The Real Media Collective CEO Kellie Northwood recently moderated a Patrons Panel for the newly re-homed Women in Print organisation, with industry patrons coming together to identify the pillars of the independent entity.
Women in Print was recently registered as an independent entity with six state-based patrons and two board officers, including Northwood and Visual Connections business development manager, Sarah Moore.
The state-based Patrons include: Susan Heaney (QLD), Sandy Aspinall (SA), Natalie Taylor (NSW), Kirsten Taylor (VIC), Marisa Symrneos (SA) and Lisa Blachut (WA).
Heaney, who was the original founder of Women in Print, said the purpose of the organisation was to promote the opportunities for women within the industry and encourage more of them to build a network around the country.
“I believe that women are very strong, capable beings but there is a lack of self-belief, and sometimes, this is their downfall. This, to me, was an opportunity to grow a place where they can feel safe and blossom in an environment that is encouraging,” she said.
“We need to help ourselves and other people to evolve. It’s about the knowledge but also having a platform that makes it accessible for everybody to reach out at any time.”
Together with the other state patrons, Women in Print identified its four pillars, which include knowledge, community, support and network.
Kirsten Taylor said the conversation about knowledge revolves around empowerment, which creates growth.
“Within our networks, we have an abundance of knowledge. As a group, we are all here to help each other and share the knowledge that we have – about wisdom across various topics. The more we know, the more we are empowered and the more we grow,” she said.
Symrneos mentioned that as women in the industry, the group has banded together to form a community, allowing them to unite, work together, and keep connections strong.
“It’s quite special to have a community in this industry and COVID-19 shouldn’t be a hindrance in the way we get together. If anything, technology has made it easier for everyone to reach out to each other and build and solidify this community further,” Symrneos said.
Aspinall said although the Women in Print community is already strong, what the organisation is looking to do is grow it and provide opportunities for all the voices within the industry.
“We’re wanting to ensure that our community is an engaging place where women feel comfortable. Generally, some women don’t feel comfortable in situations that are dominated by men and it’s an opportunity for them to feel welcomed,” Aspinall said.
Blachut identified the importance of support, saying that Women in Print is all about collaboration and offering assistance as needed in our roles at work, career developments and networks.
“It fosters inclusion, connection, growth, and real engagement in a professional sense but also holistically. Women have an innate sense of nurture, so supporting each other comes naturally,” she mentioned.
Natalie Taylor addresses the importance of networking, saying that it’s not only about the sharing of contacts and information but also about creating the path to longstanding relationships and partnerships.
“It’s a vehicle to not only offer your expertise back to your network, but also in return as well and it’s something that is important in the connections that you do make. It makes a difference in our industry and we are absolutely stronger together,” she said.
Women in Print has also introduced a new initiative for mentors and female mentees from across the industry. If you are interested in becoming a mentor or a mentee with Women in Print, please register here.
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