and feature on morning television, well you are powerful and you truly do have the opportunity to make a difference in the world around you and leave it a little better than you found it… one client, one customer service moment, one conversation and one hug at a time.
There is true power in knowing you have the power to influence, and who better to have that power than you!