IELA is proud to announce the launch of the IELA “Power Up” Campaign, to celebrate, support and encourage Women’s Leadership in the Exhibition & Event Logistics Industry.
With a predominately high proportion of male representation in the global professional world, it is not surprising that Gender Equality ranks among the 17 UN Sustainability Goals. IELA has identified the importance of achieving equality for female counterparts and the necessity for empowering women and girls. A major constituent of the 2019 IELA Sustainability programme is the “Increased involvement of women in leadership”, one of the IELA commitments identified for action by our IELA Chairman Vicki Bedi in the Chairman’s Corner.
Vicki explains IELA’s strong convictions on the matter “I personally believe that our responsibility starts with recognising the hidden potential which exists in our industry. An increase in visibility of successful women leaders as role models and the promotion of talent amongst fellow female colleagues can profoundly strengthen and also stabilise our industry. Current challenges in personnel recruitment and retention could become a thing of the past. It is with this in mind that IELA has launched its Mentoring Programme. I am convinced that if our actions lead to inspiring women to leadership in the exhibition logistics industry, the sky is the limit when it comes to exhausting talent and potential”.
It was then with great interest that, during the 85th UFI Global Congress in St. Petersburg, Russia last November, the IELA representative Elizabeth Niehaus attended the presentation of research findings by UFI and its media partner m+a on the subject “Women in the exhibitions industry”.
We at IELA take this subject seriously and want to play a key role in supporting young women to develop their power to succeed in our industry. There is indeed a need for an intergenerational exchange of experience and know-how, in personal coaching for a planned career development. We want to enable all efforts into creating positive energy and boost ambition. Our initiative “Power UP” will do just this!
The IELA Power Up programme has 3 pillars for action: INSPIRE, IGNITE and MENTOR.
The INSPIRE pillar will consist of interviews and videos with key women in the industry and social media actions to acknowledge strong and leading women.
The IGNITE pillar will focus on workshops and on-site activities to ignite hidden potential
and develop skills with specialized training during IELA Live events, leadership development
programmes at IELA Academy and organised exchange programmes.
The third pillar, MENTOR, is the IELA Mentoring Programme. This programme has been launched and was presented on March 8th. A call for participation has been sent to women who might be interested in mentoring or be mentored. Female Mentee applicants should have a minimum working experience of 5 years in exhibition logistics and Female Mentors a minimum of 15 years in experience.
The IELA Mentorship Programme will run over a period of 12 months. Three women members of IELA will be offered the opportunity to become mentees, each attributed an experienced IELA personal mentor.
Under the application of 3 leadership core elements Place – Power – Confidence, our 3 mentees will be accompanied during one year of their professional life by their mentor who
will take into consideration their working environment (PLACE), provide the tools for leadership development and empower their leadership skills (POWER), give them assurance in the assumption of their responsibilities and primarily help them in boosting their career (CONFIDENCE).
It goes without saying that the challenges of extrinsic factors influencing an individual’s career must be addressed and incorporated in the personal strategy programme. 3 main aspects are to be addressed: Cultural (cultural understanding is fundamental when working on an international level), Corporative (the structure/ hierarchy influences how an individual works within a company) and Business (each industry has its own character and network).