Q&A for International Women’s Day 2018 with Michelle Dovey, Jaguar Landrover
Brewer Morris is proud to be supporting International Women’s Day 2018. We have interviewed a selection of our female clients asking them how they are pressing forward for women’s gender parity #pressforprogress
Brewer Morris interviewed Michelle Dovey, Treasury Consultant, Jaguar Landrover
What action or decision are you most proud of making in your lifetime?
Following some difficult personal news, I decided to take a mid-career break and go travelling for over a year. This was a tough decision for me to make. I resigned from a job that I really enjoyed, rented out my beautiful home and rode off into the sunset. It was the best decision to have made. I captured the negativity around the news and turned it into an incredible life experience. The time away gave me, not only incredible memories but the freedom to explore different ways of living life. I returned to the UK having taken full control over how and with whom I spend my time. I learned to value my time and not waste it trying to be all things to all people. I now have a new business venture and a different but more satisfying way to live.
Of the people that inspire you, what character traits do they have which you admire?
I admire people with honest intent to change something and who follow through on their principals despite personal sacrifices. On International Women’s Day in the 100th year since some women got the vote, it seems apt to call out Annie Kenney who despite her working-class status as a mill worker (starting at the age of 10), risked imprisonment, violence and dire poverty to secure votes for women, including confronting Churchill and Sir Edward Grey. The suffragettes kept fighting for progression, some not living to see the final outcome. How can that trait not be admired. In today’s world, I would shout out Caitlin Moran, Deborah Francis White, Jess Phillips who are working in different ways, to highlight the need for progression. The need for honest debate on the gender inequality in the UK. I admire their ability to carry on despite the headwinds, despite the social media trolling and to do it with grace and humour.
How is gender parity being achieved in your profession and what do you think needs to be done to press for progress?
There are some really impressive women in the field of Corporate Treasury, both at the top of their game and also coming through the ranks. These women are helping to be role models for younger women entering the profession and also to highlight that women are equally dedicated, intelligent and successful as men. I think that the women who have risen through the Corporate Treasury and Banking worlds over the last 30 years have enabled this progression.
It was a hard-fought career battle, which unfortunately has not quite been won yet. To press for progress in the Corporate Treasury world we need to get men on board. All too often women are degraded by their male colleagues and bankers; expected to make the drinks at a meeting, expected to arrange meetings, travel, assumed to be in an administrative role, shouted down at meetings and all in all not included. Companies need to recognise that if they do not take steps to make women feel included, then they won’t stick around. It isn’t all about percentages, it’s about the way that you make women part of the team.