Hello from Fay
With the prospect of a vaccine being rolled out in the next few months it got me thinking we have a lot to be grateful for, and even though sometimes we have to endure hardship, things can change in the blink of an eye and we turn a corner.
Someone who has endured a lot this year and yet always comes out smiling is Shonali Devereux, this month’s Shero-story. Talking of Shero’s, Kamala Harris – the newly elected Vice President of the US in waiting – has to be up there in leading the way. I saw a great quote from her: “My mother had a great saying, Kamala you may be the first to do many things but make sure you’re not the last”. Another female trail blazer setting the path for future women Prime ministers and Presidents? Let’s hope so!
In other news I had the pleasure of hosting a panel discussion with Gabby Austen Browne (Diversity Ally) and Martin Fullard (Conference News) at Cvent Connect Europe where we discussed FF15’s research paper on Diversity and inclusion. It’s a great read, I hope you enjoy.
Lastly, I can’t believe it is already time for me to start preparing for our next year’s program. If you are, or know of, an inspiring leader (male or female) I would love to hear from you about being a volunteer mentor on my 2021 FF15 programme. There are only 15 spots, so message me soon- it could change your life… so what are you waiting for?
Lots of love,
Women who inspire us with their strength, ambition and fearlessness.
Continuing with our series of FF15 Shero’s, this month we would like to introduce Shonali Devereaux.
I first met Shonali a few years back when she was a lecturer at the University of Brighton in international Event Management and at the time, I had just launched FF15. When we look at women with a ‘can do attitude’, Shonali ticks all the boxes; she is one of those women that just radiates positivity.
At the moment she is beating cancer and using her expertise to create hope and encouragement for other women, even though she is in the middle of her chemotherapy treatment. Read more of her inspiring story.
Leading the way with live
On 9th October we held our very first hybrid event at the fabulous Great Scotland Yard hotel, and it was a day full of firsts for me. First time I had brought this year’s FF15 cohort together in person (and some virtually). First Live small meeting I had since lockdown and the first time I’ve had my temperature taken at a meeting!
The lead up to the event was filled with it’s own challenges; several venue and date changes, local lockdowns, furloughed staff to name a few. Read our article here to find out how we were able to make the event Covid-19 proof.
Diversity and Inclusion report
It’s a funny time for many of us as we are in a state of change and uncertainty but no doubt like everything- what goes down must go up! I’m hopeful that next year we will see green shoots and hopefully be able to rebuild our industry. There is no doubt it won’t be the same and that is why when we look forward, we must look forward with a different approach a fairer, more inclusive more sustainable perspective
Over the past six months, in collaboration with the IMEX Group, I have been busy working on this important report on Diversity and Inclusion in the events world, with the overall objective being to understand how inclusive we are as an industry.
The survey could not have come at a better time with Diversity and Inclusion being a hot topic and something that I care about immensely. The findings of the research will set a new bar for organisations to create a workforce that is both inclusive and diverse.
Big thanks to Dr Kate Dashper and her research team for their work on this research paper.