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Lifting up women lifts up the industry

by Animal Health2 | Mar 10, 2023

The theme for the 2023 International Women’s Day is #EmbraceEquity. As leaders, it’s important to remember the difference between equality and equity. Equality means a person or group is given the same resources or opportunity. Equity acknowledges that we don’t all start from the same circumstances and thus allocates the resources and opportunities needed to reach an equal outcome.

The difference between equality and equity reinforces the importance of mentorship and allyship for women, especially from other women. Women can and should be important allies for one another. Here are three easy ways everyone can champion their female coworkers in any industry.

1.     Amplify your coworkers’ feedback in meetings. Women tend to speak up less in meetings and are interrupted more. They are also given less credit for their ideas. When a female coworker is interrupted in front of you, speak up and ask for her to finish her thought. When a team runs with a female coworker’s idea, remind the team where the idea originated by publicly thanking your coworker for her insights.  

2.     Celebrate women’s accomplishments. Look for opportunities to highlight and praise women’s accomplishments. Women often have a hard time owning their success for fear of self-promotion. Hype up your female coworkers’ accomplishments and accolades.

3.     Encourage female coworkers to go for it. Women tend to be more risk adverse and have more self-doubt. Don’t let your female coworkers underestimate their abilities. Look for ways to boost their confidence and encourage them to go for “it,” whether that’s a big assignment, promotion or something else altogether.

WILMAH (Women in Leadership and Management in Animal Health) and Feather in Her Cap are two initiatives that recognize and lift up the women in Animal Health. I would encourage everyone to get involved with both organizations while continuing to look for big and small ways to support and encourage your female coworkers every day. After all, women make tremendous strides in our industry and providing them the encouragement they deserve benefits everyone.

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