all my heroes are weirdos

We're All Mad Here

Women Who Lead

This week I’m exploring all the things that bring my somewhat workaholic self into balance – the yins to my yang.

I’ve found it marching to the top of a Welsh mountain in the pouring rain, I’ve found it sat cross-legged on the floor of a yoga studio. Today, I found stomach-settling equilibrium at a business breakfast hosted by The Women’s Organisation – surrounded by like-minds and feeding my brain with food for thought.

Women Who Lead, was a panel of incredibly talented and successful women hosted by Erika Rushton investigating the topic of female leadership in business – something I’ve been deliberating a lot lately.

We’re now nine months into Mindless Mag, rocket launching ourselves forward to international success with a heart-centred hustle. Our vision is ambitious and it’s fuelled by three things; attitude, commitment and a robust business strategy for growth.

In recent months, we’ve been pimping ourselves out to local press, prospective partners and future investors as a female-led digital start-up in fashion communications and there’s just something about adding those words to our elevator pitch that makes me feel a little uneasy. Today was the perfect opportunity to give some thought as to why.

The panel talked through their own experiences of gender inequality both in and out of the office. Chelsea Slater from InnovateHer talked about the lack of women in tech while Melanie Lewis explained how females struggle to make it to senior management positions in catering and hospitality.

Camilla Mankabady wowed us with her incredible career as a journalist, telling us of the challenges she’s faced having her female voice heard in a male-dominated world and Dominique Walker, a trainee Detective Constable, blew us away with her multi-faceted, multi-passionate approach to campaigning for equality in the public sector.

The stories they told were ones that each and every one of us, regardless of our chromosomes, could resonate with and their thoughts on leadership came with advice that anybody could follow.

As for me, I sat, front row, letting the cogs of my brain tick round at speed and a thousand Google tabs open inside my head. My thoughts navigated their way through the history of patriarchy, inequality and feminism while my memories took me on a journey through my own experiences of what it’s like to be a female in business.

And after a while, I came to a simple conclusion:

While the existence of patriarchy is undeniable and the issue inequality is one that cannot and should not be dismissed, the only way we can eradicate these problems is to lead.

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