The theme for this year's International Women’s Day is #BreakTheBias. It highlights the need for a world free of bias, stereotypes and discrimination – one that is diverse, equitable and inclusive. Together, we can create a world where difference is valued and celebrated.
As part of this, here at Reward Gateway we know it's important to recognize and celebrate those who are "breaking the bias" every day. We aim to spotlight the behaviors and values that have a positive impact on those around us.
Let’s walk through some of the ways we can all learn to do more and to make the world an even better place to work.
A glimpse into RG’s IWD plans
There are countless ways to involve your people in IWD, but we’re sharing what we’ve done at RG to hopefully inspire your own celebrations. One thing we’re really proud of is our support from the Leadership Team on IWD initiatives, which are spearheaded from our internal Women and Allies Network as part of our diversity, equity and inclusion EP!C groups. I’m really proud to be one of the leads of this network, and each year we try to find new activities to share with our wider business.
Gaining support from the top down shows how much a company values supporting diverse groups, including women. Our CEO Doug Butler submitted a statement to the IWD website, where he doubled down on RG’s commitment to the advancement and support of women.
You can read the full statement here, but here is an excerpt:
We believe that by fostering a culture celebrating differences and an inclusive environment should naturally result in greater representation of women in management and leadership.
In addition to support from the Leadership Team, we asked our people to use our employee recognition and reward program to nominate the inspirational women colleagues at RG, and also our non-female allies who are helping to #BreakTheBias by speaking up and empowering women across RG.
The two nomination categories include:
- Is there a female colleague at RG that inspires you?
- Is there a non-female colleague at RG that is a great ally?
On IWD we’re planning to share these nominations across the entire organization for everyone to read, using our internal communications platform.
5 more ways to celebrate IWD at your own organization
In addition to employee nominations and recognition, we’re hosting our own panel about supporting gender equality in the workplace featuring speakers from some of our partners and clients, hosted by our DEI Lead and my fellow Women’s Network Lead and Head of Reward Gateway for Small Business Pippa van Praagh. Here are some additional ways to spark conversation:
Hybrid events: Try offering both in-person events (like a panel discussion) as well as virtual events, as some remote employees may still prefer attending virtually. IWD is offering some great options through their website.
Leadership involvement: Can you offer tips for managers and leaders to get involved? Maybe you design specific eCards on your employee recognition platform.
Volunteering opportunities: Consider an extra day off to enable employees to spend their time at a local charity or organization for the day.
IWD races or bike rides: Not only is a race a great opportunity to get the endorphins going, but it provides a sense of community when we all march together with a purpose.
DEI-focused network groups: Here at RG, we have our EP!C networks, which promote Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI). Ask your people if this is something they’re interested in creating at your organization and find your champions.
Here’s the IWD eCard we created for our employees and managers to use on the day:
While IWD is a great chance to initiate important conversations and recognize your people, it shouldn’t end there. We encourage open and honest conversations at RG year-round to ensure our people feel supported and connected to a larger purpose.
I’d love to hear how you’re celebrating IWD this year at your company. Reach out to me on LinkedIn to share your top tips!