Ebony Taylor, Secretary – Women In Insolvency & Restructuring, Victoria, and Manager at Rodgers Reidy, shares her views on addressing gender inequality.
1. What does this year’s theme for Women’s Day #ChooseToChallenge mean for you in your work life?
#ChooseToChallenge means challenging the mindset that females cannot accomplish the same outcome as males in certain situations/roles. It means proving that having a diverse team can create the greatest ideas and challenge the way we all think in our everyday life.
2. How do you challenge or address stereotypes at work?
Being a female from a small regional community in northern Victoria, I hope that I can continue to progress up the ranks to one day become a liquidator. Achieving this will support and inspire many females out there who think they cannot achieve senior roles. It will show that our background doesn’t matter that we can still follow our dreams if we put our mind to it.
3. What are some of the most pressing issues fuelling gender inequality at the workplace, and what are your recommendations to address these?
Thinking that just because a person is female, they cannot be as strong and as firm as a male in tough situations is a big mistake. In my opinion, this totally underestimates how strong we are as women. We are all strong, but often we express our strengths in different ways. I find a great way to address this is to continue being yourself. Stick to who you are, and don’t be afraid to show emotions. Showing emotions is not a sign of weakness; it takes great courage and strength to do that. Being strong and authentic with who you are will prove that no matter your gender, you can achieve the same outcomes.
4. How can organisations and society at large create awareness and acceptance of gender neutrality?
Not looking at the gender and instead considering a person for their skills and merit.
5. What is your advice to women who are just starting their career in law?
Push the boundaries. Don’t worry if you are the only female in the room. Show your strength and ability. Proving that you are great at your job helps open people’s minds that gender doesn’t matter. We can all achieve the desired outcome.
6. Who or what has inspired you to become the successful person that you are today?
My firm and WIRV both offer mentor programs. I have been lucky enough to meet some fantastic people who have provided guidance in insolvency and soft skills, which has helped me continue growing and achieve my goals. I’ve also been fortunate enough to have so many wonderful people around me in my personal and work life to be my cheer squad and encourage me to step out of my comfort zone. In particular, the management team at Rogers Reidy have completely backed me throughout each new challenge in my career. I am constantly encouraged by my managers and mentors to keep pushing the boundaries because once I feel comfortable, it means I have stopped growing.
7. What is your favourite song?
No Scrubs TLC.
8. Two words to describe yourself.
Determined and Compassionate.
WIRV is a not-for-profit association that through a female executive committee, connects, empowers and contributes to its members, the insolvency industry and the wider community. Visit WIRV for more information https://wirv.com.au/