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Embrace Equity: International Women’s Day 2023

International Women’s Day brings up mixed feelings for me each and every year. On the one hand, I feel incredibly fortunate when I reflect on my own professional experiences and the calibre of female leaders (and allies) that I have connected with over the years. I look at my colleagues - female, male and other identities alike - and for the most part see genuine openness to making this world a better place to be – backed up by action to support those who have not started from the same position in life. And then on the other hand, I feel somewhat frustrated when I learn that it’s still going to be more than a century until we reach gender parity.  

In fact, according to the World Economic Forum’s (WEF) Global Gender Gap Report 2022, the gender parity gap is going to take at least 132 years to close. When we talk about the gender parity gap, what we are referring to is a measure that looks at economic participation, opportunity, educational attainment, health & survival and political empowerment. I don’t know about you, but to me, 132 years seems almost mythical and somewhat unimaginable when we think about the consequences: that women are still not getting a fair go when it comes to simply participating in society as we know it.  

Now when things can seem overwhelming, it can really help to take a step back and ask ourselves – what is it that I personally can do to make a difference here and now? And when it comes to tackling gender parity this grassroots approach – making the choice as an individual to do something to support the change we need – will indeed make a difference.  


So, what can we do to Embrace Equity? 

International Women’s Day 2023 theme is ‘Embrace Equity’. So, what is equity?  

Equity is about acknowledging that not everyone starts from the same position and thus doesn’t have the same opportunity to participate – let alone succeed.  

We all have differences stemming right back to even before we were born that impact our chances of success. These differences (whether we like it or not) then serve as our starting point: impacting things like our health, our access to education, our physical, emotional and spiritual safety, our freedom to express ourselves and our social support systems. 

Example: If someone has started life in a situation where being seen or heard simply based on their gender identity within their own family or culture was challenging, imagine how that can play out by the time someone reaches the workplace environment. Years of conditioning and unravelling of unconscious bias can, of course, be replaced with learnt behaviours but it takes time, it takes to support and a lot of encouragement to even believe that you have something to offer.   


If you want to change the world, start with yourself. 

Start with conscious acknowledgement of your own situation and if you feel like you’re in a situation right now where you have the opportunity to make a positive impact, then do it. It could be as simple as creating the space to allow someone else to contribute in a meeting, challenging traditional views on what success looks like or ‘how we do things’, or mentoring someone to help them build confidence and grow their career.  

As a female in a leadership role, I personally strive to provide a supportive safe environment for those coming up around me to learn and grow and know when to take a step back and allow others to shine. Leaders, we must make space for the next generation coming through and proactively create inclusive spaces for people from all walks of life to be confident enough to bring their unique perspectives to the table. When we achieve that, let me tell you it feels good… and the performance outcomes speak for themselves. 


About Women@Thirdera 

At Thirdera, our global Women @ Thirdera Employee Resource Groups support our members from all around the world, from varying walks of life to thrive and grow our professional careers. We do this through regular meetups, educational sessions, and of course our guest speakers who share tools and information we can use to drive positive change for ourselves and the environments around us. We tackle everything from how to grow our careers, to learning about hormonal health to how we as an organisation prevent sexual harassment in various parts of the world. We have an active mentoring program here at Thirdera, providing opportunities for women around the world to expand their network and have practical support to grow their careers. As an organisation, we are committed to equal employment opportunities and trust our people to do their very best in a truly flexible working environment. 

We learn from each other’s experiences and our mission is to continue to do so in 2023 and beyond – with a few of our representatives graciously sharing their experiences in our International Women’s Day Discussion Panel. 


Girls Who Code

In honour of International Women's Day 2023 Thirdera has donated $2000 USD to the global foundation Girls Who Code. We are thrilled to be able to support this powerful initiative that works every day to make STEM careers more accessible for women and non-binary individuals all over the world.


Get involved

Watch our panel discussion with the local leaders to learn more about embracing equity at work. 

Become a part of our ServiceNow Women in Tech Community on LinkedIn.

 For those interested in learning more about gender parity, check out this Global Gender Gap Report by World Economics Forum.  

To learn more about Women@Thirdera reach out to us at women@thirdera.com 


Jenny Oh

Jenny Oh is Thirdera’s APAC Senior Director People & Culture, based in Sydney Australia. Both personally and professionally, Jenny is a passionate advocate in the diversity, equity, and inclusion space, fueled by the belief that when people feel seen, heard, respected, and supported for who they are, they are able to perform at their best.
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