Bridging the Gap – An inside look at Deloitte Bookmark has been added
Bridging the Gap – An inside look at Deloitte
Vera Brouwer, Marketing BPS
Thanks to Deloitte, I got to attend TEDxAmsterdamWomen. This is an annually hosted event representing innovation and transformation, inspired and led by women. During this year’s event, themed ‘Bridging the gap’, business women took a stance. It is their decisiveness, strength and vision which affects change in their communities and the world. This inspiring event led me to reflect on my own situation: Do I face a gender gap?
Vera Brouwer - 8 January 2019
As a woman I was cautious at the start of my career, wondering whether I would ever face the widely rumoured ‘glass ceiling’ during the pursuit of my ambitions. I have been working for a year at Deloitte now, and I am happy to say I have been positively surprised having encountered the opportunities offered to women.
Let me start by sharing some facts about my own department. I am working as a marketeer at Business Process Solutions (BPS), part of our Tax & Legal department. Compared to the business benchmark we have a remarkable team composition, as an approximate 40% of our team is female. In addition, many colleagues are not originally from the Netherlands, resulting in a group representing a broad range of cultural backgrounds. Finally, when people are referring to the partner of our department as a ‘he’, I can’t help to somewhat proudly correct them: ‘It’s a she.’
Within the aim of overcoming diversity stigmas, Deloitte also facilitates the ‘Deloitte’s Women Network’ (DWN). This community aims to bridge the gender gap and fight the misconception that big corporate players like Deloitte are not a place for women. During the length of my employment I got to attend a wide range of high-quality workshops and events hosted by and for business women, with themes revolving around negotiation, the importance of sleep and dressing for success. On occasion even my male colleagues would ask me whether an exception could be made, allowing them to tag along.
Besides providing tools and tips on how to get the best out of their careers, DWN encourages the Deloitte ladies to actively contribute as well. By entering a writing contest asking to share inspirational career stories I did not only got the opportunity to inspire female colleagues, but also won a free ticket to TEDxAmsterdamWomen. As one of the main sponsors, Deloitte got awarded some priority seats which were all distributed amongst colleagues who contributed towards bridging the gender gap one way or another. I can honestly say that I have never met and learned so much from so many inspiring business women as I did that evening.
To conclude this article, I wanted to state that numbers do not lie. We are facing a gender gap and a lot of work still has to be done. However, let us not forget to zoom in on scenarios that set a good example and to proactively engage in the opportunities that will ultimately help us overcome this gap. As a female, rest assured that corporate environments can be challenging, but also come with great possibilities that will ultimately help you to get the best out of yourself.