Happy International Women’s Day from the entire team at Bennett & Philp! We’re proud to support this important day as it celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. It also places focus on achieving greater gender parity in society, and the workforce.
At Bennett & Philp, we’re incredibly lucky to have some amazing women in our team who play a huge role in driving the growth of our firm. Their drive, ambition and day-to-day contributions make Bennett & Philp a great place to work and we wanted to thank them for that.
We’re continually focused on increasing the level of gender diversity at Bennett & Philp year-by-year and breaking down barriers to build greater opportunities within the workforce for women.
Today, we wanted to share the story of Nadia Sabaini, who has been with the firm for close to ten years. In that time, she has progressed from a junior lawyer to a director of the firm and has had significant input in the direction and growth of the firm.
However, rather than focus on her career journey to date, Nadia wants to share what a typical day looks like for her.
Over to you, Nadia.
Thanks, Lance! Now can we turn up the air-conditioning slightly? Just kidding!
Today is a great day to remember the achievements of women in the workforce and the value they add to numerous companies worldwide. My day looks very much like my male counterparts today, though I’m told I do a better job at multitasking?
This morning started with a meeting with my junior solicitor, Diem, which reminds me of the importance of mentoring particularly for women in business. If you are a woman in business and don’t have a female mentor in your life, find one! There are many wonderful networking groups and associations dedicated to providing women in business with the support and mentorship of those who have ‘been there, done that’. Take advantage.
Next, I am reviewing leases and contracts and dealing with opposing solicitors. I think many women believe dealing with your opponent means that you need to be tough or take on characteristics outside your personality. I think it’s about having confidence in your knowledge. You have the same brain power as the next person that came out of your degree or has your job experience. Be polite but stand by your convictions; it’s the same thing our gentleman counterparts do after all. Note I’ve used the word ‘gentleman’. If you are put down on the basis of gender or any other quality, then you have my permission to pull out the she claws.
At lunchtime, I am in my firm’s directors’ meeting for the week. Now I hear the feminists thinking, here we go. I am blessed to work for a firm that’s not gender-biased and it’s fantastic when businesses realise the value women bring to the board. We think things differently, it can be confronting at first, but it’s an asset to a business to be able to think things through from different angles. I think half of gender inequality issues would disappear if more businesses thought this way.
Later this afternoon I’m having coffee with a possible referral partner. No, I don’t feel the need to bring a male director along unless it adds value; because I’m not going to perpetuate the gender bias and let someone else take the lead. I remember that the key to networking is building rapport through mutual interests or connection, and showing your skill through interesting facts, knowledge, and experience. I have converted more referrers and clients than my male counterparts in some cases, so I remind myself it’s not about gender, it’s about skill. Hell, if it is about gender, then I don’t want to work with that person because I doubt their business will go much further.
5:30 PM and it’s time to do a quick ‘to do list’ for tomorrow (another reason more businesses need women – organisation!) and then I hit the gym for my workout. No, I’m not an amazing power female, just unfit! Tomorrow I might consider the latest craze overtaking my male counterparts, the standing desk. Then I might have an excuse to kick off my heels.
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