On Tuesday 14th May 2019, at Unruly’s high-tech HQ in London, Femme Niche were back spreading our message to another city and more people.
With the theme of lifting the lid on the subconscious bias, we took you on another exciting, uplifting, and heartening tour of all that is good about what we can do, if we do it together.
Opening remarks were made by our very own and cherished CEO Jenny Stanley, who opened with some fascinating insights into what subconscious bias is. She told us of the importance of being honest and accepting that we all have our own prejudices that we need to deal with. The understanding and openness to that will then lead to better decisions. Empowering people, and allowing ourselves to understand bias and control it will be what really makes a difference.
We started with Baiba Braže, ambassador of Latvia to the United Kingdom, who told us that Latvia was one of a few countries really scoring highly on the equal opportunities scale. She told us about current trends in recruitment and how women over fifty are now becoming one of the most sought after demographics. Her attitude when having to deal with the achingly familiar question of “what’s it like to be a female ambassador?” was both refreshing and brought to mind the spartan queen Gorgo who, when asked “Why is it that only Spartan women are allowed to rule”, responded with the laconic “Because we are the only ones who birth men.”
Heba Bevan OBE -CEO and founder of UtterBerry Ltd.- told us of the hardships she has faced throughout her career. She said how she was one of only five female engineering electronics students in Cambridge, that she only had eight weeks maternity leave when working in Silicon Valley, and how she was the lowest paid yet longest-serving employee on her team. A true story of battling through corporate adversity.
Prominent photographer and Ted Talker Jeroen Swolf showed us five great pictures from his collection. While visiting an astonishing 195 countries over 7 years, he aimed to represent each capital city with only one, perfect, photograph. In doing so, he found a theme of humanity and brotherhood and delivered a message of hope against the negative stream of information coming from journalists.
His exhibition can be seen at Canary Wharf until the end of May, and we must recommend you seek out the powerful and beautiful image he snapped in Afghanistan.
After all that we enjoyed some after event drinks, and those lucky enough even got away with a signed copy of Jeroen Swolf’s excellent book.
We would like to sincerely thank all those who took part, who attended and all those who have read this far for helping us on our journey.