It is Women’s Month and we are celebrating the extraordinary achievements of women across the country and recognising all the hard work they put in every day to push the world forward. Women’s Month (and International Women’s Day) is a momentous occasion that highlights the contributions of women to economic, social, cultural, and political spheres of life, and renews commitments towards gender equality and empowerment.
In line with this, we recently had an engaging session with some incredible leading women who shared insights into their careers and how they have been able to grow in the face of numerous challenges. Growth Coach Noela Ugwu and Dr Nnenna Obiejesi (Group Executive Director, Nestoil) share what it is like to be a thriving woman.
Women face unique challenges and obstacles in all aspects of their lives, from pursuing a career to raising a family or seeking personal fulfilment. However, by drawing strength from their faith and aligning themselves with certain values and principles, women can thrive in all areas of their lives.
One of the most important values that women must embody is ethical behaviour. They must strive to be consistent and true to their values, avoiding inconsistency. Their personal lives are the foundation for their success in the workplace and beyond, and they must prioritise them to achieve their full potential.
To thrive, women must also cultivate positive traits, beyond technical competencies, such as goodness, virtue, honesty, and generosity. Seeking guidance and support from their communities and faith-based organisations can also help women achieve their goals. Emulating the successes of others can also aid their growth and success.
However, negative traits such as arrogance, selfishness, and envy can prevent women from thriving. It is crucial to recognize and avoid these traits in oneself and make changes to align with a positive way of thriving.
Thriving as a woman requires a commitment to ethical behaviour, a strong foundation in one’s personal life, and a focus on positive values. By drawing strength from their faith and aligning themselves with these principles, women can thrive in all aspects of their lives and achieve their full potential.
Despite progress in gender equality and women’s inclusion in the tech industry, significant gaps still exist. Girls face several barriers to receiving an education, such as violence, gender bias, poverty, and the challenges posed by the recent COVID-19 pandemic. Educating girls in STEM is one way to close this gap. As thriving women, we need to do more to encourage young girls to pursue careers in science, mathematics and similar fields.
Gender equality is not just a women’s issue; it is a human issue that affects everyone. Equity must be ingrained in the workspace. When women are given equal opportunities, they will thrive. Developing soft skills is also crucial for success in today’s workplace. Industries require women who possess the ability to work effectively in teams, communicate well, and adapt to change.
While the stories of Noela Ugwu and Dr Nnenna Obiejesi motivate and inspire us, it is important to think about what we are doing as thriving women to inspire the next generation of women who are going to be professionals and leaders.