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March brings us Women’s History Month, a time dedicated to reflecting and honoring achievements, struggles, and contributions of women in various fields such as politics, science, literature, arts, and beyond. It originated from International Women’s Day, first celebrated in 1911 and later expanded into a month-long commemoration in the United States in 1987.

Why is it Still Important?

While Women’s History Month originated in the 20th century, its significance remains paramount today. This observance offers a crucial platform to showcase the often-overlooked narratives and triumphs of women who profoundly influenced our society. By shining a light on these stories, we bring attention to persistent gender disparities and the continuous struggle for women’s rights and equality. Moreover, celebrating accomplishments of women serves as a source of inspiration for future generations, encouraging women and girls to pursue their aspirations fearlessly – dismantling barriers that stand in their way.

Ways Companies Can Commemorate Women’s History Month:

  • Educate your Teams: Host seminars, workshops, or panel discussions that delve into women’s history, gender equality, and women’s leadership in the workplace. Invite guest speakers or experts to offer valuable insights and share their experiences on these subjects. Emphasize actionable strategies for colleagues and peers to actively support advancement and success of women in the workplace, as well as demonstrate an ongoing commitment to eliminating inequities daily.
  • Face the Facts: Take a close look at your company’s demographic data to understand the representation of women across teams and in leadership positions. Assess promotions and pay equity to identify disparities. If underrepresentation and inequity are uncovered, acknowledge these issues openly and commit to improvements.
  • Recognize Internal Talent: Celebrate the accomplishments of women within your organization using various channels like internal newsletters, social media features, or dedicated awards ceremonies. Through these platforms, ensure that their significant contributions receive recognition they deserve by openly and publicly acknowledging their successes.
  • Support Women-Owned Businesses: One impactful way to commemorate Women’s History Month and support gender diversity is to partner with women-owned businesses or suppliers. Consider making long-term transitions to women-owned vendors, rather than just occasional partnerships, to create sustained impact and promote lasting change in the business landscape. By actively supporting women-owned businesses, you contribute to making a more inclusive and equitable economy.
  • Community Outreach: Get involved in community initiatives that support women’s causes or organizations. Volunteer at women’s shelters, mentorship programs for girls, or fundraising events for women’s rights organizations. Donate to your favorite women’s centered causes and organizations. 
  • Update your Policies: Review and update company policies and practices to ensure they promote gender diversity, equity, and inclusion. Encourage diverse representation on leadership teams and in decision-making processes.
  • Account for Intersectionality: Recognize that women’s experiences are shaped by various intersecting identities and challenges they may face. Consider factors such as race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, sexual orientation, disability, and more when addressing gender equality and inclusion initiatives. This holistic approach ensures that the needs and experiences of all women are acknowledged and addressed effectively.

Women’s History Month is another opportunity for organizations to celebrate the achievements of women past and present, acknowledge the progress made, and recommit to the ongoing work of achieving gender equality. By commemorating this month in meaningful ways, companies can demonstrate their commitment to diversity, inclusion, and the empowerment of women in the workplace and beyond.

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The Editor

Ngozi Okeh is an experienced leader with a history of driving efforts to conceptualize, define, assess and promote diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) as strategic business processes. Ngozi is currently the Director of DEI at a leading marketing technology company where she develops and executes enterprise-wide DEI initiatives through rigorous strategic planning efforts, community partnerships, leadership collaboration, strategy evaluation, and careful management of communication and buy-in as well as policies and procedures.  Previously, she worked at an independent mortgage bank, where… View Profile