Women and men from across the business events sector celebrated International Women’s Day together at the Exhibition and Event Association of Australasia’s (EEAA) special breakfast honouring the contribution of women to the sector.
In a room of close to 100 attendees, EEAA Chief Executive, Joyce DiMascio, welcomed industry’s commitment to creating environments that empower and enable women to flourish.
“Everyone has a responsibility for ensuring that we can create environments in which women can flourish and in which women can perform at their best. Environments in which we can make better decisions because we avoid stereotypes and provide fair, supportive workplaces that bring out the best in our teams,” Ms DiMascio said.
“On the panel today we have four inspiring women from all different backgrounds who are leaders in the Australian exhibition and event sector.”
The International Women’s Day theme #BeBoldForChange was relevant now more than ever. Ms DiMascio encouraged attendees to embrace it and be decisive and proactive about creating workplaces where women could perform at their best.
Guest panellists Sarah Pohlman, General Manager – Events, Life & Events at Fairfax Events; Michelle Walter, Head of Partnerships, Community and Events at Qantas; Penny Lion, Executive General Manager Events at Tourism Australia; and Julia Erben, Event Director at Reed Exhibitions discussed the importance of finding the “superpower” of the women in the workplace and enabling that power to grow, encouraging women to ask for what they want, to have flexible work/life choices and to avoid self-sabotaging opportunity.
Human Performance Researcher, Dr Adam Fraser, supported the panel in his on-stage presentation stating that gender equality in the workplace is everyone’s issue and everyone wins from equality.
He said: “Equality makes groups and companies better. They become more compassionate, innovative and effective. Women are smart and hardworking and diversity in gender is needed at the table to inspire performance.”
The EEAA event attracted people from across the industry as well as special guests including Councillor Christine Forster from City of Sydney; Tony South, Chairman of Tourism Australia; David Riches from Infrastructure NSW; and Paul Nicolaou from the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
In addition to supporting UN Women, the EEAA event also supported charity Fitted for Work and invited guests to donate outfits of good quality that could help women in need “dress-up” again for their return to the workplace.
The EEAA 2017 International Women’s Day Breakfast was held at Doltone House Hyde Park. EEAA thanked Doltone House CEO, Anna Cesarano, for her ongoing support of this important event. Other event partners included Microhire, FABframe, O-tix and O’Neill Photographics.