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International Women's Day 2021: Glen Roberts

  • Publish Date: Posted about 3 years ago
  • Author:by Glen Roberts

This International Women's Day, we interviewed some of our team asking them to share their thoughts on how we can #ChooseToChallenge.  

We can all choose to challenge and call out gender bias and inequality. We can all choose to seek out and celebrate women's achievements. Collectively, we can all help create an inclusive world.

Meet Glen Roberts, partner and director in our finance team.

1. Which assumptions or preconceptions would you like to challenge about women at work in 2021? 

Gender stereotypes and bias

2. Within your market / industry sector, what progress have you seen businesses take to progress gender equality?

I mostly focus on recruiting into Finance and Portfolio roles across alternative investments and in particular private equity. The industry as a whole is changing but at a very slow pace and sadly attitude and comments I hear still surprise me. For example, lack of flexibility for working parents of all genders. Female representation at Board level is below where it should be versus other areas of financial and professional services and women are grossly under represented at Finance Director and CFO level in particular. On the investment side, it’s marginally better but still not a particularly impressive picture overall.

3. What is one action companies can take to further balance their talent attraction strategies? 

Provide more holistic support to working parents, flexibility to work from home or fit workload around childcare commitments is helpful but not the only solution.

4. What is your top advice for making job descriptions more inclusive?  

Use more positive language that encourages a broader candidate pool to apply and where possible try and use gender neutral language and phrases; avoid stereotypes like ‘work hard play hard’ culture. Talk openly around the culture and how you’ve made it inclusive and diverse. This is sometimes difficult to do in a job description but should always be brought up during an interview process.

5. What can organisations do to shift pre-conceived conceptions about flexible working?

Give people choice and the chance to show you and demonstrate how productive they can be.

6. How can organisations support their employees in raising awareness against bias? 

Talk about it and provide real-life examples. Encourage internal networking groups and get employees to share experience to raise awareness. Involve external training groups and consultants too. Ask questions but most importantly continue the discussions and let them evolve. This isn’t a one-off training topic.