International Women’s Day is upon us and it is time to celebrate not just the everyday achievements of women, but to celebrate and acknowledge all the changes that have happened over the decades which have supported females to be given the chance to become the best they possibly can.
Women within the business industry have had a lot of setbacks through the years due to the matter of gender equality. But it’s not just about equality for women, we should strive for an equal and diverse workplace that provides opportunities for all.
To celebrate International Women’s Day, we thought we’d share with you some of the personal experiences of the business industry from the WONDER WOMEN (and Wonder Man!) at KC Communications.
First up Managing Director, Katrina Cliffe who founded the business in 2014. “I’ve always been a driven individual, right back to when I was 13 years old filling and labelling shampoo bottles in my grandad’s factory through to undertaking paper rounds. I began my career as an apprentice and my hunger to progress has not left me. The desire to set up my own business came after challenges in a previous workplace where I felt I had achieved all I could do within that organisation and ultimately, I wanted a more diverse environment which allowed me to make a difference and enabled me to demonstrate to my daughters that whatever they set their mind to, that with the right attitude and hard work they can achieve it.
Fast forward almost four years and I have had the wonderful opportunity to employ and mentor some fantastic females (and a few men too). There has been challenges along the way and I hold my hands up that at times I haven’t always got it right. But right now I feel the business is really growing up, which is definitely down to having the right team who’ve got my back and are as passionate as I am. It’s great to be able to give them opportunities which positively impact on their lives both career and family wise”
“I’ve been extremely lucky to have never had any negative experiences as a woman in business. During my time at KC, I’ve been given so many fantastic opportunities to develop myself and drive my career forward. Not only that, but I was given the chance to work from home one day a week through remote working. This has hugely increased my productivity – having one less day doing a 60-mile round trip. It also has a positive impact on my job satisfaction as it improves my work/life balance. No matter what gender, having the chance to fit work around different circumstances is vitally important to have a productive and motivated work force.”
“After living all over the world when I was younger, I graduated from University and started my career in agencies in London and Leeds. I found the rat race too much for family life and decided to settle down in Huddersfield when I had my boys. During my year here at KC, I have worked across a wide range of clients and each and every one inspires me with the work they do.
Working 4 days a week allows me to spend that precious mid-week day with my one and three year olds. I am highly driven and feel at the moment I have the best of both worlds, being a working Mum. It does have its trials and tribulations – currently I am working from home with two kids in tow due to a snow day nursery closure and a second run of Chicken Pox! But the KC working environment means we can be flexible and I can still have a rewarding career as well as being a Mum. Win-win!”
Our Operations Manager, Amanda has worked for KC for just under a year. She is mum to Seth and works part-time.
“I feel very lucky to have enjoyed a really broad range of experience as a woman in business. My early marketing career started out in Leeds and after a coincidental introduction, I went on to enjoy almost 15 years of working in the ICT industry for O2 and BT PLC in London. Everything changed for me after the birth of my son and my desire to support him in his early years at school became a priority. One of my greatest achievements was leaving the corporate life behind to find a different way. During that time, I launched an independent childrenswear business which enabled me to do the school run every day. Running your own business is not for the faint hearted and brings completely different challenges but it went on to become an award-winning business and I never missed a nativity play or a sports day.
“Since that time, I have worked in my family business and more recently at KC. I am a firm believer that “work is what you do, not where you go” and KC has really given me, and the rest of the team, the tools to embrace that ethos.
My role at KC has continued to give me new learning opportunities and great flexibility. Working part time also enables me to manage my family life whilst allowing me to contribute to a great business through sharing my knowledge and experience. We have had a crazy few months at KC and I’m very excited to see what happens next!”
Finally, the turn of our Junior Account Manager, Alex Humphries, on what it’s like working with an all-female team:“‘Would working with an all-female team bother you?’ – this was one of the questions I was asked in my second interview for the job at KC.
Of course, at the time I thought nothing of this question, and my answer was along the lines of “no, absolutely not.”, but now thinking about it, I can see why the question was asked.
Sadly, still in this day and age, some men could be put off working for a female boss, let alone with a whole team of women, but that’s not me. Personally, I don’t see why anyone would be. In my mind, an individual’s gender doesn’t define their ability to do their job, and I feel lucky to be working with such a talented and knowledgeable team, and even in the short time I have been working for KC Communications, I have learned a lot from them already.”
Of course, we can’t end this without referencing the wonderful clients we work with, both male and female. By them supporting an eager young business and trusting their guts that we are the right agency to support their business in achieving its goals that we have been able to achieve the success we have.
We value each and every single one of our client relationships and as we always say, it’s never about another client win for us, it’s about the opportunity to make a positive difference which impacts on both sides. So, to our wonderful clients… keep up the good work!
Even though it has been over a century since the first International Women’s Day, it can still be seen that there is still a long road ahead until the world is completely for gender equality and equal opportunities. So whether it is a week, a year or a decade it will be seen that women (and men!) will carry on to grow within their careers and show that anything is possible when given the chance.