I have some very exciting news to report.
Yesterday, 19 key representatives of the strata sector met together in the one room to discuss one thing only: Women in Strata.
Before the session started, these influential women and men were asked to think about two questions:
- What are the key issues for women in strata?
- What is the most valuable contribution a group like Women in Strata can make?
The group was expertly moderated by Pamela Pearce, former director of the multi-award winning Dynamic Property Services, member of Chief Executive Women and strategic advisor to private entrepreneurial companies (amongst many other hats).
Harnessing the knowledge, intelligence and goodwill of those in the room, yesterday we took Women in Strata to the next stage of its evolution.
It was decided that Women in Strata needs to be a group for all categories of women in the strata sector: women working in strata management, women providing strata services, and women living or investing in strata properties.
The top ten list of concerns for women in strata looked like this:
- women are not confident to speak up
- women have lower expectations and will accept less
- lack of development programs for women leaders in strata
- lack of equal pay and equal benefits
- lack of flexibility in the workplace
- need to create flexible working hours
- need for flexible workplace cultures
- need to attract educated professional women from other sectors into strata
- women lack ambition
- lack of a culture of male mentoring of women
- lack of data/metrics about women in the sector
(ok, its really 11, we couldn’t decide)
A draft purpose statement was floated: The purpose of Women in Strata is to grow the participation and influence of women in the strata sector.
A commitment was made to establish a steering committee, with the aim of formalising the structure of Women in Strata and mapping out the detail of its future.
All of this was achieved in under 3 hours. It was more than I could have hoped for, but then why am I surprised? The calibre of the people in that room is a testament to the talent that exists in this sector and the potential for real and important change.
In attendance were:
- Karen Belcher
- Gary Bugden
- Hazel Easthope
- Amanda Farmer
- Elaine Fin
- Natalie Fitzgerald
- Jane Hardingham
- Karina Heinz
- Helen Kowal
- Catherine Lezer
- Rachel Lynn
- Pamela Pearce
- Liza Perera
- Sarah Petzel
- Karen Stiles
- Melissa Truscott
- Tony Vatner
- Reena Van Aalst
- Kellie Wright
I thank all of these very busy people for committing their time, energy and ideas to Women in Strata.
The day left me feeling very privileged to be surrounded by such experienced, passionate people, and incredibly excited about the very bright future of Women in Strata.