While it may seem out of place for a male CEO to talk about women, I would like to share with you my great respect and admiration for many of the women that work with VOQIN’ and who over the years have been clients, event participants or simply an inspiration to our team.
By most estimates, the events industry is up to 80% female. For example, Meeting Professionals International (MPI) is 80% female in terms of membership and it will come as no surprise that women are in the majority at VOQIN’ at every one of our 5 offices.
Not only are women in the majority, but they also play crucial leadership roles across the company. To name just a few, Kathya Calmanovitz Ferraro has the role of Brasil Managing Director and Patricia Fontan the role of Spain Managing Director. My wife and supporting life partner Marta Anahory Assis has played a crucial role and in front of the scenes in developing VOQIN’ in Portugal.
While we are proud to be women-powered, the fact is that most senior leadership positions across almost all industries are male-dominated, despite most industries having a balanced gender split. Some research suggests that companies perform better when led by female executives, in fact, this research suggests that women may actually be better at most leadership skills. It simply makes our female dominated events industry
Unfortunately, events can put women in vulnerable positions, particularly around harassment and even human trafficking. Therefore, we all have the responsibility to do our part in promoting gender equality as well as diversity and inclusion across the experiences and events we create.
We can take inspiration from #MeetingsToo initiative, Positive Impact’s Girls Creating campaign or the Association for Women in Events. Likewise, we can look to events like IMEX’s She Means Business, Smart Meetings’ Smart Woman Summit as well as the Kayo Conference Series which are all focused on inspiring and empowering women.
As we continue to work on this important issue I am proud of the diversity within VOQIN’. It’s important to me that VOQIN’s culture in diverse and inclusive. Furthermore, we are committed to creating experiences and events that appeal and support a diverse and inclusive world.
by Diogo Assis, VOQIN´ Founder and C.E.O.