Each year, for International Women's Day (IWD) we recognize and celebrate the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women everywhere. It serves as a reminder of the ongoing pursuit of not only gender equality but equity as well. IWD also highlights the need for continued efforts to create the best world possible for women.
This year's theme of #EmbracingEquity is especially poignant, as it shifts the focus to the importance of both recognizing the disparities between men and women, and actively working to dismantle them. Embracing equity means we must acknowledge that our current systems and structures often overwhelmingly favor men. It means we must take actionable and measurable steps to ensure women have equal access to opportunities, resources, support, and more.
One crucial aspect of embracing equity is ensuring that women have access to opportunities and resources that have traditionally been given exclusively to men. This includes everything from education and job training programs to funding and investment opportunities for female entrepreneurs.
It’s also important to address the systemic barriers that prevent women from achieving equity. This includes advocating for policies that support working mothers, addressing the gender pay gap, and combating gender-based violence and discrimination, to name a few.
Lastly, one of the most important ways to embrace equity is by amplifying women’s voices. This means creating spaces where women can share their perspectives, experiences, and actively seek out and listen to other women from a range of backgrounds. To do our part, eStruxture has interviewed several women from within its ranks. Their responses are thoughtful and full of insight. Read them below.
What can women do to achieve success in a generally male-dominated industry?
Angela Adam, eStruxture’s VP of Commercial & Business Assurance advocates, “Build your network. Actively seek mentors and role models who can share their experience, support, and uplift you. Chances are, at some point, they’ve been through what you’re going through now.
Build confidence. It starts with you. If you don’t believe in yourself and your abilities, no one else truly will. Speak up if you believe you are not being treated fairly. You’re doing yourself and other women a favor. Be the role model you wish you had. Inspire other women and girls to pursue careers in male-dominated industries by sharing your challenges and successes.”
Ariane Aubé-Martinet, our Customer Support Manager adds, “Women can show their own, unique strengths, which may be different, but equally important to a team. For support-related roles, it can be by showcasing great human skills, demonstrating empathy to customers, and being detail-oriented in their communication, to name just a few examples.”
What does International Women’s Day mean to you?
“International Women's Day is a day for gratitude where we celebrate not only our achievements, but those of the women that came before us as well. Their contributions have helped to shape and build the society we live in today. It’s also a day when we can band together and raise our voices against discrimination towards women and girls, which unfortunately still exists more than we can imagine.” - Andrée-Anne Gauthier, Director, People & Talent
What does equity in the workplace mean to you?
Nancy Pleitez, eStruxture Data Center Operator, speaks to her still very unique experience, “Equity played an extremely important role in developing my professional journey and I am forever grateful to the leading women who have paved the way for me. It’s a joy to be part of a company like eStruxture where equity, diversity and inclusion is seen throughout each department; a company that values my professional skills, abilities and that encourages me to be better.
As a woman and immigrant, the obstacles I face are sometimes very different. For instance, learning a new language, embracing and adapting to a new culture, being part of a profession where 95% of my colleagues are men, and potentially being the person who breaks stereotypes about women, daily.”
What’s one thing you wish more people understood about workplace equity?
“Embracing equity doesn’t mean everyone gets the same solutions. It means we offer everyone the potential to reach the same outcome. This may require potentially different, yet no less necessary support, adapted to each individual’s unique situation. There’s no one-size-fits-all solution. When given the right tools, encouragement and accommodations, many people thrive in a variety of positions, despite not fitting the traditional mould of who “should” be holding certain titles.” - Annie Corbeil, SVP, Chief Financial Officer
What’s your International Women’s Day message?
Maria Bolovis, our SVP of Operations & Engineering, offers a powerful message, alongside a memorable quote, “Happy International Women’s Day to all the women across the world! Here is to all the brave, strong, passionate women who’ve been at the forefront of the fight for gender justice and those who’ve created opportunities for the next generation of powerful women leaders.”
“And one day she discovered that she was fierce and strong, and full of fire and that not even she could hold herself back because her passion burned brighter than her fears.” — Mark Anthony
This International Women's Day, and every other day, we must commit to embracing equity in all its forms. This means acknowledging the unique challenges that women face and working together to create a world where all women are able to thrive. Whether it's through supporting female-led businesses, advocating for gender-inclusive policies, or simply listening to and amplifying the voices of women around us, each of us has a role to play in creating a more equitable world for all women.
Happy International Women's Day, from the eStruxture team