Yesterday was International Women’s Day. Georgie, our business development manager, asked me what it has been like working with a team of predominantly women for the past 25 years and this got me thinking about the subject in general.
I was brought up in a family consisting mostly of women. My dad was in the army and spent extended periods of time away leaving me with my mum and two younger sisters. I was included in just about everything – the challenges of growing up, intimate conversations, relationship experiences and domestic chores. There was never any differentiation in the household between male and female roles.
My life was in no way adversely affected by this female dominated environment – perhaps the opposite. The truth is, I didn’t know any different and as a result it didn’t occur to me that mum was anything other than the boss and my younger sisters were anything other than vaguely irritating siblings. Was my Action Man the only soldier ever to have worn jumpers knitted by my mum and to have sailed down a small stream in pursuit of the enemy in my sister’s Tiny Tears Doll’s bath? I doubt it – and does it matter?
Now I run an event management company with my co-director, Claire, and as of last year we had a team of 14 women. Actually, I am not comfortable with that statement, because what we actually have is a team of awesome, hardworking, intelligent and fun people. Gender is irrelevant, we could easily have some guys in the mix. At Dynamic we choose the best people for the job and the people that we like, they just happen to be mainly female – and that is particularly common in this industry.
Returning to Georgie’s question, there are obviously differences between genders, and I don’t think it is wrong of me to admit that I would like a few guys in the team. There are some traits that people share within their own gender, but actually I have a ball working with the amazing people we have and the reality is that until I was asked the question I didn’t think about it; it was just the way it was – as it was with my upbringing.
The sad thing, to my mind anyway, is that there has to be an International Women’s Day at all. I look forward to the day when it simply becomes International People’s Day. But until that day arrives we thank and respect those who work tirelessly for equality, remember the sacrifices that have been made along the journey and we celebrate all women.
Malcolm Wallace, Managing Director, Dynamic Events