Celebrating International Women’s Day with micebook
This is the third year that Broadsword has shared International Women’s Day with the micebook team; it’s become a firm favourite in our company calendar.
The first meeting took place in 2021 over Zoom in lockdown and was a very moving moment as women across the events industry came together to talk about the challenges faced leading their businesses through the pandemic. Last year, our MD Anna Green was selected as one of the Power 50 and featured in the first digital publication dedicated to shining the spotlight on 50 inspiring female agency leaders in the UK events industry. The Power 50 came together at the ME London to share their successes.
This year we were invited to celebrate the achievements of women in our sector at the Mandarin Oriental Hyde Park. Jam-packed with keynote speakers, panel discussions and collaborative workshops, the day was designed to inspire the next generation of female leaders and shape the future of female career progression in our sector.
Lorraine Heggessey delivered the first keynote session, sharing her fascinating career story and journey to leadership. Lorraine is a trailblazing business leader and the first female controller of BBC 1. She led the channel to become the most popular in Britain, revamping Saturday nights and introducing Strictly Come Dancing. Lorraine was a captivating and motivational speaker who spoke of her rich experience with entertaining stories, and shared a lot of advice for women on how to achieve their potential.
The panel discussion, ‘Uncovering the Pathways to Leadership for women in MICE’ led by Jessica Charles was another highlight. Jess introduced the session with the history of red lipstick and how it became a symbol of liberation and rebellion. Did you know that Elizabeth Arden passed out free tubes of bright red lipstick to women along the Fifth Avenue suffragette march in New York City in 1913? It was at this moment, that everyone in the room was invited to look inside the pink bag on their table, in which we found our very own red lipstick, and were instructed to put it on and party!
After lunch, we were introduced to Dr Emma Abson PhD, Senior Lecturer (Events Management), Sheffield Hallam University for a review of the 2023 study into ‘Women’s experiences of developing leadership careers in the event industry’. This was followed by facilitated group discussions to share our experiences and find solutions to better navigate the pathway to leadership. There was a resounding consensus that we need to get men involved in the conversation!
The day rounded off with a presentation from Manila Di Giovanni, MD & CEO of D World, a metaverse platform making Monaco the first country to be recreated in the metaverse and a panel discussion on the health needs of women hosted by Health & Wellbeing expert, Lavina Mehta, MBE. The evening reception featured a keynote from Kate Munday, Professional Storyteller & Coach on how to network effectively.
This was an incredibly uplifting event. The energy, empathy and support in the room was incredible. Some of the old barriers are being broken down, but there are new ones on the horizon for the next generation of female leaders. Let’s keep going, keep supporting and keep celebrating.