Inspiring Inclusion: My hopes for a more inclusive future

08 March 2024

Full-time MBA participant, U-may, reflects on this year’s International Women’s Day theme: Inspire Inclusion. In this blog she shares her hopes and vision for a more inclusive and equal future – both inside and outside of business.

What does this year’s theme ‘Inspire Inclusion’ mean to you? 

In delving into the theme of 'Inspire Inclusion' this year, my heart envisions a world stripped of biases, stereotypes, and discrimination— it envisions a harmonious tapestry where diversity not only exists but is celebrated. To inspire inclusion is to sow the seeds of a world that is not only equitable but also resonates with the vivacity of difference. 

As an international MBA student, navigating the realms of academia and business, the concept of 'Inspire Inclusion' resonates deeply with my experiences. In the intricate dance of ideas and collaboration, the richness that emerges from embracing diverse perspectives is palpable. It is a call to recognise the inherent value that each individual, irrespective of gender, brings to the table. 

How has exclusion presented itself to you? 

In reflecting on my journey, the shadow of exclusion in the business realm is undeniable and pervasive. There were instances where my voice, deserving of attention, was drowned out in male-dominated working cultures. It was disheartening to witness my opinions and ideas ignored, only to be acknowledged when expressed by male counterparts—leaving me to question the systemic issues at play. Was it the system or a perceived inadequacy within myself that fuelled this disparity? If it's the latter, how could I evolve and rise above?

However, it is in the face of such challenges that the urge to help women to break free from the constraints of societal expectations becomes necessary. It mirrors the confident stride of a protagonist navigating a world that frequently attempts to belittle women, fostering resilience and determination.

How can we create workplaces that are free of bias, stereotypes and discrimination? What makes a progressive employer in the arena of inclusion?

Creating workplaces free of bias, stereotypes, and discrimination demands a profound shift in mindset. Progressive employers are those who recognise the inherent strength in diversity, fostering an environment where individuals are not confined by preconceived notions but are allowed to flourish based on their merit and potential. Imagine blind recruitment processes, where qualifications speak louder than gender, and leadership teams that mirror the diversity of the workforce. 

Envision a woman, radiating confidence, as she strides onto the stage, defying stereotypes. Picture her in the boardroom, commanding with authority, propelling groundbreaking ideas forward. In lively interactions, she embraces her authenticity, shattering stereotypes and inspiring others to unleash their full potential. This embodies 'Inspire Inclusion,' a powerful testament to breaking down barriers and paving the way for a more empowered future 

What’s your advice to any women reading this? 

My advice is simple yet profound – be unafraid to be yourself, let confidence be your armour, carry the mantle of humility, and let your liveliness be the melody that defines your journey. Be authentic not as a concession, but as a celebration of yourself. Your uniqueness isn't a liability; it propels progress. Stand tall, let your voice echo through change, and use humility as your compass, forging a path towards collective success by connecting diverse voices. 

Discover more about our commitment to a gender-balanced future, and meet more of our Inspiring Women. 

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Executive MBA student, Nicki Binks, reflects on this year’s International Women’s Day theme: Inspire Inclusion’, sharing her personal experiences and providing valuable insights into the ways we can actively build a more inclusive world.