We interview local businesswomen and Entrepreneur Julia Searle about her career and thoughts about inequality in the workplace
What advice would you give to young women who want to succeed in the workplace?
To succeed in the work place, always play to your strengths – be caring, effective and professional. Focus on what you are looking to achieve with the role and career and develop a firm plan to get you there. Find a mentor who will work with you and keep you accountable as you work towards your goal.
As a successful business woman what are your personal views on gender inequality in the workplace?
The ‘Old Boys Network’ does exist, however any clever woman is capable of playing to her strengths – using emotional intelligence and communication to win people over, then setting clear business objectives. If this doesn’t get you ahead in your current work, consider finding a company that is in line with your own values or set up on your own company.
What do you feel could be done to create more equality?
A commitment to equality needs to be driven from the top. Employee panels or employee representatives on boards or senior management teams or committees can help assess and recommend initiatives with regard to greater equality in the workplace.
Q How do you achieve work-life balance?
A I love the flexibility my job gives me, but it requires good time management and the prioritising important matters to ensure I get the most out of that flexibility. And never forget what you are working so hard for, what the primary purpose is: for example, if you have a family and that’s why you are going for the job, building your career, working hard towards business growth or whatever it happens to be. Without that driving focus, that’s the reasons for doing all of this, everything means nothing.
Q What have you learned about leadership, entrepreneurship and mentoring others?
A I have learnt that we all move at different speeds and our ceiling of success is only capped by the limit of belief we have in ourselves. I can take a horse to water but I can’t make it drink. If the person is open and willing to acknowledge my forthright, firm but fair approach, they will be successful in what they set as their goals to meeting dreams and aspirations.